One Pan Italian Sausage Butternut Squash Gnocchi

It’s time for a serious self-esteem, kitchen-confidence, OMG I AM SUCH A GOOD COOK boost! Italian Sausage Butternut Squash Gnocchi. It’s an easy recipe that cooks in one pan, but the moment you take a bite, you will want to hire yourself to be head chef in an Italian restaurant.

One Skillet Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Italian Sausage and Spinach. Healthy, EASY recipe that cooks in just one pan! Pure comfort and so simple to make!

This recipe is sponsored by Land O’Lakes

I’ve become more confident in the kitchen over the years and feel like I more or less know what to expect when I approach a recipe. Every now and then, however, a recipe will catch me off guard in a very very good way. This Italian Sausage Butternut Squash Gnocchi is one of those recipes.

I mean, I didn’t think it was going to be bad by any means. Butternut squash (my fave fall veg), Italian sausage (all things good), and gnocchi (pure comfort food) are all involved. Add some butter and a handful of Parmesan cheese, and you have a dinner dream team.

I was not, however, expecting this simple sausage and vegetable gnocchi to blow me away like it did.

I took a bite and had to pause to ask myself if I had really made it.

I suppose we are all allowed to blow ourselves away in the kitchen now and then, but my goal has always been for other people to feel that way about a recipe. This Italian Sausage and Butternut Squash Gnocchi made me feel that way about myself. It was a cool sensation, and I can’t wait for you to try it and experience it too!

Easy, healthy Butternut Squash Gnocchi with sausage and spinach.

About This Simple, Splendid One Skillet Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Italian Sausage Recipe

Culinary rock star feelings aside, this is a delicious meal that is so easy to make, it almost feels like cheating.

The entire recipe cooks in one skillet, including the gnocchi. Since it’s packed with both lean protein and veggies, it works as an all-in-one meal, no extra sides required.

This easy gnocchi is Friday dreams meets Monday reality. It tastes like fall comfort on a plate and had me convinced for a moment that I was back in Italy.

Because this easy Butternut Squash Gnocchi obtains its soul-satisfying flavor from only a few ingredients, make sure you pick good ones. At the top of my list when I’m thinking about ingredient integrity: butter.

One-pan Italian Sausage Butternut Squash Gnocchi is a delicious, filling meal!

Land O’Lakes has been in my refrigerator since I was a little girl, and it’s still the brand I choose to purchase. I love that Land O’Lakes works with family farmers (I had the pleasure to meet several of them out in California earlier this year), and also…I just ♥ buttah. I want to make sure the butter I buy tastes great, is worthy of the indulgence, and is a good value. Land O’Lakes doesn’t let me down.

For this recipe, I used Land O Lakes® Unsalted Butter, which also happens to be my go-to when I’m testing baking recipes on my site. It’s my standard.

Italian Sausage Butternut Squash Gnocchi is a healthy, all-in-one family meal.

For a boost of protein and even more comforting flavor, this recipe also includes Italian sausage. I use chicken or turkey sausage 99% of the time (this Italian Sausage Rice Casserole and this recipe for sheet pan Italian Sausage and Peppers are two favorites). It’s leaner than pork sausage but still delivers on flavor. Pinky promise, you won’t notice the swap.

Other key ingredients include a pinch of sage and nutmeg to complement the butternut squash and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese because it feels like the right thing to do.

Easy Italian Sausage and Butternut Squash Gnocchi. Full of vegetables and lean protein!

I am so excited for you to try this Italian Sausage Butternut Squash Gnocchi recipe! If you do give it a go, please let me know how it turned out in the comments section below. Hearing from you makes my day even more than a second helping of this gnocchi did (and you know how strongly I feel about it by now😉).

5 from 15 votes
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Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Italian Sausage

Yield: 4 to 6 servings
Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
40 mins
One Skillet Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Italian Sausage and Spinach. Healthy, EASY recipe that cooks in just one pan! Pure comfort and so simple to make!

