Meal planning and preparation is made so much easier with complete meals you can cook in one vessel. What’s better than a single recipe to track, one pot to clean and all your protein, carbs and veggies delivered in just about 30 minutes?
Tuscan Chicken and Gnocchi is a hearty, cozy, one skillet meal that’s easy to prepare any day of the week. It’s also versatile enough to suit your family’s tastes by swapping an ingredient or two.
Ingredients and Substitutions
In addition to pantry staples like olive oil, kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper, you’ll need to gather:
- Chicken – boneless/skinless, thighs or breasts, your preference. Cutting the chicken into bite size pieces before sauteeing reduces cooking time. Use a poultry-based Italian-style sausage as an alternative, but keep in mind that sausage will be saltier.
- Shallots – sliced into thin rings. These will caramelize a bit in the pan, providing a lovely touch of sweetness. Feel free to substitute a small yellow onion (halved and sliced thin).
- Unsalted butter – allows you to better control the amount of salt in this dish. (And, the scent of onion and garlic cooking in butter is intoxicating!)
- Potato gnocchi – fresh, not frozen. Fresh potato gnocchi can be found in either the deli or dairy section of your grocery store, or next to dry pasta.
- Garlic – minced garlic sautées for just a minute to release its fragrance and prevent burning (which turns it bitter).
- Artichoke hearts – my preference is the marinated variety in a jar, but canned or frozen are also appropriate. If your family is not a fan of artichokes, feel free to substitute an equal amount of your favorite vegetables.
- Sun dried tomatoes – packed in oil. You can find sun dried tomatoes whole, halved and julienned. Choose the latter for easy prep. If you prefer to use the dried variety that comes in a pouch, rehydrate them per the package instructions before adding them to the skillet.
- Baby spinach – roughly chopped. Your favorite kale would be a nice substitute.
- Dried Italian herb blend – If you don’t have a blend on hand, substitute with a variety of dried herbs like parsley, basil, rosemary, oregano, thyme and marjoram. If using fresh herbs, increase the amount to two tablespoons.
- Crushed red pepper flakes – this recipe doesn’t call for much, but feel free to omit if you’re not a fan.
- All-purpose flour – it’s used here to help thicken the sauce.
- Low-sodium broth – vegetable or chicken will do.
- Parmesan cheese – freshly grated is best.
How to Make Tuscan Chicken and Gnocchi
The key to bringing any quick dish together successfully is in the prep. I like to read an entire recipe and find the most efficient way to prep and combine ingredients ahead of time. This is how I tackle this recipe:
- Cut the chicken into bite-size pieces (I like to prepare raw meat on a plastic, dishwasher safe, cutting board) and season it with kosher salt and pepper.
- On a separate cutting board, slice the shallots, mince the garlic, and rough chop the spinach. You can leave them in piles on the board.
- Open the package of gnocchi and set aside.
- Measure out the drained artichokes and drained sun dried tomatoes into a single bowl. Measure out the Italian herb blend and crushed red pepper flakes into the same bowl.
- Measure out broth into a liquid measuring cup, then add the flour to the cup.
- Measure out the parmesan cheese.
Add olive oil to a large skillet (a 12” cast iron or non-stick skillet works well) over medium heat. Once the oil is shimmering hot, add the seasoned chicken. Stir occasionally with a wooden spoon to brown the chicken on all sides. Saute until it’s cooked through, about 8 to 10 minutes. With a slotted spoon, remove it to a plate leaving any oil and juices behind in the skillet.
Add a little more olive oil and the sliced shallots to the skillet. Season with a bit of kosher salt and pepper. As soon as they become tender, add the unsalted butter to melt. Next, add the gnocchi in a single layer and give it a minute or two to begin to crisp up. Give it a stir a couple of times to continue crisping on all sides.
Stir in the garlic and cook for a minute before adding the chopped spinach and bowl of artichokes, sun dried tomatoes, dried herbs and red pepper flakes. Return the chicken to the skillet. Stir everything to combine. The spinach will begin to wilt.
Whisk the broth and flour mixture with a fork, then pour it into the skillet. Give everything another stir to combine, and bring it to a simmer for 3 to 4 minutes to thicken the sauce. Take it off the burner and stir in the parmesan cheese. Taste it for seasoning.
Serve this right from the skillet or distribute to individual serving bowls to enjoy. Pass around extra parmesan and some crusty bread.
A Note About Artichoke Hearts
Jarred marinated artichoke hearts are stored in an oil and vinegar solution typically with some salt and herbs. They impart a tangy flavor that not everyone may find appealing. Feel free to rinse them before using to tame the salt and vinegar.
Canned artichoke hearts are stored in a brine (salt water solution) and should be rinsed to remove additional salt.
Frozen artichokes should be thawed completely and drained before using.
There is no need to press or dry any variety before using in this recipe. Any residual moisture will be incorporated into the sauce.
What to do With Leftovers
This recipe makes four hearty servings or six smaller servings (great accompanied by a side salad).
Store leftovers in a sealed container in your refrigerator for 3 to 4 days. The gnocchi will continue to absorb the sauce as it sits. Feel free to warm up and enjoy as is, or you can add a splash or two (or more) of broth before warming.
Linda Feller has been a Plan to Eat superfan since 2013 and will whip out the app to share with anyone who expresses the least bit of interest. She is a recipe developer, food photographer and the gal behind Sip + Sanity, a blog for recipes, entertaining and lifestyle.
FB & Instagram: @sipandsanity
Tuscan Chicken and Gnocchi is a hearty, cozy, one skillet meal that’s quick and easy to prepare any day of the week. It’s also versatile enough to suit your family’s tastes by swapping an ingredient or two. <br> <br>Makes 4 large servings or 6 smaller servings (great accompanied by a salad and some crusty bread).
Source: Sip + Sanity | Linda Feller for Plan to Eat
Course: Main Course
Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 25 min
Total Time: 35 min
- 12 oz chicken boneless/skinless, (thighs or breasts) cut into bite size pieces
- kosher salt + fresh cracked black pepper
- 1-1⁄2 tbsp olive oil divided
- 2 shallots sliced into thin rings
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 16 oz potato gnocchi fresh, not frozen
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 10 oz artichoke hearts* quartered
- 1⁄2 cup sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, julienned
- 2 cups baby spinach roughly chopped
- 2 tsp dried Italian herb blend
- 1⁄2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1-1⁄2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1-1⁄2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth or chicken broth
- 1⁄4 cup parmesan cheese freshly grated
- Season chicken with kosher salt + pepper.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once shimmering hot, add the chicken. Saute for about 8-10 minutes or until the chicken is just cooked through. Stir occasionally to brown on all sides. Remove the chicken to a dish using a slotted spoon, leaving the oil behind in the skillet.
- Add the other 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil and shallots to the skillet. Season with a little salt + pepper. Sauté until they start to become tender. Add butter to melt, then add the gnocchi in a single layer. Gently stir once or twice to crisp the gnocchi on all sides.
- Add the garlic, stir and cook for an additional 1 minute.
- Add all the veggies, herbs, red pepper flakes and cooked chicken to the skillet. Stir to combine.
- Whisk flour into the broth and pour it into the skillet. Bring to a simmer and cook for 3 to 4 minutes to thicken the sauce.
- Stir in the parmesan, then taste for seasoning.
- *Use marinated, canned, or frozen. Marinated imparts additional tangy flavor. Feel free to rinse before using. Canned should be rinsed to remove additional salt. Frozen should be thawed and drained. No need to press/dry any before using. Any residual moisture will incorporate into the sauce.