Canning – Split Pea or Habitant Soup

I’ve never been a fan of split pea soup. Gerry likes it so I decided this would be a good staple to have on the shelf during the winter as my goal is to stop purchasing all store-bought canned goods. I served a bowl of this for lunch and it’s actually really quite good. Who knew?! The nice thing about this is that I can make a batch anytime I find ham on sale.

The recipe I used is derived from the classic Ball Blue Book.

Yield: 5 pints or 2 quarts.


  • 16 ounce (450 gram) package of dried split peas
  • 2 quarts (8 cups) water  (next time I make it I’ll use my own vegetable broth)
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced carrots
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup diced cooked ham
  • 1 bay leaf
  •  1/4 tsp. allspice
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Combine dried peas and water in large pot.

Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for about 1 hour or until peas are soft.

Puree the cooked peas in a food processor.

Return puree to saucepan and add remaining ingredients.

Simmer for 30 minutes.

Ladle soup into hot jars, leaving 1 inch head space.

Adjust two-piece caps.

Process at 10 pounds pressure–pints 1 hour and 15 minutes, quarts 1 hour and 30 minutes. For my altitude here in Kamloops I need to process at 11 pounds pressure. You need to check the altitude for your location and adjust accordingly.



I’m a writer, reader, and creative. I thought by now I’d have things figured out, but I keep coming up with more questions. I think that’s okay. I’m here most mornings pondering ordinary things and the thin places where faith intersects.
  1. Hi, I have enjoyed reading your recipe for this soup and plan on pressure canning some of my own. I’m glad you are using the Ball Book so we know it’s safe. How did you ensure that it wouldn’t get to thick? I am reposting your blog entry on a facebook page all about canning. I can’t find your ball recipe on line but I can find the one for habitant soup on Bernardin’s page. Thanks for any help you can give me. Leasa

    1. Thanks for your comment, Leasa. The Ball and Bernardin recipes are almost the same. The Ball recipe calls for the allspice where the Bernardin one doesn’t. I didn’t have an issue with it getting too thick, it really was just a good smooth consistency after I used the immersion blender on it. I opened a jar for lunch yesterday and hubby deemed it to be delicious. Good luck with it and thank you for sharing.


      1. I do think Ball and Bernardin recipes are the same I have a Bernardin bible and it calls for the allspice. I have my jars in the pressure canner now. It was very thin but smooth and I am assuming it will thicken as it gets processed? I was worried about too thick, now I’m worried it will be too thin! LOL I did follow the recipe to the letter….

  2. I did it! I think they are perfect. I wrote on my blog about it just a few minutes ago. I’d like to know what you think!

    1. Yay! They look perfect! I took a few minutes to poke around your blog and it looks like you’ve got something great happening over there. I’ll be a regular reader from now on and expect I’ll be trying out some of your recipes in the future. Glad to have connected.


      1. Me too! I hope this thing gives me notices when you post! I’ll be watching!!

  3. I made a batch today. It was too thick. I opened a jar for dinner. But it tastes wonderful. I will just add a little water when I open the jars. Did you cover the pot as it simmers? I didn’t. Maybe that’s why it got too thick.

    1. Mine is thick too. It thins a bit when I heat it to serve and your solution of adding a bit of water is great! Enjoy%?!

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