This easy recipe for Split Pea Soup can be made on the stove or in your slow cooker. The kick from a dash of chipotle powder and bites of Smoked Gouda keep things interesting. A cozy dinner for a lazy (or busy) day. 

Split Pea Soup with Smoked Gouda (Slow Cooker) from The Food Charlatan

So when I started this blog over 3 years ago, I of course posted all of my favorite recipes right away. What’s a food blog without the tried-and-trues? There are some recipes that I still make all the time for my family, but don’t get much attention here on the blog, because well, only my mom was reading then. Which is kind of a shame, because hello, look at this soup. You should be eating it.

I usually go back and change the story of the post too, to keep it fresh, but for some reason I just couldn’t let this one go. I mean, who could toss out a list of their favorite movie quotes? Apparently I can’t. So here it is, Karen From Yesteryear (circa April 2012):

Eric’s birthday is coming up. At work they sent him a get-to-know-you questionnaire so that they can read it at their next staff meeting. The last question was What is your favorite movie? Instead of naming one, he listed 16, complete with genre categories.* That’s what you get when you ask people like us about movies.

Split Pea Soup with Smoked Gouda (Slow Cooker) from The Food Charlatan

It got me thinking about some of my favorite movies, and of course my favorite quotes from them. Wanna hear some?

1. Han Solo: Keep your distance, Chewie, but don’t LOOK like you’re trying to keep your distance. [Chewie barks a question] Han Solo: I don’t know. Fly casual!
This is, of course, from Star Wars. I don’t even need to make an explanation for Han Solo’s awesomeness.

2. Chunk: Mikey, Mikey, this ain’t the kind of place you wanna go to the bathroom in.
Mama Fratelli: Why not?
Chunk: Because they might have daddy longlegs and um… dead things, Mikey, DEAD THINGS!
!! I was obsessed with this movie as a tween. What, you weren’t??

Split Pea Soup with Smoked Gouda (Slow Cooker) from The Food Charlatan

3. Miracle Max: Get back, witch.
Valerie: I’m not a witch, I’m your wife!

Vizinni: No more rhymes now, I mean it.
Fezzik: Anybody want a peanut?

These are from The Princess Bride, possibly the most quotable movie of all time.

4. I brought you flours. Harold Crick says this to Ana Pascal in Stranger Than Fiction when he brings her gourmet flours to bake with. My kind of man.

5. The kid is a L7 weenie. From the Sandlot. Yes please. (Do you want a s’more? Some more of what?)

Split Pea Soup with Smoked Gouda (Slow Cooker) from The Food Charlatan

6. Buzz! Your girlfriend! Woof!

Kevin Mcallister on Home Alone. I will never get over this movie. It cracks me up. Just the other day my friend and I were in our church’s kitchen and I held up a spoon and said, “Is this real silver?” And she whispered loudly, “Put it in your purse. Just put it in your purse!!” And I knew that I had found a Home Alone kindred spirit.

7. Dionne: Hello? There was a stop sign.
Cher: I totally paused.
This is from Clueless. I think this to myself every time I roll through a stop sign, and imagine myself saying it to a cop as an excuse. But officer, I totally paused! 

Okay people. Your favorite movie quotes? Everybody’s got one! Come on, spill in the comments!

Split Pea Soup with Smoked Gouda (Slow Cooker) from The Food Charlatan

Hi, it’s the Real Me again. Let’s talk split pea. I usually make this soup around Easter when I have a leftover ham bone, but I was totally craving it recently. I didn’t feel like buying an entire ham just for soup, so I used a ham steak and it worked out beautifully. Make sure you add whatever bones you have to the soup, it lends great flavor.

The first time I made this, I used the ham bone from this Raspberry Chipotle Glazed Ham (my favorite ham, ever.) The chipotle gave the soup a little kick that I loved, so I’ve incorporated it into this recipe by adding chipotle chili powder. If you don’t have any, you could use regular chili powder, or omit entirely. I really love the extra layer of smokiness it adds, as if smoked ham and smoked gouda weren’t enough. << This, by the way, is totally not optional, in my opinion. Gouda for president!! It’s a game changer, friends.

^^Here’s my original photo, just for kicks :)

Do you guys give up? Or are you thirsty for more?
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Split Pea Soup with Smoked Gouda

5 from 2 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 1 hour 45 minutes
Total: 1 hour 55 minutes
Servings: 8 Servings
This easy recipe for Split Pea Soup can be made on the stove or in your slow cooker. The kick from a dash of chipotle powder and bites of Smoked Gouda keep things interesting. A cozy dinner for a lazy (or busy) day. 


