If you’re over onions, you’re not totally fond of garlic and you’re looking for a new way to give your recipes a little boost, then it’s about time you fell in love with leeks. This veggie, which belongs to the Allium genus, has a slightly less strong flavor than its cousins the onion, shallots, and garlic, and they infuse a major dose of flavor to any recipe, without being too harsh or too difficult to prepare. A leek looks similar to a green onion, though they are larger, and they work perfectly in everything from stock to salad and more.
And in addition to the delicious flavor they can add to your dish, they are also loaded with health benefits. As per Food Facts, “the many antioxidants leeks provide begin converting to allicin. Allicin provides an abundance of important attributes to the body, such as anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal activities, and reducing cholesterol by impeding harmful enzymes in liver cells. Another major benefit is the 52% daily requirement of vitamin K, and a more than 29% daily requirement of vitamin A.” Here are 10 killer leek recipes that you need to try immediately. Cook now, thank us later.
1. Leek, Bacon, and Gruyere Crustless Quiche We’ve never seen a recipe with bacon that we didn’t like, and this quiche is no exception, and because there is no crust with this quiche you can indulge without the guilt. This is a must-serve at your next brunch party.
Read Related: Leek Love: 15 Leek Recipes to Try Right Now
2. Leek Potato Soup This soup is simple but so hearty and delicious you won’t notice that it only required 8 ingredients and a few simple steps. This is going to become you new go-to soup on a cold day (or any day).
3. Leek Mashed Potatoes It’s no secret that mashed potatoes are really, really yummy. But they can also start to seem a little boring if you keep preparing them in the same old way. It’s time to kick them up a notch with this recipe.
4. Creamy Dijon Leek If you’re looking for a simple but tasty side dish for your next meal, this creamy leek recipe is out of this world. And shockingly it’s really easy to make. You simply steam the them and then make the creamy Dijon sauce, which you can pour over or leave on the side for dipping.
5. Spicy Cavatelli with Zucchini and Leek Leek flavors make a perfect addition to pasta dishes, because they are mild enough to not overpower the other ingredients, but flavorful enough to add some texture and taste toy our recipes. When it’s done the cheese and veggies hide in the nooks of the noodles, making every bite a burst of flavor.
6. Leek and Olive Tart Seriously, what could be bad? This tart looks beautiful when it’s done, so your guests will think you put a ton of time and energy into making it, when in reality, it’s quite easy to whip up.
7. BLT (Beef, Leek and Tomato) Salad Onions are usually the go-to addition when you want to add some flavor to your salad, but why not try it with a leek or two instead? This dish is a salad that can be served as a main dish thanks to the grilled strip steaks and bacon. You’ll never think of your salad as boring again.
8. Chicken with Lemon-Leek Linguine Kiss boring weekend dinners goodbye, this recipe makes a simple chicken dish so much more delicious. Your kids will love it, your friends will love it, you will love it, and sadly there won’t be any leftovers.
9. Garlicky Leeks in Olive Oil Simple recipes that use fresh ingredients never disappoint. This dish lets the leek flavor shine because they aren’t masked by too many other ingredients or flavors.
10. Leek and Mushroom Bread Pudding Bread pudding isn’t just for dessert; It’s not exactly light or healthy (after all, there is milk, half and half, cheese and butter involved) but it’s so worth it when you’re looking to treat yourself and indulge your guests.
Photos 2 & 4 courtesy of Food Network.com