Homecooked Purple Hull Peas

Fresh Purple Hull Peas are hard to come by around these parts. If you ever run across someone who grows them, I highly suggest that you get chummy with them.

Purple hull peas are very filling served on top of rice for a light lunch. They are usually eaten as a side veggie with a serving of cornbread nearby. Whether seasoned with just salt & pepper, or a load of spices or accompanied with a ham bone or salt pork, any way they're cooked, they're good eats!

I really enjoy the natural flavor of the peas. So, my recipe for cooking them is very simple & easy.


  • 2 pounds fresh shelled purple hull peas
  • 2 garlic cloves, whole
  • 1Ā teaspoon Hickory liquid smoke
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • enough water to cover peas in the pot

Place all the ingredients in a large pot over medium high heat. Make sure you have enough water to cover the peas with 2 inches of water. After the water comes to a boil, cover with a lid, reduce heat and simmer for 2 hours.

Set your timer for the first hour and check the water level on the peas. Add more water if necessary, you want at least 1 inch of water above the peas. Cover with lid, again, and set the timer for the last hour.

Two pounds of peas makes enough for dinner and storing extra in the freezer. Even though, it takes time to cook them up. They are worth every minute. And you don't have to stand over the stove while they're cooking. Go watch a couple of your favorite cooking shows while you're waiting.


    • Mandierin

      That’s disgusting

  • mary mckeel

    I live outside of Kansas City, in Missouri. I am originally from Arkansas, and I really miss fresh purple hull peas. If anyone knows where I can locate some within 50 miles of K ansas City, I would certainly appreciate it. I have many memories of shelling, cooking and freezing peas. I have no relatives in Arkansas now, so I don’t get to travel there and bring back bushels of purple hull peas.

    • Mary, go over to LocalHarvest.org. It’s a great source for finding locally grown foods in your area. It’s free and they have a newsletter that keeps up to date on farms, farmers markets, and events.

    • Russell Hunt

      We grown our own. They are great!

      • That’s wonderful! Purple hull peas are my absolute favorite summer veg. I try to find growers at our farmers market that will sell them by the bushel. The kids moan to see me bring home that many, but we end up sitting in front of the TV mindlessly shelling the whole evening. Family fun ;D

    • Jan

      I just bought a pound of shelled purple hull peas from Arnolds Produce in Muskogee, Oklahoma. They also have Amish made pastas. Porter peaches are in season here and thier peach salsa is delicious.

  • cjkw67

    my husband and I sat in front of the TV today shelling a bushel of peas.. he said I sure hope none of the kids stop by, cause if they see this they’ll say “man y’all are old”..(Im 47 and hes 48) .it sure brought back some memories of my grandparents and their gardens šŸ™

    • I know just how you feel. When I’m shelling anything, I float back to the times when I was a kid sitting on my Aunt Maggie’s hot Louisiana porch. A BIG aluminum bowl between my knees, dirt under my nails, a glass of sweet tea to whet my whistle, and listening to Memaw and Aunt Maggie swap stories.
      Boy, I miss those beautiful women.

  • Karen Redd

    I live in Arkansas and I grow my own, they’re so good! I’ve got cantaloupes and honey dews, watermelons, -black beans and limas I grew from buying the beans at the grocery store and leaving in water overnight to sprout. Yellow squash, zucchini, and acorn squash, tomatoes, jalapeƱos, okra, I LOVE TO GARDEN! And Mary plant your own peas!

    • The Blogging Queen

      I’m in Arkansas too and I WISH I knew how to garden. Yours sound wonderful!!!

      • Karen Redd

        I love it, yes it can be hard work but it sure is worth it. There’s nothing like a bowl of fresh purple hull peas and cornbread! That makes me hungry lol.

      • HarryDolittle

        Just put seeds in the ground hon you’re really hot so………they’ll grow.

        • Karen Redd

          Right, that part is so easy and I love to watch them grow!