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Peas are a member of the Legume family (alongside beans and lentils) and are said to be one of the earliest vegetables grown. Fresh peas are a very popular vegetable but have a short season.The majority of peas grown in Ireland are sent for processing.

Peas are rich in good quality protein and carbohydrate and are therefore used in many vegetarian dishes as a meat substitute. They are also a good source of fibre, Vitamins A and C, folic acid, phosphorus and iron.

Nutritional Information

Nutrient   Raw Cooked
Energy kJ 344 329
  Kcal 83 79
Protein g 6.9 6.7
Carbohydrate g 11.3 10
Fat g 1.5 1.6


Preparing and Using

 If buying peas, they should be as fresh as possible. In top condition, the pods should be bright green, the more withered the pod, the longer they have been stored incorrectly.Before cooking peas they will need to be shelled. Then they can be cooked in a pan of rapidly boiling water with some mint. .Don’t overcook peas, as they will lose their colour and flavour, and some of their nutrients. They can be blanched and refreshed to use in salads. 


One of the first recipes for peas was “petits pois à la française” (peas cooked with small hearted lettuce), which is still a popular dish. Peas are also used in many Indian dishes and vegetarian recipes. They are also used to make soup – minted or with bacon, for example. They can be used in stir-fries and curries, stews and casseroles.


Flavours and ingredients that go well with peas include orange, lemon, mint, lettuce, spinach,wine, bacon, Indian spices, Thai spices and cream.

Learn more about Irish produce

Find out what time of year is best to purchase Irish vegetables, fruit and herbs.