This Creamy Chicken Pesto Gnocchi is the perfect harmony of tender chicken, pillowy gnocchi, and a velvety sauce bursting with the vibrant flavors of pesto. All ready in under 20 minutes, it will become a family favorite in no time!
Imagine sinking your fork into tender pillows of goodness that melt in your mouth. And when you combine them with succulent pieces of chicken bathed in a luscious, creamy pesto sauce, you've got a match made in culinary heaven.
With just a few simple ingredients, you can whip up a warm and comforting meal that will satisfy even the hungriest of appetites. Whether hosting a dinner party or preparing a cozy family meal, this Creamy Chicken Pesto Gnocchi fits the bill.
These notes are here to help make this recipe a success; they cover some but not all ingredients; for a complete ingredient list, check out the recipe card below.
Gnocchi: I buy dried gnocchi when cooking one-pan meals since it tends to hold up well. I always keep a packet of the shelf-stable kind in my pantry, and you can easily find it in the pasta aisle of most major grocery stores.
Garlic: The recipe suggests 3 cloves, but as I always say, garlic should be measured by your heart, so add more if you wish.
Pesto: Use any brand that you enjoy.
Broth: You can use chicken or vegetable broth for the recipe. Pick low sodium to keep control of the salt.
Cream: Use heavy cream/double cream/thickened cream. Half and Half or single cream doesn't thicken, and you'll have a thin sauce.
Parmesan: If you can, buy a block and grate it yourself. It will have a better flavor, and pre-grated parmesan will leave your sauce a little grainy.
We've tested this recipe at least 3 times to ensure it works well for you, have a look at our tips for getting the best dish you can!
- If you chop the chicken into small pieces similar in size to the gnocchi. This makes the dish easier and nicer to eat.
- Allow the garlic to cook gently in the butter until it smells fragrant and delicious. But don't allow it to color, as it will start to taste bitter. To prevent this have the pesto ready to add to the pan.
- Stir the sauce well to combine the pesto with the cream thoroughly.
- The grated parmesan helps thicken the sauce, so we suggest grating your own. Sprinkle it evenly over the dish and stir gently to give you a smooth sauce.
- Use a big high-sided skillet or Dutch oven to cook your dish, giving you plenty of space to stir. Also, make sure it has a lid.
- Add the fresh basil once you have removed the pan from the heat.
Why You'll Love This Creamy Chicken Pesto Gnocchi
- It all cooks in one pan.
- The ingredients are all available at the grocery store.
- It is creamy and comforting and so easy to make.
- It is ready in under 20 minutes!
These are all just suggestions and things that have worked in our test kitchen, but it is your dinner, so adapt it to suit your family. That is the beauty of cooking; we can all create our own delicious meals.
- The recipe uses chicken breast, but feel free to use chicken thigh instead, they will need cooking for 10 minutes in step 1 of the recipe.
- Instead of cooking chicken use any leftover chicken from a roast or rotisserie chicken (add it for the last 2 minutes of cooking to warm through)
- Instead of chicken add some shrimp for the last 2 minutes of cooking.
- Swap the basil pesto for a sun-dried tomato, artichoke, broccoli, or kale pesto.
- To add extra veg, stir some leafy spinach through the dish at the end of cooking.
- Add a crispy crust to your gnocchi, cook it in an oven-safe pan; then, when cooked, sprinkle the top with some grated cheese (mozzarella or provolone would be great) and a handful of breadcrumbs. Drizzle it with oil and put it under the broiler for a few minutes.
Serving Suggestions for Creamy Chicken Pesto Gnocchi
Sides for Pesto Gnocchi: The creamy, rich gnocchi is perfect for serving with some crusty bread. Just right for mopping up all the creamy pesto sauce! Other than that, maybe a simple salad.
Wine Pairings: The ideal white wine for this pesto gnocchi is something with a herby grassy finish. Sauvignon Blanc, Grüner Veltliner, or Vermentino are the perfect match. Try Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, or Sangiovese if you want red wine.
If you make this Creamy Chicken Pesto Gnocchi, please come back and comment. You can also tag me on social media.
Any questions about the recipe? Use the comments section below.
Get the Recipe
Creamy Chicken Pesto Gnocchi
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 chicken breasts , diced (see note 1)
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 3 cloves garlic , minced
- ¼ cup pesto (see note 2)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- ¼ cup chicken broth (see note 3)
- 1.1 pound uncooked potato gnocchi (see note 4)
- ½ cup grated parmesan cheese (see note 5)
- ¼ cup basil leaves
- salt & pepper
- Add the oil to a high-sided skillet or Dutch oven. Add the chunks of chicken and cook for 2 minutes over high heat so the chicken browns.1 tablespoon olive oil2 chicken breasts
- Turn the heat to low and add the butter and garlic. Stir for 30 seconds, and then add in the pesto.1 tablespoon butter3 cloves garlic¼ cup pesto
- Pour in the cream and broth, stir well to combine, and bring to a simmer.1 cup heavy cream¼ cup chicken broth
- Add the gnocchi, cover the pan, and cook for 5 minutes over medium-low heat.1.1 pound uncooked potato gnocchi
- Uncover the pan, stir well, and cook for 2 minutes more.
- Add the grated parmesan cheese, then remove from the heat and stir in the basil leave.½ cup grated parmesan cheese¼ cup basil leaves
- Taste your sauce and season to taste. Serve immediately.salt & pepper
- The recipe uses chicken breast, but feel free to use chicken thigh for this recipe. Alternatively, you can use any leftover chicken from a roast or rotisserie chicken.
- You can use vegetable broth if you prefer. Pick low sodium to keep control of the salt.
- Use any brand of pesto that you enjoy.
- I buy dried gnocchi when cooking one-pan meals since it tends to hold up well. I always keep a packet of the shelf-stable kind in my pantry, and you can easily find it in the pasta aisle of most major grocery stores. I buy De Cecco Potato Gnocchi that comes in 1.1lb/500g packets. If your brand comes in 1lb/454g then that is fine.
- If you can, buy a block of parmesan and grate it yourself. It will have a better flavor, and pre-grated parmesan will leave your sauce a little grainy.
Nutrition is per serving