Split Pea Soup with Ham Bones & Hocks Sous Vide

The Dutch call it “Snert.” In Poland it’s common military fare where it’s prepared so thick that it will hold a spoon straight up. In Sweden and Finland, it’s traditional to eat with pork and pancakes on Thursdays as a preparation for the traditional Friday fast. Here in the old U.S. of A, the venerable split pea soup was said to be introduced in New England during the 19th Century by French-Canadian millworkers. I find that factoid interesting in that our Canadian culinary cousins tend to eat yellow split pea soup rather than the green version they apparently got us hooked on!

Split pea soup and others in the dried legume category are not all that difficult to execute and when you prepare it sous vide, well heck, it’s just downright simple. Just place every ingredient in the bag, vacuum seal and cook! When your finished just open the bag and carefully remove the meat. When cool enough to handle shred or chop the pork and toss away all bones and any other un-edibles. As far as thickness goes it’s quite up to you how you like your soup. You may serve it as is right out of the bag as a chunky stew adding extra broth if you like it thinner. Or you can do as I did and puree the soup in a high speed blender to get a silky version that’s as elegant as any fancy schmancy bisque you might find. As far at the meat goes I like a combination of smoky hocks and meaty ham bones but you can use one or the other if need be. There are also options on how to incorporate the pork. You can puree it up with the base, or fold it in to the finished soup or do as I did and use it as a garnish, piled up in the center of the serving bowl. Any way you choose, this sous vide version of split pea soup is ridiculously easy to prepare and tasty to boot! 


• 1 pound split peas, picked over

• 2 tablespoons olive oil, evcp or similar

• 1 large onion white, peeled, cored and diced

• 2 large carrots, peeled and diced

• 1 large celery stalk, trimmed and diced

• salt and freshly ground black pepper

• 1 large garlic clove, peeled, cored and chopped

• 2 tablespoons thyme leaves, fresh, chopped

• 1 bay leaf

• 2 quarts’ homemade chicken stock, or your favorite brand

• 1 1/2 pounds smoked ham hocks

• 1 1/2 pounds’ ham bone with meat 

Split pea soup ingredients

sous vide split pea soup image


1. Preheat the VacMaster SV1to 85C/185F

2. Using the VacMaster bag filler and appropriately sized VacMaster bag(s) carefully add all of the ingredients to the bag or bags as necessary.

3. Using a VacMaster Chamber machine carefully vacuum pack the soup mix and cook for 5-6 hours or until the peas are easily smashed with your fingers.

4. Carefully remove the bag from the SV1 and gently remove the ham hocks and ham bones from the soup and set aside. 

5. Working in batches if necessary puree the soup in a high speed blender or food processor until smooth and adjust seasonings as necessary with additional salt and pepper as you see fit.

6. After the meat has cooled carefully remove the meat and discard bones and unwanted sinew etc.

7. Coarsely chop the meat and reserve.

8. Serve the soup in large shallow bowls garnished with the chopped meat.

sous vide split pea soup photo