Get Baked: Vegan Leek and Parsnip Soup

This soup is the easiest and it is the best. It’s even better than carrot ginger soup, which is saying something. Excuse me while I wax harmonic about the wonders of hand blenders.

Leek and Parsnip Soup


2 tbsp olive oil
3-4 large leeks
1 pound parsnips
1/4 cup dry sherry
4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth + 2 cups of water
3 sprigs fresh thyme
2 bay leaves, broken in half
1/2 to 1 tsp freshly ground white pepper, to taste
2 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped


1. Wash and drain the leeks. Chop the white and light green parts roughly and toss the dark ends. Peel the parsnips and cut them into smallish pieces. You’re going to blend everything later so it doesn’t really matter how you cut everything up, but aim for 1-inch chunks.

2. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the leeks and cook until they start to soften, which will take about ten minutes. Add the parsnips and cook for another two minutes. Add the sherry, turn up the heat and cook, stirring often, until most of the liquid evaporates.

3. Add four cups of broth and two cups of water. (I use four cups because that’s how much is in a tetra pack plus two cups of water because it needs it, but if you have six cups of broth, or prefer chicken to vegetable, you can use that instead.) Add the white pepper, bay leaves and sprigs of thyme. Cover the pot and bring everything to a boil, and then turn down the heat and simmer until the parsnips are tender.

4. Remove from heat and let stand for about 10 minutes before you fish out the thyme and bay leaves.

5. If you have a hand blender, use it and avoid splattering the ceiling. If you have a food processor or blender, blend in smallish batches for a consistent texture (and don’t forget to hold the lid down).

6. Garnish with freshly chopped thyme and additional pepper to taste and serve.

Adapted from Fine Cooking.

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Ryan Yates

Ryan Yates was the NSFW Editor (2013–2018) and Literary Editor for, with bylines in Nylon, Refinery29, The Toast, Bitch, The Daily Beast, Jezebel, and elsewhere. They live in Los Angeles and also on twitter and instagram.

Ryan has written 1142 articles for us.


  1. this looks really good. However I do not have a hand blender and did not like parsnips the one time that I tried them. BUT that last picture is amazingly gorgeous and I like how the garnish matches the green of the bowl/the pale soup is echoed in the granite counter top. Also I’m impressed by your leek chopping abilities, those are super duper even. Go you!

    • Haha, same boat here – I love leeks, but I just don’t like parsnips. I gave them a few fair shots but they don’t do it for me. Fortunately there are potato and leek soup recipes around the web if you want something still creamy and yummy. :D

      For those without a hand blender, one can always do batches of soup in a regular blender. It takes a little longer but works as well. :)

  2. I really don’t understand the concept of “sherry” or “cooking wine”. as in, wine you keep around but don’t drink. for my unrefined palate, the only wine I don’t drink is the kind that’s turned really vinegary and gross.

    • A mandolin slicer is a great investment for quickly slicing leeks for this soup or onions for french onion soup. mmmmm, soup.

  3. Made the soup. Very tasty! My dumbass had no idea that leeks was an onion so in the middle of chopping it occurred to me why I was crying all of a sudden. Lol oh and I’m soo with you on the handblender. God bless it.

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