Gnocchi with leftover meatloaf is the answer to your weeknight woes. Spinach meatloaf and pre-made gnocchi effortlessly combine to feed even your hungriest folks at the table in minutes.
One of the easiest and quickest things you can make are gnocchi—those lovely little pillows of potato wrapped in pasta that cook in about 5 minutes. And when you add leftover meatloaf to the sauce . It occurred to me one day, as I’m looking at a leftover big fat slice of meatloaf, what could that become? It became a meat sauce for me. –Sam Zien
☞ Table of Contents
Gnocchi with Leftover Meatloaf
- 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound leftover meatloaf crumbled into 1/2-inch (12-mm) pieces
- 2 garlic cloves peeled and crushed
- 1 cup heavy cream
- One (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- 1 pound store-bought or homemade potato gnocchi
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Chopped fresh parsley for garnish
- In a large skillet over medium heat, warm the oil. When it’s hot, add the meatloaf and garlic. Stir to combine and cook until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Stir in the cream, tomato sauce, and basil. Cook until thickened, 4 to 5 minutes.
- While the sauce is cooking, bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Drop in the gnocchi and cook according to package directions, or until they float, 2 to 7 minutes.
- Drain the gnocchi quickly and add to the sauce. Stir, season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve garnished with parsley.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
I might be putting my reputation as a cultured and worldly food connoisseur on the line with this review, but this recipe for leftover meatloaf gnocchi is exactly what I love about being a tester. We scour cookbooks for the best of the best, often times disappointed but occasionally finding that rare recipe that really wows us. This recipe is so simple, that I could promise if I came across it in a cookbook I wouldn’t even consider making it. How could it be good? How could I keep my street-cred serving this to my family? And yet, from that first bite, you don’t care about the provenance, or the ingredients. All you care about is how good it is and you just want to keep eating.
There was swearing. There were moans. There was the most effusive praise I’ve ever received from my family for a test recipe. “This is like pasta from the heavens. One of the best things we’ve ever tested!” It comes together in a literal 10 minutes, so it’s a clear candidate for any weeknight. The suggested meatloaf, which we loved a few nights prior, brought enough spice and seasoning to be interesting without upstaging the Italian foundations. The leftovers reheat magnificently, but I can’t promise you’ll have any. I don’t know what else I can say beyond make this. Make this often. Make more than you think you’ll need. No need to thank me.
I used the meatloaf with spinach recipe and it felt like the sauce ingredients brought out the flavors in the meatloaf. Also, it’s extremely practical. By using leftover meatloaf, it also makes the recipe come together very quickly.
Honestly, the best part of this recipe for leftover meatloaf gnocchi is that it uses leftover meatloaf and provides a template that can be used to create many versions of the sauce. For example, you could use less cream. If you had less leftover meatloaf, that looks like it would work too, because the sauce is actually very basic.