Chicken Gnocchi Soup
Chicken gnocchi soup is so full of comfort from the creamy broth to the pillowy gnocchi (potato dumplings). It also sneaks in some veggies and even some greens. This is a popular copycat recipe for Olive Garden Chicken Gnocchi soup - made simple so you don’t need to leave home to satisfy your cravings for it. It tastes so good served up with some crusty bread and some grated Parmesan on top and it is so easy and quick to whip up!
Chicken Gnocchi Soup Recipe Ingredients
- OLIVE OIL: Extra virgin olive oil is what I use to saute the bacon and veggies in. If you prefer to use butter to do this that is fine too
- BACON: Not only does the bacon add some tasty texture to the soup but it adds so much flavor to the broth as the veggies and broth simmer and cook in the bacon drippings. If you prefer to skip the bacon no problem just make sure to add 1-2 tablespoons more olive oil for the veggies to cook in. For a variation you can use ½ pound of Italian sausage.
- ONIONS: I love the flavor red onion gives this soup but feel free to use one yellow onion in its place
- CARROTS & CELERY: The veggie classic combo for soup base.
- GARLIC: Adds really nice flavour to the soup - feel free to use as much or as little as you like.
- HERBS & SPICES: I like to use dried herbs for the soup and fresh herbs to finish off. I use a combination of thyme, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper and red pepper flakes, but if you prefer to use other spices that is fine, use whichever you like. To finish off the soup I like to stir in some chopped fresh parsley or fresh basil or a little of both. For extra flavor feel free to add a pinch of mustard powder.
- CHICKEN: For a speedier version of the soup I use precooked chicken or rotisserie chicken - or leftover cooked chicken or turkey chopped or shredded and stirred into the soup. You most definitely can make this soup using uncooked skinless boneless chicken breast or skinless boneless chicken thighs will work here too. more about that below. You will need 2 cups cooked shredded chicken or 1 lb chicken breast.
- CHICKEN BROTH: I like to use either store bought or homemade chicken broth and if you are using store bought chicken broth or chicken stock - I recommend using low sodium chicken broth to intensify the flavour feel free to add some chicken bouillon or poultry seasoning - be mindful of the extra salt in both of these.
- GNOCCHI: I use potato gnocchi or potato dumplings that cook directly in the soup. The ones I use are the shelf-stable gnocchi kind you can easily get in the pasta aisle at the grocery store or the refrigerated ones or even frozen gnocchi. Feel free to use any brand you like and this will even work with cauliflower gnocchi or gluten free ones.
- HEAVY CREAM: This creates a really creamy luscious broth in the soup. Feel free to reduce amount by half or use half and half cream instead.
- SPINACH: I love adding greens to my soups especially baby spinach or kale - leave the baby spinach as is or give it a rough chop - up to you
- VARIATIONS: I like to to stir in ½ cup of Finely grated parmesan cheese when I add the basil but that is optional. For a touch of brightness I sometimes add in some lemon zest at the end. Sprinkle ¼-⅓ cup of flour over the veggies before add in the broth for a super thick soup/stoup. Add more veggies like mushrooms - saute them with the other veggies. Stir in some green peas for extra protein and veggies.
How to Make Chicken Gnocchi Soup
- BROWN BACON WITH MIREPOIX: Heat olive oil then cook bacon until golden and crispy then add veggies and cook until tender
- ADD REMAINING INGREDIENTS: Add the garlic and spices followed by the broth, water
- SIMMER UNITL VEGETABLES ARE TENDER: Bring everything to a boil then reduce heat and simmer soup gently for 10 min
- ADD THE GNOCCHI & CHICKEN: Add the chicken and gnocchi and cook until gnocchi are cooked though or according to package instructions
- ADD CREAM, SPINACH & FRESH HERBS: Stir in the spinach, fresh herbs and cream
- SERVE: Ladle into bowls and enjoy warm sprinkled with more fresh herbs
Can I Make This Soup With Uncooked Chicken?
Yes you definitely can. Stir in broth and water and 1 lbs of whole chicken breast or thighs; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium to maintain a simmer; cook, flipping the chicken occasionally, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the chicken registers 165°F, 5-10 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate. Stir gnocchi into the simmering soup; cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, using 2 forks, shred the chicken into bite-size pieces. Return the shredded chicken to the pot. Add spinach and cream and stir until the spinach is wilted, about 1 minute. Then stir in the fresh basil.
Creamy Chicken Gnocchi Soup Storage & Freezing
- STORAGE: Once the soup has cooled to room temperature or if you have leftover soup, you can store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. Reheat in the microwave or stove top.
- FREEZING: Creamy soups usually don’t freeze well but this soup can be frozen just do not add the cream, spinach or basil. Once soup is room temperature, place in airtight freezer safe containers and freeze for up to 1-3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge then reheat stove top adding the cream, spinach and basil.
More Cozy Recipes You Will Love
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 6 slices bacon chopped
- 1 onion peeled and chopped
- 2 ribs celery, finely chopped
- 2 carrots peeled and finely chopped or shredded
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ¼ teaspoon chili flakes/red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 4 cups chicken broth or stock
- ½ cup water
- 2 cups shredded chicken (1 lb chicken breast cooked and shredded or diced)
- 1 pound uncooked potato gnocchi
- 1 cup heavy/whipping cream
- 2-3 cups (packed) fresh baby spinach (left whole or rough chopped)
- Heat oil in a large pot or dutch oven over medium to medium-high heat and cook bacon until golden brown and crispy (reserve some for garnish if you wish) drain some of the fat, ensuring 2 tablespoons are left (5-7 min)
- Add the onions, celery and carrot and sauté until tender 7-10 min
- Add salt pepper, spices and garlic cook 1 minute
- Stir in the broth, and water. Increase the heat to high and bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 5-10 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
- Stir in the gnocchi and chicken and cook until gnocchi are cooked through or according to package instructions. 4-5 min
- Stir in the cream and spinach. Cook for a few more minutes until the spinach wilts.
- Stir in fresh basil or parsley and season with more salt or pepper if needed.
- Ladle into bowls and serve warm with more fresh chopped herbs
- For a thicker soup - sprinkle up to ¼-⅓ cup of all purpose flour to the mirepoix stirring well before adding the broth and water. Or you could make a cornstarch slurry with 1-2 tablespoons of cornstarch and broth or water and stir it into soup.
- Keep in mind the soup will get thicker as it sits as the gnocchi releases its starch. Feel free to add more broth or cream to loosen it up if needed
- How do you know when gnocchi is cooked? Each brand of gnocchi is slightly different, as are stoves, but cooked gnocchi will float. When in doubt, just taste a gnocchi to see if they are cooked or follow the instructions of the package.