Creamy sausage gnocchi is a simple 30-minute, one-pan recipe that tastes like a dish from a fine dining restaurant! The recipe features basic ingredients found in most pantries, including the basic tomato sauce for pasta, spinach, and Italian sausage.
Creamy sausage gnocchi - main ingredients:
This one-pan meal combines creamy tomato sauce with spicy Italian sausage, garlic, spinach, Italian seasoning, and red pepper flakes. The recipe uses basic ingredients such as store-bought gnocchi and tomato pasta sauce.
- Gnocchi. I used store-bought potato gnocchi, Delallo brand, made with 85% potatoes.
- Sausage. Crumbled spicy Italian sausage works the best. You can also use Italian sausage links (casings removed, sausage links sliced). Or, use mild or sweet Italian sausage - and add some spice to it!
- Tomato sauce for pasta. Use your favorite tomato sauce - it can be a store-bought pasta sauce or marinara sauce. Any flavor will work: traditional, tomato basil, arrabbiata, or garlic tomato sauce.
- Greens. I use fresh spinach to add some veggies to this recipe. You can also use frozen spinach - thawed and drained of any liquid. Or, use kale instead.
Why make this recipe?
Sausage gnocchi is a simple and quick dinner (only 30 minutes of your time!) which makes it a perfect choice to make on a busy weeknight. This dish is so comforting, creamy, and flavorful - it will become your new favorite comfort food! Another thing I love about this one-pan meal is that for such a small amount of effort you get a beautiful dish that tastes and looks like an entree from a high-end restaurant! I do hope you give this recipe a try and let me know in the comments if you liked it!
If you like sausage pasta recipes, be sure to check out this delicious sausage tortellini soup with spinach or this popular recipe on my site: skillet mac and cheese with sausage and bell peppers
One-pan 30-minute meal
In this recipe, everything is cooked in one skillet: sausage, spinach, tomato cream sauce, and even gnocchi! The clean-up after dinner is minimal - only 1 cooking dish to clean! Because of the simplicity of this recipe and how tasty it is, this recipe might become one of your family's favorite weeknight dinners!
What type of gnocchi to use?
I used potato gnocchi, a Delallo brand, made with 85% potatoes. They work beautifully in this recipe.
Do you need to pre-cook the gnocchi?
You don't need to pre-cook the gnocchi for this recipe. Just add the uncooked gnocchi directly to the sauce (heavy cream + chicken broth). The gnocchi will cook in the same pan with the sauce and the sausage. This saves you one more pan to clean and minimizes the cleanup. Also, as you cook the gnocchi in the sauce, the starch from gnocchi is released which helps to thicken the sauce. What you have in the end is the sauce of a very nice, thick consistency. I use heavy cream in this recipe, but half-and-half can be used instead.
What type of sausage to use with gnocchi?
- Crumbled Italian sausage. I used 15 oz of crumbled spicy Italian sausage. I love spicy sausage, and because it is used with pasta, the spiciness of the final dish is actually pretty mild overall since the sausage is mixed with gnocchi, the tomato cream sauce, etc.
- Italian sausage links. You can also use Italian sausage in casings. I would remove the casings and slice the sausage.
- Sweet or mild Italian sausage. You can also use sweet or mild Italian sausage - in this case, I do recommend adding some spice, such as red pepper flakes.
Storage and reheating tips
Because the sauce is made only with heavy cream, chicken broth, tomato pasta sauce, and without any cheese, this recipe is very easy to store and reheat. You can also easily make this ahead.
- Fridge. Store creamy sausage gnocchi in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
- Freezer. Freeze it in an airtight container for up to 2 months.
- Reheat in the microwave oven. Reheat the refrigerated sausage gnocchi in a microwave oven for about 1 minute. Taste and reheat for 30 seconds more, if needed.
- Reheat on the stovetop. Reheat this dish in a large, high-sided skillet on the stovetop on low-medium heat. When using this method, add a small amount of heavy cream, or half-and-half, or milk to thin out the sauce when reheating.
What to serve with sausage gnocchi
- Bread. Serve this easy recipe with something equally simple, such as a slice of store-bought, warm Italian bread, garlic bread, or olive bread loaf. Breadsticks are great, too!
- Simple salad. Because the sausage gnocchi dish is made with a rich and luscious cream sauce, a fresh salad is a great choice. I would suggest a basic spinach or arugula salad, probably sprinkled with toasted nuts, a small amount of shredded Parmesan or crumbled goat cheese, and dressed with your favorite salad dressing!
