Spinach Ricotta Gnocchi Recipe from Piemonte. – The Pasta Challenge

Often known as ‘rabatòn’ within the native dialect, these wonderful massive baked spinach ricotta gnocchi come from Alessandria in Piemonte (Piedmont) in Northern Italy. Made with spinach and Swiss chard and ricotta these Italian dumplings are each luxurious and light-weight. Historically baked with butter and sage, this home made gnocchi dish is ideal as a starter for particular events and holidays!

Homemade spinach ricotta gnocchi from Italy.

Somewhat rabatòn historical past!

Historically made with Swiss chard and spinach or nettles and wild subject herbs and greens (erbette di campo), these divine home made gnocchi are a conventional dish from a historic space east of town of Alessandria, often called La Fraschetta. That is the place, in 1800, Napoleon fought and gained the battle of Marengo towards the Austrians.

Homemade spinach gnocchi with ricotta (rabaton).

La Fraschetta is an agricultural space made up of 8 small cities and villages positioned on what is named the Alessandria plain. Considered one of these villages is known as Litta Parodi and it’s right here that rabatòn is claimed to have originated. In actual fact, yearly the village holds a rabatòn pageant in September.

Baked spinach ricotta gnocchi in oval oven dish.

In response to some meals historians, these massive spinach gnocchi have been initially made with ricotta and wild greens and herbs bartered for bread and different meals by herders travelling by with their cattle to the summer time mountain pastures from the lowlands within the spring. Native ladies would then make the gnocchi by mixing eggs and bread with the ricotta and greens.

Ingredients for spinach gnocchi with ricotta (rabatòn) on wood work surface.
Step 1 Collect your substances: Spinach, chard, eggs, breadcrumbs, ricotta, flour, butter, Parmigiano, and herbs.

What are Italian erbette di campo?

Italy apparently has one of many richest forms of vegetation in Europe and Italians have lengthy used foraged edible vegetation, often called erbette di campo, in conventional dishes and natural medicines. Curiously, with the appearance of agriculture, many wild vegetation corresponding to rocket (arugula), asparagus and fennel have been and nonetheless are each cultivated and foraged.

Washed and chopped Swiss chard in saucepan with water.
Step 2 wash and clear the greens and prepare dinner the spinach and Swiss chard individually if utilizing each.

Other than these talked about above, the preferred foraged edible vegetation used within the Italian kitchen are nettles (ortica), tarrasaco (dandelion), tarragon (dragoncello), sorrel (acetosa), wild garlic (aglio orsino), chicory (cicoria), Swiss chard (bietola), mint (menta), puntarelle (the flower shoots of Catalonian chicory) capers (capperi) and salsola soda (agretti). After all, there are extra.

Puréed Swiss chard and spinach in food processor.
Step 3 Drain the greens very well squeezing out as a lot water as attainable. Then puréé in meals processor.

Spring is one of the best season for foraging edible vegetation, however they don’t all develop at precisely the identical time of yr or in the identical components of the nation. Some, like wild fennel, are extra prevalent within the south and due to this fact utilized in Southern dishes. Others, like wild garlic (aglio orsino), might be discovered largely within the North the place the local weather is extra temperate.

Mashed fresh ricotta in a white bowl with fork.
Step 4 Drain the ricotta properly and mash it with a fork in a big bowl.

Which greens do you have to use in your rabatòn?

Initially, these massive baked spinach and ricotta gnocchi would have had solely wild greens in them. These included wild spinach, chard, nettles, chicory and others relying on the season and availability.

Ricotta, puréed greens, eggs, and herbs in white bowl.
Step 5 Add the eggs, puréed greens, marjoram, parsley and nutmeg to the ricotta and blend properly.

At the moment, most Italian recipes name for both cultivated spinach or Swiss chard or each. I used each. Nevertheless, some recipes I discovered included foraged greens. I believe you should use what you’ve got. Frozen spinach would work too. Simply be sure you get as a lot liquid out of it as you may.

Grated Parmigiano cheese in white bowl with spinach gnocchi mixture.
Step 6 Add the grated Parmigiano or vegetarian parmesan to the gnocchi combination. Combine .

The Swiss chard.

Do you know that chard, additionally commonly known as Swiss chard, doesn’t come from Switzerland however was initially domesticated from wild beets in Sicily? These days, there are various sorts of chard accessible to develop and purchase. Many individuals love rainbow chard (which is definitely simply a mixture of completely different varieties). Regardless of the color of the stems, chard can be utilized in a lot the identical means as spinach or kale.

Breadcrumbs added to white bowl with spinach and ricotta gnocchi mixture.
Step 7 Lastly add within the breadcrumbs and blend them into the gnocchi dough.

