Vivian Howard’s Black Eyed Pea Gravy

Yield: 6 servings
Calories: 142
Theme: New

Chef Vivian Howard is showing everyone how to fit all the flavor of Southern comfort food into healthy recipes that are good for your waistline too! This gravy is the perfect example. Gravy is usually known for being full of both animal fat and white flour, but Howard switched it up to create this creamy and healthy version of your dinner staple. Enjoy all the comforts of this classic dish with none of the guilt.


  • 2 medium onions, or 2 cups onions halved and sliced thinly with the grain
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt, divided
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 2 cups frozen black eyed peas
  • 4 cups beef stock or water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cups milk


1. In a 4-quart saucepan, cook the onions and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt in the olive oil over medium-low heat until they caramelize, about 30 minutes. They should be a chestnut brown.


2. Stir in the black pepper and garlic. Cook an additional two minutes.


3. Add the peas, beef stock, and bay leaves. Cover and bring up to a boil. Cook for about 40 minutes or until the peas are extremely tender.


4. Transfer the peas, their liquid, and the remaining 1 teaspoon of salt to a blender.


5. Add the milk and blend until smooth.

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This recipe was recently featured in What Kathie Lee Learned About God and Faith.

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