What goes well with leeks? Learn the best ingredient pairings, meal ideas, popular flavor combinations, and other helpful tips.
First things first though.
What Are Leeks?
Leeks are part of the allium family along with chives, garlic, onions, and shallots. This is why leeks look like large green onions.
They have a delicate onion flavor that is slightly sweet when cooked.
How to Cook Leeks
Leeks can be boiled, braised, fried, grilled, roasted, or steamed. Plus, the whole leek is completely edible.
Pro Tip: Make sure to wash them really well before cooking because dirt gets trapped inside their layers.
The white and light green parts are often used early on when building flavor in soups or when making caramelized braised leeks but can be used in place of onions or shallots, or even in place of garlic. Leek greens have just as much flavor (if not more) when cooked, so make sure not to throw them away.
Best time to buy leeks: Leeks are in season from autumn to spring. Buying them during this time will ensure they have the best flavor and are at the lowest price. See what other produce is in season right now.
What Ingredients Go Well With Leeks?
Carrots, cauliflower, celery, chile peppers, fennel, garlic, mushrooms, onions, potatoes, and scallions.
Lemons and tomatoes.
Bay leaf, caraway seeds, coriander, nutmeg, paprika, pepper (black or white) and kosher salt.
Chives, dill, oregano, parsley & chervil (french parsley), sage, tarragon, and thyme.
Butter, cheese (cheddar, goat, or parmesan), and cream (for dairy-free, use cashew cream, oat cream, or coconut cream from a can).
Anchovies, bacon, beef, chicken, eggs, fish, mussels, and sea bass.
Balsamic vinegar, barley, capers, chicken or vegetable broth, mustard, olive oil, rice, soy sauce or tamari (gluten-free soy sauce), truffles (black), and wine (red or dry white).
Popular Leek Ingredient Pairings
- anchovies + garlic + olive oil
- bacon + cream
- cream + thyme
- mustard + vinaigrette
Leeks are a common ingredient in French and Greek cuisines and are great in egg dishes, soups, stews, dressings, and salads.
What to Make With Leeks
- frittatas or healthy breakfast hashes
- caramelize and add to homemade vinaigrettes
- impress your guests or yourself by making caramelized braised leeks
- use the leek greens in leek greens farro risotto or traditional risotto if you eat gluten-free