A great soup for autumn that will tickle your taste buds and warm your soul! Our Carrot and Leek Soup recipe is a delightful blend of flavours, pairing the earthy sweetness of carrots with the mild, oniony goodness of leeks. With a touch of buttery indulgence and a sprinkle of aromatic thyme and ground cumin, this soup is a comforting hug in a bowl.
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Tips For Making A Great Soup
Soups are generally really easy to make and make a perfect lunch in the colder months of the year. However, how can you ensure your carrot leek soup is not just ok but is actually great? Here are our best tips:
- Clean your leeks thoroughly! Leeks are renowned for having dirt in the most inaccessible places, so make sure to wash it properly – nobody likes grit in their food! For tips on how to prepare leeks, see below.
- Cook your veggies in butter first. Sweating the vegetables in butter before cooking them in stock will add richness and depth of flavour to the soup.
- Choose high-quality stock. Since this soup has very basic ingredients, make sure your stock is top-notch for the best flavour!
- Make sure your vegetables are very tender before blitzing (but not completely disintegrating). This will ensure a silky smooth texture of your carrot leek soup.
- Leave the soup in the blender for a few more seconds than you think you should to make sure you have the smoothest result.
These tips can be applied to other soups, especially Carrot & Coriander Soup.
Ingredients and Substitutes
- butter: we used unsalted butter, but it can be substituted with ghee. Use odourless oil if you want to make this soup vegan!
- leeks: 1 large or 2 small leeks can be used in this recipe. As a rule of thumb use 1 part leek : 2 part carrot (in weight).
- carrots: cleaned and chopped.
- fresh thyme: leaves only, stalks discarded. Thyme can be substituted with other herbs that you enjoy. We think fresh coriander, parsley or even mixed dried herbs go very well with carrots.
- ground cumin: or you can try it with mild curry powder or ground coriander instead.
- vegetable stock.
- Swirl some cream (double cream/ heavy cream) on top.
- Add a spoonful of creme fraiche or sour cream.
- Scatter some toasted pumpkin seeds or pinenuts on top for texture.
- Nigella seeds are our go-to for pairing with carrot recipes.
- Add fresh herbs.
- Sourdough croutons work very well with this soup if you don’t want to serve it with bread on the side.
Four simple steps: prepping the vegetables, sweating them in butter, boiling and blending. That’s it!
How To Prepare Leeks?
Leeks are notoriously difficult to clean, however, since we are blending the soup and there’s no need to keep any of the leek intact, there’s an easier way than to cut it lengthways and try to get the dirt out from between the layers. Here’s how we prepare leeks:
- Remove any brown outer leaves. Cut off the root end and dark green tops. To waste as little as possible, cut the green tops at an angle down to where they are attached so that you keep more of the inner leaves.
- Cut each leek in half lengthways first, then chop into chunks crossways.
- Place the chopped-up leeks in a large bowl with cold water. Use your fingers to break the layers of leaves apart and swirl them around to encourage any dirt out of any groves. Leave the leeks to float to the top for a minute. The dirt will sink to the bottom.
- Lift the leeks out of the bowl, leaving the dirt behind in the bowl.
Is It Necessary To Peel Carrots For Soup?
No, there’s absolutely no need to peel your carrots. As a matter of fact, notes of nutrients are actually in the skin of the carrots (all the extra Vitamin C, B3 and phytonutrients). Just top your carrot, make sure it is thoroughly washed and continue without peeling it.
If you have old carrots with the skin starting to dry out and wrinkle, we recommend you peel them though!
Chop the carrots into chunks (smaller chunks will cook quicker, so may save energy :)!
Making Carrot and Leek Soup
Melt the butter in a large pan. Add the carrots and leeks and cook on low heat for 5 minutes. Add the thyme and cumin and stir for another minute.
Pour the hot stock over the vegetables, increase the heat to medium and cover with the lid. Cook for 15-20 minutes (or until your vegetables are very tender).
Pour the soup into a liquidiser (or use a stick blender) and blitz it into a smooth puree. Taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking.
Divide the soup between bowls and, if you wish, swirl some cream on top, scatter some pinenuts or pumpkin seeds and garnish with some fresh thyme. Serve with your favourite bread.
How To Store Carrot Soup?
If you have leftovers but are planning to eat the rest of the carrot and leek soup in the next couple of days, store it in an airtight container in the fridge! Just cool your soup to room temperature first, then cover it or pour it into an airtight container and keep it in the fridge for up to 3 days.
This Carrot Leek Soup freezes well too, but freeze it without any toppings or cream stirred in. Just cool it to room temperature, then pour it into freezer-friendly air-tight containers and freeze for up to 4 months. Thaw before reheating.
Both storage methods will likely result in your soup separating (forming a layer of water on top). It’s nothing to be alarmed about – the heavier particles sink to the bottom of the dish, whilst water floats on top. Just stir it whilst reheating it and it will all come together again!
What To Serve With Carrot Leek Soup?
Some form of bread is always welcome with soup, right? We love this budget-friendly soup with:
- Crusty Sourdough Bread
- Eggless Cheese Scones
- Simple Naan Bread (or Sourdough Naan Bread)
- Homemade Sourdough Croutons
Other Delicious Soup Recipes To Try
- Creamy Mushroom & Blue Cheese Soup
- Roasted Butternut Squash and Red Pepper Soup
- Vegan Creamy Cauliflower Soup
- Delicious Sweet Corn Soup (Vegan)
- Courgette and Potato Soup with Cheese Crisps
Carrot and Leek Soup (Easy & Budget Friendly)
- Stick Blender or Liquidiser
- 30 g butter unsalted
- 200 g leeks about 1 large leek, sliced
- 400 g carrots cleaned and chopped
- 2 sprigs of fresh thyme about 1.5 tbsp
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 700 ml vegetable stock
- double cream
- toasted pumpkin seeds
- toasted pinenuts
- nigella seeds
- Melt the butter in a large pan. Add the carrots and leeks and cook on low heat for 5 minutes. Add the thyme and cumin and stir for another minute.
- Pour the hot stock over the vegetables, increase the heat to medium and cover with the lid. Cook for 15-20 minutes (or until your vegetables are very tender).
- Pour the soup into a liquidiser (or use a stick blender) and blitz it to a smooth puree. Taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking.
- Divide the soup between bowls and, if you wish, swirl some cream on top, scatter some pinenuts or pumpkin seeds and garnish with some fresh thyme. Serve with your favourite bread.