A simple and authentic Italian weeknight pasta recipe using premade gnocchi and homemade pesto.
- 16 ounces gnocchi
- 1/2 pound medium shrimp, peeled, deveined, and tails removed
- 3/4 cup basil pesto (use homemade for best results)
- olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- salt and pepper to taste
- Optional 1/4 cup cream (see note below)
homemade basil pesto
- 3 loosely packed cups of basil leaves, about 2.5 ounces
- 3 tablespoons pine nuts
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 2/3 cup olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste
For the pesto
- Combine all pesto ingredients except for the olive oil in a food processor or blender. Blend/pulse until mixed and smooth.
- With the motor running, add olive oil in a slow stream until combined. Pesto should not be too soupy or fine. Set aside. Can be made a day in advance and stored in the fridge in a tightly sealed container. Cover with plastic wrap seated directly on top of the surface to prevent browning/air exposure.
For the pesto shrimp gnocchi
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large nonstick pan over medium heat. Add shrimp and red pepper flakes and season all over with salt and pepper. Cook the shrimp until fully cooked through and no longer translucent, about 2-3 minutes per side.
- Meanwhile, bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Add a big pinch of salt and add gnocchi. Boil for about 2 minutes or until gnocchi float to the surface, about 3-4 minutes. Strain well and transfer to the pan with the shrimp. Reduce the heat to low and add in the pesto, stirring until fully green and coated in the pesto. Add additional olive oil as needed if the pesto feels too thick.
- Serve immediately with extra Parmesan cheese on top if desired.
You can add an optional 1/4 cup of light or heavy cream along with the pesto to make the dish a little more creamy.
If you don’t have a food processor, you can use a standard blender or single-serve blender instead. Just don’t blend the ingredients too aggressively or it will turn into a creamy paste. If using a single-serve blender, combine all ingredients together and pulse until smooth. Shaking the containing in between blends will help to mix the ingredients if they get “stuck.”
Make pesto in advance. always tightly cover pesto with plastic wrap to prevent browning. Ensure plastic wrap is touching the surface of the pesto so it’s completely sealed from the environment. To freeze pesto, place portions in small ziplock baggies and remove as much air from the bag as possible. Pesto can last several months in the freezer. To defrost, let the pesto rest on the counter for 15-20 minutes. Alternatively, you can freeze pesto in ice cube trays for simple small portions that quickly defrost when added to hot dishes.
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 583
- Sugar: 2g
- Sodium: 484mg
- Fat: 25.9g
- Saturated Fat: 4.9g
- Carbohydrates: 56.7g
- Fiber: 1g
- Protein: 30.2g
- Cholesterol: 160mg
Keywords: gnocchi recipes, pesto gnocchi