This classic recipe for Potato Leek Soup is made from some of the simplest ingredients. This soup is made with bacon, potatoes, leeks and onion. It will warm you up on a cool day. Now that you have the recipe make sure to save it so you can cook it later!
It’s one of the soups I make several times a year. This fall, when the weather began to cool down, I made this soup. I also make it every year before St. Patrick’s Day. This is a creamy, savory dinner. This meal will satisfy you while feeling light.
The potato and the Irish
In different parts of Britain, including Ireland, Potato Leek Soup has been proclaimed a national dish. Scottish people also make their version, which they call Tattie & Leek. You may be surprised to find out that the French also have a version called Vichyssoise, named after a region of France.
Both potatoes and leeks can grow in Ireland’s soil, so they are very common in Irish cuisine. The potato was a staple food for many families in this area during the population boom that Ireland experienced. They were easy to cultivate and filled everyone up, especially during the winter months when other food was scarce.
Leeks: a little bit about them
Leeks once were better known than they were. They are Alliums that are in the same family as onions, shallots, green onions, garlic, and chives. The flavor is very mild. Very mild. If you didn’t notice they were there, you may have missed them. Their light flavor is a great way to give the potatoes in my Potato Leek Soup a little flavor.
Leeks grow best in sandier soils, so they have more dirt between their layers. Before washing, cut off about 1/2 inch from the bottom and five inches from the top. Basically, I removed the roughest parts of the green. This will make it easier for you to remove any dirt that is stuck between the leaves. You can then slice them as you normally would and add them to your pot.
How to cook my potato leek soup with bacon
You’ll know that I like to layer flavors with lots of herbs. Some people find potato leek soup bland. If you flavor it the way I do, you will love it.
In a large Dutch Oven, I first sauté the bacon until crispy. I then remove the bacon but leave the fat. Then I add the onions, leeks, and garlic. Cook until they are soft (about five minutes). Then I add a little bit of butter. Butter will give onions, garlic, and leeks a bit more caramelization. Butter has a lower burning point than bacon fat or some other oils that I use.
After adding the chicken broth, I deglaze the pan by scraping away the brown bits. The potatoes, bay leaves, and thyme are then added. Let it all simmer until the potatoes become soft, then use an immersion blender to smooth out the soup.
How to make my potato leek soup with bacon recipe
- Give yourself plenty of time to complete this task. It takes about 40 minutes for the entire process. You want it to be timely because you need to get the potatoes the right consistency.
- When I make this recipe, I remove the potato skins. I recommend that you do the same thing. The skins are tougher, and it makes it easier to blend.
- Three factors will affect the color and consistency.
- 1. How long do you cook the bacon? The more charred the bacon leaves, the more brown bits will be in the soup. Don’t be alarmed if there are any brown bits. They are very flavorful.
- 2. If you use heavy cream. A little heavy cream was used in the pictures. I’ve tried it both with and without heavy cream and enjoyed it both!
- 3. The amount of broth that is used. I suggest 3-4 cups, depending on whether you prefer your soup to be thicker or thinner. I’ve tried it both ways. Kevin likes the wider version. I prefer a light version.
- Use sea salt to rinse the leeks, and don’t forget!
- The Potato Leek Soup recipe with bacon can be blended in batches using a stand blender or an immersion blender. This is my favorite immersion blender. It is under $20, and it has lasted really well.
- This recipe will require a Dutch Oven or large pot. I like to have enough leftovers. It will serve four giant bowls and six small bowls. If you are making it for an appetizer, you can get eight cups. Here is my Dutch Oven HERE. If you are a follower of mine, you will know that I use this Dutch oven pretty much year-round.
- Salt and pepper is my recipe for Potato Leek Soup With Bacon well. As you cook, taste as you go. Imagine how much salt you would use to season baked potatoes and then multiply that by the number of potatoes you are using. It’s important to taste as you go so you don’t over-salt it.
Storing and topping
- The Potato Leek Soup can be stored in an airtight container for up to one week. You can freeze the soup for up to three months in an airtight container.
- You can reheat it on the stovetop or in the microwave.
- Include the bacon, prosciutto crisp, thyme chives and cheese. That’s not Irish. Who am I to judge if I top mine with Parmesan?
Want to see more Irish recipes?
- Try these Irish recipes if you are planning a meal to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day or looking for Irish food.
- Guinness Irish Stew With Braised Beef
- Irish Soda bread (a fan favorite)
- Irish Scones with raspberry jam and clotted Cream
- Cottage Pie
- Reuben Sliders
- Bailey’s Chocolate Cake
- Dutch oven or large pot
- Stand blender or immersion blender
- Five strips of bacon, sliced
- 4 Tbsp. butter, salted
- Yukon Gold Potatoes 3 lbs, peeled & quartered
- 5 Leeks, cut with the tops and bottoms removed
- One medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
- Five cloves garlic, diced
- 3-4 cups of chicken broth. If you prefer a thicker, more concentrated soup, use 3 cups. Use 4 cups if you like a thicker soup.
- 1 Tbsp. 1 Tbsp.
- 2 tsp. Fresh cracked black pepper
- Three fresh thyme stems.
- 3 Bay Leaves
- Optional: 1 cup of heavy cream
- Toppings include chives (fresh), bacon, cheese, fresh thyme and parsley.
- Add salt and pepper according to taste.
- Remove the bacon from the Dutch oven and let it cool.
- Add the onion to the pan and cook for 2 minutes. Add the leeks and minced garlic to the pan and continue sautéing for two more minutes while stirring constantly.
- Continue to cook the butter for 3-4 more minutes, stirring constantly.
- Add the chicken broth to the pan and scrape the brown bits off the sides and bottom.
- Add the bay leaves, thyme, salt and pepper. Stir everything well and cook on medium heat for 20 minutes.
- Check that the potatoes are easily detachable with a fork when time is over. Remove the bay leaves and springs of thyme.
- Add the cream now.
- You can use an immersion blender or a stand-alone blender. You will need to use a stand blender and blend in sections.
- Heat on low for 10 minutes after everything is blended. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve immediately. Top with desired toppings. I highly recommend thyme, bacon, and cheese!