Homemade Italian Gnocchi

Homemade Italian Gnocchi

For years I've been trying to make Italian gnocchi, but, to be honest, I wasn't convinced we liked them and it was worth continuing the efforts. We gave them another chance last time we were in Italy. So we tried homemade gnocchi, in a local restaurant, to feel their true texture. This was the moment when I gave a definite "Yes!" They were soft, yet firm, very tender and silky. Combined with various flavors and sauces they were a real delight.

I searched and found the correct recipe. I tested it successfully several times in our family and now I can show you in the smallest details (which make a difference, though) how to prepare real homemade gnocchi. They can be boiled immediately after shaping. They can also be frozen successfully, you can make reserves of gnocchi in the freezer and you will always have at hand a quick and delicious recipe of authentic Italian food.

In the simplest and classic version, gnocchi are seasoned with butter, sage, black pepper and grated parmesan. They can also be served with classic Marinara tomato sauce, with Pesto sauce or many other wonderful combinations. You just have to stock up on gnocchi in the freezer, there are endless ideas!


Yellow potatoes
500 g
White flour
150 g
1 piece
0.5 tsp
30 g
for serving
3 pieces
3 leaves, optional, for serving
Ground black pepper
0.25 tsp
for serving
3 tbsp
for serving

Step by step

Step 1

Weigh 500g of white/yellow potatoes. Wash well.

Cover with water completely and bring to a boil.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 1
Step 2

When potaoes are in full boil, turn the heat down and simmer for about 30-40 minutes.

I usually check by inserting a knife in the middle and, if it enters easily, they are done.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 2
Step 3

Carefully pour out the hot water and replace with cold water.

Let potatoes sit in the cold water for two minutes.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 3
Step 4

Then remove from the water and peel immediately with a knife.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 4
Step 5

Place 150 g of flour in a large bowl and pass the potatoes through a fine ricer while they are still hot.

What's important here is to work while the potatoes are warm, before they get sticky after cooling. You can find the potato ricer in stores, mine is from Ikea at a very reasonable price.

You can also use a classic masher, but you may end up with lumps of uncooked potatoes in the gnocchi and uneven texture.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 5
Step 6

Let the mashed potatoes cool a bit, just like this, over the flour.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 6
Step 7

Meanwhile, beat with a fork an egg and 0.5 teaspoon of salt.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 7
Step 8

Pour two spoons of beaten egg over the potatoes and the flour and mix a little with your hands, or a spoon.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 8
Step 9

Then pour the remaining beaten egg and bring together all the ingredients in the bowl.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 9
Step 10

Gnocchi dough shouldn't be kneaded for too long, only until it becomes smooth and soft like playdough.

If, by any chance, it's too sticky, you can add another 1-2 tablespoons of starch - not flour, as it must stay tender.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 10
Step 11

You must work and shape the gnocchi while the dough is warm, so don't go away and leave it on the table.

Turn the dough out onto the table sprinkled with flour and cut about 1/3 of it.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 11
Step 12

Shape this piece into a thin rope, about one cm thick.

If necessary, add a little more flour to the table throughout this process.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 12
Step 13

Cut the rope into 1.5 - 2 cm small pieces.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 13
Step 14

Unfold and pass through a a bit of flour, so that they are not sticky while shaping.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 14
Step 15

Shaping gnocchi - first method:

- press your finger in the middle of each piece and gently rub it on the table towards you, so that it curves a little;

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 15
Step 16

- that's what it looks like at the end. When served, the delicious sauce will gather in this small curl.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 16
Step 17

Shaping gnocchi - method 2: 

- press the small pieces of dough against the tips of a fork. This way you will get not only a curl, but also some indentations that will retain the sauce and make them even more delicious.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 17
Step 18

Shaping gnocchi - method 3: 

- you can indent your gnocchi with a special utensil made of wood, called a gnocchi board. Sprinkle with flour, place the gnocchi, press it with your finger, then pull downwards;

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 18
Step 19

This way you can get very beautiful and uniform gnocchi.

The only problem is that these tools are very hard to find here. I bought mine in Italy and I really had to search for it. If you don't have a gnocchi board, use the first two methods presented above.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 19
Step 20

Continue to shape your gnocchi in any style you choose, until you finish all the dough.

Along the way, arrange them in a tray lightly dusted with flour. After you have finished, keep the gnocchi at room temperature for 30 minutes to dry out.

After this time, you can boil the gnocchi. Or you can place the tray with the gnocchi on it straight in the freezer. After they have frozen, you can then move to a bag and keep in the freezer for a longer period of time.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 20
Step 21

While gnocchi are sitting at room temperature, fill a large 4-5 liters pot with water. Add one tablespoon of salt and bring to a boil.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 21
Step 22

After the gnocchi have dried out (it's important, so that they are not sticky and slimy), drop them in the boiling water, gently mix and wait 2-3 minutes until they start to rise to the surface.

From the freezer, you don't need to thaw beforehand, just cover them with water and place over heat.

Gnocchi shouldn't boil for too long. Fish them out with a slotted spoon when they come back to the surface.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 22
Step 23

As soon as you drop the dumplings in the water, heat a little butter with three leaves of sage in a pan.

This is if you serve them plainly with butter and parmesan. If you prefer another sauce, you should have it ready when you boil the gnocchi.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 23
Step 24

Fish out the gnocchi from the water and transfer to the pan with butter (or another sauce). Shake gently and cook for 2-3 minutes over high heat.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 24
Step 25

Sprinkle over with some ground black pepper and grated parmesan, turn off the heat and serve.

Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 25
Step 26

All the variants were successful for us - with butter, with tomato Marinara sauce, with pesto etc. Every time, these Italian dumplings were delicious, tender and slightly soft, absolutely amazing!


Homemade Italian Gnocchi - Step 26
Quantity: 700 g (4 servings)
Prep time: 30 min
Difficulty: intermediate
Ready in: 60 min
Publish date:

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