Craving homemade soup? This fix-it-and-forget-it Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham recipe is an easy way to enjoy a bowl of warm comfort food on a chilly day.

Two bowls of Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham and two spoons. Soup is topped with shredded ham. Let’s be honest; split pea soup will never win any beauty contests.

Fortunately what this soup lacks in visual appeal it more than makes up for in fantastic flavor. If you’re a split pea soup fan (like me), you’ll loooove the convenience of this dump and stir version of Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham.

Let’s start with the obvious question: what are split peas? 

Split peas are actually peeled, dried peas that have been split in half. These are not your average garden pea; they are a special variety that are grown just for drying purposes. 

So what makes split peas so special? 

They are nutritional powerhouses! Split peas are surprisingly high in protein and fiber for their petite size. They are also a nutrient-dense, meaning they are packed with vitamins and minerals while being relatively low in calories. You get a lot of bang for your buck with these little guys. 

Two bowls of Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham. Surrounded by toasted crostini pieces and salt and pepper shakers. Soup is topped with shredded ham. How to make Split Pea Soup in the slow cooker

The ingredient list for this Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham is pretty straight forward: dried split peas, carrots, celery, onion, chicken broth, ham hocks and a few seasonings. Simply dump the ingredients into your slow cooker and give them a quick stir. That’s all that is needed to jumpstart the goodness.

The result of your 10 minutes of “work” is a pot full of savory, smoky deliciousness. The hardest decision you’ll have to make is if you should enjoy it right away or freeze it for another day. (Delayed gratification is overrated, in my opinion.)

What kind of ham do you use for this Split Pea Soup recipe?

I highly recommend seeking out smoked ham hocks for this recipe. They were readily available at my local grocery store.

Though not pretty to look at (I’m sensing a theme here), I love the additional layer of flavor that they smokiness adds to the soup. Plus you can pluck the extra meat from them to use as garnish for the soup. A leftover ham bone works great, too, but I don’t usually have that on hand. 

Note: You can make this soup without the ham, but you’ll definitely want to amp up the herbs and veggies to make up for the depth of flavor the ham brings to the party. 

Add this Split Pea Soup with Ham to a soup buffet!

I love including this Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham on a buffet of soups for entertaining. Mix up the flavors and include a white chicken chili and an Italian wedding soup, too. All you need to do is grab a few loaves of crusty bread and you have an easy way to serve a crowd of diverse tastes.

Hosting a large group doesn’t get much easier than that!

Two white bowls of Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham on a dark wood background. Garnished with extra ham.

Have leftover split peas? Try some of these other yummy recipes:

Lemony Yellow Split Pea Side Dish with Garlic and Ginger – Kalyn’s Kitchen

Eggplant Potato Curry with Turmeric Split Pea Rice and Spiced Yogurt Soup – Eats Well with Others

Split Pea Soup with Chicken Sausage – Pressure Cooking Today

Collage picture of Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham

Yield: 8 servings

Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham

Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham

This belly-warming Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham recipe is one of my favorite comfort foods during chilly weather. It freezes well, too. Great for groups and soup buffets!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 20 minutes


  • 1 (16-ounce) package dried split peas, rinsed
  • 5 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 3 ham hocks (about 1 1/2 pounds)


  1. Place all ingredients in the slow cooker; gently stir. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.
  2. Remove the bay leaf from the soup and discard. Pull ham hocks out of soup and remove remaining meat from ham hocks. Reserve meat.
  3. At this point, you can either remove a few cups of the soup, puree in the blender and return to the slow cooker or use your immersion blender for 10 seconds to puree the soup slightly. (I like my soup a bit chunky. Puree to your personal preference.) Stir the reserved ham back into the soup and serve warm.