Vegan Gnocchi Recipe (Traditional Italian Dumpling)

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Let’s dive into the world of homemade pasta with our Vegan Gnocchi Recipe! These pillowy potato dumplings are simple to make and oh-so-satisfying to eat.

Start by boiling potatoes until tender, then mash and mix with flour until a dough forms. Roll into ropes, cut into bite-sized pieces, and press with a fork for texture. Boil until they float, then toss with your favorite sauce and enjoy!


  • Incorporating nutritional yeast and olive oil offers a rich, cheesy flavor without dairy.
  • Perfectly versatile, pairing well with various sauces to suit any taste preference.
  • Homemade preparation ensures a fresh, wholesome meal for a satisfying vegan dinner.
  • Quick cooking time means you won’t have to wait long to enjoy this delicious dish.

Finding the perfect vegan gnocchi recipe can often feel like a daunting task. Many traditional versions rely heavily on eggs and dairy, leaving plant-based enthusiasts in a lurch. 

I remember countless evenings sifting through recipes, seeking that elusive blend of taste and texture without animal products.

With this in mind, the journey led me to a breakthrough. By experimenting with different ingredients, I discovered a method of replicating the beloved Italian classic and enhancing it with a vegan twist.

This recipe promises the same pillowy softness and rich flavor that gnocchi is known for, using ingredients that align with a vegan lifestyle. So you can indulge in this comforting dish without compromise, getting the most out of every bite.

vegan gnocchi recipe

What Is Vegan Gnocchi?

Vegan gnocchi is a plant-based version of the traditional Italian dumpling, typically made from potatoes. Unlike its conventional counterpart, which often includes eggs and sometimes dairy to bind and enrich the dough, vegan gnocchi relies on alternative ingredients such as flour, olive oil, and sometimes a dash of nutritional yeast for added flavor.

This makes it an ideal option for those following a vegan diet or anyone looking to reduce their intake of animal products. Vegan gnocchi can be served with various sauces, offering a versatile and satisfying meal.

Quick Fact – Vegan gnocchi is a versatile Italian dish that’s completely plant-based, making it a favorite among vegans and those with dietary restrictions for a hearty, satisfying meal.

vegan gnocchi recipe

Recipe Directions

  • Start by cutting peeled, cooked, and cooled potatoes into sections. Work with one section at a time, pressing them through a potato ricer. If you don’t have a ricer, mash them well to ensure no lumps remain.
  • Combine the riced or mashed potato in a large bowl with salt, olive oil, and flour. Using clean hands, mix the ingredients, then squeeze to knead them into a cohesive ball gently. If the mixture feels sticky, gradually add flour until it no longer sticks to your hands. Should the flour not fully integrate, add more olive oil until the mixture comes together. The goal is to achieve a dough that is not wet and sticky for easy handling.
  • Keep the dough covered to prevent it from drying out. Take a small section at a time to form the gnocchi. Pinch off a 1 tsp (~6g) piece of dough, squeeze it in your fist to compact it into a roughly shaped ball, then roll it between your palms to smooth it out.
  • Position a fork face down on the counter to create the traditional gnocchi shape with grooves. Place the dough ball at the top of the fork’s tines, using your thumb to slide the gnocchi down the tines until it reaches the counter. The gnocchi will curl under your thumb, creating grooves around 3/4 of the dough and leaving a small divot where your thumb was.
  • Repeat the process with the remaining dough. If the dough becomes sticky at any point, lightly flour the shaped gnocchi to prevent sticking and incorporate a bit more flour into the unshaped dough as needed.
  • To cook, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook half the gnocchi for about 4-5 minutes or until they float to the surface and have cooked for an additional minute. Remove the cooked gnocchi with a slotted spoon, then proceed with the second batch.
  • Serve the cooked gnocchi with your favorite sauce, or store it in the refrigerator for up to a week. For longer storage, freeze them.

vegan gnocchi recipe

Variations, Add-Ons, And Toppings


  • Sweet Potato Gnocchi: Substitute regular potatoes with sweet potatoes for a sweeter, nutrient-rich alternative.
  • Spinach Gnocchi: Incorporate pureed spinach into the dough for a vibrant, iron-packed variation.
  • Pumpkin Gnocchi: For a fall-inspired twist, use pumpkin puree instead of potatoes and add spices like nutmeg and cinnamon.