Ingredients

  • 5 tablespoons  Land O Lakes® Unsalted Butter — divided
  • 1 pound ground sweet Italian turkey sausage — removed from casings if needed
  • 1 small butternut squash — about 1 1/4 pounds, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 3 1/2 cups cubes total; if you have a little extra, use a very large skillet and add it all if you really love squash, or reserve the extra for another time)
  • 1 small yellow onion — diced, about 1 cup
  • 3 cloves garlic — minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt — plus additional to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon rubbed sage — or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 pound potato gnocchi*
  • 5 cups loosely packed baby spinach — about 5 ounces or 5 generous handfuls
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan — optional—we loved it both with and without
  • Pinch red pepper flakes — optional

Instructions

  1. Melt 1 tablespoon of Land O Lakes® Unsalted Butter in a very large skillet with a tight-fitting lid over medium high. Once the butter is melted, add the sausage. Cook, breaking apart the meat, until it is browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes. Transfer the sausage to a plate.
  2. Reduce the skillet heat to medium. Add the remaining 4 tablespoons butter. Once melted, add the squash and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the squash is tender and golden, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic, salt, pepper, rubbed sage (if using fresh sage, wait to add it until the end), and nutmeg. Continue cooking until the garlic is softened and fragrant, about 1 additional minute.
  3. Add 1 1/2 cups chicken broth and gnocchi to the skillet. Increase the heat to medium high. Stir to coat the gnocchi, then cover the pan. Cook, covered, until the gnocchi is just tender, about 5 minutes. Uncover and stir in the sausage. Stir in the spinach a few handfuls at a time, allowing it to wilt. If you’d like a looser sauce, add a bit more chicken broth. Sprinkle with Parmesan and season to taste with additional salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Enjoy hot.

Recipe Notes

  • Store leftovers in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days. Rewarm gently in the microwave or on the stovetop with a splash of extra chicken broth or water to keep it from drying out.
  • You can find packaged gnocchi near the pasta in your grocery store.
  • Nutritional info is calculated as 1 of 5, or about 1 1/2 heaping cups
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Italian Sausage, Italian Gnocchi Recipe

Nutrition Information

Amount per serving (1 (of 6)) — Calories: 420, Fat: 18g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 89mg, Carbohydrates: 44g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 21g

Did you try this recipe? I want to see! Follow Well Plated on Instagram, snap a photo, and tag it #wellplated. I love to know what you are making!

One Skillet Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Italian Sausage and Spinach. Healthy, EASY recipe that cooks in just one pan! You save time on dishes and the garlic butter sauce is to-die-for! One of our family’s favorite meals. #wellplated #gnocchi #butternutsquash #easy #healthy

This post contains some affiliate links, which means that I make a small commission off items you purchase at no additional cost to you.

About Erin Clarke

I’m fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food taste incredible. Wearer of plaid, travel enthusiast, and firmly convinced that sweets and veggies both deserve a place at the table. MORE ABOUT ERIN…

46 comments

  1. Oh this looks so good! I think i’ll just add a little more potato and maybe cheese it up a bit. Thanks!

  2. Butternut Squash gnocchi? SIGN ME UP!

  3. This is what I will be making this weekend! I already have the butternut squash just waiting for inspiration…now i have it. What a great Fall recipe. Will let you know how it turns out. Thanks.

  4. Talk about the perfect healthy fall comfort dish!! :)

  5. Erin, this was amazing! I just made this tonight and couldn’t stop myself from seconds as well! Followed the directions exactly and everything turned out perfectly. I love your recipes, I’ve been following along for about a year and have made more than I can count! 

  6. I made this last night and it was to die for.  I used the cauliflower gnocchi from TJs and it was so good.  My husband even loved the squash and he’s usually not a fan.  The perfect cold weather meal that I will be making until I can’t find the butternut squash anymore.  Thank you!

  7. Made this for dinner tonight and everybody loved it! My mom says it’s a keeper recipe. Used kale and pork sausage as substitutes and still tasted delicious

  8. This was so yummy! I lightened it up by using chicken sausage, light butter and cauliflower gnocchi and it was still amazing! Fall comfort food at its best! 

