Pan-fried potato dumplings that are soft and fluffy inside and are perfectly crisp on the outside. Sauteed in garlic-infused butter these crispy potato dumplings are a great substitute for pasta and only take minutes to make. And of course, all ingredients are from Aldi!
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I've become a huge fan of gnocchi these last few years, simply because it's a nice alternative to pasta. It's a mashed potato dumpling that's held together with some flour and usually eggs. And Aldi always has it in stock. It's also an amazing pantry staple because it has a long shelf life and if you buy the dried vacuum-sealed variety then it can last in the store cupboard for about 6-9 months. For this recipe, I've used the fresh variety because that's what I had on hand. But the steps are the same for fresh or dry.
- Grana Padano or parmesan
- crushed chilli flakes
- fresh parsley
How to fry gnocchi step by step
- Frying gnocchi starts off pretty much the same as making pasta. Bring a pot of salted water up to a boil. Add in the gnocchi. They will sink to the bottom, and when they float they are done. This only takes about 3 minutes, making gnocchi an even quicker dinner than boiling pasta.
- Once the gnocchi is floating and cooked, drain them using either a slotted spoon or a colander. Leave the dumplings for a few minutes while you infuse the butter. Melt the butter and a drop of olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat until it starts to bubble and foam. Add in large chunks of garlic and let it infuse for about 3 minutes.
- Add the gnocchi to the foaming butter and oil and let the gnocchi brown, stirring and tossing frequently. Once the dumplings are golden and crispy toss them with the parmesan and chopped fresh parsley and serve immediately.
Fried gnocchi FAQ's and tips
Q. Do you need to pre-boil gnocchi first before panfrying it?
A. No. Pretty much all directions for gnocchi will instruct the boiling method and then serving. But you can go straight to pan-frying, however, it takes about 15 minutes to fry from uncooked. Whereas when you boil it first it takes a fraction of the time because boiling is a much faster cooking method.
Q. Besides being faster, does boiling gnocchi first do anything else?
A. Yes. Because gnocchi is made from mashed potato it tends to be a little on the soft and delicate side. Boiling first helps to firm up the dumplings ensuring that they hold together while they are fried.
Gnocchi is very often left boiled and added to sauce rather than taken the extra step of panfried, but when you sautee potato dumplings in garlic butter and turn them crispy and golden they just go to the next level.
Top Tip- pan-fried gnocchi doesn't make great leftovers. It tends to dry out and go stale very quickly in the fridge. But, there is a way you can use leftovers and make them amazing. Take any of your favourite pasta bake recipes and toss in the pan-fried gnocchi and cover with sauce and bake with cheese. Just like in this gnocchi bake.
How to serve
Gnocchi can be served as a stand-in for pasta and tossed with a tomato-based or cream-based sauce. Or it can be a great alternative to a potato dish.
Sauces to toss with gnocchi:
Crispy Pan Fried Gnocchi Recipe
- 500 g pan-fried gnocchi
- 75 g salted butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon chilli flakes
- 3 tablespoons Grana Padano parmesan
- ½ bunch parsley chopped
- Bring a pan of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the gnocchi to the boiling water and cook for about 3 minutes, or until the gnocchi floats. Drain and set aside while you make the infused butter.
- In a non-stick skillet melt the butter and olive oil together. Add in the chopped garlic and continue to heat until the butter starts to foam. Once the butter is foaming, remove the garlic and add the gnocchi to the pan and toss and stir until the gnocchi is golden on all sides.
- Once the gnocchi is golden, toss with the cheese and fresh chopped parsley. Serve immediately.
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