About: I am a 82-year-old self-proclaimed Chef who has spent most of his life in the hotel/resort tourism industry. I have traveled up and down the east coast of the United States from New York to Key West, and fro...

Nothing should go to waste these days, and that bone left over from a baked ham is not only a great treat for your pet dog, but also an excellent source of flavor for black eyed peas and many other dishes.

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Step 1: INGREDIENTS (6 Servings)

  1. 1 hambone with some meat and gristle attached (left over from your Holiday baked ham)
  2. 4 to 6 strips of thick bacon
  3. 1 TBS Extra Virgin Olive Oil (not shown)
  4. 1 cup of chopped onion (red, white, or yellow - your call)
  5. 1/2 cup of chopped celery
  6. 2 or 3 cloves of garlic, or more (optional)
  7. 12 to 16 ounces of chopped cooked baked ham
  8. 1 pound of dry black eyed peas
  9. 6 to 8 cups of chicken broth or stock or water
  10. 1 red chili pepper, partially seeded and finely diced (also optional)
  11. 1/4 teaspoon Diamond Crystal Salt Sense
  12. 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper.
  13. 1/2 teaspoon of Cajun seasoning (or seasoning of your choice; Old Bay Seasoning is good, too).
  14. 2 bay leaves


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

  1. Once the oven has heated up toss that big ole hambone into a Dutch Oven (or a big heavy oven-proof pot with a lid) and place it in the oven. Let it bake uncovered for 10 to 15 minutes, or until your kitchen begins to smell like baked ham.
  2. While the bone is baking, finely chop the onion, peel, mash & mince the garlic, cut the bacon into small pieces, slice the celery into small chunks and dice or mince the red chili pepper (I leave a few seeds in to add some heat to this recipe, but you can remove the seeds and veins if you want a mild dish).
  3. Chop about 12 to 16 ounces of left-over baked ham into nice bite-sized pieces and set it aside (I usually save scraps of baked ham, including the rind, in a separate ziplock bag just for the purpose)
  4. Have your chicken stock or liquid, and your spices, handy and ready to use.
  5. Dump the dry black eyed peas into a strainer and rinse thoroughly.
  6. Carefully remove the pot from the oven - turn off the oven and remove and set aside the baked ham bone (if there are some pieces of ham and a little melted fat in the bottom of the pan, leave it there; it will enhance the flavor of the blackeyed peas).


  1. Place the pot on a burner and fry the pieces of bacon over medium-high heat until cooked through (but not brown and crispy).
  2. Add the vegetables (onion, celery, garlic, red chili if using) and saute until the onion has softened (about 5 minutes or so). If needed, you can add the 1 TBS of olive oil, but leave it out if you don't need it.
  3. Add the Blackeyed Peas to the pot, stir to mix, and cook for a minute or two.Next, gradually add 6 cups of chicken stock or other liquid to the pot. Stirring as you bring the mixture to a boil, adding the S&P, bay leaves, and cajun seasoning as you do so.
  4. Place the baked ham bone back into the pot.Reduce heat to medium-low, cover pot and simmer for at least 1 hour.
  5. After an hour, add the chopped ham and continue to simmer until the peas are tender (adding more liquid if needed - 6 to 8 cups is usually about right for 1 lb of beans)

.When the beans become cooked to your satisfaction, remove the pot from the heat and prepare to serve.

Step 4: TIME TO EAT . . .

Many people like to serve their blackeyed peas and ham over rice, but I usually prefer to skip the rice and dish up a big bowl or peas and sop up the liquid with a big slice of my homemade skillet cornbread the first time out. Since this recipe makes enough peas and ham to serve about 6 people, I will portion the leftovers and freeze them. The next time around I will cook up some rice and serve it that way.

Bon appétit

(This is my recipe for skillet cornbread (as you can see, I also use this recipe to make gluten-free corn muffins) https://www.instructables.com/id/Red-Chili-Jalapen...)


I have evaluated the nutrition of this recipe to the best of my ability using the MyFitnessPal Recipe Analyzer. The nutrition posted here does not include the cornbread.

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    3 Discussions


    3 years ago

    I saw that you wrote the bone would be a treat for your dog- it will be but COOKED bones are not good for dogs. When they eat the bones they often splinter- with raw bones they are not a problem but cooked bones could perforate the gut.If you were to remove the bone before cooking that would be OK. Other than that this looks so tasty! I will try this soon but since I don't have a ham bone I will get a smoked pork hock.


    3 years ago

    Oops! I forgot to mention adding water or chicken stock! I usually add a gallon and let cook without a lid so the soup reduces.


    3 years ago

    My family knows to keep all hambones for me. I LOVE hambone soup. Chop onions, dice carrots, dice celery and saute in fat from cooking ham. After, 10 or so minutes and bone, jus from cooking ham, canned diced tomatoes and a couple of bay leaves. Simmer for an hour. Now add corn, green beans, lima beans and peeled and cut potatoes. Stir and add salt and pepper. Cook another hour. Eat with corn bread! Better the next day!