  • Vegan Pesto: Blend basil, garlic, pine nuts, nutritional yeast, and olive oil for a rich, herby sauce.
  • Cashew Cream Sauce: A creamy, rich sauce from soaked cashews blended with garlic, nutritional yeast, and lemon juice.
  • Roasted Vegetables: Toss your favorite vegetables, such as cherry tomatoes, zucchini, or bell peppers, with olive oil and roast until caramelized.

vegan gnocchi recipe


  • Sautéed Mushrooms: Earthy mushrooms sautéed with garlic and herbs add a meaty texture.
  • Vegan Parmesan: Nutritional yeast, ground almonds, and garlic powder create a sprinkle-worthy topping.
  • Toasted Pine Nuts: Adds a nutty crunch and a touch of elegance to the finished dish.
  • Fresh Herbs: Chopped basil, parsley, or chives provide a fresh, aromatic finish.
  • Chili Flakes: A sprinkle of red chili flakes can add a spicy kick for those who enjoy a bit of heat.


Vegetable Substitutions

  • Mushrooms: A perfect substitute for meat due to their umami flavor and meaty texture. Portobello mushrooms can replace beef in burgers, while shiitake mushrooms work well in Asian dishes.
  • Cauliflower: Great for mimicking rice, mashed potatoes, or even as a base for pizza crusts. Its neutral flavor and versatile texture make it a popular choice.
  • Zucchini: Ideal for pasta replacements like zoodles or in lasagna, adding moisture and a mild flavor.
  • Eggplant: With its dense texture, eggplant can replace meat in dishes like lasagna or be used as a base for vegan bacon.
  • Spinach And Kale: Excellent for adding nutrients and greens to smoothies and salads or as a substitute for cooked greens in recipes.
  • Butternut Squash: Its sweet, nutty taste is perfect for soups, stews, or as a filling in ravioli, serving as a hearty, flavorful base.
  • Sweet Potatoes: Offer a nutritious boost instead of regular potatoes, with their rich flavor and versatility in dishes from fries to curries.

Quick Tip – To enhance the flavor of vegan dishes, roast your vegetables before adding them to recipes. This caramelizes their natural sugars, adding depth and richness to any meal.

Vegetable Substitutions

Best Side Dishes

  • Roasted Brussels Sprouts Their crispy edges and tender centers add a satisfying crunch.
  • Garlicky Green Beans Sautéed with olive oil and a hint of garlic, they bring a fresh, vibrant contrast.
  • Arugula And Cherry Tomato Salad A light, peppery salad that offers a refreshing balance to the rich gnocchi.
  • Sautéed Spinach With Pine Nuts This combination brings a subtle nuttiness and a wealth of nutrients.
  • Grilled Asparagus: Its smoky flavor and firm texture complement the soft gnocchi wonderfully.
  • Caprese Salad With Vegan Mozzarella A classic Italian salad that pairs beautifully with gnocchi for a full vegan feast.
  • Roasted Mediterranean Vegetables Zucchini, bell peppers, and eggplants roasted with herbs enhance the meal with hearty flavors.
  • Crispy Kale Chips Their crunch and saltiness offer a pleasing texture contrast to the gnocchi.
  • Steamed Broccoli With Lemon Zest Adds a bright, citrusy note to balance the dish’s richness.
  • Ratatouille A stewed vegetable dish that infuses Provencal flavors into the meal, making it a hearty, comforting option.

Best Side Dishes

How To Serve?

