Parmesan, Leek, and Chickpea Soup

Don’t let this soup’s light appearance fool you. It’s rich with flavor, and a classic Italian favorite. Chickpeas and leeks add heft and texture, and the Parmesan cheese lends a saltiness. For a thicker version, remove 1 Cup (8 fl oz/250 ml) of the soup base, purée it, then stir it back into the soup.


  • 6 cups (48 fl oz/1.5 l) low-sodium chicken broth or beef broth
  • 3 Tbsp dry white wine
  • 3–4 large leeks, white and pale green parts only, sliced
  • 1–1½-oz (30–45-g) piece Parmesan cheese rind, preferably Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1 can (15 oz/470 g) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • cup ( oz/45 g) freshly grated Parmesan cheese, preferably Parmigiano-Reggiano, for sprinkling


In a saucepan over high heat, combine the broth and wine and bring to a boil. Cook until reduced by 1–2 tablespoons, about 2 minutes. Add the leeks and the cheese rind and reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer until the leeks are translucent, the rind has melted a bit, and the broth is nicely flavored by both the cheese and the leeks, about 25 minutes.

Add the chickpeas and continue to cook until they are heated through, about 5 minutes. Remove and discard the cheese rind. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Ladle the soup into warmed bowls and serve at once. Pass the grated cheese at the table for sprinkling.