Potato and Leek Soup

Asking for a recipe for potato leek soup for many European cooks is akin to asking for a step-by-step explanation for making toast. It demands no special skills or equipment. Its ingredients are few and generally available in most climates. It is not fussy when it comes to “what goes in when” and “for how long”. Yet, despite this, it remains a largely undiscovered joy to many of the world’s eaters, but, hopefully not to you. As with peanut butter, there are those who love their soups chunky and those who prefer smooth. The recipe above is for smooth lovers, but the pureeing step can be skipped without consequence. For a creamier flavor and texture, try adding a drizzle of cream. For a heartier version, consider adding some real, cripsy bacon bits or a sprinkling of grated cheese.


  • 3 tablespoons butter or olive oil
  • 3 large leeks (white and pale green parts only), halved lengthwise, thinly sliced (about 4 1/2 cups)
  • 2 large russet potatoes, peeled, diced
  • 4 1/2 cups (or more) chicken, vegetable stock, or water
  • chopped fresh chives or parsley for garnish


  1. Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add leeks; stir to coat with butter.
  2. Cover saucepan; cook until leeks are tender, stirring often, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add potatoes. Cover and cook until potatoes begin to soften but do not brown, stirring often, about 10 minutes.
  4. Add 4 1/2 cups stock. Bring to boil.
  5. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until vegetables are very tender, about 30 minutes.
  6. Puree soup in batches in a processor or with an immersion blender until smooth. Return to saucepan. Thin with additional stock if the soup is too thick. Season with salt and pepper.
  7. Bring soup to a simmer. Ladle into bowls. Garnish and serve.

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