How To Cook Frozen Peas Well Enough To Actually Eat Them

Frozen peas are one of those staple frozen vegetables you can find in everyone's freezer. Unfortunately, for most of us, we've been cooking frozen peas incorrectly most of our lives. Most bags of frozen peas tell us to cook them by pouring the peas into a pot of boiling water. Once the peas are boiled to death, they're strained in a colander and served. If you're lucky, maybe they'll be coated with some butter, salt, and pepper. This method makes the peas mushy and just sad. Who wants to eat peas that resemble baby food?

We've done the research to find out how to make our peas actually taste delicious.  One simple trick will totally change how you cook frozen peas.

How To Cook Frozen Peas

how to cook frozen peas bagged

The best way to cook frozen peas is to saute them on the stovetop with a pinch of sugar. In only 10 minutes, you can have a delicious pea side dish that people will actually enjoy.

In a pan, melt a few tablespoons of butter. Next, add the peas and a pinch of sugar. The sugar helps to bring out the natural sweetness of peas. Cook the peas over medium heat for about 7 minutes, then drain off any excess liquid. When you are ready to serve, sprinkle on some Kosher salt and black pepper.

The addition of sugar will not outshine the health benefits of peas. Peas are high in Vitamin A and  Vitamin C. They're also a great source of protein and fiber.

Types of Peas

multiple types of peas in bowl and table

Next time you head to the grocery store for frozen peas, don't forget to check out the other varieties of peas.

English peas, also known as sweet peas, are the most common fresh pea. They grow in a tough outer pod. You can find them already shelled in the frozen sections of the market.

Snow peas are found in many Asian stir-fry dishes. Their entire pod and pea is edible, making it great to cook with.

Snap Peas are a mix between an English pea and a snow pea. Their entire pod is edible and makes a delightful "snap" sound when eaten. They have a naturally sweet flavor.

Frozen Pea Recipes

bowls of pea soup on table

1. Pea Soup

You've probably heard of split pea soup, but this pea soup is made with frozen green peas. It's very easy to whip up as an appetizer to the main course.

In a pan, saute chopped onion, celery, and garlic. Then, stir in peas, broth and 1/2 cup of water and bring to a simmer. Next, puree the soup until it reaches your desired consistency.

This soup can be made vegetarian and is very healthy. The soup has less than 300 kcal per serving. The optional addition of half-and-half increases the calcium amount of the soup.

Get the recipe here.

2. Quinoa with Peas

This side dish is one of our favorite new recipes for peas. Quinoa is a super food and the addition of peas makes this a health food powerhouse. This recipe contains less than 30g of carbohydrates and no cholesterol.

Heat olive oil in a large pan and saute onion and peas. While the veggies are cooking, cook the quinoa according to package instructions. Add the quinoa to the peas, season with salt and pepper, and toss in some walnuts for crunch.

Get the recipe here.

3.  Parmesan Peas

This is the perfect weeknight dish when you're short on time. The total time is only 15 minutes including prep time and cooking time.

All you need to do is saute butter and shallots, add frozen peas and cook for 2 minutes. Add lemon juice and a sprinkle of parmesan.

Get the recipe here.

4. Marinated Vegetable Salad

This light and fresh dish makes good use of green beans and frozen peas. The addition of sugar and red wine vinegar adds needed brightness and acidity. Simply, mix all the ingredients together, pour over the vinaigrette and marinate for 24 hours.

Get the recipe here.

5. Microwave Chicken and Dumplings

The best part of this recipe is that you can make it entirely in the microwave. This comfort food classic uses frozen peas and carrots to pair with the creamy dumplings.

You'll make the creamy filling by combining broth and flour in a microwave-safe dish. Then, you'll add in the butter, vegetables, and fresh herbs. Lastly, you'll throw in the shredded chicken, frozen peas, and carrots.

Get the recipe here.

Knowing how to cook frozen peas can be a lifesaver. They're cheap, easy to prepare, and extremely nutritious. Stop using them as an icepack for that sprained ankle and get to cooking!

READ: Why Frozen Peas Are Better Than Fresh