Gnocchi may seem like it's just a super fancy version of pasta, but it's not your average pasta at all. When Italians first blessed our world with the creation of gnocchi, it was considered a "poor man's food" because it's made from potatoes, which are notoriously cheap and easy to grow. This makes gnocchi an ideal meal for broke college students, too, and it's way easier to make from scratch than you might think.

I used to go for the pre-made gnocchi since I thought making it from scratch was some long, arduous process that wouldn't even be appetizing by the end. After testing it out over spring break, though, I learned that it requires just four ingredients and tastes far better than the frozen version.


  • Prep Time:1 hr 30 mins
  • Cook Time:5 mins
  • Total Time:1 hr 35 mins
  • Servings:4
  • Medium


  • 2 pounds russet potatoes
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tbsp salt
pesto, gnocchi, cheese, ricotta, vegetable, herb, pasta, spinach
Jenna Sudol
  • Step 1

    Using a fork, stab the potatoes a few times, then bake at 400°F for an hour to dry them out.

    bread, potato
    Jenna Sudol
  • Step 2

    Once the potatoes are cool, peel them with a paring knife (or any kind of knife/sharp object you might have in your apartment or dorm).

    Jenna Sudol
  • Step 3

    Process the potatoes with a potato ricer or grater, and spread them out on a baking sheet.

    Jenna Sudol
  • Step 4

    Sift the flour and salt over the potatoes. Then beat the egg, add it to the potatoes, and knead the mixture together to form a smooth dough. Let the dough rest for 20 minutes.
    #SpoonTip: If the dough gets too sticky, just add a little more flour.

    dairy product, sweet, dough, rice, milk, flour, cereal
    Jenna Sudol
  • Step 5

    On a lightly floured surface, cut the dough into quarters and roll these into logs that are roughly 3/4 inch in diameter.

    sweet, dairy product, soup, tofu, bread
    Jenna Sudol
  • Step 6

    Cut the logs into 3/4-inch-long pieces.

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  • Step 7

    Roll the pieces of dough on the tines of a fork to create ridges. These will help whatever sauce you choose stick to your gnocchi and give it that fancy textured look.

    sweet, bread, pastry, flour, dough
    Jenna Sudol
  • Step 8

    Add the gnocchi to salted, simmering water, and cook until they float to the surface (2-3 minutes). Remove the gnocchi with a slotted spoon and serve with pesto, marinara, butter or whatever sauce your heart desires. Sprinkle some parmesan cheese on top, and enjoy.

    ricotta, tomato, spinach
    Jenna Sudol

Whip out this easy, traditional potato gnocchi recipe to impress your friends with authentic Italian cuisine. Once you've perfected making the gnocchi from scratch, check out the other variations—like ricotta and spinach gnocchi (pictured above), called gnudi, and you'll be the fanciest chef on campus. No one has to know how simple it was.