Potato Leek Soup

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A French classic, this creamy potato leek soup is quick, easy, and comforting.

Two white crocks of potato leek soup.

Potato leek soup, or potage parmentier, is a French classic. It’s one of the first dishes I learned to make in culinary school, right after a proper omelette and basic vinaigrette, because it’s an essential base soup in French cuisine. Add watercress to make potage au cresson, serve it chilled to make Vichyssoise, or top it with oven-fried bacon, fried leeks, fresh herbs, or diced vegetables. There are endless variations – just use your imagination (or whatever you have in the kitchen) to make it your own. Potato leek soup is simple to make and can be served as an appetizer, a side dish alongside a Reuben sandwich or wedge salad, or as a stand-alone lunch.

What You’ll Need To Make Potato Leek Soup

Soup ingredients including chicken broth, leeks, and bay leaves.

How To Make Potato Leek Soup

Potato leek soup is simple to make, but first you have to deal with the leeks. They’re notoriously sandy and dirty, and very good at hiding it, so be sure to wash them well. Start by cutting off and discarding the root ends and thick dark green parts. Cut the leeks in half lengthwise and rinse each half under cold water, pulling apart the layers to remove any grit that’s tucked inside.

Person washing leeks under running water.

Once the leeks are clean, roughly chop them — you should get about five cups of chopped leeks from four large leeks.

Sliced leeks on a cutting board.

To make the soup, melt the butter in a Dutch oven or large soup pot, then add the chopped leeks and garlic.

Sliced leeks in a Dutch oven.

Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and wilted.

Dutch oven of cooked leeks.

Next, add the potatoes, chicken broth, bay leaves, thyme, salt and pepper.

Broth pouring into a Dutch oven with leeks and potatoes.

Bring to a boil.

Broth boiling in a Dutch oven.

Then cover, reduce the heat, and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.

Blue Le Creuset Dutch oven with the lid on.

Fish out the bay leaves and thyme sprigs.

Spoon removing bay leaves from soup.

Then purée the soup with a hand-held immersion blender (or in a regular blender) until smooth. (If using a standard blender, be sure not to fill the jar more than halfway; leave the hole in the lid open and cover loosely with a dishtowel to allow the heat to escape.)

Immersion blender in a pot of soup.

Finally, add the heavy cream. You can reduce the amount if you’d like but I wouldn’t leave it out completely. Cream makes the soup deliciously silky, rich, and smooth — just add it little by little until the soup tastes good to you.

Heavy cream pouring into soup.

Bring to a simmer, then taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Serve hot, garnished with fresh thyme, chives, or anything you like.

Video Tutorial

potato leek soup

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Potato Leek Soup

A French classic, this creamy potato leek soup is quick, easy, and comforting.

Servings: 6
Prep Time: 25 Minutes
Cook Time: 40 Minutes
Total Time: 1 Hour 5 Minutes


  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 large leeks, white and light green parts only, roughly chopped (about 5 cups)
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped into ½-inch pieces
  • 7 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Chives, finely chopped, for serving


  1. Melt the butter over medium heat in a large soup pot. Add the leeks and garlic and cook, stirring regularly, until soft and wilted, about 10 minutes. Adjust the heat as necessary so as not to brown.
  2. Add the potatoes, broth, bay leaves, thyme, salt and pepper to pot and bring to a boil. Cover and turn the heat down to low. Simmer for 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are very soft.
  3. Fish out the thyme sprig and bay leaves, then purée the soup with a hand-held immersion blender until smooth. (Alternatively, use a standard blender to purée the soup in batches; see note.) Add the heavy cream and bring to a simmer. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. If soup is too thin, simmer until thickened. If it's too thick, add water or stock to thin it out. Garnish with fresh herbs if desired.
  4. Note: If using a standard blender to purée the soup: be sure not to fill the jar more than halfway; leave the hole in the lid open and cover loosely with a dishtowel to allow the heat to escape; and pour blended soup into a clean pot.
  5. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: The soup can be frozen, without the cream, for up to 3 months. Defrost the soup in the refrigerator for 12 hours and then reheat it on the stovetop over medium heat until hot. Once heated through, add the cream and bring to a simmer before serving.

Pair with

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (6 servings)
  • Serving size: about 1-1/2 cups
  • Calories: 454
  • Fat: 24 g
  • Saturated fat: 14 g
  • Carbohydrates: 49 g
  • Sugar: 10 g
  • Fiber: 5 g
  • Protein: 12 g
  • Sodium: 828 mg
  • Cholesterol: 78 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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  • Very good recipe! We loved it!

    • — Barbara on June 11, 2024
    • Reply
  • Leek soup does not have, has never had garlic. Additionally, it does not have thyme or bay leaves. This is your own recipe not the classic original recipe for Leek soup.

    • — Kathryn Johnson on June 8, 2024
    • Reply
  • This is frustrating. I can’t find the list of ingredients showing amounts.

    • — Bronwyn on June 8, 2024
    • Reply
    • Hi Bronwyn, It sounds like you are just looking at the portion of the page that has the pictures with some instructions above. If you scroll down a bit to under the pictures, you’ll find the full recipe. Alternatively, at the very top of the page, to the right of the recipe name, you’ll see an orange/red button that says Jump to Recipe – if you click on that, it will take you directly to the recipe. Hope that clarifies!

      • — Jenn on June 8, 2024
      • Reply
  • I’ve made this recipe for a long time and love it. Its my go to recipe for Potato Leek, perfect, easy and has great taste. Sometimes I’ve used the Knorr chicken bouillon (trick I learned by a chef in Europe). It’s still as good and handy if you don’t have stock.

    • — Iris Shah on May 29, 2024
    • Reply
  • Used extra leek & extra stock, plus booster & garlic powder & lots more pepper. Served with crispy speck cubes on top. Solid recipe, thanks:)

    • — Kori Sanderson on May 28, 2024
    • Reply
  • such a tasty soup ! will be definitely doing it again 🙂

    • — Mariam on May 18, 2024
    • Reply
  • I was planning on making potato soup with dill until I came across this recipe; I bought two bundles of fresh dill and wondering if I could add in this recipe?? Or perhaps suggest another recipe?

    • — Anna on May 11, 2024
    • Reply
    • Hi Anna, you can use some dill in this, but I’d limit it to 1 to 2 tablespoons.

      • — Jenn on May 15, 2024
      • Reply
      • I regretted adding the dill (added too much) but family liked it fine. I decided to retry your recipe again and stick to your recipe and it turned out AMAZING!! If I could give it 10* I would!! Thank you; I have signed up for your recipes and will stop searching elsewhere for recipes!!

        • — Anna on June 9, 2024
        • Reply
    • Love your potato leak soup. It’s easy to make and very flavorful. I use whole milk and it’s still creamy enough.

      • — Anne on May 20, 2024
      • Reply
  • Delicious! Out of bay leaves so used dash of dried basil (per Chef Google!). Finished with less cream and white pepper. And… drop of lemon juice. Divine!

    • — Siobhan on May 11, 2024
    • Reply
  • Delicious! Added chives, bacon, cotija cheese and ground pepper.

    • — Rachel Bennett on April 25, 2024
    • Reply
  • What an unbelievably easy and delicious soup. I’m just amazed at how tasty this soup is. I can wait to share it with my family.

    • — Tennielle on April 22, 2024
    • Reply

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