Get Sweet on Fresh Spring Peas with These Recipes
If you're ready to enjoy in-season English peas, sugar snaps, snow peas, and even pea shoots, these recipes are where you'll want to start.
Brilliantly green, a bowl of peas is a delightful thing: After a pat of butter and a shower of mint, all you really need to enjoy them is a spoon. Since they are so simple to prepare, it's easy to forget that there are more ways to use peas than the reflexive drop-and-boil. To honor the familiar legume, we have collected our best recipes for peas.
Much as we love frozen peas (they're always in season!), each year we wait for spring when fresh peas come into season. After all, what could possibly be better than just-shelled garden peas? Peas have strong qualities in terms of their ingredient-game. Their iconic color adds instant vibrance to any dish. Their famed sweetness is a contrast for neutral, tart, or herbal flavors. And their distinctive pea-texture—soft after an initial pop—makes them as good intact as they are smooshed. Finally, they are so easy to prepare: Cooked in minutes, peas come to the rescue when time is tight.
And those are the so-called English peas, whose pods we discard. Fresh sugar snap peas, with their flattened, edible pods and tiny green pearls inside, are another delicacy. Snap peas are a tonic in any dish that needs a quick fix: risotto, pasta, and bruschetta are brought to life by their emerald freshness. And peas have other secrets up their green sleeves: Their edible tendrils and young leaves are a delicious bonus, adding crunch and whimsy wherever they land. If you grow your own, pea tendrils are a cut-and-come again pleasure.
For inspiration, read on to glimpse this cheerful legume's range.
Shiitake and Snap-Pea Risotto
The meaty texture and full-bodied flavor of earthy shiitake mushrooms is emphasized by a splash of soy and complemented by the sweetness of bright sugar snap peas in this filling entrée.
Deviled Eggs with Peas and Ham
Little Gems, Asparagus, and Peas with Creamy Mustard Vinaigrette
Wild Salmon with English Peas and Mustard Beurre Blanc
When you want to make dinner a little more special, this is the dish to prepare: In addition to being vibrant and beautiful, it's also elegant, delicious, and easy. Blanched English peas are scattered around a simple roasted side of wild salmon. Beurre blanc, served on the side, is basically a warm vinaigrette made with butter instead of oil. Finish with a sprinkling of chives and—if you have them—a few flowering pea shoots.
Pea, Almond, and Ricotta Spread
Simmer this wholesome bowl of spring goodness for a nourishing return to simplicity. Spring onions with mint, tarragon, and bay perfume the gentle broth where new potatoes and sugar snap peas add comfort and crunch.
Gnocchi with Peas and Egg
For an easy spring-like dinner, transform store-bought gnocchi with a vivid sauce of peas and arugula, then top the dish with a soft-cooked egg. Bon appétit!
Grilled Peas with Toasted Coconut
Who needs edamame? Instead, grill fresh farmers' market peas in the pod for this seasonally delicious riff on the classic Japanese finger food.
Fava Beans with Snap Peas and Mint
Fava-and-peas is a classic late-spring combination that brings a green party to a plate. Aromatic mint lightens the smooth richness of the beans.
These gorgeous pocket squares (made from quick-cooking lasagna sheets) carry a velvety emerald coating with every mouthful you fork up.
Poached Chicken Sandwiches with Peas and Radishes
Why don't we put peas in our sandwiches more often? For a playful picnic interpretation of a plateful of peas with chicken, slide them with comforting poached chicken between slices of good bread with snappy radishes.
Crispy Grain Salad with Peas and Mint
A gorgeous, gluten-free salad features steamed millet and quinoa, flash-fried to bring out their nuttiness. The wholesome grains are tossed with green peas and pea tendrils in a vinegar and lemon-sharp dressing, heavy on the herbs.
Roasted-Chicken Bread Salad with Peas
Here's your new chicken dinner, complete with sides. Roast and carve the bird, then whisk together a warm, lemony dressing using the pan juices. Toss it with cubes of toasted rustic bread, English peas, and snap peas, and arrange everything together. Finish with a garnish of pea shoots.
Snap-Pea and Melted-Leek Tartines
Cooking leeks slowly brings out their best, melting quality. The silky leeks complement the textured crunch of sugar snap peas atop fluffy ricotta and toasted sourdough slices.
Potato, Snap Pea, and Pea-Tendril Salad
There are as many potato salads as there are days in a year, and this vibrant version will become a favorite. Bacon bits, sharp shallot, and the soft pop of sugar snap peas pair beautiful the comforting texture of new potatoes.
Tagliatelle with Mashed Peas and Pecorino
Think of this dish as a grown-up version of noodles with butter. English peas, mashed with sautéed shallots, are dotted throughout the ribbons of pasta, providing sweetness against the rich backdrop.
Ham Fried Rice with Snow Peas
Leftover rice is transformed by a quick frying with garlic and ginger, bits of ham, and the all-important crunch and color of snow peas.