Potato Gnocchi with Herb Butter & Parmesan


6 as an appetizer,
4 as a main course

Prep Time:

25 minutes

Cook Time:

1 hour



About this Recipe

Recipe from Set for the Holidays
Appetite for Random House, 2018

I love serving a pasta course as part of a plated dinner. This menu doesn’t include a potato side dish, so these fluffy, tender gnocchi make a perfect pasta course. I take inspiration from the Italian approach to cooking and resist adding too much to the plate. A few simple herbs and shavings of Parmesan are all you need.

warm pizza dip



  • 2 ¼ lb (1 kg) russet potatoes, skins on (about 2 to 3 medium)
  • 2 cups (300 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp fine sea salt
  • Black pepper

Herb Butter and Cheese

  • 3 Tbsp (45 g) butter
  • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) chopped fresh chives
  • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) chopped fresh tarragon
  • Salt and black pepper
  • Parmesan cheese, for grating

– You can prepare the gnocchi up to 1 day ahead. Refrigerate the uncooked pieces in a single layer on the baking tray uncovered. To freeze them, place the gnocchi on their tray in the freezer for a few hours, and then package them in airtight containers. They can be boiled from frozen, but cook them for 5 to 6 minutes.

Truffles take these gnocchi to a whole new level of elegance. Omit the chives and tarragon from the herb butter and add a touch of truffle oil or truffle paste. Or, if you were lucky enough to receive a fresh white truffle for Christmas, thinly slice it over the gnocchi right before serving.

Step by Step Instructions

Step 1

For the gnocchi, simmer the potatoes in a large saucepan of salted water over high heat until the flesh is tender and the skins crack, about 50 minutes. Drain the potatoes and let cool in the saucepan for 15 minutes.

Step 2

Peel the potatoes while they are still warm, discarding the skins. Push the warm potatoes through a ricer or a food mill, or use a handheld potato masher. Stir in the flour, egg, salt and a pinch of pepper until the mixture comes together. The dough should not stick to your hands—if it feels tacky, stir in a little more flour.

Step 3

Line a baking tray with parchment paper. Turn the dough out onto a large cutting board and divide it into 8 pieces. Roll out each piece of dough into a long rope about 1 inch (2.5 cm) wide.

Step 4

Cut each rope into about 1-inch (2.5 cm) pieces and arrange them in a single layer on the baking tray. Chill, uncovered, until ready to cook.

Step 5

Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the gnocchi, dropping them in quickly but carefully, a few at a time, so they hit the water individually (this way they won’t stick together). Let the water return to a boil and cook the gnocchi for 3 to 4 minutes, until they float to the top of the water. Drain the gnocchi.

Step 6

For the herb butter, return the saucepan to a low heat (no need to wash it) and melt the butter. Add the still-warm gnocchi, followed by the parsley, chives and tarragon. Season lightly with salt and pepper, stirring gently to coat the gnocchi.

Step 7

Spoon the gnocchi to individual plates or pasta bowls. Finish with a generous grating of Parmesan cheese and serve immediately.