Classic Southern Lady Peas Recipe for Dinner Delight

Listen up y’all, I’m here to introduce you to a recipe that’ll make your taste buds holler with delight. My Southern Lady Peas recipe is sure to be a crowd pleaser at your next family gathering or potluck.

Now, some of y’all may be wondering, what in tarnation are lady peas? Well, let me tell you– they’re small, creamy peas that have a delicate flavor and tender texture. Sometimes they’re also called cream peas or field peas.

This southern-style recipe is easy to make and packs a punch of flavor. It features bacon and kosher salt, with a dash of fresh cracked pepper to tie it all together. The result is tender, creamy peas that will transport you straight to the heart of Dixie.

So grab your ingredients and let’s get cookin’! Trust me, once you taste these lady peas you’ll be hooked for life.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Southern Lady Peas
Southern Lady Peas

Are you tired of the same old beans in your plate? Are you looking for something that will wake up your taste buds and transport you to the southern countryside with just one spoonful? Look no further than this recipe for Southern Lady Peas.

These peas, also called cream peas or lady cream peas, have a delicate flavor that pairs perfectly with fresh cracked pepper and kosher salt. Their tender texture will have you begging for more as you savor each bite. The combination of bacon and peas creates a flavor explosion in your mouth that will leave you feeling satisfied and fulfilled.

Plus, this recipe is versatile enough to be paired with just about anything. Whether you want to enjoy it alongside some cooked rice or make it a part of a larger salad recipe, these Southern Lady Peas will elevate any dish to new heights.

But don’t be fooled by their delicate nature – these Southern Lady Peas are packed full of nutrients that your body will thank you for. They are an excellent source of protein, iron, and fiber, making them a healthy addition to any meal.

So why settle for boring old beans when you could be enjoying this southern-style dish? With just 30-35 minutes of cooking time and straightforward instructions, there’s no reason not to give these delicious Lady Peas a try. Trust me; one bite is all it takes to fall in love with this classic southern recipe.

Ingredient List

 Southern comfort in a bowl.
Southern comfort in a bowl.

Before we dive into making the delectable Southern Lady Peas, let’s round up all the essential ingredients that we’ll need. Make sure to grab these ingredients before starting this recipe to ensure a smooth and enjoyable cooking experience.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 pound Lady peas (also called lady cream peas, Southern pink lady, or purple hull peas)
  • 4 cups water
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1/4 pound bacon, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
  • Optional: Salt pork (for extra seasoning)
  • Optional: Hot sauce (for serving)

Once you have all of these ingredients at hand, be prepared to elevate your dinner game with this hearty pea dish straight from the Southern kitchens!

The Recipe How-To

 Rich, earthy and full of flavor.
Rich, earthy and full of flavor.


  • 1 pound of lady peas (also called field peas)
  • 3 cups of water
  • 2 strips of bacon or salt pork, diced
  • Fresh cracked pepper and kosher salt to taste


  1. Rinse the lady peas well and pick out any discolored ones or foreign objects.

  2. In a pot, bring the water to boil.

  3. Add the rinsed lady peas to the pot along with the diced bacon. Stir until everything is combined.

  4. Reduce the heat to medium-simmer and cook for approximately 30-35 minutes or until the peas are tender and creamy.

  5. Season with fresh cracked pepper and kosher salt to taste.

  6. Remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes.

  7. Serve warm with cooked rice, garnished with extra bacon if desired.


  • If you find that there is not enough liquid in your pot after reducing the heat, add more water 1/4 cup at a time.
  • Lady peas cook quickly compared to other varieties, so keep an eye on them.
  • These southern style peas can also be made with pink lady peas, crowder peas, or black-eyed peas.
  • Leftover lady cream peas can be turned into a pea salad by mixing them with a vinaigrette, chopped onions, and fresh herbs.

By following these instructions step-by-step, you will have tender and flavorful Southern Lady Peas every time!

Substitutions and Variations

 A hearty, wholesome dish to warm your soul.
A hearty, wholesome dish to warm your soul.

