Black eyed peas are a traditional New Years Day dish, but they are definitely delicious year round! Flavored with the cajun trinity- white onion, green bell pepper, and celery- you’ll definitely be wanting these no soak southern style black eyed peas more than just once a year!
Green bean casserole, cornbread dressing, peppermint chocolate, pumpkin spice…I’m going to add black eyed peas to one of those dishes that we associate with a season or holiday. I only make black eyed peas once or twice a year, every time I eat them, I wonder why I don’t make them more often. They’re so darn good!
Not only are they delicious and inexpensive, but they are EASY!
Getting started with your black eyed peas
Black eyed peas on their own are like most other beans. Starchy, earthy, and not very much fun on their own. But with the right flavors, you’re going to eat them until you burst.
For this southern style black eyed peas recipe, you’re going to need:
- The Cajun Trinity: No proper southern dish is complete without the cajun trinity. Diced white onion, green bell pepper, and celery. I always throw in a bunch of minced garlic as a bonus.
- Your favorite Cajun/Creole spice mix: I use Tony Chachere’s (paid link). Sometimes I get criticized for this, but pooh-pooh to that. It’s a deliciously mixed seasoning that enhances so many dishes. You can make your own spice mix, but Tony’s is top for me.
- Garlic powder: Yes, tons of garlic was added to the trinity. Yes, there is garlic in Tony’s. Does that stop me? Nope.
- Chicken Stock: You can use water if you want, but chicken stock has so much more flavor and really gets up in the black eyed when they soak up all that liquid.
- Salt: Lots of salt, as usual.
- Bacon: You can use bacon, pork belly, sausage.. whatever you like. But you really need to add some ham and fat. I love to use fatty bacon because I need all that rendered bacon fat as my base.
- Tasso: Tasso and bacon in the black eyed pease? Yep. Pork gives the black eyed peas so much flavor. Two different types of pork? Heaven. Tasso provides so much smokey, delicious flavor.
Prepping your ingredients
Most of the work in making black eyed peas is in the prep.
1) Dice your green bell pepper, onion, and celery.
I like to dice mine nice and small. They’ll soften and cook down, but I don’t want big chunky pieces in the finished black eyed peas.
2) Mince the garlic.
I love using the ninja food processor. The other way I love to mince garlic is by using a microplaner. This takes a little more time, but there is less cleanup, and it’s super easy. I can’t function without my microplaners.
3) Slice your bacon.
I like to cut mine into little strips. It shrinks up quite a bit but you still get some tasty bites.
4) Cube the tasso
Tasso won’t really shrink up, so I chop it up pretty small.
5). Measure the rest of the ingredients
Get your chicken stock ready, measure out your spices, and have your beans on hand.
Cooking your black eyed peas
The first thing you’ll need to do is render your bacon fat. in a 7-ish quart heavy duty pot, cook your bacon over medium heat. Maybe just a touch under medium. It takes a few minutes this way, but it’s the best way to melt out that bacon fat without burning your bacon. Once you have rendered all of your bacon fat, remove the bacon. Set aside for later.
Next, add your minced bell pepper, onion, and celery. After cooking for a few minutes, add your garlic. The garlic cooks much faster so it’s always best to add it last. Salt your veggies.
Pour in your dried black eyed peas.
Wait, did you forget to tell us to soak your beans?
No, I didn’t. I never soak my red beans, black eyed peas, none of it. It’s not necessary. I’m going to die on this hill. Fight me.
After you’ve added the fresh from the bag, dried, unsoaked beans, add the cooked bacon and tasso. Pour in your chicken stock, add your spices, another handful of kosher salt, and bring to a boil.
Boil for about 5-7 minutes. Give your beans a jump start on the cooking and soaking up all those spices. After they’ve boiled for a few minutes, reduce to a simmer, cover, and let cook for about and hour and a half to two hours.
Finishing your black eyed peas
After you have reduced your heat and covered your black eyed peas, there’s not much else you need to do! All you need to keep up with is stirring them every so often and tasting the broth/beans (once they are chewable) and monitor your flavor.
One of the keys to great flavor with beans is salt. Just when I think I’ve added enough salt, I add a little more. I think I ended up using a couple palmfuls of kosher salt when it’s all said and done.
It may seem like a lot of liquid at first, but as the beans cook, they will absorb a lot of that moisture. And better than them soaking in some bland water before they cook, they are absorbing spicy and delicious chicken stock, thus soaking in all that flavor.
I cook them with the lid on the whole time until they are soft. If there is too much water, let them bubble with the lid off so the liquid will thicken and evaporate. If you find that too nuch of your liquid has soaked up, and a little more stock or water.
Above all, keep tasting! It’s so easy to get it exactly how you like it and make modifications along the way!
And that’s pretty much it! Enjoy these black eyed peas not only for New Year’s day, but all year long.
Serve alone, over rice, or with a side of cornbread. All the carbs!
I normally serve my black eyed peas with regular cornbread, but if you want something with a little extra kick, try these Cheesy Chorizo Stuffed Corn Muffins.
No Soak Southern Style Black Eyed Peas
- 1 lb dried black eyed peas
- 1 white onion diced
- 1 green bell pepper diced
- 2 large stalks of celery
- 10 cloves of garlic
- 6 cups chicken stock
- 5-6 slices of bacon, sliced into smaller bite sized slices I love applewood smoked
- 1 tbsp Tony's Chachere's Bold Creole Seasoning
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- Kosher salt
- Over medium heat in a 6-7 quart heavy saucepan, cook your bacon pieces until all the fat is rendered. Remove bacon pieces and set aside for later.
- In the rendered bacon fat, saute your bell peppers, onions, and celery. After about 4 minutes, add your garlic. Cook for about 2 minutes. Add a palmful of salt.
- Pour in your dried black eyed peas. Add the bacon back to the pot. Pour in your chicken stock. Add Tony's, garlic powder and another palmful of kosher salt.
- Bring to a boil. Let boil for about 5-7 minutes.
- Reduce to a simmer and let cook for 1.5-2 hours.
- Taste periodically for spice level. Don't skimp on the salt!
- Once your beans are nice and soft, they're just about ready! The starchy goodness will help thicken the cooking liquid. If there is too much liquid left in the pot, let lightly boil uncovered until it thickens to your liking. If the beans are still too tough, add more stock or water.
- Serve over rice, with a side of cornbread, or both. All the carbs! Enjoy!