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Vegan Pumpkin Gnocchi Made From Scratch

5 from 14 votes

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You are going to LOVE this Vegan Pumpkin Gnocchi! Pumpkin gnocchi is made with pumpkin puree, potatoes, and gluten-free flour all topped with a rich and flavorful vegan-friendly sage butter sauce enhanced with pine nuts, culinary sage, onions, vegan parmesan, and sun-dried tomatoes.

casserole dish with pumpkin gnocchi

Fall cooking isn’t just for pumpkin donuts, pumpkin pie, or cookies! Pumpkin puree lends a special seasonal flavor to the base of savory foods as well. This delicious pumpkin gnocchi has all of that and is rewarding to make. Check out this post with all the vegan pumpkin recipes – both sweet and savory – from Veggie Fun Kitchen!

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fork with piece of pumpkin gnocchi with pinterest text overlay

Why make homemade gnocchi from scratch?

I never made potato gnocchi from scratch before. It seemed scary and daunting and oh so much easier to just buy it from the store! But it wasn’t always easy to find vegan gnocchi since a typical gnocchi ingredient is eggs.

So of course, I started experimenting and did come up with fabulous potato gnocchi – no eggs required! This recipe will be coming soon – but I wanted to get this delicious seasonal pumpkin gnocchi up on the blog while we are still thinking about all things pumpkin and fall!

You’ll love this pumpkin gnocchi recipe! Not only for its fun seasonal pumpkin flavor but also (and maybe especially) for the rich buttery sage sauce! Because we are a vegan family, I’ve made the sage butter sauce vegan-friendly by using vegan butter and vegan parmesan cheese. If you are not vegan use the products of your choice.

Ingredients (and substitutions) needed to make pumpkin gnocchi with butter sage sauce

To make the pumpkin gnocchi:

  • potatoes – I use Yukon gold potatoes in this recipe.
  • pumpkin puree  – Make your own or used canned pumpkin puree. Do make sure you are using pure pumpkin, not pumpkin pie mix (which would be very weird)
  • One-to-one gluten-free white flour- First of all…I am not about gluten-free. My recipes are NOT usually gluten-free…unless they just happen to be. Gluten-free flour just works best in this recipe. The texture of the gnocchi comes out better. I think because the pumpkin puree has to be worked in well to the dough, you don’t overdevelop your gluten when you aren’t using gluten. Makes sense right? I use King Arthur Gluten-Free Measure for Measure Flour.
  • salt

To make the sage butter sauce

  • vegan butter -We are a vegan family and so we use vegan butter. If you are not vegan, then use the butter of your choice. Just use salted butter as this recipe was developed using vegan butter which is salted.
  • red onion
  •  pine nuts – Make sure they are very fresh.
  • 15-20 culinary sage leaves  – Use fresh sage leaves, not dried.
  • sun-dried tomatoes – I used five halves and cut them into 14 thin slices. You can also buy them pre-sliced.
  • vegan parmesan cheese – (Again, if you are not vegan then use the parm of choice.) This is for flavor, not texture. I like Follow Your Heart Vegan Parmesan. Or you could make your own. My cashew parm would work great for this recipe.
ingredients for pumpkin gnocchi - listed in blog post

How to make this vegan pumpkin gnocchi recipe

The exact ingredients with measurements can be found in the recipe card below along with more concise abbreviated instructions. Read on for more details, tips, and tricks so that you will feel confident making this recipe.

After you’ve read through the steps, please read the section “What Could Go Wrong…” BEFORE making this recipe.

Step one: The potatoes

Boil a pot of salted water. While the water is boiling, remove the skin from the potatoes with a paring knife or potato peeler.

You will need about two small-sized potatoes for this recipe or one large potato weighing about 14 ounces before cooking. Since potato sizes vary so much, I thought it best to give you the measurement in weight rather than just say “two potatoes”.

It’s easy enough to pop the potatoes on the scale at the grocery store. That way you know exactly how large and heavy your potatoes are. This will equal about one and three-fourths cups of loosely packed mashed potatoes. In the end, you will need 1 3/4 mashed potatoes for the recipe.

Once the water has come to a boil, place the peeled and cut potatoes in the pot for 15-20 minutes until they are fork-tender. Remove from the heat and run under cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain the water and pat the potatoes dry.

Mash the potatoes into a med/large mixing bowl until they are mashed and fluffy It’s best to use a potato ricer or a large grater, but you can use a potato masher or a fork.

