Gnocchi works perfectly well on its own, as a dish in its own right, with a simple pasta sauce. But what happens if you want the gnocchi to go a little further or want something healthy to cut through the richness? Well, here’s what to serve with gnocchi:
10 Dishes to Serve with Gnocchi
Our list of gnocchi side dishes contains some healthy options and some not-so. Either way, they all work well besides a bowl of warming gnocchi.
1) Simple Green Salad
Sometimes, the simplest side dishes are all you need, and it doesn’t get much easier than a green salad dressed with a bit of olive oil, lemon juice and salt.
Gnocchi is quite a heavy, rich and dense dish which is why you want something refreshing and acidic to cut through that heaviness. A green salad is a perfect accompaniment to gnocchi.
2) Roasted Broccolini
Broccolini lends itself to being roasted to give it charred edges. Those charred edges are what help broccolini work so well served in a dish alongside gnocchi.
When gnocchi is served in a tomato sauce, it can be sweet and acidic. The nutty, smoky charred ends of roasted broccolini are the perfect contrast to this sweetness.
According to Taste Atlas, panzanella is the 2nd most popular salad in Italy, and for good reason. Stale bread cubes soak up an acidic, vinegary dressy to cut through rich dishes – dishes, like gnocchi!
Don’t waste the sauce left behind when you’ve finished a bowl of gnocchi. Instead, grab a slice or two of bread to soak up all that sauce.
Focaccia or ciabatta would be the go-to option if you want to stick with the Italian theme. But any crispy, crunchy, good-quality bread would work well.
5) Garlic Bread
If you want to take it up a notch, then instead of serving gnocchi with plain bread, why not try it with garlic bread? Garlic is a flavour that’s essential in Italian dishes, and garlic bread can provide that much-needed garlicky hit.
The Easy Way to Make Garlic Bread
Making garlic bread is super easy (and a great way to impress your friends and family). Mix softened butter with crushed garlic and parsley. Cut slits into a baguette and push in this garlic butter. Wrap in foil and then pop into a hot oven for 5 to 10 minutes.
When you think of an Italian side dish, antipasti is likely at the top of that list. It’s simple to throw a platter together, there’s bound to be something on there for everybody and it works with most dishes – gnocchi included!
Any antipasti ingredients will work well alongside gnocchi, whether it’s a bowl of marinated olives, some sliced grilled peppers or a jar of artichokes.
7) Rocket and Parmesan Salad
Rocket and parmesan combined in a salad with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar might sound simple, but it has all the elements of the perfect side dish.
Peppery rocket, salty parmesan and acidic vinegar combine to create a salad that can provide respite from the richness of gnocchi.
8) Griddled Asparagus
Much like the roasted broccolini we included at no.2 on this list, griddled asparagus provides both freshness and smokiness when served alongside gnocchi.
When eating a heavy, dense dish like gnocchi, you will want to serve it with something that provides a bit of green vegetable goodness. Griddled asparagus does precisely this (and more) by bringing contrasting flavour, texture and colour.
9) Garlicky Spinach
Spinach and garlic are both hugely popular ingredients in Italy which is why they love combining the two into a simple side dish that works wondering alongside a bowl of decadent gnocchi.
If you’re feeling lazy but still want to put something else on the table to serve with your gnocchi, then open up a packet of grissini (Italian breadsticks), stick them in a pot and pop them in the middle of the table.
They won’t fill you up too much but are the perfect snack to nibble on when the gnocchi is too hot to eat or when you plate runs dry.
Gnocchi Accompaniments FAQs
Do you still have questions about what to serve alongside gnocchi? Then these FAQs might help you out:
Gnocchi is incredibly versatile, meaning a range of pasta sauces will work well with it. Tomato marinara sauce, puttanesca sauce, amatricana and arrabiata all go well with gnocchi.
Providing that it has a sauce, gnocchi can be served on its own as a complete meal. It doesn’t need to be served with any side dishes. However, side dishes can cut through the richness of gnocchi.
Lewis is the founder and editor of Let’s Foodie alongside other food-related platforms including FreezeIt and SubstituteIt. He launched Let’s Foodie to provide aspiring cooks with one place to get the answers to some of the most commonly asked cooking questions.