How to Cut Leeks

By Rena Awada |

If you’re confused about how to use and cut leeks, then you’ve come to the right place. Learn how to quickly and easily cut and clean leeks in this Step-by-step post on the How to Cut Leeks.

Leek on a cutting board with different cuts beside it.

What are Leeks?

Leeks are a member of the onion family so they’re related to garlic, chives, shallots, and onions. They look like giant versions of scallions with white bottoms and leafy green tops but only the white part is used for recipes as the dark green part is bitter. Leeks are in season from October through May. Due to how they’re grown, they can be sandy and there might be debris in the layers of leek which is why it’s important to wash them after cutting. This way, whatever is trapped between the layers is clean. Keep reading down below to see how I clean my sliced leeks.

What do Leeks Taste Like?

Leeks are similar in taste to onions as they’re in the same family but they taste much milder and a bit on the sweeter side. There’s also a slightly garlicky flavor to them as well. Unlike cutting onions, you won’t be tearing up when cutting leeks. Similar to onions and scallions, leeks can be eaten raw or cooked.

How to Pick Leeks at the Store

  • Look for large white and light green sections in the leeks. The tough green tops are usually discarded.
  • Make sure they are firm and there aren’t soft spots.
  • Look for leeks that are perky and don’t look droopy. If the top green parts look dried out, the leeks are on the older side.
  • Some leeks are thick and some are tall, it doesn’t matter which ones you purchase.
Leeks on a cutting board.

How to Cut Leeks

There are two ways to cut leeks. They can be long thin slices or circular ring cuts. Both cuts can be roasted, sautéed, added to soups and stews, and more.

Method 1 {how to cut leeks}

  • Cut off the dark green leafy part of the leeks.
  • Cut off the roots at the bottom of the stems.
  • Cut the stem in half and place them cut side down.
  • Julienne the stems into long thin pieces.
  • Transfer the sliced leeks into a bowl of water and rub them through your hands to try and dislodge any dirt or debris stuck between the layers.
  • Transfer to a strainer and allow the water to drain off the leeks.

Method 2 {how to cut leeks}

  • Cut off the dark green leafy part of the leeks.
  • Cut off the roots at the bottom of the stems.
  • Slice the leek into thin round rings, from tip to root.
  • Transfer the sliced leeks into a bowl of water and rub them through your hands to try and dislodge any dirt or debris stuck between the layers.
  • Transfer to a strainer and allow the water to drain off the leeks.

How to Store your Cut Leeks

If you are cutting your leeks in advance, once the sliced leeks are dried from the mesh strainer (you can pat them dry with a paper towel to speed things up), transfer them to an airtight container and place it in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Leek on a cutting board with different cuts beside it.

Can I Freeze Sliced Leeks?

Yes, you can! Once the keeps are dried, place them in a single layer on a sheet pan and allow to freeze. Once frozen (around 1 to 2 hours), you can transfer them into an airtight freezer bag or container. This prevents them from freezing in a giant lump. You can even use them straight from frozen this way.

Ways to Use Sliced Leeks

  • soups
  • stews
  • risottos
  • quiches
  • stir fry
  • frittatas
  • stuffing
  • pizza topping
  • fried rice

Tips on how to cut leeks

  • Store freshly purchased leeks in the crisper drawer in your refrigerator in a plastic bag to stay fresh. No need to wash it before you store it. To save space, you can cut off the dark green leafy section before storing.
  • Leeks can last up to 2 weeks in the fridge when properly stored.
  • You don’t want to pour the water and leeks through a strainer. Use your hands to transfer the cut leeks so any dirt or sediments say at the bottom of the bowl of water.

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Different cuts of leek on a cutting board.

How to Cut Leeks

If you’re confused about how to use and cut leeks, then you’ve come to the right place. Learn how to quickly and easily cut and clean leeks in this How to Cut Leeks guide!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: ingredient
Cuisine: American
Diet: Low Calorie
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 1
Calories: 54kcal
Author: Rena

Ingredients

  • 1-2 leeks rinsed
  • water

Instructions

Method 1

  • Rinse the leeks thoroughly with water. Cut off the dark green leafy part of the leeks.
  • Cut off the roots at the bottom of the stems.
  • Cut the stem in half and place them cut side down.
  • Julienne the stems into long thin pieces.
  • Transfer the sliced leeks into a bowl of water and rub them through your hands to try and dislodge any dirt or debris stuck between the layers.
  • Transfer to a strainer and allow the water to drain off the leeks.

Method 2

  • Cut off the dark green leafy part of the leeks.
  • Cut off the roots at the bottom of the stems.
  • Slice the leek into thin round rings, from tip to root.
  • Transfer the sliced leeks into a bowl of water and rub them through your hands to try and dislodge any dirt or debris stuck between the layers.
  • Transfer to a strainer and allow the water to drain off the leeks.

Notes

  • Freshly purchased leeks should be stored in the crisper drawer in your refrigerator in a plastic bag to stay fresh. No need to wash it before you store it. To save space, you can cut off the dark green leafy section before storing.
  • Leeks can last up to 2 weeks in the fridge when properly stored.
  • You don’t want to pour the water and leeks through a strainer. Use your hands to transfer the cut leeks so any dirt or sediments say at the bottom of the bowl of water.

Nutrition

Calories: 54kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 0.3g | Saturated Fat: 0.04g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Sodium: 18mg | Potassium: 160mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1484IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 2mg
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