Step two: Add the other Gnocchi ingredients to the mashed potato

pumpkin, flour, and mashed potatoes to make pumpkin gnocchi dough in white bowl surrounded by pumpkin half, wooden spoon, sage, pine nuts, and potatoes

The pumpkin

If you want to make your own pumpkin puree, then go right ahead. Just make sure you use the right kind of pumpkin for the job. The type of pumpkin you carve a face into is not the right kind of pumpkin for baking or for making pumpkin puree. The texture will be too stringy and the flavor bland. Read more from Southern Living on how to choose the best pumpkin for cooking and baking.

If you buy a 15-ounce can of pumpkin puree, make sure to purchase “pure” or solid pumpkin – not the pumpkin pie mix! You will not use the entire 15-ounce can of pumpkin for this homemade pumpkin gnocchi. I suggest using the leftovers for my delicious no-bake pumpkin cookies! Or perhaps yummy pumpkin spice crescent rolls or pumpkin spice granola are more to your liking!

The Flour

This recipe calls for one-to-one gluten-free flour. You can easily make this homemade pumpkin gnocchi recipe totally gluten-free if you desire. Just make sure the ingredients you use are manufactured in a gluten-free facility. Use a one-to-one gluten-free flour – not almond flour or coconut flour or anything like that.

Step three: Make the gnocchi dough

Add the pumpkin puree, salt, and all-purpose flour on top of the mashed potatoes. Combine the ingredients until you form a nice solid but pliable dough. Work in more flour if the dough is too mushy and can’t hold its shape when rolled. Remember that you want your dough to be pliable – not dry and crumbly, but the dough should still be able to hold its shape.

ball of pumpkin gnocchi dough in white bowl surrounded by pumpkin half, wooden spoon, sage, pine nuts, and potatoes

Step four: Preparing the pumpkin potato gnocchi

Lightly dust your work surface with flour. You’ll also want a little flour for your hands. Divide the dough into five or more even pieces. Stretch and roll each piece into a cylinder that is about one-half inch thick. Picture a thick jumping rope about as big around as your thumb. If this is your first time making gnocchi from scratch, feel free to work in smaller batches and with smaller lengths of “rope”.

Cut each cylinder into pieces that are the same length (as much as possible). These little pieces should be slightly longer than they are fat to make small rectangular pillow-shaped gnocchi pasta.

rolling the dough for pumpkin gnocchi in ropes and cutting the pieces

You can leave the gnocchi in these rectangular puffy pillow shapes, or make the classic gnocchi designs using a gnocchi board if you want to be extra fancy, or use the backside of a fork if you do not have a gnocchi board. Place a fork on the table with the curved part on top. Take a cut gnocchi piece and carefully press it with your finger or thumb onto the top of the fork. Roll the gnocchi piece to the table to get the lines pressed in.

Yes, this would probably be easier using a gnocchi board!

Place the prepared uncooked gnocchi pieces in the refrigerator while you are boiling the water for the gnocchi pasta. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. (It’s important that the pot be large enough to cook the gnocchi with enough space so that the gnocchi pieces don’t stick together.) Cook in batches if your pot isn’t large enough or if your gnocchi pieces are feeling crowded.

While the water is boiling, I try to save time by prepping and making the buttery sage sauce. You will find those directions below.

Step five: Make the buttery sage sauce

While the water is coming to a boil, you can cook the buttery sage sauce. Start by slicing the onion and sun-dried tomatoes so that they will be ready when you are. Set them aside separately. You can use sundried tomato halves and cut them like I did, or buy already julienned sundried tomatoes.

I have also used jarred sundried tomatoes in oil. It just depends on what I can find and doesn’t really affect the outcome much.

Melt two Tablespoons of vegan butter in a frying pan and add the fresh sage until they become browned and crispy – not burned. You will be using fifteen to twenty sage leaves for this recipe. I really like the flavor of sage and so use the maximum amount. Remove the crispy sage with a slotted spoon and set aside.

You should still have melted butter remaining in the pan. Now, add the pine nuts to the melted butter and pan fry, stirring constantly until they are just lightly browned. Remove them from the pan immediately. Pine nuts turn quickly so do be sure to watch them carefully. Set them aside separately from the sage.

pine nuts toasting in pan
Pine nuts turn brown and then burn very quickly!

Add the remaining vegan butter to the pan and let it melt. Saute the onions for about three minutes or until they have softened. Add the sliced sundried tomatoes and continue sauteing for another minute. Add the pine nuts. Give it a taste and add salt and pepper to your liking.

sauteing the onions, pinenuts, sun dried tomatoes in vegan butter

You can leave the onions, tomatoes, and pinenuts in the pan, but remove it from the heat while the gnocchi is cooking. It’s time to boil the gnocchi!

