Dairy-Free Potato-Leek Soup with Bacon Recipe

Potato-leek soup
A bowl of potato-leek soup. Dennis Gottlieb/Getty Images
Total Time 90 min
Prep 10 min, Cook 80 min
Yield 6 servings Dairy-Free Soup

Now you can have your creamed soups and eat them, too, with this Dairy-Free Potato-Leek Soup recipe.

Traditional potato-leek soup is made with heavy cream and milk or buttermilk. But you can build an incredibly rich soup by taking advantage of the starchy quality of potatoes themselves. After blending or puréeing the potatoes, the potato starch combines with a small amount of dairy-free milk to create an incredibly rich mouth feel.

I've replaced the traditional butter in this recipe with bacon -- a common flavor partner for leeks -- but I also have provided vegetarian alternatives that will work just as well.

This is not necessarily a quick dish to prepare, but a filling and popular one that is well worth the time expended.

Ingredients

  • 6 pieces bacon, divided, or 6 tablespoons olive oil or dairy-free margarine, divided
  • 4 to 5 medium leeks (white parts only), scrubbed and trimmed, and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
  • 8 medium white potatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped (about 3 to 4 cups)
  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened dairy-free milk (rice milk, hemp milk, soy milk, etc.), or more if necessary
  • Finely chopped chives for garnish (optional)

Preparation

  1. In a large stockpot or Dutch oven, cook 3 pieces of bacon over medium heat until all the fat is rendered and bacon is cooked. Remove bacon and set aside. (If not using bacon, heat 3 tablespoons oil or margarine over medium heat until quite hot.)
  2. Turn heat to low and add leeks to bacon grease or oil or margarine. Cover and cook leeks slowly, stirring every few minutes, until leeks are soft and have given off a large quantity of liquid, about 30 minutes. Remove leeks and set aside.
  1. Wipe pot and cook 3 more pieces of bacon until fat is rendered and bacon is cooked. Remove bacon and set aside. (Again, if not using bacon, heat 3 tablespoons oil or margarine over medium heat until quite hot.)
  2. Cook potato cubes in bacon grease or oil or margarine over medium heat until light brown, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  3. Add cooked leeks, cooked bacon, broth, and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce heat to low and simmer until potatoes are fork-tender, about 30 to 40 minutes.
  4. If you have a stick blender, blend soup until mostly blended (some chunks can and should still remain). Otherwise, remove soup to a blender and pulse several times on a low setting until most chunks are blended.
  5. Return soup to stockpot over low heat and stir in 1/2 cup dairy-free milk or more, if necessary, to bring soup to a spoonable consistency. Heat until soup reaches boiling again. Serve immediately, optionally garnished with chives.

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