Gnocchi “Mac” and Cheese

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese -- rich and creamy, easy to make, and unbelievably good | gimmesomeoven.com

After going-going-going for our first two weeks in Austin, I must say that this past weekend was a lesson in R&R.

We slept in — like, legitimately sleep in — each morning.  We ate tacos, tacos, and more tacos for lunch.  We soaked up the warm Texas sunshine and went on some long walks exploring in the afternoons.  We sipped frozen happy hour margaritas on patios as the sun went down in the early evenings.  We stayed up spending time with new and old friends and some family members passing through town until late at night.  And we took it all wonderfully — and deliciously — slow.  No rushing, no hurrying, no packed calendars.  Just nice and slow, like the charming Southern drawls we keep hearing everywhere.

Which, of course, made me realize for the 1000th time how quickly I still tend to move through life.  I feel like I have slowed down significantly over the past few years, choosing to more time with people I love and lesson work, and trying to make that quality time without being distracted by alerts on my phone or looming plans ahead.  But even still, I can’t help but always notice that my default is to rush, in the hopes of squeezing as many good things as possible into a day.

That’s the beauty of being in a brand new place, though, where everything is new and we don’t know our way around and our calendars are wi-hi-hide open.  (And notably, where we have an entire month to explore, versus trying to cram everything into a few days.)  We have been able to take our time — quite literally — with everything.  And goodnesshas it felt refreshing.  I apparently needed it.  And I’m loving it.  And I’m trying to let myself get very, very used to it.  :)

I’m happy to say that we’ve also been taking things at a slower space in our little Texas kitchen.  I’m usually the queen of efficiency when buzzing right and left around my kitchen at home in Kansas City.  But trying to navigate our way around a new kitchen has definitely slowed me down, not to mention the constant elbow-bumping and cute-dog-distracting that comes with sharing a kitchen with Cookie & Kate.  I wouldn’t change a single (slow) minute, though.  It has been so much fun.

And frankly, when it comes to Italian comfort food like this creamy stovetop Gnocchi Mac and Cheese, I want to soak up every second.

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese -- rich and creamy, easy to make, and unbelievably good | gimmesomeoven.com
I know that we’re not officially in the “deep” South right now.  But hey, Texas may be as close as I come for awhile.  So as a little nod to Southern comfort food while we’re down here, I thought it was high time I post a new recipe for mac and cheese.

Well, minus the mac.

My favorite gnocchi from DeLallo get to play the starring role in this rich, classic, creamy stovetop version of mac and cheese!  Which means that this dish will have minimal gluten if you use my favorite mini potato gnocchi.  (Or which can be 100% gluten-free if you use DeLallo’s gluten-free gnocchi.)  And which also means that you get to enjoy those little heavenly pillows of chewy gnocchi deliciousness with each bite.  (Sorry, I don’t know why I always think of gnocchi as “heavenly pillows”…but they are.)
Gnocchi Mac and Cheese -- rich and creamy, easy to make, and unbelievably good | gimmesomeoven.com

You can definitely make homemade gnocchi for this recipe if you insist.  But I took the shortcut of using DeLallo’s delicious pre-packaged gnocchi for this recipe.  I always keep a few boxes on hand in my pantry (even here in Austin!) because they only take a few minutes to boil and are perfect for last-minute dishes.

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese 5

If you’ve never cooked gnocchi before, trust me, you’re going to love ’em.  Just bring a big pot of salted water to a boil (as you would for pasta).  Then add the gnocchi and wait until they rise to the surface, for about 4-ish minutes.  Once they have floated to the top, just strain out the water and you’re ready to go!Gnocchi Mac and Cheese -- rich and creamy, easy to make, and unbelievably good | gimmesomeoven.com

While you’re waiting for your pasta water to come to a boil, let’s get started on that cheesy sauce.

I went with the classic trifecta of cheeses for mac and cheese with this recipe — sharp cheddar, fontina and Parmesan.  They are the ultimate in rich, creamy, cheesy perfection.  But in order for each of them to melt the smoothest, I recommend buying the cheese in blocks and then grating it yourself just before adding it to the sauce.

Once they are all grated, whisk them up with some milk, veggie (or chicken) broth, cornstarch (as a gluten-free thickener), garlic, and some salt and pepper to make your sauce.

