Go beyond the traditional gnocchi with an easy and simple Baked Chicken Gnocchi for dinner this week. Rotisserie chicken and packaged or frozen gnocchi can transform into a yummy meal in under 30 minutes. The cheese and spinach make for the perfect combo of appetizing and healthy.
Taylor dropped in for dinner last weekend, I love that she is close enough to do that when she needs a break from college food. Her friends have learned that there is always food at our house and have been coming over with her which is so much fun for us. As your kids get older, you don’t really get to know their friends.
Food is a great way to bring people together. Taylor loves all of the ingredients in baked chicken gnocchi so I was hoping she would like it as she can be a bit picky! Nothing to worry about here, we all loved it and she took the leftovers home with her.
Cooked mushrooms add a lot of flavor to a quick 30 minute meal, you’ll cook them first, remove them from the pan and make the sauce in the same pan. The mushrooms are then added back in before it’s baked.
Why you’ll love it
- It’s a quick and easy dinner you can prepare in about 15 minutes, then it bakes for 15 minutes and you have dinner on the table in 30 minutes.
- Rotisserie chicken make this a snap to prepare.
- Everyone loves little potato dumplings.
- You can sneak some spinach in and no one will complain.
- The mushroom sauce is delicious but not heavy.
- You can make it all in one pan, easy clean up.
What you’ll need
- Gnocchi – fresh, frozen or vacuum sealed. You don’t need to boil the gnocchi first, just add it to the pan with the sauce and it will cook while it bakes.
- Chicken – use rotisserie or cook some chicken breasts, whichever you choose, the chicken that is added needs to be cooked first.
- Fresh mushrooms and spinach – you get two vegetables in baked chicken gnocchi.
- Parmesan cheese – just a little for flavor
- Pantry items – chicken broth, butter, flour, milk and nutmeg.
What’s the difference between pasta and gnocchi
Pasta is typically made with flour and water and sometimes an egg, while gnocchi is made with potatoes and is more like a dumpling. They are great for absorbing the flavors in a sauce. Like pasta, gnocchi is boiled, when it’s done, it will float to the top of the water. However, in this chicken and gnocchi recipe you don’t have to cook the gnocchi first, it will cook in the sauce while it bakes, time saver and one less pot to clean!
How do you make a roux
Taylor wanted to know how hard it was to make. It’s very easy. If you are a novice cook, the only thing that you have to do other than mix the ingredients together, is make a roux. There’s no reason to be intimidated by this. You just heat butter in a skillet, sprinkle flour over it, and whisk for about a minute. Once the flour is incorporated into the butter, slowly add the liquid, whisking continuously.
It will sizzle when you first add the liquid and look a little lumpy, but just keep gradually adding the liquid and continue to whisk until there are no lumps. If you add all the liquid at one time, it will eventually thicken but it will be a smoother and tastier roux if you add the liquid slowly. Once all the liquid has been incorporated, let it simmer to the desired thickness.
This is how you make any roux whether you’re making gravy for Thanksgiving or a white sauce for mac & cheese. Generally you want equal amounts of flour and butter. This process will generally take about five to ten minutes.
How do you make baked gnocchi
Step 1: First sauté the mushrooms and then remove from the skillet.
Step 2: In the same skillet make a roux with butter, flour, milk and chicken broth. Once thickened add the chicken, gnocchi and spinach and let it cook until the spinach has wilted. You don’t cook the gnocchi first, just add it uncooked.
Step 3: Sprinkle with cheese and bake until bubbly.
You can make this in advance and put it in the oven 15 minutes before you’re ready to serve it.
FAQ’s and Tips
Yes, the sauce is so tasty from the mushrooms, that you won’t miss the extra fat in the milk.
This is not a cheesy dish, the cheese just adds some flavor so use a hard flavorful cheese like parmesan.
For a quick weeknight meal, I use rotisserie chicken. If you have a few extra minutes, you can cook your own chicken breasts, it’s so easy but it takes about 30 minutes. I’ve given directions in my chicken chili recipe.
Yes, just reheat in the oven at 350º for 10 minutes.
No, the gnocchi will cook while it bakes.
More skillet dinners
- Chicken with grapes and olives
- Chicken parmesan meatballs
- Tater tot casserole
- Guinness beef pie
- Mustard chicken with potatoes
Adapted from the Food Network Magazine
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Baked Chicken Gnocchi
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 8 ounces mushrooms sliced
- salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 ½ cups whole milk
- 1 cup chicken broth
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ rotisserie chicken skin removed and meat shredded
- 1 pound gnocchi
- 1 ½ cups baby spinach loosely packed
- ½ cup parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 425º.
- Heat olive oil in a 10 inch cast iron or oven proof skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms and cook until browned, season with salt and pepper and remove from the skillet to a plate.
- In the same skillet melt butter and add flour, whisking for about 1 minute. Slowly whisk in milk and chicken broth until smooth. Simmer, whisking constantly until slightly thickened about 5 minutes. Whisk in salt and nutmeg.
- Add shredded chicken, mushrooms, uncooked gnocchi and spinach and stir until coated and the spinach wilts. Sprinkle with cheese, transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until bubbly, about 15 minutes.
Barbara’s Tips + Notes
- If you don’t have an oven proof skillet, transfer it to a baking dish, you may have to increase the baking time.
- You do not boil the gnocchi before adding it to the dish, it will cook while it bakes in the sauce.
- If you want this to be cheesy, add some mozzarella along with the parmesan.
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