When it comes to southern lady peas, there are a number of ways to switch things up and make the dish your own. Here are a few substitutions and variations that you might want to try:

– Bacon: While bacon is my preferred pork product to use in lady peas, you could also try using salt pork or a ham hock for a different flavor profile.

– Pea Varieties: Lady peas are not the only type of southern pea out there! You could also use field peas, crowder peas, pink-eyed peas, or black-eyed peas in this recipe for slightly different textures and flavors.

– Spices: While I think kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper are perfect for seasoning lady peas, you could add some cayenne pepper for heat or use herbs like thyme or oregano to switch things up.

– Creaminess: If you prefer your lady peas more brothy than creamy, you can reduce the amount of liquid in the recipe. Alternatively, if you want them even creamier, add some heavy cream or sour cream to the pot.

– Salads: Lady peas make a great base for salads! Try mixing them with cooked rice or quinoa, diced veggies like bell peppers or cucumbers, and a simple vinaigrette dressing for a refreshing summer side dish.

No matter how you decide to customize your lady pea recipe, remember that these flavorful legumes shine brightest when cooked low and slow. Be patient and let them simmer until they’re tender and creamy–you won’t regret it!

Serving and Pairing

 Simmered perfection.
Simmered perfection.

Southern Lady Peas recipe is a versatile dish that goes well with many main courses. They make the perfect side dish to fried chicken, grilled pork chops, or baked ham. The tender and creamy texture of the peas pair perfectly with the savory taste of bacon and the aroma of fresh cracked pepper.

For a healthier twist, you can serve these peas with a simple green salad, which balances out the richness of the dish. You can also mix Southern Lady Peas into your favorite pasta salad recipe for a hearty and filling meal.

Another delicious option is serving them alongside cooked rice, which absorbs all the flavors of the dish and creates a filling and balanced meal. The saltiness from the bacon compliments the delicate flavor of lady peas; making it an ideal pairing for a comforting and satisfying home-cooked meal.

You can also prepare Southern Lady Peas as an appetizing alternative to traditional hummus. Serve them with pita bread or tortilla chips for a crowd-pleasing snack or appetizer that everyone will enjoy.

Whether you are hosting a dinner party or preparing a weeknight dinner at home, Southern Lady Peas Recipe is an easy-to-make and delicious side dish that pairs well with many main courses. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different ingredients to find your favorite way to serve this classic Southern-style pea recipe!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A delicious twist on classic black-eyed peas.
A delicious twist on classic black-eyed peas.

Now that your Southern Lady Peas are ready, if you have any leftovers, I recommend you follow these storage tips to make sure they last as long as possible without losing their delicate flavor.

First of all, let the peas cool off at room temperature before storing them. This will help prevent them from spoiling too quickly. Once the peas have cooled completely, transfer them to an airtight container and refrigerate them for up to 4 days.

If you’re planning on reheating your Lady Peas, I highly suggest doing so slowly over low heat. Heat them in a pan with a bit of water or chicken broth to keep them moist and tender. Avoid overcooking the peas as this can make them mushy and bland.

If you’re looking to make these ahead of time for a gathering, you can prepare the dish up until the final step of adding the ham hock or bacon. Store in an air tight container in the fridge for up to two days. Simply reheat and add your pork product when ready to serve.

When you’re ready to enjoy your Lady Peas again, simply reheat them slowly over low heat with a bit of water or chicken broth. You may want to adjust the seasoning by adding more salt or fresh cracked pepper before serving.

With these tips, you’ll be able to preserve the tender lady peas for longer and make sure that they still taste just as amazing when you reheat them later. So grab a fork, scoop yourself a second helping of this southern-style pea dish, and savor every last bite!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Just like grandma used to make.
Just like grandma used to make.

Southern Lady Peas are a labor of love, and as the saying goes, “the proof is in the pudding”. In this case, it’s in the peas. Here are some tips to guarantee your Lady Peas turn out perfectly every time.

First and foremost, don’t skimp on the salt. Add enough kosher salt to flavor the peas throughout. You want every bite of these tender little gems to deliver that unmistakable savory taste.

