Step aside, Trader Joe’s gnocchi! This effortless cauliflower gnocchi recipe will knock your socks off (pun intended)! With just four ingredients – including the salt – you can whip up a wholesome low-carb dish that rivals a luxurious Italian restaurant main course. And don’t worry; you don’t need to be a master chef to make this dish!
Have you ever tried gnocchi (singular ‘gnocco’)? Those small, fluffy, and flavorful Italian dumplings that melt in your mouth? They’re simply irresistible! And if you’re a fan of gnocchi, you’re going to love this recipe. Today, we’re going to show you how to make cauliflower gnocchi, a healthier alternative to the traditional version.
Benefits of eating cauliflower
In case you’re looking for more reasons to try this tasty dish, cauliflower brings a wealth of health benefits to the table, making it a worthy inclusion in your meal plan. Some of the primary perks are:
- Rich in nutrients: Cauliflower is packed with vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, vitamin K, B vitamins, potassium, and manganese.
- High in fiber: This vegetable is an excellent source of dietary fiber, which aids in digestion, promotes gut health, and helps control blood sugar levels.
- Low in calories: Cauliflower is low in calories, making it a great option for those looking to manage their weight or maintain a healthy diet.
- Antioxidant properties: Cauliflower contains antioxidants like beta-carotene and quercetin, which help protect cells from damage caused by free radicals and reduce inflammation.
- Supports brain health: The choline content in cauliflower contributes to healthy brain function and may help prevent age-related cognitive decline.
- Versatile ingredient: Cauliflower can be used in various recipes as a substitute for high-carb ingredients like rice or potatoes, making it an excellent choice for low-carb diets.
- May support heart health: The fiber, potassium, and antioxidant content in cauliflower may contribute to better cardiovascular health by lowering blood pressure and reducing inflammation.
- Supports bone health: The vitamin K present in cauliflower helps maintain strong bones and may reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
But mostly, it’s delicious! So, let’s get started!
- Cauliflower: The nutritious, low-calorie base of the recipe. When selecting a cauliflower, look for a firm head with tightly packed, creamy-white florets and crisp, vibrant green leaves, as this indicates freshness and good quality.
- White whole wheat flour: Provides structure and helps bind the ingredients together. Regular whole wheat flour works as well.
- Salt: Enhances flavor and balances the overall taste.
- Extra virgin olive oil: Used to cook the gnocchi. Provides a rich taste and heart-healthy fats.
How to make Cauliflower Gnocchi
For full recipe details, read below.
Tip: once you see how easy it is, you’ll want to make a double batch and freeze some for future use.
Best way to cook cauliflower gnocchi
The easiest method to cook these cauliflower gnocchi is in a skillet. Simply heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil and cook the gnocchi about 2 minutes on each side, working in batches if necessary.
You could also cook them in an air fryer, heated at 400F for about 12 minutes. Spray the basket with olive oil and make sure you shake it every 4 minutes or so to encourage cooking on all sides and prevent them from sticking.
I do not recommend boiling these gnocchi, they are so much better with the slightly crispy outer layer you get from frying.
Tip: Just like Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi, you can cook these from frozen without defrosting.
What sauce for cauliflower gnocchi?
You can serve these cauliflower gnocchi with any sauce of your choice. Two classic choices are Marinara Sauce or Pesto. But feel free to get more creative with a Roasted red pepper sauce or a Sun-dried tomato pesto or even an Italian Salsa Verde!
Add a big green salad for a complete comforting and healthy meal!
Other recipes to try
Cauliflower Gnocchi recipe
- Chop the cauliflower into florets and place them in a large pot, covering them with water.
- Bring the water to a boil, cover the pot, then reduce the heat to a low simmer. Cook the florets for about 20 minutes or until they are very soft when pierced with a knife.
- Drain the cauliflower and let it cool. Once cooled, put the florets on a dish towel and squeeze out as much excess water as possible.
- Move the strained cauliflower to a large bowl and add salt and flour. Mix the ingredients well, first using a fork and then your hands, ensuring the flour is fully incorporated. If the dough is too sticky, add more flour, one tablespoon at a time.
- Dust a work surface with flour, transfer the dough onto it, and divide it into four equal parts.
- Shape each portion into a log approximately 1/2" thick and cut the logs into 1" long pieces. If the dough becomes too sticky while working, apply some flour to your hands.
- Place the gnocchi on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Gently press a fork onto the gnocchi to create a decorative pattern on their surface.
- The gnocchi is now ready to cook or freeze.
- To cook the gnocchi, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat, add olive oil and gnocchi (cook in batches if necessary). Cook for 2 minutes on each side or until slightly brown and crispy on the outside.
- Add your preferred sauce, toss until heated through, and serve.
- To freeze the gnocchi, place the baking sheet in the freezer for about 2-3 hours or until the gnocchi is completely solid. Then, transfer them to an airtight container or plastic bag for storage.