This pesto gnocchi recipe is everything you need in a delicious week-night dinner. It takes less than 10 minutes to make, it has so much flavour and requires minimal effort.
Table of Contents
The gnocchi pesto can be made for meal prep as it reheats really well, or it can be served immediately to family/friends (this could be a dinner party show-off dish)!
There’s a slight twist with this pesto recipe as I use rocket/arugula, which creates a delicious peppery contrast that takes this recipe to the next level.
The foundation of any pesto gnocchi is basil. Don’t skip out on using fresh basil here, as dried basil wouldn’t be the same! You could try out some other fresh herbs like parsley, coriander and mint, but for me, basil works best for pesto recipes!
Pine nuts are super expensive, so I’ve opted for cashews. They provide the same nutty richness for half the price. Another good vegan alternative is nutritional yeast to add to your pesto.
Extra virgin olive oil
If you can, use extra virgin olive oil instead of standard olive oil for flavour, however using olive oil will still make a great pesto.
Gnocchi with pesto needs to have parmesan within the sauce and also to top. Don’t skip out on this ingredient! If you are vegan, go for the nutritional yeast which makes a great cheesy alternative to parmesan.
See the recipe card for full information on all ingredients and quantities.
3. Set the charred courgette slices aside (Image 3).
4. Using a food processor, add the basil, garlic, rocket, soaked cashews and lemon juice (Image 4).
5. Roughly blend the basil, garlic, rocket, soaked cashews and lemon juice until coarsely blended (Image 5).
6. Add a splash of water, some salt and then add half of the parmesan and pulse a few times. Repeat until all the parmesan is combined. Add the extra virgin olive oil into the pesto to make a paste (Image 6).
7. Add the gnocchi to salted boiling water and cook according to the packet instructions. Reserve some of the starchy water before draining (Image 7).
8. Combine the gnocchi and pesto in a saucepan with a big splash of starchy water. Add half of the charred courgette and stir until everything is incorporated and saucy. Finish with an optional extra sprinkle of parmesan, black pepper and the remaining charred courgettes to garnish (Image 8).
To get the best pesto gnocchi, add the parmesan into the food processor after blending all of the other pesto ingredients together. This stops the parmesan from clumping together.
Freshly grate the parmesan rather than buying pre grated.
Use a food processor rather than a blender if you can. This gives us the right chunky texture in our pesto & requires less liquid to blend. If you only have a nutri-bullet style blender, you might have to add a couple of tbsp of water to blend.
Absolutely! This pesto gnocchi recipe is great for meal prep as it reheats really well. Just pop in the microwave with a tbsp of water & reheat for 2 minutes on high. Stir & serve with a pinch of salt and pepper.
Yes! I’d freeze into individual gnocchi meals, so that you can grab one portion at a time. To defrost, leave in the fridge overnight to thaw and follow the instructions above.
I use the packet gnocchi (not the fresh refridgerated version) as it’s more expensive. Both taste very similar once cooked and with the pesto added.
If you tried this Easy Pesto Gnocchi recipe, it would be mean so much to me if you could leave a review & a star rating to let me know how you found it! I love hearing about your experiences – it motivates me to keep creating more and more recipes for you guys 💛 Let’s get cooking! – Mimi x