Chicken Gnocchi Soup - A simple, creamy, flavor packed dream of a copycat soup recipe! This gnocchi soup can be made in one pot and only 30 minutes with or without chicken!
Chicken Gnocchi Soup:
This soup is a super popular restaurant favorite that is beyond easy to make at home! It's easy to see why this one is so special because it is rich, creamy, cheesy and full of soft potato gnocchi! I use shelf stable gnocchi for this recipe and you can find it in any grocery store along with the pastas. We are in the mood for soups and having fun with copycats, we just put out our version of Zuppa Toscana last week too! My favorite thing is to have this soup with a good batch of homemade buttery Garlic Bread to soak up that cream based broth! One of my other favorites on the blog is our Roasted Red Pepper Gnocchi, so if you're a gnocchi lover check it out too! Both are total comfort food and perfect for the season.
What is Gnocchi Soup Made of?
- Bacon: This ingredient is optional and not traditional in the Olive Garden version. But, I think it really adds a ton of extra flavor so don't skip it unless you absolutely have to.
- Butter: I used salted butter in testing. Unsalted butter works fine too, or olive oil.
- Celery, Onion, Carrots, Garlic: You can leave the celery out if you aren't a fan, but as long as you dice everything fine you won't notice it much, it adds good flavor! This mixture is a staple for lots of soups!
- Dried thyme and basil: These are my own additions that also aren't traditional but I prefer a more flavorful soup! You could also sneak in some oregano if you want.
- Cooked Chicken: You can use Instant Pot Shredded Chicken or Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken. Or, you can use a rotisserie chicken, or just leave it out if you don't like it!
- Chicken Broth: Vegetable broth works ok too.
- Shelf Stable Gnocchi: You will want a 16 ounce package.
- Cream Cheese & Heavy Cream: They make the soup so luxurious! If you want to use half & half instead that works too.
- Spinach and Parmesan: I use a bag of baby spinach and chop it up a bit. The parmesan is optional but sends this soup over the top!
Storing Chicken Gnocchi Soup:
This soup is so, so good you may not even have leftovers! But, if you do I have to sadly say that it doesn't freeze well. That's ok, because it's pretty fast and easy to make on any night. I'd say about 30 minutes total. You can store leftovers in the fridge for 1-2 days for best results. Keep in mind that the gnocchi will become a little softer when you reheat it again.
A Few Recipe Notes and Tips:
- If you don't like chicken, you could use Italian sausage or even ground beef, or just use the bacon! Just make sure to cook the sausage or beef first and then drain off any grease.
- Make sure you very finely dice up your celery and carrots here or they will still be crunchy. If you want, you can always use shredded carrots as well just keep in mind that they cook a little faster.
- The spinach can be left out if you prefer. Or, you can use some kale, just make sure you remove all of the stems if you do.
- SLOW COOKER: I personally prefer to make this one on the stove instead of using the slow cooker or IP because it's so simple. So, I have not tested it out in the Instant Pot (which would easily overcook the gnocchi in my opinion and doesn't save any time). If you wanted to toss everything in the slow cooker you can! Just leave out the gnocchi, cream cheese, cream, spinach, and cheese at first. Then, add them in to the pot about 5 minutes before you want to eat, give everything a good stir!
Chicken Gnocchi Soup
- 8 Slices Bacon Chopped
- 1-2 Tablespoons Butter If Needed
- 1 Medium Yellow Onion Diced
- ½ Cup Finely Diced Celery
- ½ Cup Finely Diced Carrots
- 3 Cloves Garlic Minced
- 1 teaspoon Dried Thyme
- 1 teaspoon Dried Basil
- Pinch Salt & Pepper
- 2-3 Cups Cooked Shredded Chicken
- 4 Cups Chicken Broth
- 16 Ounces Gnocchi
- 4 Ounces Cream Cheese At Room Temperature
- 2 Cups Heavy Cream
- 2 Cups Fresh Spinach Chopped
- Parmesan Cheese For Serving
- Cook the bacon in a large dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat for about 5-6 minutes, until crisp. Use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon to a paper towel lined plate. Drain all but 2 Tablespoons of bacon grease from the pan. If there isn't enough grease, add 1-2 Tablespoons of butter to the pot as needed.
- Add the celery, carrots, garlic, thyme, basil, salt and pepper to the pot and cook stirring occasionally for 10 minutes.
- Add the shredded chicken, chicken broth, and gnocchi to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 3-5 minutes until gnocchi is cooked through.
- Stir in the cream cheese until melted, then stir in the heavy cream and spinach. Cook for 1-2 more minutes until the spinach is wilted.
- Serve the soup with the cooked bacon and parmesan cheese if desired.