Other creamy sausage pasta recipes you might like
- Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta with Sausage and Spinach
- Creamy Mozzarella Pasta with Smoked Sausage
- Creamy Sausage Tortellini with Spinach, Tomatoes and Mozzarella cheese sauce
Creamy Sausage Gnocchi - One-Pan, 30-Minute Meal
- 15 oz Italian sausage spicy, crumbled
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 16 oz potato gnocchi
- ½ cup chicken broth
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning or Herbs from Provence
- 13 oz tomato sauce such as tomato pasta sauce or marinara
- 5 oz spinach fresh
- salt and coarsely ground black pepper to taste
- red pepper flakes to taste
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil on medium heat in a large, high-sided skillet.
- Add crumbled sausage and cook on medium heat for about 5 minutes, crumbling it.
- To the same skillet with sausage, add uncooked potato gnocchi, chicken broth, heavy cream, minced garlic, Italian seasoning. Bring to a boil on medium heat and stir everything well. Cover with lid, and allow the gnocchi to cook for about 5 minutes on medium heat, while the sauce boils.
- Add tomato pasta sauce and stir it well. Add fresh spinach, and cook on medium heat, stirring frequently for 5 minutes until the spinach wilts to your liking. Cook longer if you would like a thicker sauce.
- Mix everything well. Remove from heat.
- Season with salt, freshly ground coarse black pepper, and red pepper flakes, if you like.
- Tip: use your best judgment about the salt. If the sausage is salty enough, you might not need to add any extra salt.
- Chicken broth is used in this recipe. However, you can also use white wine, red wine, or water instead! Frankly, I've used water in this recipe, too, and there was no loss of flavor!
- Tomato sauce. It can be a store-bought pasta sauce or marinara sauce. Any flavor will work: traditional, tomato basil, arrabbiata, or garlic tomato sauce.
- Sausage. I used crumbled spicy Italian sausage. Italian sausage links can be used, too, with casings removed and sausage links sliced. You can also use sweet or mild Italian sausage (add some spice in this case!)
- Italian seasoning of Herbs from Provence. The mix that I used contained dried rosemary, thyme, parsley, tarragon, marjoram, basil, and sage.
- Cook gnocchi right in the same pan! Gnocchi releases the starch, which actually helps to thicken the sauce without adding any cheese or cornstarch. This also minimizes a clean-up since you're using only one pan for the whole recipe!
- Heavy cream or half-and-half - either can be used!
The nutritional information on this website is only an estimate and is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed. It should not be used as a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
Super delish! My family is not a fan of gnocchi so I used penne instead. I par-cooked the penne for 7 minutes and then followed the recipe when it said to put in the gnocchi. Pasta was cooked perfectly and everyone raved about the flavor. Yum!
Made a double batch, used a Hearty Burgundy instead of chicken broth.
Turned out Excellent! Will be making it again & again!
Gary, love that you used red wine instead of chicken broth - that goes really well with Italian sausage! 🙂
Wonderful, easy weeknight recipe and meal. Added a bunch of shitake mushrooms. Soooo good!
Selene, I am so glad you loved this dish! 🙂 Mushrooms are a delicious addition!
Just made this. So tasty.added a little wine,and a medley of mushrooms! Little less tomatoes. Will definitely keep this in my repertoire! Thank you!
Flo, I am so glad you've added this recipe to your rotation. Love the addition of wine and mushrooms! 🙂
Easy and delicious! I used a can of full fat coconut milk in place of the cream to make it dairy free. I also took the suggestion of adding mushrooms from another comment. My husband took one bite and said "can we add this to the rotation?". Thank you for sharing this great recipe!
Molly, your comment made my day! 🙂 And, thank you so much for taking the time to share this positive and helpful feedback - good to know that full-fat coconut milk worked just great to make it dairy-free and delicious!
I just bought a package of cauliflower gnocchi. Wonder if I could substitute that.
Suzie, cauliflower gnocchi would work great here - no changes to the recipe are needed!
This is a great recipe, very tasty!!!! I couldn't find any premade gnocchi, so I had to make the gnocchi from scratch. I also added some fresh mushrooms. I'll definitely make it again.
Kim, I am so glad you tried this recipe and enjoyed it! Great to know it worked with homemade gnocchi!
Dying to make this, but I have one question... Are the gnocchi fresh or frozen?? Sorry I'm a bit dumb at the moment
Tara, I used shelf-stable gnocchi that is usually sold in the same aisle as pasta. But you can use frozen gnocchi too - just throw them frozen - they will cook in the sauce.
This is what I used:
Made this tonight!!!! So quick and easy. Delious. Thanks for sharing
Jules, so glad you tried this recipe and loved it! Thank you for your positive comment! 🙂