There isn’t an incredible distinction within the flavour of various forms of Swiss chard so you should use any kind for this spinach ricotta gnocchi recipe. You’ll be able to even use simply Swiss chard and miss the spinach. Nevertheless, I’m unsure if the colored stems of sure sorts of chard will have an effect on the color of the ‘inexperienced’ in these gnocchi.

Uncooked large cigar shaped spinach ricotta gnocchi on wood pastry board.
Step 8 Type the spinach ricotta gnocchi (see recipe directions).

I used Barese Swiss chard which has white stems. So, I used each the stems and the leaves. Apparently, initially chard had solely white stems not colored. I might recommend utilizing simply the leaves in case your chard has colored stems. You should utilize the latter in one other recipe. You’ll be able to add them to soups, bake them and even ferment them.

The ricotta on your home made spinach gnocchi.

This recipe requires recent cow’s milk ricotta. In Piemonte, these gnocchi are additionally made with a singular ricotta known as seirass. Seirass is the native dialect phrase for ricotta. Nevertheless, in contrast to different varieties, they make this ricotta with milk not whey.

One spinach gnocchi on slotted spoon held over pot of boiling water.
Step 9 Cook dinner the spinach ricotta gnocchi in boiling water till they rise to the floor. Take away with a slotted spoon.

I haven’t tried seirass because it’s not accessible exterior of Piemonte however, apparently, it’s a very mild, clean, and recent ricotta with cream in it.  They are saying it has a extra buttery flavour than regular ricotta and is sweeter too. On my to attempt record!

Different substances.

Other than the greens and ricotta you want eggs, breadcrumbs, parmigiano, nutmeg, parsley and marjoram for the spinach gnocchi. Plus, flour to roll them in and butter, extra parmigiano and sage while you bake them.

Boiled spinach ricotta gnocchi in oval oven dish with pieces of butter.
Step 10 Place the boiled spinach ricotta gnocchi in a properly buttered oven dish. Add extra items of butter.

How you can make this recipe vegetarian or gluten free.

Other than Parmigiano, this recipe is vegetarian. Italian Parmigiano is made with animal rennet and due to this fact not vegetarian. Use a vegetarian parmesan as a substitute.

The one substances with gluten are the flour used to roll the prepared gnocchi in and the breadcrumbs. You’ll be able to substitute the wheat flour with a gluten free flour corresponding to almond flour or rice flour. You solely want somewhat.

Boiled spinach gnocchi covered in grated parmigiano and some sage leaves in oven dish.
Step 11 Sprinkle your spinach gnocchi with extra grated cheese and add some sage leaves.

Do-it-yourself breadcrumbs from gluten free bread are higher than ready-made, store-bought GF breadcrumbs, until the latter are plain breadcrumbs. Typically they’re made from nuts and different substances which can change the flavour of your spinach gnocchi. Plus, I’m unsure how properly the gnocchi will maintain collectively with out bread.

Baked spinach ricotta gnocchi in white oval oven dish.
Step 12 Bake the spinach ricotta gnocchi in a preheated oven till the cheese begins to brown.

How you can serve your home made spinach ricotta gnocchi.

Historically, these massive gnocchi are served straight from the oven with a few of the melted butter from the baking dish spooned over them. They’re additionally incredible baked and served in particular person portion dishes! Italians eat them as a ‘primo’ or first course (starter) earlier than the primary course. However, you can too serve them as a facet dish.

Homemade spinach gnocchi with ricotta (rabatòn).

What to do with leftovers.

Your cooked spinach gnocchi might be stored sealed within the fridge for 2-3 days after which reheated in a scorching oven with somewhat extra butter and sage, which suggests you may truly make and bake them a day or two upfront. You can even re-bake them in a tomato sauce in the same approach to this recipe for Tuscan spinach gnudi. Gnudi are similar to rabatòn.

Homemade spinach gnocchi with ricotta (rabatòn)

Let me know what you assume.

I can actually say that rabatòn are one of the best spinach and ricotta gnocchi I’ve ever made or tasted! In actual fact, I’m planning to serve them at Christmas this yr as a result of not solely are they so superb, however they are often made and baked the day earlier than after which simply reheated while you wish to serve them with out dropping any deliciousness! Only a excellent dish for entertaining!

For those who attempt these massive baked spinach gnocchi I’d love to listen to what you assume. Please, write a remark right here on the weblog or publish a touch upon the Pasta Project Facebook page.

Your suggestions means lots to me!

Buon Appetito!

Homemade spinach ricotta gnocchi from Italy

Do-it-yourself Spinach Gnocchi with Ricotta (Rabatòn)


These luxurious home made massive spinach ricotta gnocchi from Northern Italy are simply one of the best gnocchi ever! Good as a starter or a facet dish you may make and bake them upfront after which reheat with out dropping any deliciousness!