Step six: Cooking the gnocchi and finishing things up

To cook the gnocchi place the gnocchi in the boiling water and gently stir so that the pieces don’t stick together. Once the gnocchi floats to the top, they are cooked. This should take about 3-5 minutes. Boil the gnocchi in batches if your pan is feeling too crowded. Strain the gnocchi and add to the frying pan with the other ingredients.

Pan-fry everything (except for the sage) altogether, stirring and flipping until the gnocchi pieces are well covered and have started to crisp up around the edges

Top the cooked gnocchi mixture with the fried sage and vegan parmesan and serve immediately.

cooking pumpkin gnocchi in pan with sage sauce
You are going to need a very large frying pan!

What could go wrong when cooking gnocchi made from scratch?

This is a complicated recipe. Unless you are an experienced gnocchi maker, do not attempt to make this recipe for the first time for guests. Practice first. It took me many times of trial and error to get this Pinterest-perfect result. And believe me, everything listed below….I’ve done!

  • You didn’t read through the instructions and understand everything BEFORE you started cooking.
  • The potato was not yet fork-tender before you tried mashing it, and now you have big chunks of undercooked potato in your gnocchi.
  • The potato was too wet and mushy because you didn’t pat it dry and/or you overcooked it.
  • Your potato was mashed too compactly. A potato masher works great and allows some air into the mashed potato. If you could use a potato ricer or even a large grater, that would work even better and allow some air into the potato.
  • Your cooked potato was cold when you tried to add the other ingredients. Cooking and mashing the potato is not something you can do ahead of time. The potato needs to be a little bit warm.
  • You didn’t add enough flour and your dough is too wet to roll and hold together.
  • You didn’t use gluten-free flour and now the gluten has been overdeveloped.
  • You made your gnocchi pieces too large. It’s better to make the rope (and pieces) too small than large. Large pieces will just end up hard and doughy inside. Feel free to work in smaller batches.
  • You overboiled the gnocchi. Seriously, when they are floating, they are done! You might need to boil the gnocchi in batches.
pumpkin gnocchi in casserole dish with cherry tomatoes in foreground, sage at the top and a piece of pumpkin on the left bottom

Looking for some more tasty savory vegan main course meals?

You are going to love this vegan pumpkin gnocchi recipe! I’m not sure what I like better – the soft pillowy gnocchi bite or the sage butter sauce. If you are looking for other vegan main course recipes, give these a try:

The printable recipe card

casserole dish with pumpkin gnocchi

Did you love this recipe? Want to share the love? It would thrill me to no end if you could leave five ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ stars and even a comment. Did you know that this will help google to find this recipe when others are looking for something similar? Thanks, Cindy

fork holding a piece of pumpkin gnocchi

Vegan Pumpkin Gnocchi Made From Scratch

The pumpkin gnocchi is made with pumpkin puree, potatoes, and gluten-free flour all topped with a rich and flavorful buttery sage sauce enhanced with pine nuts, culinary sage, onions, vegan parmesan, and sun-dried tomatoes.
5 from 14 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: gluten-free gnocchi, gnocchi made from scratch, pumpkin gnocchi, vegan gnocchi, vegan pumpkin gnocchi
Prep Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours
Servings: 4
Calories: 436kcal
Author: Cindy Rainey

Ingredients

The Pumpkin Gnocchi

  • 14 ounces Yukon gold potato 1 3/4 cups mashed see notes
  • 1⅓ cup pumpkin puree see notes
  • 1½-2½ cups gluten-free flour see notes
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt

Buttery Sage Sauce

  • 5 Tablespoons vegan butter divided, see notes
  • cup red onion, sliced
  • 3 Tablespoons pine nuts
  • 15-20 culinary sage leaves use fresh
  • 5 sun-dried tomatoes see notes
  • ¼ cup vegan parmesan cheese

