Three Cheese Baked Gnocchi with Spinach Recipe - Skillful Cook
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Three Cheese Baked Gnocchi with Spinach

28 reviews / 5 average

You're in for a treat with this delicious Three Cheese Baked Gnocchi! Tender gnocchi blanketed in a creamy tomato sauce, speckled with fresh spinach and bites of melty cheese. Gorgeous!

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This recipe is sponsored by DeLallo.

Tender gnocchi blanketed in a creamy tomato sauce, speckled with fresh spinach and bites of melty cheese - capital G to the orgeous!

This recipe is a new fave around here and I think it walks that summer-to-fall line perfectly: just a beautifully simple tomato sauce made with mild tomato passata (a skinless, seedless, silky, and pure tomato puree that pretty much tastes like fresh tomatoes in a jar), thinly sliced garlic and onion, a little torn basil to hold onto those last few days of warmth, and a dollop of mascarpone cheese to kick off the cozy vibes for the season.

Add some pre-made gnocchi and spinach to that dream of a sauce, blanket it under some fresh mozzarella and Parmesan, and you are looking at a dinner-party-worthy recipe that conveniently also works as an SOS weeknight meal.

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Ingredients for three cheese baked gnocchi. There's purple text over the top that says the name of each ingredient.

Here Are The Ingredients We're Working with Today

Your wonderfully short ingredient list consists of:

  • passata (love! love love love. I recommend DeLallo passata because they make only the best authentic Italian products so you know they're doing it right. Their passata is just so mild and lovely.)
  • onion / garlic
  • mascarpone cheese
  • pre-made gnocchi (see above about DeLallo)
  • spinach
  • cheese for topping - I like mozzarella slices and a little dusting of Parmesan
  • basil

Fab. Amaze. Perfection. Couldn't love this lineup more.

Three cheese baked gnocchi sprinkled with fresh basil on top. The gnocchi is in a cast iron pan and there's fresh basil and grated parmesan cheese in a bowl on the side.

How To Make Baked Gnocchi

Making this couldn't be easier:

You make the sauce.

You add the gnocchi and spinach.

You bake it under cheese.

How you deal with all the goodness, though, is a more challenging affair. Do you invite friends over? Share with a neighbor? Eat the whole thing in 1-2 sittings? Or save a small container in the fridge for a midnight snack? I can personally confirm these are all effective and appropriate ways to conduct yourself around a large bubbling skillet of cheese-blanketed gnocchi. You can't go wrong.

Three cheese baked gnocchi in a cast iron pan.

I've also tried adding a can of white beans for a little extra bulk, which would be a good trick to keep in your back pocket, but I would submit to you that the glory of this recipe is its simplicity - the chewy gnocchi, the tender cooked spinach, and the tangy tomato sauce with just the right amount of creaminess - and honestly I hate to mess with such a good thing.

Grab your cozy clothes and let's get into this.

Three Cheese Baked Gnocchi: FAQs

Can I use frozen gnocchi?

Absolutely! Just thaw the gnocchi beforehand.

How can I bulk this meal up?

It's super filling on its own, but you can always add white cannellini beans or spicy Italian sausage. Either would be delish!

I can't find mascarpone. Any substitutions?

Ricotta cheese can work in a pinch. The texture just might be a little grainier.


Watch Lindsay Make This Gnocchi on Stories!

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A picture of Three Cheese Baked Gnocchi with Spinach

Three Cheese Baked Gnocchi with Spinach


  • Author: Lindsay
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 5-6 servings 1x

Description

You're in for a treat with this delicious Three Cheese Baked Gnocchi! Tender gnocchi blanketed in a creamy tomato sauce, speckled with fresh spinach and bites of melty cheese. Gorgeous!


