Light and Fluffy Italian Homemade Gnocchi

The traditional Italian homemade gnocchi are light, fluffy, they melt in your mouth and you can actually taste the potatoes.

Light and Fluffy Italian Homemade GnocchiVery different from the ones already made which tend to have too much flour because they have to last longer on the shelf. My husband calls them lead balls.

Also, some recipes use eggs, I don't. My homemade gnocchi are suitable for vegans.

They still have that firm consistency, but without the egg the taste of the potato prevail.

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They are not difficult to make, you just need to follow some simple rules and you will have the most delicious and versatile base dish you can serve with a multitude of sauces.

Here I make the simple and most commonly used gnocchi sauce, which are seasoned with sage and butter, you can use any other sauce depending on how you plan to eat your gnocchi.

lamb ragu

Sauces for Gnocchi

You can serve gnocchi in 3 different ways:

  1. As a main dish: use sauces with meat like Ragu for example. My favourite ragu to serve with gnocchi is Lamb ragu. (yes, I still have to publish the recipe and will do that next)
  2. As a side dish: like potatoes served as a side dish for meat or fish. You can simply flavour the gnocchi with some herbs and butter. 
  3. As a starter: in Italy this is what we would call Primo Piatto, like pasta or risotto. You can use any pasta sauce you like. For a special meal I use truffles. We usually have it as a starter for our Christmas lunch.   

My Secret

To make fluffy and light homemade gnocchi I have 1 special secret, keep the flour in the dough to a minimum.

For 1 kilo of potatoes I use around 100 / 120 gr of flour not more (plus 3 tsp of salt).

Once the potatoes are mashed and completely cold I add only 100 gr of flour and I add more only if necessary.

homemade gnocchi ingredients

homemade gnocchi flour tray

Unfortunately there is an undesirable consequence for not adding too much flour to the dough.

Once the gnocchi are ready on the tray and you try to pour them in the boiling water, they will be stuck to the tray and mash as soon as you touch them.

Any humidity in your kitchen will soften the gnocchi, they will soak the vapour from your boiling pot of water while they are laying on the table, before they reach the pot.


To avoid this problem I make sure that:

  1. Once I shape the gnocchi I put them on a well floured tray and add more flour on top.
  2. I make sure the kitchen is well aired and does not have too much humidity.
  3. I don't let them rest for too long, usually I make them only 1 hour max 2 hours ahead, no more.


homemade gnocchi floured trays

Have you noticed that my gnocchi do not have an indentation? They do not need it.

The indentation helps the sauce stick to the gnocchi, but because my gnocchi do not have a lot of flour they absorb the sauce anyway.

They are smaller and soft and will melt in your mouth.

But if you like the shape and have time on your hands, use a fork and add the indentation.

cooking the homemade gnocchi

Cooking Gnocchi

The gnocchi are cooked in hot salted boiling water, but they do not get drained like pasta or vegetables.

Once cooked they float in the boiling water, you can then remove them with a strainer ladle.  

That is why it does not matter how much flour you are pouring over the shaped gnocchi to keep them loose on the tray.

The four will drop to the bottom of the boiling water, and when you drain the gnocchi with the ladle the flour will remain at the bottom of the pot. 

Choosing the Potatoes

Use old big potatoes with a thick skin that are rich in starch and don't have too much water.

Choose potatoes for mash like Russets, Yukon golds, Desiree in France Amandine, Chérie or Pompadour.

Ingredients for homemade gnocchi

Follow the recipe below and remember:


  • Boil them with their skin for max 20 minutes
  • When making the dough add just enough flour until the dough is smooth
  • Once the gnocchi are ready cover the prepared gnocchi with a lot of flour so they will not stick to the tray


  • Don't peel the potatoes before boiling them
  • Don't use a blender to mash them otherwise they will become waxy
  • Wait until the mashed potatoes are completely cold before adding the flour to make the dough

To make this recipe I use KitchenAid attachment 5FVSP Fruit and vegetable Strainer 

You can find it on Amazon (affiliate link)

I find it very useful to sieve cooked fruits, tomatoes and potatoes.

It separates the skin directly so I don’t have to peel them.

It is perfect when you make gnocchi, they are mashed in a flash and you don t have to burn your hands to peel hot potatoes.

