Chunky Leek and Potato Soup Recipe

Try this savory, hearty twist on the classic leek and potato soup to warm up as the cool weather hits, using your dutch oven on hot coals.

Winter 2019

Cook Time: 28 min

Yield: Yields 8 to 10 servings

Ready yourself for cold winter weather with this filling, warming soup recipe. Photo by Getty Images/Christian-Fischer.


Embrace the simplicity of the great outdoors by cooking without electricity.  With just a campfire of coals and a dutch oven, quickly make a delicious potato leek soup for a small army.


  • 3 to 4 pounds leeks
  • 4 ounces pancetta, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup chopped chives
  • 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon ground thyme
  • 1 pound white potatoes, peeled and diced into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 pint half-and-half or heavy cream


While your charcoal heats (see “Cooking Beyond the Kitchen”), cut off the dark tops and root ends from the leeks, and slice leeks lengthwise. Put the slices in a pot of cool water, and separate the layers enough to be sure there’s no dirt between them. Pat dry, and slice the leeks and dark tops into thin ribbons.

  1. When the charcoal is ready, arrange all the coals evenly beneath a 12-inch Dutch oven.
  2. Add pancetta to the Dutch oven and fry until crisp. Add butter, leeks, and onion, and sauté for 8 to 10 minutes, or until leeks are softened.
  3. Add the chicken stock, chives, salt, pepper, bay leaves, and thyme. Bring mixture to a slow simmer, adding new hot coals beneath the Dutch oven as needed.
  4. Add potatoes, and simmer for another 10 minutes, or until tender.
  5. Stir in half-and-half, and return to a simmer. Remove Dutch oven from the coals. Discard the bay leaves, and serve warm.

NOTE: For a thicker soup, before adding the half-and-half, remove some of the potatoes from the pot and mash them, then return them to the soup.

Reprinted with permission from where NDOG host and participant Leslie Lovett shares Dutch oven knowledge alongside delicious recipes.

For more delicious Dutch oven recipes, see:

Sweet Cast iron Creations: Dutch Oven Desserts

Food & Entertaining

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