This spinach white bean gnocchi skillet is a simple one pan vegetarian dinner that can be on the table in less than 30 minutes! Sun dried tomatoes and pesto give this gnocchi dinner tons of Italian flavor!
Up until this past year, gnocchi was something I rarely cooked with. Then I made this butternut squash, sausage, kale gnocchi skillet and have been loving using it when we need a quick and easy dinner.
The recipe I’m sharing today is another one pan gnocchi dinner, but this is a vegetarian recipe and it’s heavy on Italian flavors. It’s a great dinner to make when you’re short on time too!
What Is Gnocchi?
Many people think that gnocchi is pasta, but actually it’s a potato dumpling. Gnocchi is generally made with flour and/or semolina, mashed potatoes, and an egg. You can however make gnocchi without the egg.
Gnocchi is thick, soft, and has just the right amount of chewiness to it. People often describe it as pillowy, which I think is pretty accurate.
How To Cook Gnocchi
There are a couple methods for cooking gnocchi. You can boil them in water or your cooking sauce like you would pasta. They don’t take nearly as long as pasta to cook, only about 4-5 minutes.
You can also pan fry them which is what I did for this white bean gnocchi. The gnocchi will still be soft and tender in the middle, but they’ll have a golden brown crisp exterior. Here’s how to do it.
- Add olive oil to a large skillet and let it get hot. Swirl the oil to coat the bottom of the pan.
- Add the gnocchi to the skillet and use a wooden spoon to separate them. Spread them out into a single layer.
- Let the gnocchi cook for 3-4 minutes without moving them. This will allow them to get browned and crisp. Stir the gnocchi and allow them to continue cooking for another 6-8 minutes.
- Once they’re crisp and browned on the outside and tender on the inside remove them from the skillet onto a plate or bowl and continue with the remainder of the recipe.
Ingredients For Spinach White Bean Gnocchi Skillet
- potato gnocchi
- sun dried tomatoes – use the ones in the jar that are packed in oil
- Italian seasoning
- red pepper flakes – optional, but they add a nice bit of heat
- baby spinach
- white beans – my preference is cannellini beans. I love how tender and creamy they are.
- mozzarella cheese
How To Make Spinach White Bean Gnocchi Skillet
Start by heating olive oil in a large skillet. Add in the gnocchi and break them up with a wooden spoon so they’re in a single layer. Let them cook without disturbing them for 3-4 minutes.
Toss them around and let them cook for another 6-8 minutes or until they’re golden brown and crisp on the outside and tender in the middle. Remove them onto a plate.
Add the sun dried tomatoes to the skillet along with the spinach, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper, and red pepper flakes. The oil that’s clinging to the sun dried tomatoes should be enough so that you don’t need to add additional.
Sauté until the spinach wilts which should only take a couple minutes. Toss in the white beans and add the gnocchi back into the skillet.
Dollop in the pesto and stir everything together until it’s coated. Top with the shredded mozzarella and cover the skillet with a lid.
Turn the heat down to low or even off if everything is warmed through. Let the residual heat melt the cheese and then serve.
White Bean Gnocchi Recipe Variations
- Substitute the spinach with chopped kale.
- Add protein. Diced or shredded chicken or even chicken sausage would be good options.
- Add fresh herbs such as parsley, basil, or oregano.
- Add additional vegetables such as zucchini, broccoli, cherry tomatoes, or onion.
- Add a 1/4 cup of heavy creamy for a rich creamy sauce.
More Vegetarian Skillet Dinners
- Southwest Sweet Potato, Black Bean, and Rice Skillet
- One Pot Cheesy Mexican Lentils, Black Beans, and Rice
- Cheesy Skillet Italian Baked Beans
- Moroccan Baked Eggs with Chickpeas
- Broccoli Rice Casserole
Spinach White Bean Gnocchi Skillet
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 16 ounces potato gnocchi
- 1/4 cup jarred sun dried tomatoes, chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, grated or minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- 5 ounces baby spinach
- 15 ounce can low sodium cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- 2 tablespoons pesto
- 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When the oil is hot swirl to coat the bottom and then add in the gnocchi. Break them up with a wooden spoon so they're in a single layer. Cook the gnocchi without moving them for 3-4 minutes.
- Toss the gnocchi around and cook for another 6-8 minutes or until they're golden brown and crisp on the outside and tender in the middle. Stir them occasionally. Remove the gnocchi onto a plate when they've finished cooking.
- Add the sun dried tomatoes to the skillet along with the spinach, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. If you find that you need additional oil either use olive oil or the oil from the jar of sun dried tomatoes for extra flavor.
- Sauté until the spinach wilts, about 2 minutes. Add in the cannellini beans and add the gnocchi back into the skillet. Stir in the pesto until everything together is coated. Top with the shredded mozzarella and cover the skillet with a lid. Cook on low for another minute or until the cheese is melted and everything is heated through.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 437Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 38mgSodium: 342mgCarbohydrates: 69gFiber: 12gSugar: 3gProtein: 20g
Nutritional information is an estimate. Please consult a registered dietician for the most accurate nutritional information.
If I wanted to add cream, what step would I add it?
Hi Katie. Add the cream in at the same time you add in the pesto and just stir it all together.