Yellow Split Pea and Paprika Soup (Vegan)


Despite it being Easter this coming weekend, with the snow still thick upon the ground up and down the UK, I don’t feel too bad about posting another frugal warming soup from the Penniless kitchen.

Now there’s frugal and then there’s frugal and split peas definitely belong in the latter category. They are ridiculously cheap and as a quick scan of My Supermarket reveals, you can pick up a 500g bag of these nutty little fellows for around only 50p in any of the major supermarkets.

Split peas come in both yellow and green and while I’ve never yet figured out if they actually taste any different, for some daft reason when I make split pea soup out of green split peas it’s all about dark green woody herbs, but with yellow split peas it’s got to be smokey spices. And yellow split peas it is today, because I happen to have a huge 3 kg bag of them in my pantry!

I like this soup served with crunchy croutons, which I make by roughly cubing the otherwise unwanted crusts of wholemeal bread and frying them in hot oil in a wok for several minutes. After blotting on kitchen towel I store these in an airtight jar for whenever they are wanted. Never throw away crusts! If you don’t have enough time to process them into breadcrumbs or turn them into croutons before they go mouldy, just pop them in the freezer to deal with another day. When wanted, quickly defrost by toasting straight from the freezer.

Yellow Split Pea and Paprika Soup


  • 2 cups yellow split peas, rinsed
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil 
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 3 or 4 carrots, diced
  • 8 cups hot vegetable stock (I use Marigold Bouillon)
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • half a tsp ground black pepper
  • salt to taste 


  1. Heat the oil in a large pan and add the chopped onion. Saute for a few minutes then add the garlic and saute for a couple more minutes.
  2. Add the paprika and cayenne and allow the spices to cook briefly before adding the carrots.
  3. Allow to cook for a few minutes more then add the hot stock, split peas, tomato puree and black pepper.
  4. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat, cover and simmer for about 1 hour – stirring occasionally – until the split peas are tender.
  5. Take off the heat, add the lemon juice and blend until smooth – I use a hand held immersion blender.
  6. If thicker than desired reduce the thickness of the soup with a little more hot water and season with salt to taste. Reheat if necessary.
  7. Serve with crispy croutons if liked.

8 thoughts on “Yellow Split Pea and Paprika Soup (Vegan)

    • All the stuff I’d usually be looking forward to in spring – like fresh crunchy salads – are on hold, decided to have a warm grain salad today, just to at least feel like I’m not constantly eating stew!

    • It makes such a huge quantity that I had more today, the warmth of the spices is even better the next day. Cheers for dropping by!

  1. Oh my, this soup is good! I’m coming out of the food fest that is Christmas where I eat far too many of the kinds of foods I really don’t like anymore, just because it is what you do. My body was starting to crave its normal food again and I found your recipe a couple of days ago. I had everything already, which was handy. It’s so tasty and delicious. I usually use lentils rather than split peas as there aren’t many recipes for them. Every now and then though, I buy a bag and they languish in the cupboard. Hence they were there waiting for their moment. Seriously, the best split pea soup I have ever eaten. I halved the recipe as its just for me, although I will try and tempt my daughter too. Happily I get to eat this tomorrow too. It was easy to make and I will make it many times I am sure. Thank you for the recipe! I loved it.

    • Thank you for the lovely comments! Very glad you enjoyed the soup 🙂 I too like lentils very much, but split peas also have a uniquely satisfying texture once cooked, and it’s definitely worth keeping some in for those days you want something simple but filling and warming – they cost surprisingly little too. I think it was a sensible idea thing you halved the recipe, this makes a large quantity! And I completely agree with you about craving simple food again, I’ve indulged too much rich stuff already and it’s not even New Year yet! 🙂

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