How to Cook Fresh Purple Hull Peas

Elise Deming, RDN
fresh purple hull peas

Fresh purple hull peas may not be the most commonplace vegetable, but they can be added into any weekly meal prep for nutrition and flavor. Similar to black-eyed peas, these peas are staples of true Southern cooking and complement corn bread, ham, and okra. Try cooking them on the stove or in a slow cooker using these basic methods.

On the Stove

One of the simplest ways to cook fresh purple hull peas is to let them simmer on the stove. All you need is a single pot and a few spices. Then, take the basic method and include some bacon and rice for a delicious and filling side dish.

  1. Rinse off the peas.
  2. Shell them by peeling open the outer shell and removing the peas inside.
  3. Place peas in a pot with enough water to cover them.
  4. Sprinkle with garlic powder, salt, and pepper for flavor.
  5. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for about two hours stirring the peas occasionally.
  6. Cook until the peas are tender but not broken.
  7. Drain the water and serve with ham, pork, or on rice.

Stove Cooked Purple Hull Peas With Rice and Bacon

Serves four

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups unshelled peas
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon garlic power
  • Pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1 package Uncle Ben's Whole Grain Instant Brown Rice
  • 4 pieces of bacon

Directions:

  1. Shell peas and place in pot with water.
  2. Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer for about two hours stirring the peas occasionally.
  3. In the last ten minutes of cooking pan sear bacon in a skillet on medium high.
  4. Remove bacon from pan and chop into small pieces.
  5. Cook rice in microwave according to directions, then pour into skillet with leftover bacon grease.
  6. Fry for about a minute until rice is crispy and stir in bacon.
  7. Serve peas over rice.

In a Slow Cooker

Fresh purple hull peas can also be cooked to perfection in a slow cooker. This may take longer, but it allows for the peas to pick up the flavors of the recipe. Once you have the basic technique down, you can throw in some vegetables and spices for a satisfying dish.

  1. Rinse and shell the peas.
  2. Place peas in a slow cooker and cover them with water or broth..
  3. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Place the lid on top and cook on high for about three hours. On low, the peas will cook for about six to eight hours.
  5. Remove the peas and enjoy!
Purple hull peas recipe

Slow Cooker Purple Hull Peas Recipe

Serves four

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups unshelled peas
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Shell peas and place in slow cooker with water, broth, onion, garlic, thyme, bay leaves, and salt
  2. Cook on high for three hours.

These can be served over rice, on their own as a side dish, or mixed with diced or shredded meat such as chicken or pork. Add some fresh or powdered garlic during step one if you're fond of garlic flavor.

Give Purple Hull Peas a Try

Cooking purple hull peas on the stove or in a crock pot are just two of the common and easy ways to prepare these unique peas. These peas are versatile as they will pick up the flavor of the ingredients they're cooked with. No matter how they are cooked, purple hull peas are a nutrient-dense and flavorful addition to a meal.

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How to Cook Fresh Purple Hull Peas