  • 2 cups dried split peas, rinsed and drained
  • 10 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons chicken bouillon
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 onions, chopped (3-4 cups)
  • 2-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 3-4 medium carrots, chopped (2 cups)
  • 1.5 pounds smoked ham, still on the bone, or a 1.25 lb ham steak*
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle chile powder, or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme, or to taste
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 6 ounces smoked Gouda, chopped into cubes or shaved


  • Rinse and sort the peas, then add to a large stock pot with 10 cups of water. Add 3 tablespoons chicken bouillon (I like the Better Than Bouillon brand). Turn the heat to high and boil for 2 minutes. Add the bay leaves, onions, garlic, celery, carrots, ham bone, and chipotle powder. Bring to a boil again, then reduce to a low simmer.
  • Simmer for at least an hour and a half, or until the vegetables are soft and the soup is at a consistency you like. If the ham is still on the bone, remove from the soup and chop, discarding the bone. Return the meat to the pot.
  • Salt and pepper to taste. Taste it first; remember, ham is very salty. You might not need any.
  • Remove soup from heat. Dice the smoked Gouda into bite-size cubes, or use a vegetable peeler to shave it. Add the cheese to the hot soup and stir. Alternatively, you can add the cheese to each individual bowl.

Slow Cooker Instructions:

  • Add the peas, water, chicken bouillon, bay leaves, onions, garlic, celery, carrots, ham, and chipotle powder to a very large crock pot. Turn it on to low and cook for at least 4 hours, or up to 8. Chop the ham and return, if necessary. Season to taste and garnish with smoked gouda.


*You could also use an equivalent amount of ham hocks. Add to the soup whole, then chop at the end.
If you use a ham steak, chop before adding to the soup, but be sure to add all of it, including the bone. Don't trim the fat. That's where much of the flavor comes from.
^^UPDATE 2017^^ I made this again a few weeks ago and didn't bother chopping my ham steak before throwing it in the crock pot. I just tossed it in, then removed it after slow cooking, shredded it with 2 forks, and put it back in. I like the texture of the meat better this way, but either way will work great!


Serving: 1bowl | Calories: 350kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 65mg | Sodium: 1270mg | Potassium: 859mg | Fiber: 14g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 4043IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 210mg | Iron: 4mg
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Calories: 350
Keyword: Smoked Gouda, soup, Split Pea
Did you make this? I'd love to see it!Mention @thefoodcharlatan or tag #thefoodcharlatan!

*Eric’s favorite “movie”:

Comedies: Groundhog Day. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.
Classics: Casablanca. It’s a Wonderful Life. The General.
Animated: Ratatouille. Wall-E. Spirited Away.
Epics: Star Wars. Lord of the Rings. Indiana Jones.
Action: Inception. The Matrix.
Others: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Cast Away. The Truman Show.

Some other cozy soups you will love:

Kale, Chicken and White Bean Soup with Parmesan Shavings:

Kale, Chicken & White Bean Soup

Cream Cheese Chicken Chili: This would be great for Game Day! You could even serve it as a dip with tortilla chips. Yummm:

Cream Cheese Chicken Chili (Crockpot) from

Cheeseburger Soup:

Cheeseburger Soup

Other great versions of the Almighty Split Pea:

Pressure Cooker Split Pea Soup with Ham from SkinnyTaste
Cauliflower and Yellow Split Pea Soup with Turmeric from Bojon Gourmet
Herbs de Split Pea Soup from Half-Baked Harvest

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    1. Hi Courtlyn! The recipe describes how to make this using a leftover ham bone. Just put the ham in the pot on the bone, and then chop or shred when it’s done cooking, and remove the bone.

  1. Thank you for the yummy soups!!

    Favorite movie quotes:
    You’re killin’ me, Smalls!! Sand Lot
    Ya done good, Buddy Boy! West Side Story
    If I didn’t have bad luck, I’d have no luck at all. Bronx Tale

  2. OH MY GOD! My favorite soup with my favorite cheese…now why didnt I think of that! Pure Genius! Going to make it tomorrow….I am just giddy with excitement 🥰

  3. We had the Raspberry Chipotle Ham yesterday.  I am definitely making the split pea soup!  I haven’t had that is years.  And the ham was excellent by the way.  The sauce was a big hit!

  4. My favorite movie quote is from SEND ME NO FLOWERS with Doris Day. She thinks her husband has faked being a dying man in order to carry on with another woman. She is complaining to a friend: “He says he’s dying and then he doesn’t. Wouldn’t he think I’d get suspicious?”

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