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Skillet Gnocchi with Sausage & Broccoli Rabe

1-skillet meals are a frequent dinner in my house, and this Skillet Gnocchi with Sausage & Broccoli Rabe is one of our favorites. It’s meaty, the slightly bitter broccoli rabe is so tasty, and the gnocchi are plump and delicious. It’s all tied together with a light sauce that’s so good you’ll want to lick your plate clean!

Gnocchi with sausage and tomatoes on a plate.

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Sure, I’m a chef and can create fabulous, complicated dishes. But oftentimes, when my family is hungry, I make easy dishes like this Skillet Gnocchi with Sausage & Broccoli Rabe. 

This is an easy 1-pot meal. Everything cooks in one skillet, and the whole dish is ready in about 30 minutes. It’s meaty, hearty, and flavorful, and the best part is that there’s hardly any cleanup! 

Start with prepared gnocchi and this dish is a breeze. You can find broccoli rabe – also called rapini – in the produce section of most grocery stores. It has a bit of a bitter taste that pairs really well with the rich sausage, and it’s loaded with nutrition.

Don’t forget the Parmesan cheese! That’ll tie the whole dish together!

A bowl of pasta salad with meatballs and tomatoes.

What you’ll love About Skillet Gnocchi with Sausage & Broccoli Rabe


  • It’s quick and easy to make and is ready in under 30 minutes.
  • There’s hardly any cleanup because this is a 1-dish meal.
  • It’s a hearty, meaty, cheesy, and delicious meal!

Ingredients

  • Italian sausage – Hot or sweet.
  • Sliced red onion – You can use yellow cooking onions or sweet onions, too.
  • Olive oil
  • Garlic, minced – I always cook with fresh garlic. It has so much more flavor!
  • Broccoli rabe – Also called rapini, washed and chopped.
  • Chicken broth – Use low or no sodium.
  • Grape tomatoes – Or cherry tomatoes.
  • Gnocchi – Use prepared gnocchi. You can find this in the pasta aisle of your grocery store.
  • Parmesan cheese – Use good-quality shredded parmesan.
  • A pinch of red pepper flakes
Ingredients for meatballs with sausage and tomatoes on a marble countertop.

How to Make Skillet Gnocchi with Sausage & Broccoli Rabe

  1. Add about 1 inch of water to a large skillet and add the sausage. Simmer the sausage for about 5 minutes or until it is partially cooked. 
  2. Transfer the sausage to a cutting board to cool, and drain the water from the skillet.
  3. Add the oil to the same skillet and heat it over medium heat. Add the sliced red onions. Cook until the onions start to soften, about 3 minutes, then add the garlic and cook for an additional minute.
  4. Slice the sausage into discs, and transfer them, and any juices, to the onions and cook for 2-3 more minutes or until the sausage is no longer pink.
  5. Add the chopped broccoli rabe and chicken broth and cook over medium heat until the broccoli rabe is tender.
  6. Add the grape or cherry tomatoes to the skillet and cook for 2-3 minutes until they start to burst.
  7. Add the gnocchi to the skillet and cook for 3-4 minutes or until they’re soft and plump. 
  8. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes. Adjust seasoning to taste and serve!

Chef Jenn’s Tips

  • Store-bought gnocchi hold up well in this dish.
  • Don’t overcook the broccoli rabe; it should be tender but still vibrant green.
  • If you prefer less spice, opt for sweet Italian sausage.
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese makes a big difference.

Recommended

Make It A Meal

Serve this Skillet Gnocchi with Sausage & Broccoli Rabe with a glass of your favorite white or red wine. It’s pretty much a complete meal, so all you need to do is add dessert, like a slice of Nanna’s Apple Cake!

Storage

This dish keeps well in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in a skillet over medium heat until warm. For freezing, let the dish cool completely, then store in freezer-safe containers for up to 2 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and reheat as recommended. Remember, gnocchi may change texture slightly when frozen and reheated, but it will still be delicious!

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Gnocchi with sausage and tomatoes on a plate.
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Skillet Gnocchi with Sausage and Broccoli Rabe

Super easy and ready in no time, this Skillet Gnocchi with Sausage & Broccoli Rabe is hearty, delicious, and a terrific weeknight meal!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Keyword broccoli rabe, gnocchi, rapini, sausage, skillet gnocchi with sausage
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 504kcal
Author Chef Jenn

Ingredients

  • 1 pound Italian sausage hot or sweet sausage
  • 1 cup sliced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 pound broccoli rabe also called rapini, washed well and chopped
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes or cherry tomatoes
  • 1 pound gnocchi
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes

Instructions

  • Add about 1 inch of water to a large skillet and add the sausage. Simmer the sausage over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until it is partially cooked.
  • Transfer the sausage to a cutting board to cool, and drain the water from the skillet.
  • Add the oil to the same skillet and heat it over medium heat. Add the sliced red onions. Cook until the onions start to soften, about 3 minutes, then add the garlic and cook for an additional minute.
  • Slice the sausage into discs, and transfer them, and any juices, to the onions and cook for 2-3 more minutes or until the sausage is no longer pink.
  • Add the chopped broccoli rabe and chicken broth and cook over medium heat until the broccoli rabe is tender.
  • Add the grape or cherry tomatoes to the skillet and cook for 2-3 minutes until they start to burst.
  • Add the gnocchi to the skillet and cook for 3-4 minutes or until they’re soft and plump.
  • Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes. Adjust seasoning to taste and serve!

Video

Notes

Chef Jenn’s Tips
  • Store-bought gnocchi hold up well in this dish.
  • Don’t overcook the broccoli rabe; it should be tender but still vibrant green.
  • If you prefer less spice, opt for sweet Italian sausage.
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese makes a big difference.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 504kcal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 63mg | Sodium: 979mg | Potassium: 594mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 2705IU | Vitamin C: 30mg | Calcium: 226mg | Iron: 6mg

A Note on Nutritional Information

Nutritional information for this recipe is provided as a courtesy and is calculated based on available online ingredient information. It is only an approximate value. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site cannot be guaranteed.

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