Prep Time 45 minutes

Cook dinner Time 30 minutes

Course Foremost Course, Aspect Dish, starter

Delicacies Italian, Mediterranean, Northern Italy, Piedmont-Piemonte

Servings 6

Energy 395 kcal


For the spinach ricotta gnocchi.

  • 1.1 lbs recent ricotta (500g)
  • 1.1 lbs recent spinach and /or Swiss chard (500g) you can too use frozen spinach.
  • 3.5 oz Parmigiano Reggiano (100g) or vegetarian parmesan
  • 2.5 oz breadcrumbs (70g) might be gluten free breadcrumbs
  • 2 oz wheat flour (50g) or gluten free flour
  • 2 eggs One complete, one yolk.
  • 2 sprigs recent marjoram
  • recent parsley
  • tsp nutmeg freshly grated
  • salt to prepare dinner gnocchi and to style

For baking the gnocchi

  • 2 oz butter (50g) extra if wanted
  • sage leaves


Put together the substances

  • Wash, put together and prepare dinner the greens. If utilizing recent Swiss chard, wash the chard and minimize off the laborious finish of the stems. Then minimize the leaves off from the remainder of the stem and minimize them into items. Lastly, slice the stems, so they’re fairly small. Cook dinner stems and leaves collectively till the stems are mushy. You can even use the stems for one more recipe.

  • If utilizing recent spinach, wilt it in a saucepan with simply the water on the leaves after washing them.

  • Drain the greens very well after cooking and squeeze out as a lot water as attainable. Chop the spinach and chard leaves and stems. Then purée in a meals processor. Maintain the purée somewhat tough not too clean.

Make the gnocchi combination

  • Drain and mash the ricotta in a big bowl with a fork. Add the vegtable purée, one complete egg and one yolk, the marjoram leaves, some recent parsley and grated nutmeg. Salt to style. Combine all the things collectively.

  • Add the grated Parmigiano or vegetarian parmesan to the bowl and blend once more. Then add the breadcrumbs and blend once more! If the gnocchi dough feels somewhat too moist, you may add extra breadcrumbs.

Make the spinach gnocchi

  • Take a couple of tablespoonful of the gnocchi combination. Utilizing your palms roll it right into a ball after which roll right into a cigar form on a properly floured pastry board. These gnocchi needs to be about so long as your thumb or half the size of an ordinary fork.

  • Professional tip Boil a small pan of water and prepare dinner one spinach ricotta gnocchi earlier than making all of them to make sure it holds collectively properly. Rabatòn solely want a few minutes to prepare dinner. As soon as the gnocchi rises to the floor of the water, take away with a slotted spoon and place in a buttered oven dish.

Cook dinner and serve the gnocchi

  • Warmth the oven. Cook dinner the gnocchi 3 to 4 at a time as per above in boiling salted water. Place them in a single layer in a properly buttered oven dish.

  • Add items of butter on prime of the spinach gnocchi together with some sage leaves. Lastly, sprinkle with parmigiano and bake in a preheated oven at 200°c (392 °f) till the cheese on prime begins to brown.

  • Serve instantly with a few of the melted butter from the oven dish spooned over the gnocchi.


Historically, these massive gnocchi are served straight from the oven. They’re additionally scrumptious baked and served in particular person portion dishes! Italians eat them as a ‘primo’ or first course (starter) earlier than the primary course. However, you can too serve them as a facet dish.
Rabatòn might be made and baked the day earlier than after which simply reheated while you wish to serve them with out dropping any deliciousness! You can even rebake in a tomato sauce.
To make this recipe vegetarian use vegetarian parmesan as a substitute of Italian Parmigiano.
To make this recipe gluten free, use GF flour and GF plain breadcrumbs (see content material for extra particulars)
Serves 6 as a starter, 4 as a predominant course. I obtained 18 gnocchi out of the ingredient portions on this recipe.

Key phrase baked gnocchi, home made gnocchi, spinach gnocchi, spinach ricotta gnocchi

Different pasta recipes with spinach, chard or edible vegetation.

  1. Spaghetti with agretti (salsola soda).
  2. Puntarelle pasta with burrata.
  3. Sicilian pasta with sardines and wild fennel.
  4. Pansotti with walnut sauce.
  5. Baked pasta shells with spinach and ricotta.
  6. Tuscan pasta tordellata with ragu, Swiss chard and ricotta.

If you’re excited by studying methods to make home made pasta and different sorts of gnocchi, take a look at my store web page for some nice video on-line programs from my mates in Rome! Nothing beats studying to make pasta from Italians! Plus when you’re there why not order a duplicate of one among my pasta recipe cookbooks or checkout some advisable pasta making instruments?

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