  • With A Rich Tomato Basil Sauce: This is a classic choice. The sauce’s acidity and freshness complement the soft gnocchi beautifully.
  • In A Creamy Cashew Sauce: For a rich, velvety finish, blend soaked cashews with garlic, nutritional yeast, and water.
  • Tossed In Vegan Pesto: Fresh basil, pine nuts, garlic, and olive oil create a vibrant, herby coating full of flavor.
  • Sauteed With Seasonal Vegetables: Quick-cook your favorite veggies and toss them with gnocchi for a colorful, nutritious dish.
  • Under A Blanket Of Vegan Cheese: For a comforting dish, broil the gnocchi with vegan cheese on top until bubbly and golden.
  • With A Mushroom And Garlic Sauce: Earthy mushrooms sautéed with garlic add depth and umami to the light gnocchi.
  • As A Gnocchi Bake: Layer gnocchi in a casserole dish with sauce and vegetables, baking until crispy on top.
  • With A Lemon Artichoke Sauce: Mix artichokes and lemon zest into a light sauce that brightens the gnocchi’s flavor for a tangy twist.
  • Served In A Soup: Add gnocchi to a hearty vegetable soup for a filling meal that warms from the inside out.
  • Garnished With Fresh Herbs And Nutritional Yeast: A sprinkle of chopped herbs and nutritional yeast before serving adds flavor and nutrition.

Quick Tip – Avoid overworking the dough for lighter, fluffier gnocchi. Combine ingredients until just mixed, ensuring your gnocchi remain tender and airy after cooking.

How To Serve?

Storage & Make Ahead

  • Freezing: Spread uncooked gnocchi on a baking sheet, freeze until solid, then transfer to a freezer bag. Cook from frozen, adding a few minutes to boiling time.
  • Refrigerating Dough: Wrap dough tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 2 days before shaping and cooking.
  • Make Ahead: Prepare gnocchi dough and shape it a day in advance. Keep shaped gnocchi on a floured tray, covered in the fridge, ready to cook for a quick meal.
  • Cooked Gnocchi Storage: Store cooked gnocchi in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat gently in a pan with sauce or water to prevent sticking.
  • Sauce Preparation: Make your sauce and refrigerate for up to a week or freeze for longer storage. Warm up while you cook the gnocchi for an efficient meal prep.

Recipe Fact – Gnocchi originally didn’t include potatoes; they were introduced to Italy only after discovering the Americas, revolutionizing the recipe to the potato-based version we love today.

Time-Saving Tips

  1. Use Leftover Potatoes: If you have leftover boiled or baked potatoes, use them to save prep time.
  2. Freeze In Batches: Make a large batch of gnocchi and freeze them on a baking sheet before storing them in freezer bags. Cook directly from frozen, adding only a few minutes to your cooking time.
  3. Prep Ingredients Ahead: Measure and prepare all your ingredients before starting. Having everything ready can significantly speed up the process.
  4. Use A Pastry Cutter: If you don’t have a potato ricer, a pastry cutter can quickly mash potatoes without overworking them, keeping your gnocchi light and fluffy.
  5. Roll And Cut In Bulk: Instead of shaping each gnocchi individually, roll the dough into long snakes and cut them all at once. Press each piece against a fork for the traditional gnocchi shape.
  6. Boil Water While Preparing Gnocchi: Start boiling your water as soon as you start shaping your gnocchi so it’s ready to go when you are.
  7. Cook In Large Batches: If you’re making a big meal, use a large pot of boiling water to cook more gnocchi at once, reducing cooking time.
  8. Opt For Simple Sauces: Choose sauces that can be made quickly or ahead of time, like a simple garlic and olive oil sauce or a quick vegan pesto.
vegan gnocchi recipe

Vegan Gnocchi Recipe

Vegan gnocchi is a delightful plant-based twist on the classic Italian dumpling made with simple ingredients like potatoes, flour, and olive oil. This versatile dish can be served with various sauces, from rich tomato to creamy pesto, offering a comforting, satisfying meal perfect for anyone seeking a delicious, meat-free option.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Rest Time 30 mins
Servings 4
Calories 250 kcal


  • Potato Ricer or Masher
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons
  • Cutting Board
  • Knife
  • Fork or Gnocchi Board
  • Large Pot
  • Slotted Spoon
  • Baking Sheet
  • Parchment paper (optional)


  • 4 1/2 cups Baked And Peeled Russet Potatoes  riced, unpacked
  • 1 tsp Salt (5g)
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil (20g)
  • cups All purpose flour (284g), more as needed


Prepare Potatoes

  • Start with peeled, cooked, and cooled potatoes.
  • Cut them into sections.
  • Use a potato ricer to press them into a fine texture. If unavailable, mash thoroughly to avoid lumps.

