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+ servings

Tex-Mex Black Eyed Peas And Ham

Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican Inspired
Keyword tex-mex-black-eyed-peas-and-ham
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 5 minutes
Servings 8
Author Melissa Sperka


  • 1 lb dry black eyed peas rinsed and picked over
  • 10 slices thick cut bacon cooked and crumbled
  • 1 medium sweet onion finely diced
  • 1/3 cup diced jalapeno or poblano or green pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 10 oz cubed smoked ham
  • 1 14.5 oz can chili seasoned tomatoes [I used Del Monte Zesty Chili Style]
  • 2 14.5 oz cans low sodium chicken broth [plus 1/2 cup]
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 3/4 tsp seasoned salt adjust to taste
  • 3/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp dark chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 4 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro


  • Place the peas into a colander and rinse well, remove any debris. Place into a pot and cover with water and allow to soak on the counter overnight. Before cooking, drain and rinse well.
  • On the stove top, in a large pot or dutch oven, cook the bacon until crispy. Remove with a slotted spoon to drain on paper towels. Reserve 3 Tbsp drippings. 
  • To the pot add green pepper and onion. Cook for 3 minute until softened and beginning to brown. Add the minced garlic and saute for 1 minute longer..
  • Add ham, Worcestershire sauce, black eyed peas, chicken broth, canned tomatoes, seasoned salt, cumin, black pepper, chili, red pepper flakes, bay leaf and 2 Tbsp cilantro to the pot. Mix well. Simmer for 1 hour 15 minutes until the peas are tender.
  • Uncover and remove bay leaf. Taste and adjust seasoned salt and pepper to your taste. Simmer uncovered for 15 minutes to reduce sauce and thicken slightly. 
  • Stir in the remaining cilantro just before serving. Serve with a scoop of rice and garnish with bacon crumbles.


Quick soak method: Rinse the black eye peas, and place into a pot. Cover with water allowing 1 inch over the top. Bring to a boil on the stove top and boil for 1 minute covered. Remove from the stove and allow the peas to sit for 1 hour covered. Rinse, then proceed with the instructions above.
This same method will work with pinto, navy, or butter beans.