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Creamy Potato Leek Soup

I am so excited for the start of soup season! Though Jake has converted me to believe that soup season is year round, fall is here which means friends are posting new recipes to try for the colder weather. We recently moved to Southern California and wanted to try a new dish. I came across a J. Kenji Lopez-Alt (from Serious Eats) recipe for a Potato Leek Soup. I love how easy it was to throw this one-pot dish together. 

Since Kenji and the Serious Eats team have never failed me, I trusted his recipe early on and made 2x the batch so we could freeze it in our Souper Cubes® trays. I'm so glad we did. Unpacking/settling always takes longer than I expect it to. It's been so nice to have a new soup in our freezer meal stash to enjoy when we're too tired and exhausted to cook from scratch.

We'd love to hear from you! What's your favorite fall soup recipe? Comment below!

Full recipe below instructions.

Prep/Gather Your Ingredients

You can make this soup vegetarian by using veggie stock. We ended up using a chicken bone broth we had made earlier in the week. We love the extra depth in flavor it provides. 

I recommend watching this video with tips for cleaning and cutting leeks:

Turns out, leeks like to hide a lot of dirt. You'll want to be sure to clean/cut them properly. You won't be needing the dark green part for this recipe. I cleaned and cut them off, and then placed it in a large Ziploc in the freezer. I throw in other veggie scraps in the Ziploc bag as I cook/prepare other dishes (e.g., mushroom steps, onion peel, etc.). Later I'll throw it all in a pot and make a vegetable stock.

Sauté your leek in butter and olive oil

Heat butter in a Dutch oven (or large soup pot) over medium heat until melted, then add leeks and stir frequently. Takes 10-15 minutes to soften.

Once leeks have softened, add stock, bay leaf, and potatoes

Bring to a boil, then reduce to a low simmer. Cook for 20-25 minutes.

Add heavy cream and buttermilk

Note: I doubled the recipe, which resulted in adding 2 cups of buttermilk. This might be due to personal preference, but I think next time I'll start with just 1 cup of buttermilk and then add a quarter-cup at a time until I find a taste I like.

Remove bay leaves, blend soup in batches

I originally tried using an immersion blender because I didn't want to take our Vitamix out of the pantry. I found our immersion blender wasn't quite strong enough. We also didn't own a potato ricer at the time, so I called it a day and used the Vitamix. I recommend putting the soup in batches so you don't fill the blender all the way to the top. Kenji suggests straining the soup. I like the chunky pieces so just put it all back in the pot.

I should also disclose I totally got the last two steps mixed in order. Kenji blends the potatoes/stock together first and then whisks in the butter milk and heavy cream. Somehow, I didn't realize that until I was writing this blog. That being said, I think it turns out fine either way.

Add nutmeg and salt & pepper to taste

Enjoy!

We served our soup with toasted sour dough bread. It was delicious. You can also add sliced scallions or chives as a garnish.

Freeze leftovers in a Souper Cubes® tray!

Potato Leek Soup Recipe

Recipe adapted from J. Kenji Lopez-Alt at Serious Eats

INGREDIENTS*:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 large leeks, chop roughly (white and pale green parts only)
  • 8 cups stock (veggie stock recipe, bone broth recipe, chicken stock recipe)
  • 4 medium russet potatoes, peel and cut into quarters
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1.5 cups buttermilk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ¾ teaspoon nutmeg
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional: sliced chives or scallions for serving

*Note: This is the double-recipe version. To make the original recipe, reduce everything by half.

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Heat butter in a Dutch oven or large stock pot, then add in chopped leeks. Reduce heat and stir frequently until leeks are soft. 10-15 minutes.
  2. Add stock, potatoes, and bay leaves. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce to a gentle simmer, cover, and cook for 20-25 minutes. The potatoes should fall apart if pricked with a fork.
  3. Discard bay leaves. Blend soup with either a blender, ricer, or immersion blender. If using a blender, make sure to blend in batches. You'll want it to be completely smooth. Return to pot.
  4. Whisk in heavy cream and buttermilk. Add nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Serve with scallions (or chives) and toasted sour dough.

Check out our other page here: Freezer Friendly Recipes

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