Split Pea Soup

 I seriously LOVE this soup. It's the perfect wintery day soup that will warm you up and fill you up. Super healthy--packed with protein and vitamins and very low in calories. A little goes a long way in satisfying a rumbly tummy. I love to have this soup for lunch with a few pieces of pita bread. 
Umm. . .it definitely hits the spot!

You'll need:

1 large carrot, chopped (or 1 large handful of baby carrots, about 1 1/4 cups)
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
1/4 teaspoon thyme
1/4 teaspoon paprika
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1 bay leaf
8 cups chicken broth
2 cups green split peas (one 16oz bag)

Saute celery, carrot, onion, thyme, paprika, salt and pepper in 1 tablespoon olive oil on high for about 5 minutes. Add bay leaf, chicken stock and peas. Bring to a boil. Turn down heat and simmer, covered, for 1 1/2 hours. Remove lid and let cool for at least 30 minutes. Remove bay leaf. Blend soup on high in 3 to 4 batches and return to pot. Reheat and serve. Add a little water, if necessary, to thin out. Soup will store in airtight container for 1 week in refrigerator, or up to 3 months in freezer. Serve with pita, or your favorite hearty bread.