If you’re looking for gnocchi sauce recipes that are unique and tasty, look no further than our list of incredible sauces for gnocchi.
Gnocchi is the delicious little potato dumpling that originated in Italy.
Gnocchi almost always comes covered in a delicious sauce, usually a butter sauce or tomato sauce.
But we wanted to give you more creative and distinct gnocchi sauce ideas, just like #11, so you won’t find a plain marinara or basic alfredo recipe on our list.
For inventive gnocchi sauce ideas, including a Creamy Tuscan Sauce recipe and delicious Spinach Bolognese, better check out these 13 recipes that inspire you to use new flavors with your chewy, dense and delicious gnocchi.
Keep in mind some of these recipes may use pasta or not mention gnocchi at all, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t the best gnocchi sauce out there!
1. Basil Pesto
We’ll start with a classic and popular pasta sauce that will perfectly complement your gnocchi: basil pesto.
This sauce for gnocchi is flexible because you can swap out the herb you use, replace the pine nuts with a different nut, or add more ingredients like honey or jalapenos, depending on the flavor you’re aiming for.
Pesto is a vibrant sauce that brings color and refreshing flavor to your gnocchi dumplings.
Next time you wonder what to put on gnocchi, don’t hesitate to make this decadent and creamy Tuscan sauce.
This sauce has a strong garlic flavor but lightens with a pinch of nutmeg that brings a warm, comforting flavor to the dish.
The splash of white wine brings this dish together with a sharp but sweet flavor that helps the gnocchi stand out rather than blending into the taste of the cream.
If you want one of the heavy, classic sauces for gnocchi, this Pomodoro sauce is a wonderful choice.
The sauce consists of Italian ingredients like garlic, tomatoes, basil, and olive oil to achieve that classic Italian flavor.
A red sauce for gnocchi creates a warm and cozy dish ideal for a cold winter night.
This list tries to explore sauces for gnocchi away from the standard tomato-based sauces, but this Pomodoro stands out amongst those plain tomato sauces, so give it a try the next time you make gnocchi.
If you want a simple but flavorful sauce for gnocchi, the parmesan sage sauce may be the best gnocchi sauce recipe for you.
Parmesan sage sauce is ideal for a busy weeknight because it comes together in a flash and has a rich flavor profile.
Sage is a unique herb that brings a refreshing scent like a subtle mint and a bold earthy flavor like thyme.
The sage and butter are a beautifully simple combination that uplifts the soft and delicate dumplings.
Everyone knows tomato and basil are a match made in heaven but have you ever thought of tomato and mint?
Using mint in more traditional Italian herbs brings a new freshness and exciting flavor to the dumpling dish.
Tomato sauces are often very heavy, and gnocchi can be as well since it’s made from potatoes, so the distinct mint flavor brings a lightness to the dish.
The result is a robust tomato sauce with a hint of mint that helps elevate the overall flavor of the meal.
This creamy, cheesy mushroom sauce envelopes your little dumplings in a warm, earthy flavor that will have you heading back for seconds, so make extra.
Mushrooms have a robust flavor that pairs well with the rustic flavor of the potato gnocchi.
If you have mushrooms, you’ll never ponder what to put on gnocchi again because the answer will always be this delicious sauce.
Classic marinara sauce can be monotonous, but nothing is boring about this zesty pink vodka sauce that will make your potato gnocchi come to life.
The recipe features fresh tomatoes, vodka, of course, and red pepper flakes for an added kick.
Vodka sauces aren’t always spicy, but the sharp acidity from the alcohol pairs well with some heat.
If you want a new and inviting tomato sauce that steps it up from plain, old marinara, try making this sauce for gnocchi and impress your friends and family.
If you want your gnocchi to pack a big punch of flavor, try this Gorgonzola cream sauce that will leave an impression on whoever gets to try it.
You can substitute the Gorgonzola with other varieties of blue cheese like Roquefort or Cabrales.
The strong taste of Gorgonzola elevates the potato flavor rather than masking it, so you wind up getting more gnocchi flavor when you use this sauce.
You may be thinking that there is no way a peanut sauce and an Italian potato dumpling will work together, but we promise they do!
Thai dishes often feature a yummy peanut sauce, but many don’t think to incorporate it into other cuisines.
The peanut sauce is rich and well-balanced, just like the flavor of the gnocchi.
For added crunch, use crunchy peanut butter, so you get some chopped nuts along with the pillowy gnocchi.
10. Cheese Sauce
Cheese sauce doesn’t need to be reserved for mac and cheese—it can work amazingly well with firm gnocchi dumplings.
This recipe uses cheddar and parmesan cheese, but you can use almost any cheese you want, from Gruyere to Brie to Swiss.
Don’t be intimidated by a roux, the combination of butter and flour that begins a cheese sauce; they are simpler to master than you may think.
11. Pistachio Pesto
Ditch the pine nuts and opt for pistachios for a fun play on pesto.
Other nuts can step in for pine nuts, but something so distinct and memorable about using pistachios in a pesto.
The salty, sweet flavor of the nuts perfectly complements the light and starchy flavor of the gnocchi.
Gnocchi is a super delicate dumpling and can benefit from a sauce with more texture to lift the dish to a new level.
This bolognese is another classic red sauce with a twist and features sauteed spinach for some color and fresh flavor.
Bolognese is a tomato-based Italian sauce made with ground beef.
The gnocchi’s bolognese sauces are ideal because the sturdy, thick dumplings can stand up well with the heavy sauce while other pasta gets lost in the sauce.
This recipe adds spinach for a tasty twist, but you can add other vegetables like broccoli or bell peppers to change the flavor until you find your favorite version.
13. Pumpkin Sauce
Sometimes the same old marinaras get boring, so switch it up, experiment with different vegetables, and see what you end up with.
This pumpkin sauce is the perfect example of replacing tomatoes with something else to create an innovative and outstanding sauce for gnocchi.
The sauce comes together quickly and creates a warm and comforting meal perfect for autumn or winter.
Pumpkin puree is easy to use, but if you want something more challenging, you can make your puree from butternut squash or other winter vegetables.
The bottom line
Our list of gnocchi sauce recipes exemplifies the versatility of these potato dumplings, and all the different sauces for gnocchi exist.
Whether the best gnocchi sauce for you is a traditional bolognese or innovative use of a Thai dipping sauce, everyone deserves the perfect plate of saucy gnocchi.
This list should give you a good idea of what to put on gnocchi next time you treat yourself to these pillowy Italian dumplings.
What To Serve With Gnocchi: 19 Easy Sides
- Basil Pesto
- Creamy Tuscan Sauce
- Pomodoro Sauce
- Parmesan Sage Sauce
- Tomato Mint Sauce
- Cheesy Mushroom Sauce
- Vodka Pink Sauce
- Gorgonzola Sauce
- Thai Peanut Sauce
- Cheese Sauce
- Pistachio Pesto
- Spinach Bolognese
- Pumpkin Sauce
- Pick one or more options from our gnocchi sauce recipes list!
- Combine them to make your new favorite dish.
- Enjoy your homecooked meal!
- Share your thoughts on our Facebook page!