\ˈlēk \

Definition of leek 

: a biennial garden herb (Allium porrum synonym A. ampeloprasum porrum) of the lily family that is commonly grown as an annual for its mildly pungent succulent linear leaves and especially for its thick cylindrical stalk

Illustration of leek

Illustration of leek

Examples of leek in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

One exception are leeks and asparagus, which can be stored upright, with the cut end submerged in about an inch of water. Aliza Abarbanel, Bon Appetit, "How to Store Vegetables in the Fridge so They Stay Super Fresh," 20 Feb. 2018 Chicken soup is simply a protein-rich meat stock, infused with a mirepoix of vegetables such as carrots, onion and leek. Time, "Weekend Recipe: A Hearty Chicken Soup That’s Good for Your Soul and Immune System," 1 Feb. 2018 Cook, stirring often, until leek and onion are softened but not browned, about seven minutes. 3. Tan Vinh, The Seattle Times, "Fall into this Cook’s Illustrated’s recipe: creamy cauliflower soup," 16 Oct. 2018 Sweat the kale and leeks gently in a pan with the butter, lid on. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "The Hot and Hearty Pie Recipes to Kick Off Autumn in Your Kitchen," 21 Sep. 2018 Pour in oil, then add leeks and onion and stir to coat. Carla Lalli Music, Bon Appetit, "Instant Pot Split Pea Soup," 9 Apr. 2018 My son left a pile of carrots and leeks in his plate. Kim Walker, Woman's Day, "Pasta with Ham, Leeks and Carrots," 26 Apr. 2012 Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cut four 12-inch squares of parchment and fold each in half diagonally; lay parchment open and divide leeks and carrots along center creases. Country Living, "Leeks and Halibut in Parchment," 10 Jan. 2011 Trim dark green parts from leeks and remove any tough outer layers. Andy Baraghani, Bon Appetit, "Grilled Swordfish with Charred Leeks and Citrus," 28 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'leek.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of leek

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for leek

Middle English, from Old English lēac; akin to Old High German louh leek

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Dictionary Entries near leek

lee gauge


lee helm


leek moth



Statistics for leek

Last Updated

3 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for leek

The first known use of leek was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for leek



English Language Learners Definition of leek

: a vegetable that has long green leaves rising from a thick white base and that tastes like a mild onion


\ˈlēk \

Kids Definition of leek

: a vegetable having leaves and thick stems which taste like a mild onion

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More from Merriam-Webster on leek

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with leek

Spanish Central: Translation of leek

Nglish: Translation of leek for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of leek for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about leek

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