Gnocchi & A Quickie Pasta Sauce

Today’s post is for The Secret Recipe Club, created by Amanda of Amanda’s Cookin’. This is how it works: Every month, you get to scour the blog of another member of the club (assigned to you by Amanda), and pick out and cook or bake any recipe from that person’s blog. And of course, it’s a Secret. Until the big reveal, that is.

My assignment this month, was to choose a recipe from This Chick Cooks. Kate features lots of quick and easy recipes that are great for family meals and desserts, mostly using ingredients that you’re likely to already have in your pantry. The recipe choice was easy: “Mini Italian Dumplings, a/k/a Gnocchi,” adapted from Healthy Cooking magazine. Kate promises that you can have gnocchi on the table in 30 minutes. The secret? This recipe uses instant potato flakes instead of boiling and mashing fresh potatoes.

Now, my husband will tell you that I am a gnocchi freak from way back. In fact, I judge Italian restaurants on the basis of their gnocchi. So, how could I resist a quickie gnocchi? And get your minds out of the gutter, people.

This was definitely quick and easy. I omitted the dried basil called for in the recipe, but changed nothing else, and dressed the gnocchi in my own quickie pasta sauce. Hey, a quickie gnocchi calls for a quickie sauce, right?

Quickie Pasta Sauce


2 Tbs. olive oil
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
2 – 3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
2 14 oz. cans chopped tomatoes (I used organic, but I don’t judge)
Kosher salt & freshly ground pepper


Heat the oil on medium-high heat in a 2 – 3 quart saucepan. Add the chopped onion and garlic and sweat until the onion is translucent. Stir in the chopped tomatoes, and season with salt and pepper to your taste.

Partially cover the pot, reduce the heat to medium, and allow to simmer briskly until the liquid is reduced by about half, stirring occasionally. This generally takes about the same amount of time it takes to boil a pot of water and cook your pasta.

This is just the basics. You can saute some chopped bell pepper and/or mushrooms along with the onions and garlic, if you like. You can also add your favorite fresh or dried herbs along with the tomatoes. Whatever you have handy and feel like. Make it your own!

It was really fun, searching through another blogger’s recipe posts for inspiration and a different point of view. Wanna play? Join the Secret Recipe Club here.

Now follow along and see who got who – I can’t wait to see who got me and what they chose to make from my eclectic collection. Will it be a dessert? A main course? A 30-minute family meal? Let’s find out together!


This entry was posted in gnocchi, italian food, pasta, pasta sauce, quick dinner, recipe, secret recipe club. Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.


  1. Posted July 18, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

    Love Gnocchi! I've been craving it lately and now after seeing this, I think I am going to have to give in! This is my first month in the club – what fun this is!

  2. Posted July 18, 2011 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

    Love quick and easy recipes and the SRC!

  3. Posted July 18, 2011 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

    Gnocchi is one of my all time favorites…so soft and pillowy, YUM! I haven't had it in forever…now I'm craving :)

  4. Posted July 18, 2011 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

    That's crazy – I would've never thought of using potato flakes in gnocchi! They look terrific though!

  5. Posted July 18, 2011 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

    I hope that you enjoyed it :) Your take looks so tasty. Have a blessed day!Katie

  6. Posted July 19, 2011 at 12:57 am | Permalink

    I've never had gnocci but would love to try it!

  7. Posted July 19, 2011 at 4:07 am | Permalink

    I haven't made gnocci in years and now I need to as this recipe looks wonderful.If you haven't already, I'd love for you to check out my SRC recipe this month: Holy Guacamole.Lisa~~Cook Lisa Cook

  8. Posted July 20, 2011 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

    Mmm I love gnocchi and this pasta sauce looks great! Super cute dish too by the way :) Love your blog and so glad to be a new follower!

  9. Posted July 21, 2011 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    It's always great to have a favorite, quickie recipe you can turn too. Love the cute plate!

  10. Posted July 21, 2011 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

    Gnocchi has been on my list of must make and this seems like a perfect beginner recipe. I like quick and easy!

  11. Posted July 26, 2011 at 12:47 am | Permalink

    girl, this is what I call a wonderful single gals' go to dinner!!!

  12. Posted July 28, 2011 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

    I love quickie sauces! And can you believe i've never tried gnocchi? True! Must fix that.

  13. Posted July 29, 2011 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

    I love a quickie dinner. Thanks for sharing! Glad to be part of SRC with you!Amy @ A Little Nosh

  14. Posted July 31, 2011 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

    We love gnocchi, this looks awesome! So fun to be in the Secret Recipe Club with you.

  15. Posted August 4, 2011 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

    Aha! I was looking for a quickie pasta sauce. Yay!

  16. Posted August 9, 2011 at 11:29 am | Permalink

    Hi Renee! I featured you today on SRC, great looking dish!

  17. Posted August 9, 2011 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

    Hi renee!, saw you featured on SRC today, great dish, even I make this and my family loves it!

  18. Posted August 9, 2011 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

    Quick is always good!

  19. Posted August 10, 2011 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

    Saw this on the Secret Recipe Website. Sounds delicious and I love the special ingredient.. potato flakes!

  20. Posted August 17, 2011 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

    I've been wanting to try the quick version of gnocci but wanted an honest view of it. Looks like I will be able to do it and still feel like I've had a "good" gnocci!

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