Winter Squash Gnocchi

I’ve always felt anyone making their own pasta was a complete show-off. Well, the time has come, people: I’m a show-off. And the great thing is, you can be too.

It’s actually not that hard, although the process is quite long (groan). Each stage is simple and quick and can be standalone. You can also make more and fridge or freeze for later, and prep more of the squash for other uses at the same time. Efficient, moi?

My version is inspired by a few others, particularly BBC Good Food's and Honestly Healthy's pumpkin version.

Ingredients for four servings:


half a large butternut squash (c.5-600g), roasted

olive or other oil (coconut is nice)

250g of spelt/gluten free/plain flour (use whatever’s in the cupboard)

pinch of salt

1 tsp dried sage

½ tsp paprika

½ tsp chilli flakes/cayenne pepper


c. 500g baby tomatoes (these reduce a lot)

1 tsp dried sage

pinch of salt

1 tbsp oil

1) Peel, cut up and roast the butternut squash by on a tray, drizzled with oil. Roast at 180 degrees for 30-35 minutes - until it’s soft but not falling apart. Once roasted, leave to cool for a few hours, or longer, and then whizz in the blender or food processor when you’re ready. Make sure it’s nice and smooth (although if there are bits, it will still taste lovely). I always do about three trays here (about two large squashes) so I can serve the rest as mash or whiz with stock and a little creme fraiche for a super winter soup.

2) Keep the blended squash until you’re ready (it will last a few days in the fridge). Then dump in a big mixing bowl. Add in the flour, salt and herbs and mix to a dough. It will be quite wet. Don’t add too much more flour or the gnocchi becomes rubbery.

3) Scatter extra flour on the worktop and plop a small handful on, roll out to a long sausage. Cut into gnocchi sized bits. Place on a chopping board or flour-ed plate until you’re ready to cook. Continue with the rest of the dough.

4) Put a large saucepan of water on to boil.

5) Whack oil in a large frying pan. Once hot, fling in all the sauce ingredients and fry off, then turn down the heat and put a lid on.

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6) Once the water’s boiling, pop in the gnocchi about a quarter of the pieces at a time and stir up the water so they pasta doesn’t stick together. When they float (after a few minutes), they’re done. Spoon them out into a colander over the mixing bowl. Once they’re all boiled, tip the sauce out into a temporary bowl and fry off the gnocchi in the frying pan to add a bit of texture and taste. Mix in the sauce or serve gnocchi into bowls and put the sauce on top. Voila!

Great for: Making you look like you know what you’re doing, cheap to make, and also very filling

Use: At dinner parties as you won’t need to do any sides or starters.

Good for you? Lots of yummy vitamins in the squash and toms; good for the planet if you cook the seasonal squash in colder months; low GI if you use spelt or other gluten-free/low gluten option; filling so you won’t snack on other naughty things!

Quick & easy? Easy but not super quick.