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese -- rich and creamy, easy to make, and unbelievably good | gimmesomeoven.com

Then once your gnocchi are cooked and ready to go, toss them with the sauce.

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese | gimmesomeoven.com

And the result?  Well, I think you can see for yourself.

Perfectly creamy, perfectly cheesy, perfectly gnocchi-y.  Basically just perfect, if you ask me.

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese | gimmesomeoven.com #glutenfree

I usually prefer my mac and cheese fresh off the stovetop.  But if you prefer the dish baked, you can pop it in the oven sprinkled with some Italian breadcrumbs to get a nice crispy crust at this point.

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese -- rich and creamy, easy to make, and unbelievably good | gimmesomeoven.com

Otherwise, I recommend just serving it plain off the stovetop…

 

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese -- rich and creamy, easy to make, and unbelievably good | gimmesomeoven.com

…maybe sprinkled with some fresh parsley or basil, or maybe even topped with an extra pinch of Parmesan if you’re feeling indulgent.

Like I said, this meal is comfort food through and through.  But I promise you, it’s worth every delicious bite.  And even better when enjoyed nice and slowly.  Enjoy!

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese

This Gnocchi Mac and Cheese recipe is rich, creamy, classic, and oh-so-comforting and delicious.

Ingredients:

  • 2 (1-pound) packages *DeLallo mini potato gnocchi or 3 (12-ounce) packages DeLallo gluten-free potato and rice gnocchi)
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 cup vegetable or chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons butter or DeLallo extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup milk, warmed
  • 1 1/4 cups freshly-grated fontina cheese
  • 1 cup freshly-grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon finely-ground black pepper, or more to taste
  • (optional toppings: finely-chopped fresh parsley or basil, extra Parmesan cheese)

Directions:

Cook the gnocchi in a large stockpot of boiling water, according to package instructions.  Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, as you are waiting for the water to come to a boil and for the gnocchi to cook, make your cheese sauce.  Begin by whisking the cornstarch and the vegetable/chicken stock together in a small bowl until the cornstarch is completely dissolved.  Set aside.  (Be sure that the stock is room temperature or cooler, otherwise the cornstarch will not dissolve.)

Heat butter or olive oil in a (separate) large saucepan or saute pan over medium heat.  Add garlic and saute for 1-2 minutes, stirring occasionally, until fragrant.  Stir in the cornstarch mixture, and whisk until combined.  Add in the milk, and whisk until combined.  Continue cooking, whisking constantly, until the mixture reaches a low boil.  Then remove from heat, and stir in the cheeses until they are melted and smooth.  Season the sauce with salt and pepper, to taste.

Combine the cooked gnocchi and cheese sauce in the large stockpot, and toss together until the gnocchi are evenly coated.  Serve immediately, topped with optional toppings if desired.

*If you are making this recipe gluten-free, be sure to use DeLallo's gluten-free gnocchi.  Otherwise, their traditional mini potato gnocchi are not gluten-free.

If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!

This is a sponsored post in partnership with DeLallo.  I am a mega fan of the brand, and the story and ingredients and flavors behind their food, and all opinions are my own as always.  Thanks for supporting the brands which help make this site possible!

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese -- rich and creamy, easy to make, and unbelievably good | gimmesomeoven.com

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Comments

  1. Brielle — April 8, 2015 @ 10:47 am (#)

    I made this last night, it was to die for AMAZING and so easy to make! Will definitely make it again!

    • Ali — April 9th, 2015 @ 1:35 pm

      Thanks Brielle, I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

  2. Nicki Escudero — May 18, 2015 @ 6:05 pm (#)

    Hi, Ali, 

    I made this over the weekend, and it was fantastic! Thanks so much for sharing this great recipe! Nicki

    • Ali — May 19th, 2015 @ 8:01 am

      Thanks, Nicki, I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed it! : )

  3. kady — June 1, 2015 @ 5:10 pm (#)

    I don’t have corn starch on hand, any other suggestions? 

    • Ali — June 2nd, 2015 @ 8:01 am

      Sure, you can just use flour!

  4. Jennifer — August 19, 2015 @ 3:53 pm (#)

    What a great idea! Where has this recipe been all my life???

