Supermarket Potato Gnocchi
When time is short, should you reach for vacuum-packed, shelf-stable gnocchi?
How We Tested
Without a doubt, fresh homemade gnocchi is more tender and delicately flavorful than any store-bought option, but there isn’t always time to make your own. When time is short, should you reach for vacuum-packed, shelf-stable gnocchi, which can be ready in less than five minutes?
We recently tasted four nationally available brands, sampling them plain, then sautéed in brown butter, and finally in our Tomato-Basil Gnocchi Gratin. Plain and in the brown butter, all of the gnocchi had a distinct acidic “sourdough” flavor that’s never found in homemade gnocchi. We learned that shelf-stable gnocchi contains lactic acid or glucono delta-lactone to add acidity, which helps preserve the product. While this kept the gnocchi safe to eat, it imparted a noticeable “tang” that tasters disliked. But in Tomato-Basil Gratin, the acidity of the gnocchi was less noticeable in three brands, and disappeared altogether in our winner, which was also the most tender and “pillowy” of the four.
Our top-rated supermarket gnocchi is an acceptable shortcut, but only if you’re using it in a full-flavored sauce.