How to Clean Leeks: A Step-by-Step Guide

Leeks are a delicious vegetable, but they're grown in sandy soil, so they need a good cleaning before you use them in recipes.

August 31, 2021
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How to Clean Leeks 01:02

Leeks are delicious but can be tough to clean. Here are our easy tips.

Follow these steps to make cleaning leeks a cinch. For more info on leeks, head over to our story, What Are Leeks?

Step 1: Trim the Roots

Leeks are a lot like onions or scallions, but they have their own unique flavor. Trim the root end and remove the dark tops.

Step 2: Slice Off the Dark Green Tops

Slice off the dark green tops of the leeks. Typically, you should use the light part of the leek for cooking, but you can toss the dark green tops into stocks instead of onions.

Step 3: Cut Into Sections

Cut the leeks into sections about 4 inches long.

Step 4: Cut in Half

Slice the leeks sections in half lengthwise.

Step 5: Rinse

Fill a baking dish or bowl with water and add the leeks. A baking dish works well because it's flat. The leeks will float and the dirt will fall to the bottom. Check the layers for any hidden dirt.

Step 6: Slice the Clean Leeks

Slice the leeks according to the recipe.

Step 7: Or Clean After You Cut Them

You can also clean the leeks after you cut them. Simply slice and rinse by adding them to a bowl of water and lifting them out with a slotted spoon. Set them on a paper towel to drain. Tip: You can store leeks in a damp paper towel in the fridge for two or three days.

Step 8: Cook with the Leeks

Now they're ready to add their subtle flavor to your braise, saute or roast.

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