Peas with Ham: A Spanish Classic with Green Peas and Savory Ham

Peas with Ham: A Spanish Classic with Green Peas and Savory Ham

Guisantes con Jamón, also known as “Peas with Ham,” is a time-honored dish that has become a staple in Spanish cuisine. This traditional recipe beautifully combines the freshness of green peas with the rich and savory flavors of ham, resulting in a delightful culinary experience. From its humble beginnings in rural regions to its prominence in Spanish households, Peas with Ham has stood the test of time as a comforting and satisfying dish. In this article, we will delve deeper into the history of this beloved recipe, explore variations to suit individual tastes, and provide valuable tips and tricks to create a memorable Guisantes con Jamón experience.

The Origins of Guisantes con Jamón

Guisantes con Jamón traces its roots back to Spain’s agricultural history, where peas were cultivated as a primary crop. Combined with the abundance of cured ham, a cherished ingredient in Spanish gastronomy, this dish emerged as a celebration of local produce. It quickly gained popularity as a simple and nourishing meal that exemplifies the rustic flavors of the countryside.

Variations of Guisantes con Jamón

While the basic recipe remains consistent, there are endless ways to customize Peas with Ham to suit personal preferences. One variation involves sautéing onions and garlic for added depth of flavor, while others may introduce diced tomatoes to lend a touch of acidity. Aromatic herbs like thyme or bay leaves can also be incorporated to infuse the dish with their unique fragrance. For those seeking a lighter option, turkey ham can be used as a substitute without compromising the essence of the recipe.

Tips and Tricks for a Perfect Peas with Ham

  1. Opt for fresh or frozen green peas to retain their vibrant color and natural sweetness.
  2. Sautéing the diced ham before adding other ingredients enhances its smoky and savory qualities, elevating the overall taste of the dish.
  3. Adjust the seasoning to strike a perfect balance between the saltiness of the ham and the inherent sweetness of the peas.
  4. For an extra touch of richness, consider drizzling a small amount of extra virgin olive oil over the finished dish just before serving.
  5. Guisantes con Jamón pairs excellently with crusty bread or steamed rice, providing a satisfying and well-rounded meal.

Enhancing the Flavors

Serving Suggestions for Peas with Ham

To further enhance the flavors of Peas with Ham, consider adding a squeeze of fresh lemon juice or a sprinkle of chopped parsley as a vibrant garnish. Serve it as a side dish alongside grilled meats, roasted chicken, or seafood, or enjoy it as a standalone main course with a side of crusty bread for a hearty and satisfying meal.

Exploring the Best Ham Options for Guisantes con Jamón

Choosing high-quality ham is crucial for achieving the best flavor in Peas with Ham. Opt for cured Spanish ham, such as Jamón Serrano or Jamón Ibérico, known for their exceptional taste and texture. These hams impart a distinct richness to the dish, complementing the sweetness of the peas and adding a touch of indulgence to every bite.

Guisantes con Jamón embodies the essence of Spanish cuisine, combining the simplicity of peas with the robust flavors of ham. This classic recipe has evolved over generations and has exquisite taste buds with its delightful blend of ingredients. Whether enjoyed as a comforting family meal or as an impressive centerpiece for gatherings, Peas with Ham remains a beloved and timeless dish that captures the heart and soul of Spanish culinary traditions. So, gather your ingredients, follow the tips and variations, and savor the flavors of Guisantes con Jamón as you embark on a culinary journey through the rich tapestry of Spanish gastronomy.


Peas with Ham: A Spanish Classic with Green Peas and Savory Ham

Indulge in the flavors of Spain with our authentic Guisantes con Jamón recipe. This traditional dish combines tender peas with savory diced ham, onions, and garlic, simmered in a flavorful broth. Experience the taste of Spanish cuisine at home!
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Mediterranean
Servings 4


  • 2 cups Frozen peas
  • ½ cup Diced ham
  • 1 Small onion finelly chopped
  • 2 clovs Garlic minced
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil
  • ½ tsp Paprika
  • ¼ tsp Salt adjust to taste
  • ¼ tsp Ground black pepper
  • 1 cup Chicken broth optional
  • 1 tbsp Fresh parsley for garnish, optional


  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet or frying pan over medium heat.
  • Add the diced ham and cook for 2-3 minutes until it starts to brown slightly.
  • Add the chopped onion and minced garlic to the pan and sauté for another 2-3 minutes until the onion becomes translucent.
  • Sprinkle the paprika, black pepper, and salt over the mixture and stir well to combine.
  • Add the frozen peas to the pan and stir to coat them with the seasoned ham and onion mixture.
  • Pour the chicken or vegetable broth into the pan and bring the mixture to a simmer.
  • Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan, and let it cook for about 10-15 minutes, or until the peas are tender.
  • Stir occasionally to prevent sticking or burning. If the mixture becomes too dry, you can add a little more broth or water.
  • Once the peas are cooked, remove the pan from heat and let it sit for a few minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.
  • Serve the guisantes con jamón hot, garnished with chopped fresh parsley if desired.
Keyword ham, peas

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