Black Eyed Peas the Traditional Southern Way

black eyed peas bacon

by Kathy | Disclosure

This has to be my favorite comfort food. At one time I was making these in a pressure cooker to save time, or so I thought 😉 Making them in a slow cooker takes up much less of the cooks time and is far more nutritious. This is super simple and pretty much guaranteed to please.

For the sake of keeping with the original recipe today I made them on the stove.

Mrs Dull’s recipe is on page 94 of “Southern Cooking”.


  • I’ve added chicken broth as a replacement for part of the water. The more you can add, the richer the taste and the more mineral rich your dish will be.
  • I’ve soaked the peas in whey for 24 hours prior to cooking. Mrs Dull suggest soaking overnight in water.

Black Eyed Peas Southern Style

  • 3 Cups Black Eyed Peas
  • 2 Tablespoons of Whey
  • 2 cups of broth, roughly
  • A few strips of bacon
  • Filtered Water for soaking
  • A good largish pot, enameled cast iron preferably
  • Colander
  • The day before rinse the peas well, picking out any grit or bad peas.
  • Put them in the pot with about double the amount water needed to cover the peas. Add the whey and stir. You’ll need the extra water because the peas will swell quite a bit. Let it sit for 24 hours.
  • When you’re ready to cook pour the peas in the colander and rinse again.
  • Put the peas back in the pot with enough water to cover. Add the bacon.
  • Bring the pot to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and let cook for about 2 hours, until the peas are soft but not disintegrating. Add salt to taste.

Then serve. I’d pretty much guarantee a line for first dibs!

black eyed peas bacon

Links to articles on black eyed peas

These recipes are spicy versions of traditional black eyed peas. Looks pretty yummy, but don’t forget to soak your peas in whey first!

  • DivasCanCook – Spicy Black Eyed Peas video tutorial on YouTube.
  • A Southern Fairytale – this one includes jalapeños for spice!
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Pete Hammersmith February 22, 2012 at 12:41 pm

Could you provide a substitute for the chicken broth and bacon? I’d love to cook this recipe when friends visit, the only problem in they’re vegetarians.

Thank you

Kathy February 22, 2012 at 12:59 pm

Hi Pete … The recipe in the book calls for cooking and soaking in plain water so you could do that. Not sure about a good substitute for the bacon though. Many years ago I used to make legumes vegetarian style with onions and garlic. Could make for an interesting dish :-) It would reduce the nutrient density though. I added the broth since it’s so rich with minerals and gelatin. The bacon is simply for flavor.

Kathy February 22, 2012 at 2:32 pm

Also,I wanted to add that if your guests are vegan and whey is a problem you could soak the peas in either apple cider vinegar or lemon juice.

Caroline February 22, 2012 at 3:55 pm

I’ve never seen this idea of adding whey to your beans before! That is a fascinating tip, I’ll try that out the next time I make bean soup.

Kathy February 25, 2012 at 5:53 pm

Hi Caroline … yes the whey helps to break down the phytates in the beans making them easy to digest.

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