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Creamy Baked Leeks with Garlic, Thyme, and Parmigiano

Scott Phillips

Servings: 8

This simple recipe doesn’t require the cook’s attention at the last minute—but it will get the attention of your onion-loving guests. If possible, choose leeks that are all about the same size.

For more side dish recipes visit The Guide to Thanksgiving Dinner.


  • 1 tsp. unsalted butter
  • Kosher salt
  • 8 medium-large leeks (ideally with several inches of white)
  • 2 tsp. lightly chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 large cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
  • 1/3 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 170
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 110
  • Fat (g): 12
  • Saturated Fat (g): 7
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 0.5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 3.5
  • Cholesterol (mg): 45
  • Sodium (mg): 105
  • Carbohydrates (g): 14
  • Fiber (g): 2
  • Protein (g): 2


  • Heat the oven to 350°F. Rub the bottom of a shallow 10×15-inch (or similar) rectangular baking dish with the butter. Sprinkle 1/4 tsp. salt over the bottom of the pan.
  • Cut the dark-green portion and all but about 1 inch of the light green off the top of the leeks. Peel away any tough or damaged outer leaves. Trim the ends by cutting the roots but leaving a bit of the base intact to hold the leek together. Cut each leek in half lengthwise. Gently wash each half under running water, fanning open the layers to rinse as thoroughly as possible. Pat the leeks dry and then arrange them cut side down in the baking dish. They should all fit snugly, but if they are crowded, turn a few on their sides. Sprinkle the thyme and 1/4 tsp. salt over the leeks.
  • Heat the cream and garlic in a small saucepan over high heat. As soon as the cream comes to a rolling boil (watch carefully and don’t let it boil over), remove the pan from the heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Pour the cream and garlic evenly over the leeks.
  • Cover the leeks with a piece of parchment cut to fit inside the pan.
  • Bake the leeks until the thickest ends are tender all the way through when pierced with a paring knife and the cream is almost entirely reduced, about 35 minutes. Sprinkle the leeks with the Parmigiano and salt to taste. Bake just until the cheese melts, an additional 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer the leeks to a warm serving platter.

Make Ahead Tips

You can wash and trim the leeks and arrange them in the buttered baking dish 6 hours ahead.


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Reviews (7 reviews)

  • Krispie | 10/23/2016

    This was delicious! I kept the leeks full size and cooked them for the recommended amount of time and they were perfect - easy to cut and delicious. I also assembled the entire dish early in the day and put it in the fridge. I brought it to room temp before baking. Finally, I accidentally put the Gruyere I had grated for my twice baked potatoes on the leeks. I still added the Parmesan and it was wonderful. I would definately make again and soon.

  • Venny52 | 12/16/2015

    I made this last night to go with steaks. I picked smaller leeks and they were done in 30 minutes. No cutting problems. I will definitely make this again.

  • user-352935 | 12/20/2013

    Fantastic! I've made this or some variation (shitakes are a wonderful addition) every Thanksgiving since the recipe came out. A young friend called it "creamed onions for grown ups." guess I'm a grown up

  • eshields | 09/03/2012

    This recipe is fantastic. I cut the leeks in half and accidently seperated them all. Still turned out great.

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