  9. Kristina DiMartino Reply

    Erin! You have OUT DONE YOURSELF once again! This so tasty! You bring Fall home with this recipe:)

    • I’m so happy to hear this is a winner, Kristina! Thanks so much for taking the time to leave this wonderful review!

  10. Michelle McCafferty Reply

    Made this over the weekend, it is SO wonderfully delicious. I cooked the butternut squash down a little more than the recipe called for, which resulted in some of the smaller pieces ‘melting’ into the sauce and spreading that butternut squash goodness all through every bite. This is such a great fall dish, it looks, smells and tastes like autumn!

  11. Erin!
    This was amazing. I realized too late that I didn’t have sage, so I used some poultry seasoning from my cabinet. It was still scrumptious. Would absolutely make it again!

    • Maggie, I’m so happy to hear this was a hit! Thank you so much for giving it a try and taking the time to report back.

  12. Love, love, love this recipe!! It was not only absolutely delicious but so much fun/easy to make! I used the precut zigzag butternut squash from Trader Joe’s! And what’s not to love about a one pot wonder #lessmess !!

  13. I have an obsession with butternut squash, and googling new butternut squash recipes brought me to your blog. I already made your Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole with Butternut Squash and Cranberries (amazing) and this was another great recipe. Sweet Italian turkey sausage was pretty expensive at my grocery store, so I just bought lean ground turkey and seasoned it with Italian seasoning, salt, and fennel when cooking and it turned out great. Thanks so much!

    • Beth, I’m so glad to hear this recipe was a hit too! Way to be resourceful about making your own Italian sausage too.

  14. Just made this. Super delicious!

  15. This dish looks yummy!  Wonder if I could cut down on the butter?  

    • Hi Peggy, the current amount of butter is how I tested the recipe and what I can vouch for. You can certainly experimenting with cutting it back or using another cooking fat (like olive oil) of your choice. If you do experiment, I’d love to hear how it goes.

  16. This recipe is on my meal plan for next week, I have some Trader Joe’s frozen sweet potato gnocchi, think that will work? Or do I need the fresh stuff?
    Thanks!!
    Love this food blog!!

    • Hi Sarah, I haven’t tested the recipe with that product, so I can’t say for certain. If you do decide to give it a try, I’d love to hear how it comes out!

  17. Can’t wait to try this. I make something similar after Thanksgiving when we have leftover stuffing. The main ingredient are turkey or chicken sausage, butternut squash, any leftover greens (spinach, kale, etc), onion, baked in oven with the stuffing on top towards the end of baking.Obviously, some of the above ingredients are cooked or sauteed first. But the gnocchi variation sounds good too.

  18. I stumbled upon this recipe looking for butternut squash recipes. This  was so delicious, only change was I used kale instead of spinach. I made it for guests and it was a huge success—can’t wait to make it again. Thanks!!!

  19. Just made this tonight as is and my husband and I thought it was great! Love the combination of sweet squash and spicy sausage (we used hot italians). It seemed way more naughty than it actually is. Thanks!

  20. Hi Erin! How many servings does this make!? :)

    • Hi Jenna! It serves 4-6, depending upon how hungry everyone is and what else you are serving. (the total yield is 8 1/2 cups – I calced the nutrition as 1 of 5 or about 1 1/2 cups). I hope you love it!

  21. This recipe is amazing! I made it for dinner tonight and it was the perfect fall weather meal. It was like my husband and I were dining at a 5 star restaurant. The combination of ingredients is brilliant, and the recipe is simple to follow. Thank you for providing such specific, easy steps to follow. 

  22. My husband and I made this yesterday and it is phenomenal! Such a delicious combination of ingredients. It is also really filling and a great use of squash. Next time we will probably use a Tbsp or so less of butter, but otherwise, this recipe is just perfect! We did try adding a bit of parmesan but found it superfluous to the overall flavor. The sausage and butter bring enough salt and fat that we found it totally complete without the cheese. This will definitely be a new go-to Fall recipe for us!

  23. Made this last night. It was wonderful!!

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