sweet potato gnocchi with brown butter and sage

(image source)

for some reason i thought it would be a good idea to buy a 10 pound box of sweet potatoes from costco.  well after only using a few of them for the roasted sweet potato and spinach risotto we still had quite a bit left.  i was excited to try new sweet potato recipes but we’ve had a busy couple of weeks and i  wasn’t able to get to any of them.  unfortunately, some of the potatoes were already starting to look a little funky.  so earlier last week, i peeled, steamed, and mashed a whole lot of sweet potatoes.  then i divided them up into ziplocks and stored them in the freezer.  i figured this would be a good way still be able to make different sweet potato recipes without the pressure of making them in a limited amount of time.

but soon enough, on sunday i found some time to make sweet potato gnocchi with brown butter and sage.  as i was looking for recipes for sweet potato gnocchi, recipes for pumpkin gnocchi kept popping up too.  the recipes looked fairly similar so i actually used a pumpkin gnocchi recipe and substituted the pureed pumpkin with the mashed sweet potatoes since we didn’t have any pumpkin on hand.  i also added some sweet italian sausage to add some protein and make it a full meal.

oh and then as i was reading the recipe i realized that tammy actually made it too.  great minds certainly do think alike.  check out her post on pumpkin gnocchi!

finally, can i tell you this is one of the easiest fresh pasta recipes i have made.  it was incredible.  soo much faster than making the gnocchi recipe i tried before and definitely easier than the three cheese tortellini.  since these gnocchi are pan fried you don’t have to worry about making them pretty with all of those fancy grooves.  so if you’re looking for a good pasta recipe to start off with, i would definitely suggest trying this one out.

step 1: mix up all of the gnocchi ingredients except the flour…


step 2:  sift half the flour into the bowl.  mix slightly until just incorporated…

step 3: sift the rest of the flour into the bowl and knead gently with your hands until the dough comes together.  be very careful to not over knead the dough…

step 4: on a lightly floured surface, cut the dough into four equal pieces.  then roll each piece into a 1 inch thick rope…


step 5: cut each rope into 1 inch pieces and lay them on to a large sheet pan…


step 6: once all of the gnocchi are done, it’s time to pan fry them.  heat up a large saucepan with butter and olive oil.  then add about half of the gnocchi making sure they don’t touch each other…

step 7: after letting them cook fro 1-2 minutes, flip each gnocchi over and let them cook an additional 1-2 minutes…

step 8:  put the finished gnocchi on the sheet tray and repeat with the rest of the gnocchi.  then clean out the pan and add in the rest of the butter and oil.  once it’s hot, add the sage leave and allow the sage leave to get a little brown and crispy…

step 9: remove the sage leaves and then add the balsamic vinegar.  WARNING: it splatters everywhere!  like my kitchen was covered in a mixture of oil, butter and vinegar.  not good.  so be prepared with a splatter guard to keep that from happening to you.  you could probably also let the butter/oil mixture cool a little before adding the vinegar.  then pour the sauce over the gnocchi (and sausage) and toss gently.  garnish with the crispy sage leaves…

this sweet potato gnocchi was delicious – even though it was a bit rich the lemon zest in the gnocchi and the balsamic vinegar in the sauce really helped brighten up the dish.  plus i love the slight crunch of the panfried gnocchi, definitely a nice change from regular boiled gnocchi.  i highly recommend this recipe!

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Brown Butter and Sage

adapted slightly from Steamy Kitchen


  • 1/2 cup skim milk ricotta
  • 1/2 cup sweet potato (peeled, steamed, and mashed or pureed)
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest (use a microplane grater)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt (or 1/2 tsp table salt)
  • 1 cup all purpose flour, sifted plus more for dusting
  • 3 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • 2 tablespoons good quality balsamic vinegar
  • 3 sprigs fresh sage
  • shaved or grated parmesan cheese for serving


  1. Combine ricotta, pumpkin, parmesan cheese, yolk, zest and salt in large bowl. Mix well.
  2. Sprinkle half of the flour on the mixture, gently turn with spatula a few times to incorporate.
  3. Dump mixture on clean, lightly floured countertop or you can still do this in the bowl. Sprinkle remaining flour on top of the mixture. Gently knead with your fingertips, just bringing together the mixture until flour is incorporated through. This only should take a minute or two. Any longer and you will be over-kneading.
  4. Dust a clean, dry surface with a generous sprinkling of flour. Divide dough into 4 parts. Take one part and roll into a long, 1″ diameter log. Cut gnocchi into 1″ pieces.
  5. Heat a large frying pan or saute pan with just 1 tablespoon of the butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. When hot, add a few gnocchi – enough to cover surface but not touch each other. Fry on medium heat for 1-2 minutes, turn and fry for another 1-2 minutes. Remove gnocchi, place on large baking sheet to put into oven to keep warm. Repeat with rest of gnocchi.
  6. When all gnocchi is finished, discard butter/oil in pan and clean pan with paper towel. Heat pan on medium heat and when hot, add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and the remaining tablespoon of olive oil. When hot, add the fresh sage. Let the sage brown and sizzle (but not burn) for a couple of minutes until very fragrant. Remove the sage and discard if you want (or keep it in to eat — as many people in the comments below like to do!) To the pan, add the balsamic vinegar and whisk. Let simmer on low for 1 minute and pour over the gnocchi.
  7. Serve with shaved or grated parmesan cheese and crispy sage leaves for garnish.

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  1. 2011 recipe round up « miki's kitchen
  2. sweet potato risotto « miki's kitchen

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