What to Serve With Gnocchi: Best Gnocchi Side Dish Recipes

Gnocchi might seem strange to some of us especially to those that do not know much about Italian delicacies. But after tasting one of those softly made filling dumplings, you would wish you had it earlier.

Gnocchi is a dumpling gotten from the combination of ingredients such as semolina and potato predominantly. The dumpling can come in various shapes and sizes as most people tend to make it according to their cooking preferences.

Gnocchi dumplings are usually very soft although they can also be made thick, other ingredients used for making gnocchi range from eggs, flour, cheese and in some cases bread crumbs but again, there could be variations to this depending on preference.

Gnocchi is a highly addictive kind of dish and if you are lost as to what ways to go about making a perfect plate of gnocchi then keep reading. With the many fillings that can be placed within it, it is always a crowd pleaser as there is gnocchi for everyone whether you are a picky eater or not, the fillings make them count.

History Of Gnocchi

There are so many claims that have been laid regarding the discovery of gnocchi, but it is generally believed that it was first concocted in Northern Italy. As far back as the 13th century, gnocchi was present in a cookbook; this goes to show that it has been around a very long time and it has come to stay.

Potato Gnocchi, Italian Potato Dumplings With Cheese Sauce, Ham

The word, “Gnocchi” is an Italian word which means lumps. Gnocchi has been adapted into diets all over the world, with each one having its name and style of preparation, but the one thing that relates to any gnocchi is the trademark design or imprint.

In those early days, gnocchi was reserved mainly for special occasions and banquets. Potato gnocchi is one of the most famous gnocchi recipes known worldwide.

Can you serve gnocchi as a side dish?

Yes! There are plenty of gnocchi side dish recipes to choose from that would make a great addition to a steak dinner, grilled chicken, or any other type of meat-based dish. However, it’s great as a main dish as well! 

Ideal Gnocchi Recipes

Gorgonzola Cheese Gnocchi

I always look for every opportunity to utilize gorgonzola and this was a timely one, the gorgonzola cheese was used for a potato gnocchi in this recipe by Manu’s Menu.

Gorgonzola Cheese Gnocchi
Gorgonzola Cheese Gnocchi – Photo from manusmenu.com

I usually prefer my gnocchi to be smaller in size, so I reduced the measurements applied in the preparation but you can use it as indicated, it all depends on the availability of ingredients and how much time you have to get it all done. I know not everyone will have the tarocco or gnocchi maker so you can make use of a fork as stated in the recipe.

Gnocchi Soup

We just can’t get tired of having soups and not even a gnocchi soup at that, crown it all up with a spinach gnocchi soup like in this recipe by Laughing Spatula. I like the superb selection of ingredients used in the recipe giving the gnocchi a very appealing look.

Gnocchi Soup
Gnocchi Soup – Photo from laughingspatula.com

I am sure the taste is just as good as the picture depictions. If you are a fan of spinach and cream, then this recipe will make your day. Gnocchi soup can be served at dinner or even to guests, make up a smashing presentation after you conclude your cooking.

Pan Fried Sweet Potato Gnocchi

If you are ready to be adventurous with your gnocchi, and you don’t mind dumping your boiled gnocchi for a second, then try pan fried gnocchi.

I know to some of us making plain gnocchi on its own comes with fears, but you can dare to take it a step further.

This particular pan fried gnocchi recipe by Predominantly Paleo is for the paleo guys in the house, you can have your gnocchi too and a nice one at that.

When trying out this recipe, be mindful of the ingredients used especially the flours. If you have them accessible to you, go ahead and make yourself some paleo gnocchi.

Gnocchi Side Dishes


If you are doing a type of gnocchi that is plain or that doesn’t include any form of beef then pair it up with sauerbraten, and you can get a good recipe for it from Ready To Rumble.

Sauerbraten – Photo from readytoyumble.com

Now, you should know that sauerbraten typically takes a whole lot of time, so, go for this if you are ready to wait for the refrigerating time, it is a delicious substitute to your usual steak.

You can also take a look at this YouTube video by Phyllis Stokes, what you need are just simple and easy to get ingredients.

Sautéed Asparagus

Going by how heavy some gnocchi dishes are made, lighter is always better for the side pairs, except your gnocchi is lightly made as well but, if you have a well-packed gnocchi recipe then simple sautéed asparagus like in this recipe by Self Proclaimed Foodie will be a balanced pair.

It is also a very time-saving side dish as you spend less than ten minutes altogether. If you’d like to make it more colourful, you could mix in some softened carrots with the asparagus; this will give a good match with your gnocchi as well.

You can also try out this easy to follow video

Roasted Mushrooms

If you are still up for some vegetables with your gnocchi, try roasted mushrooms, the roasting offers a denser compliment for your gnocchi which is soft. I like the Lemon Basil Roasted mushrooms by Cookin Canuck.

Roasted Mushrooms
Roasted Mushrooms – Photo from cookincanuck.com

The recipe is also very simple as no further cooking is required, all you have to do is prepare your mushrooms and roast, accurate baking timing and temperatures to get brown beautifully roasted mushrooms are explicitly specified in the recipe.


Gnocchi is a very very versatile dish, you can boil them, fry them, make them into soups and the list goes on. It is one of those dishes you can take bold steps with and be sure to come out with something presentable all the time.

If you would like a cookbook with different gnocchi recipes for you to choose from, you can get this one called Mastering Pasta.

Please keep me posted on your tryouts and new recipe discoveries; there isn’t a thing like too many recipes, I am here to hear it all and see it all.

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