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Yellow Pea Soup

Yellow Pea Soup, or "Ärtsoppa" in Swedish, is a traditional dish that has been enjoyed in Sweden for centuries. It is a hearty and comforting soup made with yellow split peas, vegetables, and flavorful herbs and spices. This easy recipe will guide you through the process of creating a delicious bowl of this classic Swedish soup.
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The Story

Yellow Pea Soup is a staple in Swedish cuisine and holds a special place in the hearts of many Swedes. It is often enjoyed on Thursdays as part of a long-standing tradition. The soup is thick and flavorful, with a rich taste derived from the slow-cooked yellow split peas, combined with savory vegetables and smoky ham or bacon. It's a satisfying soup that warms you up from the inside out.


1 ½ cups dried yellow split peas
1 onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
200g ham or bacon, diced (optional for a non-vegetarian version)
6 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon dried thyme
Salt and pepper to taste
Fresh parsley, chopped (for garnish)
4 Servings

Prep Time:

0 Hrs 15 Mins

Cook Time:

2 Hrs 0 Mins

Total TIme:

0 Hrs 0 Mins



Rinse the yellow split peas thoroughly under cold water and drain.


In a large pot, heat a bit of oil or butter over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, carrots, celery, and minced garlic. Sauté for about 5 minutes until the vegetables start to soften.


If using ham or bacon, add it to the pot and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes until it begins to brown.


Add the rinsed yellow split peas, broth, bay leaf, and dried thyme to the pot. Stir to combine.


Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Cover the pot and let it simmer for 1.5 to 2 hours, or until the peas are tender and the soup has thickened. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking.


Once the soup has reached the desired consistency, remove the bay leaf and season with salt and pepper to taste.


Use an immersion blender or a potato masher to partially blend the soup, creating a thick and chunky texture. Adjust the thickness by adding more broth if desired.


Serve the Yellow Pea Soup hot, garnished with fresh chopped parsley.

Tips for this recipe

Yellow Pea Soup often tastes even better the day after it is made as the flavors continue to develop. Consider making it in advance and reheating it when ready to serve. The soup pairs well with traditional Swedish crispbread or a crusty bread roll on the side.

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