If you like the gnocchi soup at Olive Garden, you will love this recipe. This is one of those recipes you must eat for a cold fall or winter meal. Super easy and super fast! Gnocchi used in this recipe is a small dumpling made with potatoes, flour, and egg. You can purchase pre-made gnocchi or make your own. This recipe uses small ones, but if you can only find large ones, cut them in half before cooking.
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
1/2 cup finely diced celery
1 cup finely diced onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more if needed
Pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme or 1 tsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
1/4 cup flour
1 (14-ounce) cans chicken broth
2 cups of half and half
2 cups milk
1 (12-ounce) package gnocchi*
1/2 cup finely chopped carrots
2 cups diced cooked chicken breast or chicken tenders
12 oz. package of fresh spinach
1-2 teaspoons dried parsley or 1-2 Tbsp. fresh parsley
Freshly grated nutmeg
Parmesan Cheese, grated
Heat the olive oil and butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, and garlic and sauté until the onion becomes translucent. Add salt and pepper. Whisk in the flour to make a roux. Let the flour mixture cook for about a minute.
Add the half and half and milk. Heat until very warm, but avoid boiling it. Add the thyme or fresh rosemary, parsley, carrots, and chicken broth and heat to slow boil.
Add the gnocchi and cook until gnocchi is soft and soup is thickened (about 3-4 minutes). In the alternative, you can pre-cook the gnocchi and add the cooked dumplings at this point; however, the starch in the pasta will be drained and won't thicken the soup as the pasta does when you cook it in the soup.
Add the chicken and, if desired, stir in an additional cup of milk, additional half-and-half or more chicken broth (to desired thickness). Bring back up to a boil and add spinach; simmer the soup over medium-low heat until it is heated through and spinach is wilted. Taste and adjust the seasoning with more salt if needed. Sprinkle with nutmeg and Parmesan cheese.
DELICIOUS!!! Better than Olive Garden’s!!!