Leeks are grown in sandy soil, so be sure to first rinse them thoroughly, working over the sink. (See the Tip, below.)

I love using rainbow carrots in my Braised Spring Vegetables because the mix of purple, yellow, and orange makes the dish pop, but any carrots will do. 

This recipe was developed by Kate Sherwood, The Healthy Cook. Have a comment, question, or idea? Email Kate at healthycook@cspinet.org.

Serves: 6
Time: 30 minutes 


  • 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 fennel bulbs, quartered
  • 3 leeks, white and pale green parts only, halved lengthwise and well rinsed (see Tip)
  • 6 rainbow carrots, halved lengthwise
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • ½ cup vegetable stock (preferably homemade)
  • ¼ tsp. kosher salt


  1. In a large heavy pan over medium heat, heat the oil until shimmering. Sauté the fennel, leeks, and carrots until just starting to brown, 3-5 minutes. Add the bay leaf and thyme sprig.
  2. Add the stock and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, covered, until the vegetables are very tender, 18-20 minutes. 
  3. Remove and discard the bay leaf and thyme sprig. Season with the salt. 


To prepare the leeks, first trim the roots off, leaving enough of the root end to keep the leek’s layers together after it’s been halved. Then trim off the top dark green end, leaving only the white and palest green parts.

Next, halve the trimmed leeks lengthwise, starting from the root end. Rinse the halved leeks thoroughly under cold running water while separating the layers at the green end to ensure that all the grit is rinsed away.

Nutrition Information

Per serving (¾ cup):

  • Calories: 110
  • Total fat: 5 g
  • Sat fat: 0.5 g
  • Carbs: 17 g
  • Fiber: 5 g
  • Total sugar: 7 g
  • Added sugar: 0 g
  • Protein: 2 g
  • Sodium: 160 mg
Spring & Summer Vegetables cover


Spring & Summer Vegetables

Eat more vegetables! Giving advice is easy. Figuring out what to do is another thing entirely. In this installment of The Healthy Cook’s Kitchen series, chef Kate Sherwood works her veggie magic in dishes like Rainbow Carrot Salad, Roasted Ratatouille, and Zucchini “Butter.”

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