This smoky, creamy, comforting vegan split pea soup is perfect on a cold day. Packed with wholesome ingredients like split peas, cashews and garlic, this recipe will warm you up as you wind down at the end of your day.
This recipe was originally published in January 2011 and reposted in February 2023 with updated ingredients, copy, instructions and images.
What are split peas?
I love making this split pea soup when its cold outside, and I don’t have much time to cook. Packed with nutrients, split peas are cheap, and packed with fiber and a good source of plant-based protein. I usually buy them in the bulk section of my grocery store, but they are also available in pre-packaged bags. They do not need to be soaked and cook much faster than dried beans. Once opened, store the lentils in an air-tight container.
Ingredients for this Vegan Split Pea Soup
These secret to this creamy soup is soaked, raw cashews. I blend these with water and add a touch of acid to counteract the natural and subtle sweetness of the cashews.
Chopped white onion, garlic and thyme and sauteed in some vegan butter, thyme and liquid smoke. Next I added split green peas and vegan bouillon, then simmered until tender. I blended everything up in a high-speed blender and passed through a chinois (a fine-mesh sieve also works) to create a super silky texture. If you like your soup a little chunky, just blend half of the simmered soup to the blender, then return everything back to the pot!
What to serve with split pea soup
I love serving this soup with crusty bread (this focaccia is easy and so good!), crackers or biscuits (check out my olive oil biscuits here). Top with microgreens or fresh thyme and cracked pepper. Other toppings that would be great here is tempeh bacon, shiitake bacon or tempeh cubes.
This soup is:
- Quick and easy (can be made in 30 minutes)
- Made using simple and wholesome ingredients
- Packed with protein and fiber
- So comforting and delicious!
Hungry for more soup? Check these recipes out!
Minted Pea Soup with Cashew Cream and Basil OilPrint
Vegan Split Pea Soup
- Total Time: 1 hour
- Yield: 4 servings
- Diet: Vegan
This vegan split pea soup is so simple, warm and comforting. I added in cashew cream and liquid smoke to add richness and smokiness to this velvety soup. This is perfect on colder days served with a side of biscuits, crusty bread or crackers.
for the cashew cream
- 1 cup raw cashews, soaked in plenty of water for a few hours or overnight, then drained
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- a few pinches of flaky sea salt
- 1 cup water
for the soup
- 1 TB olive oil
- 1 large white onion, chopped
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 4–6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 TB vegan butter
- 1/4 tsp liquid smoke
- 1 1/2 cup split green peas, picked over and rinsed
- 3 tsp vegan bouillon, whisked and dissolved into 2 cups hot water
- 4 cups water
- extra cashew cream
- thyme sprigs
- biscuits, crusty bread, crackers
to make the cashew cream
- Place all of the cashew cream components into a high-speed blender and blend until completely smooth. You can leave it in the blender, as the soup is going to be transferred to the blender at the end.
to make the soup
- Preheat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
- Add in the onion and stir to coat. Season with the salt.
- Allow the onions to soften for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally and turning down the heat if they start to burn.
- Add in the thyme and stir to coat.
- Reduce the heat to medium, and add in the minced garlic. Allow it to soften for 3-4 minutes.
- Add in the liquid smoke and stir.
- Add in the split peas and stir.
- Pour the liquid bouillon mixture to the pot, then add the 4 cups of water.
- Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer.
- Slightly cover, then allow to simmer for about 25 minutes, or until the split peas are tender.
- Allow the soup to slightly cool. Taste it and adjust any seasonings.
- Add a couple of cups of soup to the blender with the cashew cream. Puree until smooth.
- If you want the soup super silky and velvety, pour it through a chinois or fine mesh strainer into a clean pot.
- Repeat this process with the rest of the soup. Give it a stir to move the cashew cream around.
- Transfer the soup into bowls and serve immediately.
Once pureed and strained, this soup tastes best right away. If you want it chunky or only puree half of it, it can be refrigerated and served later.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 50 minutes
- Category: Lunch, Dinner
- Method: Sautéed, Blended, Simmered
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: vegan split pea soup, easy split pea soup
This looks delicious. I don’t have any split peas on hand but I do have mung beans — do you think that would work?
Abbe, not sure of how the texture of the mung beans would turn out here after cooked and pureed. But if you try with good results, I’d love to know!
Thanks. I'm a vegan working out of town… needing some simple easily prepared tasty food. This will fit the bill nicely.