Ingredients

Units Scale

Simple Delicious Tomato Sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • quarter of an onion, minced
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced or thinly sliced
  • 12 ounces DeLallo Passata Tomato Purée
  • 1/2 cup broth or water
  • torn basil
  • 1/4 cup mascarpone cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Gnocchi: 

  • one 16-ounce package DeLallo Potato Gnocchi (I used shelf-stable gnocchi but frozen would also work)
  • a handful of baby spinach
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese slices
  • Parmesan cheese

Instructions

  1. Make the sauce: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat the olive oil over medium low heat. Add the onion and garlic; sauté until translucent and fragrant. Add passata and water or broth; bring to a low simmer. Add torn basil, mascarpone, and salt. YUM.
  2. Bake it up: Add gnocchi and spinach. Stir to coat evenly with sauce. Top with mozzarella slices and a sprinkle of Parmesan. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until gooey and light golden brown on top. Serve with more basil. THE END. That's it. You're in heaven.
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Pasta
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: Italian-Inspired

Keywords: baked gnocchi, passata recipe, gnocchi recipe

Thank you to DeLallo for sponsoring this post!

Other Gnocchi Recipes We're Crushing On

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80 Comments

  1. Skillful Cook Logo

    So the directions are lacking a lot. Like in a pot boil water and cook Gnocchi per package directions.

    Did put add tomato puree after onions and garlic are fragrant…So many missing information.

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      I don’t think you read the recipe. It says exactly when to add the tomato in step 1. Also, if you’re putting the whole pan in the oven for 20 minutes, there’s no need to boil the gnocchi ahead of time. They’ll cook in the oven.

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        This was the perfect thing to come across in my fortnightly meal planning to change up the relentless monopoly of the same dishes for my extra needs kids. and be able simple dish for a night when my brain has left the building.
        We added chorizo as Italian sausage is not a thing in Australia.
        If I had to find an issue, the only teeny tiny ity bity complaint I could have to make is when I switched it to metric it left the 12 ounces which was the only thing I didn’t know. And that was solved with a quick google search.

    2. Skillful Cook Logo

      Maybe the video would be easier for you, it clearly shows her dumping the gnocchi into the pan, which gets cooked in the sauce in the oven. No precooking required.

    3. Skillful Cook Logo

      Hi Kelli! Sorry for the confusion. No need to pre-cook the gnocchi. And yes, add the tomato sauce in after the onions and garlic are fragrant!

  2. Skillful Cook Logo

    This SOS series so far pales I’m comparison to the first…we have a couple vegetarian dishes that would barely pass as appetizers except that tofu is gross…followed by a salmon dish…salmon actually beating out tofu as one of five foods I don’t eat because *green faced emoji* and now we’ve got a dish that is essentially spaghetti, except gnocchi instead of spaghetti…groundbreaking really.

    I’m trying to stay optimistic there will be at least one dish I can add to the back of my mind…but it’s not looking good 🙁

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Amanda, I have to tell you how much I enjoy your comments on pinch of yum. I actually look at recipes to see your hot takes, it has given me a lot of amusement. Do you know that there are other food bloggers out there? Maybe you need a break from Pinch Of Yum, although I personally would miss your constant snarkiness!

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        This was fantastic. I loved finishing it on the oven with cheese bubbling on the top. I tweaked slighty using 2 cups of my own sauce I had on hand, and cream cheese…but it was great. Thanks for the recipe!

  3. Skillful Cook Logo

    Hi! What could I use instead of the tomato puree? Trying to decide if it looks more like tomato SAUCE or tomato PASTE… Thanks!

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      It is passata, more like tomato juice with crushed pulp, no seeds. Lovely stuff 🙂

    2. Skillful Cook Logo

      We haven’t tested this, but crushed tomatoes would probably work well!

    3. Skillful Cook Logo

      I made the recipe with tomato sauce and used a little more that the recipe called for, turned out amazing.

  4. Skillful Cook Logo

    I made this last night for dinner and it was spectacular!
    I modified the recipe and added 3 hot Italian sausages without casing. I also cooked it in a skillet on the stove then put it in a glass casserole dish to bake the time stated in the recipe. I barely had a single container for leftovers. This one is a winner and I will be making it again. Thank you again for your timesaving recipe.

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Great idea to add in the hot Italian sausages! So glad the recipe was a hit!

  5. Skillful Cook Logo

    Entire family loved this recipe! It has been added to our regular rotation. Super easy and delicious.

  6. Skillful Cook Logo

    This is DELICIOUS! I made the recipe exactly as written and added ground Italian chicken sausage (cooked separately). Served with a green salad and crusty bread. HEAVEN. Thank you!!