If you don t have one you can mash the potatoes with a hand mash or with a fork.

Here you will find other recipes I make with the KitchenAid vegetables strainer, here you will find more of my favourite kitchen tools.

Homemade gnocchi kitchenaid

chestnuts homemade gnocchi

Fancy Homemade Gnocchi

If you want to make something very special, you can mix other vegetables to the potatoes and change the colour and flavour.

Here I mixed some cooked chestnuts.

Other vegetables often used are with sweet potatoes, squash, and why not trying with pumpkin.

You can experiment what you fancy, on 1 kilo of potatoes substitute 100 gr with your favourite vegetable.

Though make sure it is a dry vegetable otherwise you will have to add too much flour.

I will give to pumpkin gnocchi flavoured with cinnamon a try and I promise to get back to you with some results before Thanksgiving. 

Happy homemade gnocchi making !

Looking forward to hear your gnocchi experience in the comments below


For instructions on recipes template see post: Food Madness: Digital & Apps

For measurement conversions see post: How much is a Cup in grams and the most useful cooking conversions

5 from 3 votes
Light and Fluffy Italian Homemade Gnocchi

Light and Fluffy Italian Homemade Gnocchi
Prep Time
1 hr

Cook Time
30 mins

Total Time
1 hr 30 mins


The traditional Italian homemade gnocchi are light, fluffy, they melt in your mouth and you can actually taste the potatoes. No eggs, they are vegan !


Side Dishes

Servings: 6 people
Calories: 352 kcal

  • 1
    potatoes (4 large)
  • 150
  • salt and pepper
For a simple sauce
  • 100
  • 10
    sage leaves

  1. Clean the potatoes making sure all earth is removed

    Ingredients for homemade gnocchi
  2. Boil 1 kilo of potatoes in salted water for 20 minutes

    Boil potatoes for 20 minutes
  3. Strain off the water and while the potatoes are still hot pass through the strainer, I use kitchenaid vegetables strainer

    Homemade gnocchi kitchenaid
  4. If you don't have a vegetable strainer, peel the potatoes while still hot and mash them with a fork or a potato masher

  5. Let the mashed potatoes cool down completely

  6. Add only 100 gr of flour and the salt, mix and add more flour only if necessary

    homemade gnocchi ingredients
  7. Once the dough has a nice consistency, roll it and cut the gnocchi into shape

    Shaping the homemade gnocchi
  8. Spread them on well floured tray and cover with flour so they do not stick to the tray and to each others

    homemade gnocchi floured trays
  9. Boil them in salted water and when they start floating remove them from the water with a strainer ladle

    cooking the homemade gnocchi
  10. Pour the cooked gnocchi in a pan and mix them with the sauce of your choice. Here I mix it with butter and sage

    Gnocchi mixed with the sauce

Recipe Notes

Calories 352 calories per serving
Fat 15 gr per serving
Carbohydrates 50 gr per serving
Cholesterol 36 mg
Proteins 6 gr per serving
Sugar 1 gr per serving
Sodium 48 mg per serving

Nutritional information is provided for general purpose only. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely.

The traditional Italian homemade gnocchi are light, fluffy, they melt in your mouth and you can actually taste the potatoes. No eggs, they are vegan #yourguardianchef #gnocchi #italianresipes


  8 comments for “Light and Fluffy Italian Homemade Gnocchi

  1. Patty
    24th September 2017 at 8:22 am

    Great tutorial Laura, I tried to make my own gnocchi only once and my dough was far too soft, I’ll try your method and see how I manage

    • Laura
      25th September 2017 at 2:51 am

      Let me know, looking forward to your photos

  2. 18th October 2017 at 10:57 pm

    I love gnocchi! I’m going to have to try your recipe.

    • Laura
      19th October 2017 at 1:31 pm

      Thank you Kathryn, let me know how it goes

  3. 22nd October 2017 at 1:52 am

    Looks great! I’ve always been so intimidated by gnocchi!

    • Laura
      22nd October 2017 at 7:06 am

      Thanks, you shouldn t be

  4. Jenn
    9th October 2018 at 11:55 pm

    Can you post your results from the pumpkin cinnamon gnocchi!?

    • Laura
      11th October 2018 at 6:33 am

      Certainly, on my to-do list

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