Black-eyed Peas and Ham

Throughout the Southeast of the United States, eating black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day is thought to bring prosperity in the New Year. The practice of eating black-eyed peas for luck is generally believed to date back to the Civil War. This easy and simple yet flavorful dish will provide a bowl of healthy flavor to welcome the New Year. Have leftover ham from the holidays? You can use that for this recipe!

Black-eyed Peas and Ham

Serves: 10-12

Prep Time: 20

Cook Time: 3 hrs


  • 1 pound dry black-eyed peas
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 (32 ounce) cartons chicken broth
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 pound smoked ham hocks
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 5 pepperoncini peppers
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Place the black-eyed peas into a large container and cover with several inches of cool water; let stand 8 hours to overnight. Drain and rinse before using.
  2. In a large stock pot over medium heat, cook and stir onion and garlic in olive oil until onion becomes translucent, about 5 minutes.
  3. Pour in the chicken broth and 8 cups water, bring to a boil, and reduce heat to a simmer.
  4. Stir in soaked black-eyed peas, ham hocks, tomatoes, pepperoncini, bay leaf, garlic powder, thyme, and salt and pepper. Cover and simmer until peas are tender, ham meat is falling off the bones, and the broth is thickened, about 3 hours.