If you’re like most people in the United States, you are probably under the impression that gnocchi is, in fact, a form of pasta. It is, after all, generally found near pasta in both the shelf-stable and frozen sections of the grocery store and can be used like pasta in many recipes. In reality, however, gnocchi is a type of dumpling, not a pasta. 


The reason for this is that gnocchi is traditionally made using potatoes, whereas pasta is crafted from a concoction of wheat flour, eggs, and water. There are, it bears noting, certain gnocchi recipes that are more pasta-like than others. Most of these iterations, however, are modern and do not involve the entire traditional Italian process. In the remainder of this guide, you will discover a few key dishes you can make using gnocchi dumplings. 


Zuppa Toscana – Zuppa Toscana is an Italian soup with origins in Tuscany. In addition to delicious gnocchi, it contains kale, roasted red peppers, and Italian sausage in a creamy, chicken-broth base. Soup is among the easiest ways to prepare gnocchi because it cooks directly in the liquid, making for simple one-pot meals. 


Chorizo gnocchi – This dish is great for nights when you don’t have a lot on hand. It involves gnocchi, spinach, roasted red peppers, and meat. Although chorizo certainly brings out the other flavors in this one-pan dish, you can use any meat you happen to have. For chicken or beef, season with paprika and garlic. 


Gnocchi macaroni and cheese – This is the perfect crowd-pleaser gnocchi recipe. Your loved ones, from age 1 to 100, will fall in love with gnocchi-based macaroni and cheese. For a gourmet twist on this classic side dish, use melted gouda, parmesan, or mozzarella instead of conventional American cheddar cheese. 


Gnocchi with mushrooms and feta – Since gnocchi is made from potatoes, it truly complements other earthy flavors, which is why this mushroom and feta combination is ideal. Simply cook the gnocchi in a single pan with the other ingredients, including chopped or sliced mushrooms, feta, spinach, and your choice of meat. This dish can also be made vegetarian if desired. 


As you can see, gnocchi dumplings are versatile and delicious. No matter what types of foods your family enjoys, you are sure to be able to incorporate gnocchi into your regular cooking routine. On nights you simply don’t feel like cooking or going out, grab fresh gnocchi at Bricco Salumeria in the North End of Boston. You can’t go wrong with our genuine dishes straight from Italy.