There is nothing better on a chilly, damp day than a steaming bowl of potato leek soup; and conversely, few things are as delicious and refreshing on a hot, sweaty day than a bowl of ice cold vichyssoise.

Recipe Summary

prep:
15 mins
cook:
1 hr 10 mins
total:
1 hr 25 mins
Servings:
6
Yield:
6 servings
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Ingredients

6
Original recipe yields 6 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Melt butter in soup pot over medium-high heat. Add leeks and salt; cook until leeks begin to wilt. Reduce heat to medium or medium-low and cook until soft and almost pastelike, 30 to 40 minutes.

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  • Place potatoes in the pot; add chicken broth. Adjust heat so mixture simmers slowly. Cook until potatoes are soft, about 30 minutes. Puree mixture with an immersion blender or in batches in a blender. Whisk in heavy cream and creme fraiche. Heat over medium heat. Add more salt, if needed, and cayenne pepper. Do not boil.

  • Serve with a drizzle of creme fraiche and a sprinkle of chopped chives.

Chef's Notes:

You'll need 1 1/2 pounds of leeks after they've been trimmed. Leave about an inch of the dark green.

Here's Chef John's recipe for homemade crème fraiche.

Nutrition Facts

424 calories; protein 5.8g 12% DV; carbohydrates 35.4g 11% DV; fat 30.5g 47% DV; cholesterol 104.3mg 35% DV; sodium 1171.3mg 47% DV. Full Nutrition

Reviews (61)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
06/05/2017
This turned out wonderful! I added a few cloves of garlic with the leeks. I didn't have crème fraîche therefore substituted with 5% sour cream, make sure the soup doesn't boil after its added otherwise it could curdle. Thanks for the great recipe! ! Read More
(11)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
09/30/2019
, a rich version of the original that works well in mugs. The first time I set this out on the patio, I overheard the kids deciding not to tell me that I'd served it cold. Read More
89 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 84
  • 4 star values: 3
  • 3 star values: 2
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
06/04/2017
This turned out wonderful! I added a few cloves of garlic with the leeks. I didn't have crème fraîche therefore substituted with 5% sour cream, make sure the soup doesn't boil after its added otherwise it could curdle. Thanks for the great recipe! ! Read More
(11)
Rating: 5 stars
01/11/2017
Yummy. Made just as described. Thanks chef John. Read More
(4)
Rating: 5 stars
07/13/2017
This soup is absolutely delicious! We kept the potato skins on and substituted half and half for the heavy cream...and it was still velvety smooth and so luxurious. Company-worth but also lovely for any day of the week. Read More
(3)
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Rating: 5 stars
12/09/2017
Excellent soup would not change a thing pair with crusty hard roll or bread!! Read More
(3)
Rating: 5 stars
10/01/2017
Freaking awesome! My whole family loved it. I cut the leeks longitudinally to wash them out--I'm impatient like that. Read More
(2)
Rating: 5 stars
10/20/2018
Absolutely delicious! I winged it with the ingredient amount, but it turned out wonderfully. Great recipe and very forgiving for someone who doesn’t usually measure! Haha. Read More
(2)
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Rating: 5 stars
09/13/2017
Time consuming but worth the effort. Substituting the heavy cream and creme fraiche will reduce the caloric value by almost half while retaining the velvety texture and decadent flavor. I blended in my Vitamix and it took just seconds. Read More
(2)
Rating: 5 stars
11/12/2017
Delicious, thank you Chef John, will certainly make again. Read More
(2)
Rating: 5 stars
02/20/2018
If I could give this 6 stars I totally would. It surpassed my expectations in every way. It's winter here so I ate it hot. I knew it would be rich and I was serving it as a starter so I kept the portions small but I would have gladly gone back for seconds if there were any. I'll be making this again and I won't be sharing! Read More
(2)
Rating: 3 stars
09/30/2019
, a rich version of the original that works well in mugs. The first time I set this out on the patio, I overheard the kids deciding not to tell me that I'd served it cold. Read More