Mix Ingredients

  • Combine riced or mashed potato in a large bowl with salt, olive oil, and flour.
  • Mix with clean hands, then knead gently into a cohesive ball.
  • If sticky, add flour gradually until it doesn't stick to your hands.
  • Add more olive oil if flour doesn't fully integrate, aiming for non-sticky dough.

Form Gnocchi

  • Keep the dough covered to prevent drying.
  • Take a small section, pinch off a 1 tsp (~6g) piece, squeeze to form a ball, then roll to smooth.
  • For traditional grooves, use a fork placed face down. Roll the dough ball down the tines with your thumb, creating grooves and a divot.

Repeat Process

  • Continue with the remaining dough, flouring as needed to prevent sticking.

Cook Gnocchi

  • Boil a large pot of salted water.
  • Cook half the gnocchi for 4-5 minutes until they float, then cook for another minute.
  • Remove with a slotted spoon and cook the second batch.

Serve Or Store

  • Serve with your favorite sauce or store in the refrigerator for up to a week. Freeze for longer storage.


  • Use only russet potatoes for their starchy texture, ensuring light, fluffy gnocchi.
  • Boil potatoes with their skins on to prevent excess water absorption.
  • Cool potatoes completely before starting to maintain the right dough texture.
  • Minimal kneading prevents the dough from becoming tough; handle the dough gently.
  • Test cook a few gnocchi first to adjust dough consistency if needed.
  • Freshly made gnocchi have the best texture; freeze if not used immediately.
  • Serve with a sauce that complements the gnocchi’s subtle flavor, like a light tomato or creamy vegan pesto.

vegan gnocchi recipe card

Nutrition Table

Nutrition Table

vegan gnocchi recipe

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Make Vegan Gnocchi Gluten-Free?

You can make vegan gnocchi gluten-free by substituting the all-purpose flour with a gluten-free flour blend. Ensure the blend is suitable for pasta-making to achieve a similar texture and firmness.

Some experimentation with the amount of flour may be required to achieve the desired dough consistency, as gluten-free flours absorb moisture differently than wheat flour.

How Can I Prevent My Vegan Gnocchi From Becoming Too Dense?

To prevent vegan gnocchi from becoming too dense, avoid overworking the dough. Mix the ingredients until combined, and knead gently.

Over-kneading develops the gluten in the flour, leading to a tougher texture. Also, ensure your potatoes are fully cooked and mashed or riced finely to avoid lumpy dough, which requires additional work. Using a potato ricer can help achieve a smoother texture.

Can Vegan Gnocchi Be Made Ahead Of Time?

Yes, vegan gnocchi can be made ahead of time. After shaping, place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, ensuring they’re not touching, and freeze.

Once frozen, transfer the gnocchi to a freezer bag and store it in the freezer for up to 2 months. Cook directly from frozen, adding a few minutes to the boiling time.

What Is The Best Way To Cook Frozen Vegan Gnocchi?

The best way to cook frozen vegan gnocchi is to boil them without thawing. Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil, add the frozen gnocchi, and stir gently to prevent sticking.

Cook until they float to the surface and continue boiling for 1-2 minutes to ensure they’re cooked. This method preserves their texture and prevents them from becoming mushy.

How Can I Serve Vegan Gnocchi To Impress My Guests?

Focus on presentation and sauce selection to impress your guests with vegan gnocchi. Serve them with a visually appealing and flavorful sauce, such as a vibrant beetroot pesto or a creamy butternut squash sauce.

Garnish with fresh herbs, edible flowers, or a sprinkle of vegan parmesan for an elegant touch. Consider serving a small, perfectly plated portion as a first course in a multi-course meal to elevate the dining experience.

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Greetings from the heart of Vie De La Vegan, where each dish we share is a chapter in a larger story of discovery, wellness, and the transformative power of a plant-based diet. My name is Julia, and I am thrilled to be your guide on this delightful culinary adventure.

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