Instructions

The Pumpkin Gnocchi

  • Boil a pot of salted water. While the water is boiling, remove the skin from the potatoes with a paring knife or potato peeler. Cut the potato into thirds.
  • Once the water has come to a boil, place the peeled potatoes in the pot for 15-25 minutes until they are fork-tender. Remove from the heat and run under cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain and pat dry.
  • Mash the potatoes into a med/large mixing bowl until they are mashed into a nice puree. It's easier to use a potato masher, but you can use a fork.
  • Add the pumpkin puree, one and a half cups of flour, and salt on top of the mashed potatoes. Combine the ingredients until you form a nice solid but pliable dough. Work in more flour if the dough is too mushy and can't hold its shape when rolled. Remember that you want your dough to be pliable – not dry and crumbly, but the dough should still be able to hold its shape.
  • Sprinkle flour onto your working surface and flour your hands. Divide the dough into five even pieces. Stretch and roll each piece into a cylinder that is about one-half inch thick. About as thick as your thumb – well, my thumb, your's might be smaller or larger than mine!
  • Cut each cylinder into pieces that are the same length (as much as possible). These little pieces should be slightly longer than they are fat to make small rectangular pillow-shaped gnocchi pasta.
  • You can leave it in these rectangular puffy pillow shapes, or make the classic gnocchi designs using a gnocchi board if you want to be extra fancy, or with a fork (the photos in the blog post use the fork method.) Place a fork on the table with the curved part on top. Take a cut gnocchi piece and carefully press it with your finger or thumb onto the top of the fork. Rool the gnocchi piece to the table to get the lines pressed in.
  • Place the prepared gnocchi pieces in the refrigerator while you are boiling the water for the gnocchi pasta.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil. (It's important that the pot be large enough to cook the gnocchi with enough space so that it doesn't stick together.)

Buttery Sage Sauce

  • While the water is coming to a boil, you can cook the buttery sage sauce. Start by slicing the onion and sun-dried tomatoes so that they will be ready when you are. Set them aside separately.
  • Melt two Tablespoons of vegan butter into a frying pan and pan-fry the fresh sage until they become browned and crispy. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  • Add the pine nuts to the melted butter and pan fry, stirring constantly until they are just lightly browned. Remove from the pan immediately. Pine nuts turn quickly so do be sure to watch them carefully. Set them aside separately from the sage.
  • Now add the remaining vegan butter to the pan and saute the onions for about three minutes or until they have softened. Add the sliced sundried tomatoes and continue sauteing for another minute. Add the pine nuts. Salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat while the gnocchi is cooking.

Finishing the Gnocchi

  • By now your water should be boiling. Place the gnocchi in the pot and gently stir so that the pieces don't stick together. Once the gnocchi floats to the top, they are cooked. This should take about 3-5 minutes. Strain the gnocchi and add to the frying pan with the other ingredients.
  • Pan fry all together, stirring and flipping until the gnocchi pieces are well covered and have started to crisp up around the edges.
  • Top with the fried sage and vegan parmesan. Serve immediately.

Notes

14 ounces of potatoes is about two small or one large potato. You need one and three-quarters cups of mashed potatoes for the recipe. Fourteen ounces of potato should give you this.
If you use canned pumpkin, make sure to use the pure pumpkin puree – not the cans labeled “pumpkin pie filling”. If you make your own pumpkin puree, make sure to use the right kind of pumpkin. The jack ‘0 lantern type of pumpkin is the wrong flavor and texture. Read the blog post above for suggestions.
Depending on the moisture level and the actual amount of potatoes you are using, the amount of flour may vary. Start with the smaller amount and you can always add more. You will also need flour to work with the gnocchi dough. Remember that your gluten-free flour should be a one-to-one flour substitute. Do not use straight almond flour or coconut flour or some such.
The amount of butter is divided. First, you will be using two tablespoons and then three tablespoons for a total of five tablespoons.
I used five sundried tomato halves in this recipe and then cut them into small slices. You can also use packaged julienned sundried tomatoes. You will need about 14 pieces. 
We are a vegan family and so we use vegan ingredients. If you are not vegan then use the ingredients of your choice. Also, be aware that if you are vegetarian that most parmesan cheese is not even vegetarian because of the animal rennet used – unless it is labeled as vegetarian. My favorite brand of vegan parmesan cheese is Follow Your Heart. If you can’t find a suitable vegan parm cheese then you can use my cashew parm for flavor but be aware it will not be the same texture. 
Please read the blog post section titled “What might go wrong” for troubleshooting BEFORE cooking this recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 436kcal | Carbohydrates: 61g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Sodium: 777mg | Potassium: 722mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 13404IU | Vitamin C: 24mg | Calcium: 72mg | Iron: 4mg
By on October 15th, 2022

About Cindy Rainey

Veggie Fun Kitchen by Cindy Rainey
Welcome to Veggie Fun Kitchen where you will learn to recreate family favorites the plant-based/vegan way! Let me know if I can help. I'm here for you.

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