This gluten-free Creamy Garlic and Chive White Bean Chowder with Leeks is rich and velvety and full of fiber and protein!
We all know sometimes less is more in life, and I think this can be particularly true when it comes to food. Think about a perfectly ripe summer tomato; the only thing it needs is maybe a sprinkle of salt to be mind-blowing. Or warm fresh baked bread, which can be improved by nothing except a smear of butter. Or creamy vanilla ice cream flecked with specks of vanilla beans and drizzled with hot fudge. So many times simple flavors win out.
This soup is another great example of the perfection that can be found in simplicity. Here I borrowed flavors from the classic Potage Parmentier, also called Potato and Leek Soup, which is one of my favorite wintertime dishes. And it couldn’t be easier to make! As a fun twist, I skipped the potato and went with white beans instead.
For this soup, leek and garlic are sautéed in butter, fresh chives and thyme add freshness, and white beans add fiber, protein, and creamy texture. I used Swanson® Organic Free-Range Chicken Broth because I love the depth of flavor and richness that chicken broth lends, but to keep this vegetarian, feel free to use vegetable broth instead of chicken. (Or to keep it vegan, use olive oil instead of butter, water instead of chicken broth, and skip the cream cheese or use a vegan cream cheese!)
For a healthy, filling winter meal you can serve this soup along with a big green salad and some bread (my Best Paleo Sandwich Bread would be perfect) or maybe along with a Spinach-Mozzarella Grilled Cheese if you’re feeling indulgent! And bonus, this is a great soup to keep stocked in the freezer to pull out for quick weeknight meals when there’s no time to cook because it reheats really well.
What’s your favorite kind of homemade soup?
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 large leeks, white parts only, halved, thinly sliced, and rinsed well
- 6 large cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
- 1½ (32 oz/6 cups) Swanson® Organic Free-Range Chicken (or Vegetable) Broth
- 1 (15.5 oz/439 g) can no-salt-added white beans (such as cannellini beans, great northern beans, etc.), rinsed and drained
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 oz (57 g) cream cheese
- 3 tablespoons minced fresh chives, divided
- Add the butter to a 5-quart pot over medium heat. Once melted, add the leeks and cook until softened, about 6 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the garlic and thyme and cook 1 minute more, stirring constantly.
- Add the broth, beans, salt, and pepper, and bring up to a boil. Cover the pot, turn the heat down to simmer, and cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the cream cheese, and carefully puree the soup using an immersion blender or in batches using a regular blender.
- Return the soup to the pot and bring it back up to a gentle simmer.
- Right before serving, stir in 2 tablespoons minced chives, reserving the remaining 1 tablespoon for garnish.
Vegan-Friendly: Use olive oil instead of butter, water instead of chicken broth, and omit the cream cheese or use a vegan cream cheese instead.
Make-Ahead: This soup is perfect meal to stash in the freezer for busy weeknights because it reheats like a dream!
Disclosure: I’m thrilled to partner with Swanson® as a brand ambassador. I received the Swanson® products that I used in this recipe for free, and I also received compensation for this post. I am happy for the opportunity to share brands that I believe in with my readers, and I hope you enjoy my recipe. As always, opinions stated are my own.