When it comes to cooking liquid, be sure to use plenty of water; you’ll need around 8 cups for every 3 cups of dry Lady Peas. Remember that you can always reduce the cooking liquid as your peas approach tenderness, but adding more water later on will adversely affect their texture. The peas should finish cooking with just enough liquid left to create a tender, creamy broth.

Speaking of tenderness, I know it’s tempting to crank up the heat and speed up the cooking process, but take it slow and steady. Cooking over low heat for an extended period is what gives Lady Cream Peas their luscious, buttery texture.

In addition to keeping your stove set to medium or medium-low heat, keep a close eye on your peas while they simmer away. Depending on factors like age and variety, cook time can range anywhere from 30-35 minutes to well over an hour. Use your senses (and occasional taste tests) to monitor progress until you’ve cooked Lady Peas so many times you just know when they’re done.

Finally, avoid adding acidic ingredients like tomatoes or vinegar until after your peas are tender and creamy. Adding acids too soon can impede softening by preventing absorption of moisture.

Follow these tips and soon enough, you’ll have perfectly cooked Southern Lady Peas that even Granny would be proud of.


Now that you’re familiar with the ingredients and directions involved in making this scrumptious southern lady peas recipe, it’s time to address some frequently asked questions to ensure that your preparation process goes off without a hitch. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or someone completely new to making southern-style cuisine, these FAQ tips will provide you with further insight and guidance.

Are lady peas the same as black-eyed peas?

Lady peas are a type of cowpea that closely resemble black eyed peas. These peas grow inside a pod and are commonly found in the southern United States, Africa, and certain parts of Asia. They flourish in dry and warm environments, just like any other cowpea.

Are field peas and lady peas the same?

Lady peas, also known as Lady Cream peas, have a distinguishing trait of maintaining their creamy white or light green color even after being cooked. Unlike other field peas, they produce a clear potlikker, and are considered to have a more subtle and delicate flavor.

Why are lady peas called lady peas?

Lady peas are a petite legume with a light taste and are believed to have gotten their name from their size and refined flavor. These peas are best enjoyed during the summer season while they’re fresh but can be found all year round in dried or frozen forms.

Are lady peas good for you?

Lady peas are a type of legumes that provide significant health benefits through their essential nutrients, including heart-healthy fiber, protein, antioxidants, and more. Adding either dried or fresh legumes to your daily diet can help you feel full and satisfied for extended periods, which is crucial for maintaining or losing weight.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this Southern Lady Peas recipe is the perfect addition to any meal for those who appreciate a wholesome and comforting taste. The tender lady cream peas, combined with the smokey bacon and traditional Southern seasoning make for a dish that will leave your taste buds demanding more. Not only are these lady peas delicious, but they are also packed with protein and essential nutrients, making them a healthy option for any occasion.

Whether you enjoy these peas with some cooked rice as a main dish or use them to make a tasty salad, the possibilities are endless with this versatile recipe. So why not give it a try and see just how delicious it can be? With easy-to-follow instructions and helpful tips along the way, you can make these Southern Lady Peas with confidence and impress your guests at your next gathering.

In summary, whether you are a fan of black-eyed peas, field peas, pink eyes, purple hulls or crowders – this Southern-style pea recipe is sure to satisfy your taste buds. Try it out today and experience the fullness of flavor and tradition of Southern cuisine!

Southern Lady Peas

Southern Lady Peas Recipe

The QUEEN of southern peas. Creamy, buttery, deliciousness.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Southern American
Calories 268.6 kcal


  • 6 slices bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1/2 large vidalia onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 lbs shelled lady peas
  • 3 cups chicken stock or 3 cups ham stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
  • 2 cups hot cooked rice (optional)


  • In a large dutch oven render bacon over medium heat until crisp. About 10 mins.Remove bacon and reserve 2 tbs. drippings in pan.
  • Add onion cook stirring occasionally until tender about 6 minutes Add cooked bacon, lady peas, stock, salt and pepper. bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer until peas are tender and creamy.
  • Serve over hot cooked rice if you desire.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 472gCalories: 268.6kcalCarbohydrates: 34.5gProtein: 15.2gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 2.5gCholesterol: 13.6mgSodium: 653.9mgFiber: 9.6gSugar: 13.6g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Easy
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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