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — August 19th, 2015 @ 4:00 pm

      Thank you Jennifer, we hope you love it! :)

  5. Dez — August 20, 2015 @ 10:50 pm (#)

    This recipe popped up in my Pinterest feed and I nearly tripped over myself on the way to grab my boyfriend for the inevitable: what do you think? question. As he is already a big gnocchi fan, he was in. We’ve made it twice since I found the recipe last week. Second time we added bacon on top. Good lord, I don’t think I’ve ever had anything so deliciously decadent. IT IS AMAZING!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — August 24th, 2015 @ 12:35 pm

      Thanks Dez, we’re so happy you and your boyfriend loved it! :)

  6. Amanda — September 12, 2015 @ 5:05 pm (#)

    Holy Moly! This is delicious!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 15th, 2015 @ 11:28 am

      Thanks Amanda, we’re happy you enjoyed it! :D

  7. Katie — September 21, 2015 @ 6:55 am (#)

    I stumbled across this recipe via Pinterest and I can’t wait to make it. Also, coincidence that I clicked on this particular recipe and you’re using Delallo’s products when I live a mile away from their store in Greensburg, PA? It blew my mind!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 22nd, 2015 @ 11:59 am

      That’s so cool Katie, and small world! Anyway, we hope you enjoy the recipe! :)

  8. Vanessa — September 24, 2015 @ 3:25 pm (#)

    I made this and was sooo exited to love it but all I could taste was the garlic. I couldnt make out any of the other ingredients.. not even the cheese! I will be making this again but leaving the garlic out completely.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 26th, 2015 @ 3:24 pm

      Oh no, we’re so sorry to hear it was too garlicky for you!

  9. Maribeth — November 13, 2015 @ 12:13 pm (#)

    This recipe appeared on my Pinterest feed last week. I just made it. I am in love with this dish! The only thing I did differently was to add a generous pinch of cayenne to the cheese sauce – delicious!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — November 13th, 2015 @ 6:15 pm

      Aww that’s so sweet Maribeth, thank you for sharing! We’re happy you love it and we think that cayenne is an excellent idea! :)

  10. Tony — November 23, 2015 @ 1:44 pm (#)

    My ex-mother-in-law used to make haluski with gnocchi instead of egg noodles and it was amazing. I am definitely going to try this recipe.  I usually make my own gnocchi. 

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — November 23rd, 2015 @ 4:42 pm

      That’s really cool Tony, we hope you like this!

  11. Vanessa — December 17, 2015 @ 9:31 pm (#)

    Would this freeze well for make ahead lunch? 

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — December 19th, 2015 @ 9:43 pm

      Hi Vanessa, unfortunately because of the high dairy content in this recipe, we wouldn’t recommend freezing it. It will likely change the texture significantly.

  12. Janice — January 20, 2016 @ 10:57 am (#)

    If you can’t find Fontane cheese, what can u substitute?

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — January 20th, 2016 @ 3:12 pm

      Hi Janice, if you can’t find Fontina cheese, you can use mild provolone, gruyere or gouda (whichever you like)! :) We hope you enjoy!

  13. Ariel — May 14, 2016 @ 11:22 am (#)

    This looks delicious! This may be a meal for a cheat day soon. :-) I don’t feel like there’s much of a point in trying to make mac and cheese “healthy”. 

    I hope you take some time to explore the delicious eats in Austin. I think you could definitely find some inspiration there. I don’t live there, but food and Waterloo Music are my favorite parts of visiting Austin. (And stopping for ice cream at Amy’s.)

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — May 16th, 2016 @ 3:38 pm

      Thanks Ariel — we hope you enjoy it! :) And thanks, we can’t WAIT to get back to Austin!

  14. Caree — May 24, 2016 @ 6:21 pm (#)

    We tried this tonight. It was a big hit! One kid said too much garlic, so I might try 2 cloves (I may have done a bit more than three as I tend to be rather generous with garlic – oops!) I also couldn’t find hard fontina cheese, so I subbed Monterey Jack and it worked well! Of course, fontina would probably be better, but this was definitely a doable substitute!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — May 26th, 2016 @ 7:31 am

      Thanks for sharing Caree — we’re glad it was a hit with your family! :)

  15. Emma — June 5, 2016 @ 2:01 pm (#)

    If I want to make half of this recipe, do you have any recommendations? Or do you suggest strictly just cutting all of the ingredients in half?

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — June 15th, 2016 @ 10:58 pm

      Hi Emma! Yes, all you should need to do is just cut all of the ingredients in half. We hope you enjoy!