Pan-Fried Sweet Potato Gnocchi

Pan-Fried Sweet Potato Gnocchi

Yesterday I made a recipe for sweet potato gnocchi in an oyster mushroom sauce, and because I always make too much dough I decided to do a different style for lunch today. I still made gnocchi the same way, but instead of mixing it with a rich and creamy sauce I decided to make a pan-fried sweet potato gnocchi with garlic and chili.

This is a great fresh pasta recipe to make for guests. Like most fresh pasta recipes it is also a great way to spend an afternoon with kids or friends.

How To Make Sweet Potato Gnocchi

Start with a large sweet potato. Mine was about 700 grams. Prick it a bunch of times with a fork and wrap it in a damp paper towel. Pop it in the microwave for 10-11 minutes. You can also just use mashed sweet potato if you already have it as leftovers!

Once the sweet potato is tender, peel off the skin and put the flesh in a large bowl. Mix in 200 grams of ricotta cheese, a half cup of grated Pecorino Romano (or Parmesan if you prefer), a teaspoon of salt, and roughly two cups of flour. I say roughly because you may need anywhere from 1.5 to 3 cups depending on how “wet” your sweet potato is. Just add the flour a quarter cup at a time until the dough is no longer sticky-tacky.

ball of sweet potato gnocchi dough

You may notice how my dough ball still has some chunks of sweet potato running through it. This is totally okay, but if you wanted to you could mash them more. Whatever you do, stop kneading the dough as soon as it is no longer sticky otherwise your gnocchi will not be pillowy-light.

Sweet Potato Gnocchi shaped and on a table

Rip off a chunk of dough and roll it out into a rope. Cut into segments about 2cm or 1 inch in length and then use the tines of a fork to make grooves. You’ll sort of press down with the back of the fork, and then roll the sweet potato gnocchi backwards.

putting the sweet potato gnocchi into a pot of boiling water

Place the gnocchi into a pot of salted boiling water and cook until they float to the top. This is the point where your sauce is probably just about about done. Make sure to stir the sauce so it doesn’t break before adding the boiled gnocchi.

boiled sweet potato gnocchi

Drain your sweet potato gnocchi and let sit in a colander until most of the water is off. If you leave them super wet then they will sputter and pop in the pan when you fry them.

Frying Sweet Potato Gnocchi With Garlic And Chili

frying red chili flakes and garlic in a mix of oil and butter

In a pan on medium-high heat add a tablespoon of oil and a tablespoon of butter. I like to do both this way because it prevents the butter from burning. Also add in chili flakes to taste. Stir the pan around for 30 seconds or so, and then add three cloves of minced garlic.

making Pan-Fried Sweet Potato Gnocchi

About 10-15 seconds after adding the garlic (it’s very easy to burn minced garlic) add in the sweet potato gnocchi. Stir the pan every so often, but let the gnocchi fry in the flavor infused fat for about 3 minutes. They should end up having a crisp outside and a soft, pillowy inside. You can garnish these pan fried sweet potato gnocchi with a little chopped fresh parsley.

pan fried sweet potato gnocchi
pan fried gnocchi made from sweet potatoes in a cast iron dish

Pan Fried Sweet Potato Gnocchi

A delightfully easy way to make homemade pasta, the sweet potato is a fun twist on traditional Italian potato gnocchi
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Dinner, Lunch, Main Course, Main Dish
Cuisine: European, Italian
Keyword: Gnocchi, Pan Fried, Pasta, Sweet Potato
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 575kcal
Cost: $5


  • Pan
  • Pot
  • Bowl
  • Fork


  • 700 grams Sweet Potato more or less you can easily eyeball adjust this recipe
  • 200 grams Ricotta
  • 1/2 cup Pecorino Romano grated. Can also sub for Gran Padano or Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 2 cups Flour more or less. Just enough flour so the dough isn't sticky-tacky
  • 1 tsp Salt

For Frying

  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 tbsp Butter
  • 1 tsp Red Chili Flakes more or less to taste
  • 3 cloves Garlic minced
  • 1 pinch Salt optional


  • Take a fork and poke a bunch of holes in the sweet potato. Wrap in a couple layers of wet paper towel and place in the microwave on high for 10-11 minutes. When done peel off skin and mash flesh in a bowl. (While the sweet potato is in the microwave you can get started on the sauce as it takes a while)
  • In the bowl of mashed sweet potato add in the ricotta and grated cheese, along with the salt. Mix together, then add the flour a quarter cup at a time. Just keep adding while kneading until the dough is no longer sticky and it can form a smooth ball. Do not over-knead.
  • Rip off a piece of dough and stretch/roll it out into a rope. Cut segments every 2cm/1inch or so. Use the back of a fork to make the traditional gnocchi indentations.
  • Put the gnocchi into a pot of salted boiling water and boil until they float to the top. When done drain the gnocchi in a colander.
  • In a pan on medium high heat add the olive oil and butter. When hot add in the red chili flakes and fry for a minute.
  • Add in the minced garlic and fry for no more than 15 seconds while stirring the pan.
  • Add in the gnocchi and fry until the outside darkens slightly. The outside should be just ever so crisp while the inside remains light and fluffy.
  • Move the gnocchi to a serving tray and garnish with some fresh chopped parsley.


Sodium: 915mg | Calcium: 305mg | Vitamin C: 5mg | Vitamin A: 25339IU | Sugar: 8g | Fiber: 7g | Potassium: 740mg | Cholesterol: 46mg | Calories: 575kcal | Trans Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Fat: 17g | Protein: 19g | Carbohydrates: 86g | Iron: 4mg
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Pan Fried Sweet Potato Gnocchi

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