Black Eyed Pea Stew with Collard Green Pesto

Did you know it is an old tradition in the south to eat black eyed peas and collard greens on New Years Day to symbolize good luck? It is largely believed that the more greens one eats, the more fortune they will reap in the year to come. We couldn't agree more! The more greens the better! Bring it on 2016. 

Traditional meals often include sautéed greens and stewed legumes served with ham hock and cornbread. We have taken this heavier meal and Zestified it into a metabolism boosting, anti-inflammatory bowl of goodness. 

Another perk is this recipe makes ~8 two-cup servings so you can embrace your good fortune all week long in the form of leftovers :)

This will take you about 1 hour to make start to finish. 


  • 3 cans black eyed peas, drained and rinsed
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 large carrots
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Spice blend:
    • 1 tablespoon paprika
    • 1 tablespoon chili powder
    • 2 teaspoon turmeric
    • 2 teaspoon curry powder
    • 1.5 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon cayenne (omit if you don't like spicy)

To Prepare:

  1. In a large pot on the stove top, heat garlic and olive oil over medium-high heat.
  2. Add chopped onion and carrots to pot and sauté for ~5 minutes, until onions become transulcent.
  3. Stir in all remaining ingredients EXCEPT black eyed peas (these go in at the very end), reduce heat to medium and cover.
  4. Let simmer at a low rolling boil for 20 minutes, or until carrots are tender.
  5. Remove pot from burner and use immersion blender to blend soup into creamy, uniform texture (alternatively you can transfer contents to a blender to puree). 
  6. Stir in black eyed peas and enjoy hot!
  7. Top each cup of soup with 1-2 tablespoons Collard Green Pesto (recipe below). DON'T SKIP THIS STEP! IT TAKES THE RECIPE FROM GREAT TO AMAZING!!!!


  • 3 cups packed collard greens, chopped (~1 bunch)
  • 1.5 cups packed fresh basil leaves 
  • 2 cups walnuts
  • 1.25 cups olive oil
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons salt

To Prepare:

  1. Toast the walnuts over medium-high heat on stove top for ~5 minutes until they start to brown and become aromatic.
  2. Add all ingredients to food processor and pulse until combined.
  3. Makes about 2 cups. Store in air tight container for up to 1 week.
  4. Use on top of soups, veggies, pasta/grains or as desired.

What are your New Years Day traditions?

We love to hear from you!