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January 15, 2024

Leek Soup

Leeks, they’re more than just the fancy relatives of onions and garlic. We especially love them cooked in butter and blended into this rich and creamy soup.

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Bowl of creamy leek soup topped with fresh chives and a spoon in it surrounded by crusty bread slices.
Photography by Gayle McLeod

Leeks, Not Just Supercharged Scallions

Because of their size, leeks seem like they would be Maximum Onion on a scale of eye-watering to full on sobbing while you slice. They are, somewhat surprisingly, the gentle onion. Subtly onion in flavor compared to their allium family counterparts, leeks add just the right amount of onion flavor to this creamy leek soup.

Ingredients for leek soup in small bowls including chickpeas, leeks, chicken stock, onions, heavy cream and thyme.

How To Cook Leeks

If you’re a newcomer to cooking with leeks, you might have a few questions that need answering before we get going.

  • What part of a leek do you use for soup? You’ll be using the white and light green parts only.

  • Can I use the green part of leeks in soup? The darker green parts of leeks are bitter and have a tougher texture. They are edible, but we’re only using the tender and mild portion of the stalk for this recipe.

  • How to cut leeks for soup: First, cut off the root end. Next, cut off the green leaves where the stalk intersects with the darker green portion. You’ll have a nice, cylinder-shaped stalk. Slice it into rounds about ¼ inch thick, as uniform as possible so they cook evenly.

  • How to wash leeks: We have found the easiest way to clean leeks is after slicing them. You can fill a bowl or the kitchen sink with water and let the leeks soak to loosen any debris from when they were growing in the earth. You can then dry them in a colander or salad spinner.

  • Fond of leeks? Check out some other recipes with leeks, like our Braised Leeks with Beurre Blanc, Shirred Eggs with Leeks, Wild Mushroom Chowder with Bacon and Leeks, Potato Leek Au Gratin.

raw leeks, onions and garlic in a large dutch oven.
jar pouring chicken stock into a pot of cooked leeks, onions and garlic with garbanzo beans and fresh thyme sprigs.
Leeks, onions, chickpeas, thyme cooked in chicken stock in a large cast iron pot.
immersion blender blending leek soup in a large cast iron pot

How To Make Leek Soup

It’s likely you’ve heard of Potato Leek Soup, and our recipe has the same velvety texture but with a secret little ingredient to cut back on carbs, making this healthy leek soup (or healthier leek soup!). You’ll be using a can of chickpeas instead of potatoes!

  1. Cook the alliums: Melt the butter in a pot over medium heat. Add the leeks, onion, and garlic and cook, stirring often, until the leeks are tender, about 10 minutes.

  2. Stir in the seasonings, stock, water, bouillon, and chickpeas. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the chickpeas are very soft.

  3. Blend!

  4. Stir in the parmesan and cream, until the cream is warmed through.

  5. Serve! Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with parmesan and chives or parsley, if using.

wooden spoons stirring heavy cream into leek soup in a large cast iron dutch oven.

Tools You’ll Need

close up of leek soup topped with chives being scooped out of a pot with a ladle.

Let The Soup Times Roll

You might know that when we find a good thing, we like to explore many varieties of the theme. So it goes with our feelings on the topic of soup. Try more of our favorite soup recipes, like:

a spoon dipping into a green bowl filled with leek soup topped with fresh chives and surrounded by crusty bread and chives.

Lots Of Soup For You!

We hope that you made, and loved, our homemade leek soup recipe. Snap a photo of your beautiful bowls of leek soup and maybe even a video of the beautiful people you feed it to. Tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

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Leek Soup

  • Serves: 4
  • Prep Time:  20 min
  • Cook Time:  35 min
  • Calories: 632

Ingredients

  • ½ cup salted butter (1 stick)
  • 3 pounds leeks, trimmed, leaving white and light green parts only, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 quart chicken stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon chicken flavored Better Than Bouillon or 1 bouillon cube (optional)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • minced fresh chives or flat leaf parsley, for garnish (optional)

Method

  1. Melt the butter in a large stock pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the leeks, onion, and garlic and cook, stirring often, until the leeks are tender, about 10 minutes.

  2. Stir in the salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, thyme, chicken stock, water, bouillon, and chickpeas. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the chickpeas are very soft.

  3. Remove and discard the thyme. Use an immersion blender to blend the liquid directly in the pot until smooth. (Alternatively, transfer the liquid to the base of a blender, let cool briefly, and blend until smooth. Then return it to the pot.) Stir in the parmesan and cream, until the cream is warmed through.

  4. Taste and season with salt as needed.

  5. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with parmesan and chives or parsley, if using.

To freeze this soup, allow the soup to cool completely after blending in step 3. Store in a freezer-friendly container for up to 3 months. When ready to eat, defrost the soup in the refrigerator for 12 hours, then reheat it on the stovetop over medium. Cook through the rest of the recipe as instructed.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories632
  • Protein16 g
  • Carbohydrates30 g
  • Total Fat51 g
  • Dietary Fiber11 g
  • Cholesterol139 mg
  • sodium1383 mg
  • Total Sugars8 g

Leek Soup

Questions & Reviews

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  • Bryan

    It says 3 lbs of leeks. I got mine from Trader Joe’s and they trim them (mostly). So I bought 3 lbs and feel like I have prob double the amount of usable leeks. How many cups should it be roughly?

    I'd say about 3 cups chopped.

  • Kiri

    Hi, im Keto, what could I replace those chickpeas with do you think? I cant do potatoes, hmm i cant think of anything, maybe cauliflower blended?

    You could try cauliflower!

  • Jessica

    My 10 year old loved this. I did not have chickpeas on hand but used the same amount of diced potatoes. This a wonderful recipe!

    YAY! Kid approval is always the best approval! Glad you enjoyed it Jessica!

  • Lea

    Love modern proper for soups and stews and this, like all of their recipes, was easy and delicious. My only qualm was it came out a bit too salty, even without the cube of bouillon. As the recipe calls for salted butter I would tone down the teaspoon to 1/2 teaspoon or be sure to go with a low sodium broth.

    Thanks for the feedback Lea, glad you enjoyed it. We will test it again and see if we need to change the salt levels.

  • Sam

    I don't typically cook, but I was in the mood for leek soup and found this recipe online. I made it and WOW! The soup turned very delicous and is one I will 100% make again. I did add an additional glove of garlic, but that was just my preference. Thanks for the recipe!

    Thanks Sam, glad you enjoyed it!

  • Olivia

    This recipe is fantastic! The flavors are subtle but extremely satisfying. I love the use of chickpeas which bumps up the protein. A truly delicious and easy recipe.

    Thanks Olivia, so glad it was simple and yummy!

  • Kay

    Would never have thought to make leek soup but I LOVED it. Ate it with crusty bread and can't wait for left overs for lunch tomorrow.

    Thanks Kay, so happy you were surprised and loved it!