As a child I remember my mother making all sorts of puddings with suet.  Most of these were sweet and served with custard.  However, this recipe is for a savoury pudding to serve with steak and kidney stew or mince.  It is a type of dumpling.


  • 225gms SR flour
  • 100gms suet (I use vegetable low fat suet)
  • 50grams butter
  • Salt and Black Pepper
  • 2 leeks finely chopped


Put flour into a bowl, rub in butter and mix in the suet.

Add the finely chopped, raw leeks.

Slowly add water and mix together to form a light dough that just holds together.

Traditionally this is then placed in a pudding basin and covered with grease proof paper.  A muslin cloth is then placed over the basin and tied firmly with string around under the lip of the basin.  The basin is then placed in a saucepan filled with water, bring to the boil, then simmer for 2 hours.  Ensure that the water when boiling, does not overflow into the basin.  Keep checking the level of the water, topping up when necessary.

An alternative to mixing the leeks into the pudding is to make the suet pastry without the leeks, use the pastry to line the basin, place the leeks in the centre and place more suet pastry on top to form a lid.

Some families did not cook their pudding in a basin but wrapped the whole pudding in a muslin cloth, allowing space for expansion and cooked it in a pan of water.

A modern alternative is to make individual leek puddings.  The mixture will make 4 to 6.  Use ramekins or mini-pudding basins.  These only take about 30 minutes to cook.

Why not invite friends round for supper and produce a traditional Northumbrian meal with individual puddings.


  1. My son was at Newcastle University in the nineties and used to buy Leek puddings from the market in Newcastle I have been trying to replicate the taste for a while, it`s not difficult generally but has anyone had experience of making these delicious things in a microwave and if so what are the pitfalls??? Tony in N/Staffs

  2. Hi Tony,

    My Dad used to grow a lot of leeks when I was growing up so we ate a LOT of leek puddings. I’ve never tried them in the microwave, but I’m sure you’d be able to give it a go (they take a long time to boil in the pan!)… let us know how you get on!


  3. I have just made steak and kidney this afternoon for my Mum as she loves old fashioned leek pudding. We’re going to have it tomorrow night for tea with potatoes and cabbage. I found your recipe for the leek pudding as haven’t made it for years. Thank you so much!

  4. Tracey Hawkins Reply

    Thank you so much for this. Originally from the north east but currently living in Oz I’m about to cook it tonight for my partner in an effort to educated him on all the good things from up north

    • Laura Fitzpatrick Reply

      Aw, this is excellent to hear! Hope you’re enjoying Oz – visited when I was 19 and loved it!

  5. In 1977 I worked for the local Newcastle evening paper. Their staff canteen made wonderful leek pudding ; as did the main pub in my County Durham village. The pudding was in the form of leek dumplings over savory mince. I try to skim off the beef suet fat off the dish before serving. A real pitman’s dinner!

    • Laura Fitzpatrick Reply

      It’s certainly a Northern favourite! Sounds like you have some good memories!

  6. Andrew Webb Reply

    Used to enjoy leek pudding when an undergraduate at Durham University. 2 hours seems a very short cooking time…

    • Laura Fitzpatrick Reply

      Yes, it does doesn’t it, but it seems to work. My mother in law’s recipe. She actually wrote this article before she passed away. She would be so thrilled to see how many people have viewed it over the years!

Write A Comment