The Covered Dish - Olive Garden Gnocchi Soup

November 16, 2022

It’s been a whirlwind of a week. I quickly traveled to Northeast Missouri on Wednesday, to bring my dad down through the close of November. We had a great journey home, stopping at a few locations for specialty items. We returned on Thursday and on Friday we slept in and drank coffee all morning. Then I was off to Marshfield, MO, for a wedding. When I came home our good friend, Tara, had made two soups for dinner. Taco soup and her version of the infamous, ‘Olive Garden’ Gnocchi Soup. I would hate to tell Olive Garden, but her take on this soup was better than the original!

It is extremely easy to prepare and it was very warming to the soul. You won’t need to eat too much in one setting, as it’s made with half and half & heavy cream. Oh. But it’s good. If I were serving this for company I would enjoy accompanying the soup with fresh vegetables and a meat and cheese platter.
Where is the Gnocchi, (NYo Key) in my grocery store? Usually on the pasta aisle, however you can also find it in the freezer section of many stores. It is also my understanding that Trader Joe’s makes a cauliflower Gnocchi, and it is located in the freezer section.
These potato dumplings originated in Northern Italy where the weather is cooler than Southern Italy. It’s a good climate for growing potatoes. Potatoes were the chosen food of the poor, they were tasty, cheap and very filling. Some still think of the potato as a cheap food. (Prices in 2022 would definitely prove this wrong!)

As usual you are going to find a multitude of different versions on this dish. Try Tara’s and see what you think. I know Friday night when I came home to not one, but two types of soup for dinner, I was elated.
Enjoy, Enjoy, Simply yours, The Covered Dish.

Olive Garden Gnocchi Soup

By Tara Jackson

*If possible cook & refrigerate at least 8 hours before eating, the soup will thicken.

1/2 of a rotisserie chicken

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 stalk celery, chopped

1/2 white onion, diced

1/2 cup shredded carrots

2 teaspoons minced garlic

4 cups low sodium chicken broth

Salt & Pepper to taste

1 teaspoon thyme

16 oz. potato gnocchi

1 cup half & half

1 cup heavy cream (can use 2 cups half and half, for lighter version)

1/2 cup spinach, roughly chopped

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add celery, onion, carrots and garlic. Sauté for 2-3 minutes until onions become translucent. Add chicken, broth, salt/pepper, thyme, and bring to a boil. Gently stir in gnocchi, boiling for 3-4 minutes longer, reduce heat to a simmer. Cook for 10 additional minutes.

Stir in half & half, cream and spinach cooking for another 1-2 minutes until spinach is thoroughly wilted. Reduce heat to low. Serve with fresh bread.
Serves 4-6 persons