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Great idea to add chicken sausage! Sounds like an amazing meal, Sara!

  7. Skillful Cook Logo

    Super easy and delicious. My toddler was making “mmmm” noises all throughout dinner. I couldn’t find passata, so I used a can of plain tomato sauce and it turned out great.

  8. Skillful Cook Logo

    I saw a comment whining about this recipe, but part of what I love about really simple recipes is that they’re more like templates. You can follow them as is, or you can choose your own adventure. I had a ton of CSA tomatoes hanging around so I roasted them and made a rustic sauce. It would not have occurred to me to to try baking it with gnocchi instead of doing my usual baked ziti if I hadn’t come across this recipe. So I tried that out and I also used it as an excuse to finally try out making mascarpone (usually I make ricotta because it’s easy and I always have everything on hand).
    It was delicious! And again, I like the flexibility of it being something I could still make on a night when I had less time on my hands. Thanks for posting!

  9. Skillful Cook Logo

    This was DELICIOUS!! Huge hit in my house, and I seriously wouldn’t change a single thing in this recipe. Thank you for this SOS win!!

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      We love hearing about your SOS wins! So glad your family enjoyed it!

  10. Skillful Cook Logo

    I made this tonight for some family and everyone loved it. Next time I think I’ll cut the mozzarella smaller or use the mozzarella pearls to ensure all scoops get some of the cheese. I’ll also start checking it a little earlier as some of my gnocchi were almost soggy feeling. But I’ll for sure be making it again!

  11. Skillful Cook Logo

    So yummy! I have been searching for Delallo products locally and can’t find them easily. I have taken to placing orders on their site because we prefer their pasta! I impulsively ordered passata without a plan and here’s POY with a recipe. So amazing! Paired with garlic bread, I’m already looking forward to leftovers. I really think I could drink that pissata out of the bottle ❤️ Thanks for another great easy recipe!

  12. Skillful Cook Logo

    Made this tonight and I must say, it was amazing. Like, probably the best thing to hit the dinner table in quite a while, all with minimal effort. I used a hefty amount kale instead of spinach, and of course lots of extra garlic. This will be made again!!

  13. Skillful Cook Logo

    Made this tonight. May have licked the skillet after dinner. It’s delicious, and feels fancy without the effort you typically have to exert for fancy! I highly recommend, and this recipe also strikes me as so customizable. You could add veggies, beans, meat, use pasta instead of gnocchi, etc. Thanks, POY! Another winner 🙂

  14. Skillful Cook Logo

    This was so good! I improvised a bit—used Raos sauce with some stock, arugula from the farm share, and gluten free gnocchi (Rosa brand on Amazon). So very good!

  15. Skillful Cook Logo

    Has anyone made with frozen gnocchi? Should I partially cook gnocchi from frozen in boiling water than finish in oven?

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        Hi Meg! We haven’t tested this recipe using frozen gnocchi, but yes, it should definitely work well. I’m just thinking you’d want to defrost it and drain it a bit to remove the excess water. If you give it a try, let us know how it goes!

  16. Skillful Cook Logo

    You have quickly become my favorite resource for recipes! I add just about every emailed recipe to my list for the following week. This tuned out absolutely incredible! We all loved it, 1-year-old and 13-yeard-old (and his friend) included! I have been raving about your recipes on Facebook haha. This is sooooo delicious!!

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      So glad to hear it was a hit, Amber! Thanks so much for the comment!

  17. Skillful Cook Logo

    I’ve made this multiple times and love it every time. I’ve used Passata when I had it, and tomato sauce when I didn’t and it’s delicious either way. I typically put more than a handful of spinach in – ya know, to get my greens in 😜

  18. Skillful Cook Logo

    This was delicious! It turns out, however, that my family is adverse to the texture of gnocchi (what is wrong with them?!) so I’ll get the leftovers all to myself – and I’m not complaining.

  19. Skillful Cook Logo

    This recipe is a new family favorite! Because we’re in the newborn baby season of life, I made this even more SOS and just used a jar of delicious Rao’s sauce instead of making the tomato sauce. So so good!

  20. Skillful Cook Logo

    This is sooooooo yummy! going to make it again for dinner with friends tomorrow. Going to add the chicken meatballs too!