Make this Baked Potato Soup with Leeks and Cheese and garnish it like you would a baked potato; with sour cream, cheese, bacon bits, and more leeks.
I should have a category for dishes like this Baked Potato Soup with Leeks and Cheese. There are times when a quick glance in the fridge is all the inspiration I need and the other day it was a day with two leftover baked potatoes and a couple of nice size leeks…next thing you know I’m on a mission to make something.
I simply love leeks and I certainly didn’t want to forget to use them. One of my favorite dishes has leeks, chicken, and bacon but I had made it not too long ago and needed something new. I thought about a soup and soon I was on a mission. If I’m honest I was dying to make soup too because I had just bought these new soup bowls and napkin from World Market. New props = New Recipe!
We are truly in soup weather in Denver; we’ve had more snow this past week then November thru January combined. No complaining from me though; we need snow in winter to have adequate water in summer for all of the yards that need automated sprinkler systems to stay green. And my perennial gardens…sometimes it does seem like a vicious cycle but it’s simply semi-arid living.
So soup it was and was it yummy! The leeks are sauteed with garlic and cooked further in chicken broth before being combined with milk, sour cream and cheese. Add to that some cubes of baked potato and it was divine; it really was reminiscent of a baked potato made with those toppings but in a smooth, creamy variation.
If you follow this blog, you know I give so much food away. I’m cooking for one now and while I love leftovers, enough is enough. But I also plan ahead…so when I made a baked potato last week, I purposely made two additional; no sense in running even my countertop oven multiple times for three potatoes. Those I kept. Thankfully.
What I did not give away was any of this Baked Potato Soup with Leeks and Cheese. I thought of it, I did…but I also loved that I would have another meal already prepared in the fridge and I waffled. The deal was solidified because I simply loved it…don’t hate me but I didn’t want to share!
I should make more for my friend Amy though…it is the perfect gluten free meal. So rich and creamy and not one gram of flour to be found. The potatoes and cheese that are blended into the base thicken it quite nicely and I actually had to add a bit more water to get the right consistency. Use your judgement when making and thin it down if you think you prefer a less thick consistency.
This recipe does call for you to bake potatoes but I used ones I had leftover from another meal and it made it much less time consuming. Even bake your potatoes the night before so you don’t have to wait for them, that would work too.
I do wish I lived close enough to my daughter to bring her my leftovers. After vowing to never marry or have kids; she has done both in the past three years and gave birth to my first grandchild this past Saturday; adorable little Eli. I want to take all of them everything but I have to wait; Charlotte and Denver aren’t exactly close. Kids should not be allowed to move away!
Anyway, back to the task at hand, I have included a list of garnishes in the recipe and they include sour cream, some additional cheese, bacon bits, and a bit more of the sauteed leeks. You have to remember that for any recipe I decide to share on this blog that I have to make dishes look as appealing as they taste; so sometimes a garnish on soup is more important for photos than taste.
You don’t really need the extra sour cream or cheese, but the bacon bits and leeks are nice. Bet you won’t share either!
PIN IT! ‘Baked Potato Soup with Leeks and Cheese’
Baked Potato and Leek Soup
- 2 medium russet potatoes about 1/2 lb. each
- 6 thick slices bacon cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 3 cups sliced leeks about 2 medium leeks; white and light green parts
- 3 medium cloves garlic minced
- 2 cups chicken broth homemade or canned
- 2 cups water
- ½ cup milk
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 cup Mexican Blend cheese
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Sour Cream optional
- Shredded Mexican Cheese
- Sauteed Leeks
- Bacon bits
- Heat the oven to 400ºF. Scrub the potatoes clean, pat dry, and pierce in several places with a fork. Set on an oven rack and bake until very tender when pierced with a fork, about 1 hour. Let them cool completely on a wire rack.Put the bacon in large skillet and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until browned and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the bacon bits with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with 2 thickness of paper towel and let drain. Leave about a tablespon of bacon fat in the skillet.
- Add the butter to the skillet over medium-low heat and let melt; stir into the bacon fat in the skillet. Add the leeks, season with salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 10 minutes. Set aside a couple of tablespoons of the sautéed leeks for garnish. Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute or two.
- Add the broth and water; heat to a simmer and cook until the leeks are tender, about 15 minutes.
- When the potatoes are cool, cut them in half lengthwise. Scoop the flesh out of the skin in one piece from each half. Cut the potato into 1/2-inch cubes and set aside.
- Coarsely chop the potato skin and add them plus any loose pieces of potato to the pot with the leeks. Purée the contents of the pot until very smooth using an immersion blender (See Notes about countertop blender). Return the puréed soup to the pot and reheat over medium low.
- Whisk together the milk and sour cream until smooth, add to the soup with 1/2 cup of the Mexican Blend cheese; whisking everything together until the cheese melts.
- If the soup seems too thick, thin it with a little water. Add the cubed potato and stir gently to combine; season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Garnish with the sour cream, Mexican Cheese, sautéed leeks, and bacon bits.