This tofu gnocchi is a recipe that I've been obsessing over for months. I've always loved potato gnocchi, and I love ricotta gnocchi even more. Since my husband prefers to be dairy-free, I've never been able to show him how heavenly those little ricotta clouds are, compared to potato gnocchi.
I've tested this recipe more than any other recipe I've ever published here, and I hope you like it!
I've tried this with both firm tofu and silken tofu, and I definitely recommend silken.
If you have access to 00 flour, I like that better than all purpose in this recipe, but if all you have is AP, that's totally fine too. The difference is less noticeable than using silken tofu versus firm tofu. You may need to use a bit more flour if you're using 00, or use half 00, half AP.
Important things to note:
1. Drain, drain, drain your tofu. This is easy to do and you don't need any fancy gadget to do it. Put a sieve over a bowl. Place your tofu over the sieve (if you're draining silken tofu, I do recommend lining the sieve with a cheesecloth). Place a plate or a little cutting board directly on the tofu. Finally, place a cast iron pan on top, or if you don't have one, just heavy cans will do. Drain for a minimum of 20 minutes, and up to 2 hours.
2. Try to use as little flour as possible. This recipe calls for 3/4 cups of flour, but I would recommend that you separate these into three separate 1/4 cups to help control how much flour you use. The less flour added, the more delicate your gnocchi.
3. Try to work the dough as little as possible. The less you work the dough, the more delicate your gnocchi. I love this point because it means LESS WORK!
4. I've found that the dough is easier to work with if you give it a little time to rest. So after you've mixed it up. Give it a break. Go boil water, make sauce, set the table. Once you start working with the dough, it goes incredibly fast. Like, two minutes fast.
This recipe is not vegan as we do use egg yolks. So why bother using tofu instead of ricotta, you might be wondering? Well, tofu is dairy-free, so whether you're lactose intolerant or are concerned about cows in the dairy industry, tofu is a better way to go. Using tofu also means a heck of a lot less work and time required than potatoes that you'd have to peel and cook. Finally, ounce for ounce, tofu has less calories, less fat, and more protein, more fiber, more iron than ricotta, while having basically the same amount of calcium! Check out this very handy website for a comparison.
TOFU GNOCCHI INGREDIENTS
🍴 1 package of Tofu, drained (see notes above)
🍴 ¼ cup of Nutritional yeast
🍴 ¾ cups of Flour (see notes above)
🍴 2 egg yolks
🍴 1 tsp Salt
This recipe will make enough gnocchi for two to four people.
Start by mashing your drained tofu. A potato masher works perfectly here.
Mix egg yolks, nutritional yeast, salt together.
Add mashed tofu.
Sprinkle in ¼ cup of flour. Mix gently with a spoon.
Sprinkle in another ¼ cup of flour. Continue mixing gently. It should start to pull away from the bowl. Sprinkle your work surface with the final ¼ cup of flour (a little at a time) and scoop your dough onto your floury work surface.
Very gently, use your hands to pat the dough into a log. Use the reserved ¼ cup of flour when you need it, but try to use as little as possible. A bench scraper can be really handy here. Please check out my Instagram video for reference.
Start shaping into a long log. It might be easier to cut the log in half before rolling. The dough will be very delicate. Again, use as little pressure and flour as possible.
Roll until your gnocchi is the right diameter. I like my gnocchi to be no more than 1" in diameter. Cut to size. You can roll the gnocchi across a fork to get the traditional gnocchi indentations, but there's no need to. Yes, I'm lazy and am glad to skip a step, but as you can see, there are plenty of dimples in the gnocchi already which will catch the sauce.
That's it! You're ready to boil (in salted water), sauce, and enjoy! As with other gnocchi, when they float, they're ready. Drizzle a little olive oil over them once you've pulled them out of the water.
A very simple sauce we love with our tofu gnocchi:
Sauté a quarter of an onion and a clove of garlic. Pour into a blender along with a whole sweet bell pepper (chopped roughly), and a few spoonfuls of sun-dried tomatoes with oil. Blend until smooth. We do love this topped with fresh herbs and Smart Seasoning!