One pan, no fuss! This sheet pan chicken and gnocchi recipe is the perfect weeknight dinner. Ready in just 30 minutes!
Sheet Pan Chicken and Gnocchi with Broccoli Rabe: A Weeknight Game-Changer
I can barely contain my excitement – I’m absolutely giddy over this recipe!
The other day, a few friends and I were talking about what we thought this year’s recipe trends would be. (It’s the kind of weird conversation that food bloggers have.)
I said I thought people would be looking for easy, hands-off recipes.
I don’t know about you, but I haven’t felt like spending a ton of time in the kitchen lately. Judging by the number of people I know who are suddenly all about their pressure cookers and air fryers, I have a feeling I’m not the only one.
When it comes to easy dinner, it doesn’t get much simpler than this sheet pan chicken and gnocchi. Everything cooks together on one pan – no sautéing, no browning, no boiling, no special equipment. No stress. Very little mess.
In just 30 minutes, you’re rewarded with a meal of plump gnocchi, juicy chicken, and slightly charred broccoli rabe.
What you’ll love about this recipe:
- Easy Clean up – Everything cooks together on one sheet pan, so cleanup is a breeze!
- Hands Off – Let the oven do the work while you take a few minutes to relax
- Full of flavor – There’s tons of flavor in each bite, thanks to a bright and tangy lemon sauce
Did you know you can bake gnocchi?
This recipe was inspired by one that I saw in last month’s issue of Eating Well (one of my absolute favorite magazines!)
I had never heard of cooking gnocchi in the oven before, and I had a hard time believing that they didn’t need to be boiled first. I was still skeptical even as I pulled the pan out of the oven.
Then I tasted one, and my mind was completely blown.
The gnocchi were plump and tender, with crispy edges where they touched the pan and a mild lemon flavor. It’s a weeknight game-changer.
Ingredients for sheet pan chicken and gnocchi
- Chicken thighs. Thighs have so much flavor and, since they’re smaller, they’re perfectly portioned. You’ll need boneless, skinless thighs for this recipe. Sometimes I have a hard time finding thighs without the skin. If you run into that issue, you can either roast them with the skin on (yum) or pull it off for a lower calorie option. If you can afford them, splurge on organic thighs for this recipe – they’re not as greasy as conventional chicken thighs and have a cleaner chicken flavor.
- Shelf stable gnocchi. You’re looking for the dried gnocchi in a vacuum pack for this recipe. Look for it in the pasta aisle! I like using traditional potato gnocchi, but I’ve also had success with gluten-free versions. I do not recommend whole wheat gnocchi for baking.
- Lemons. You’ll juice one to make the sauce and slice the second up to toss with the other ingredients on the sheet pan. Yay for lots of lemon-y flavor!
- Garlic powder and red pepper flakes. I kept the seasoning for this recipe simple. Feel free to play around with your favorites!
- Broccoli rabe. Did you know that broccoli rabe (also kown as rapini) is just the leafy green part of a broccoli plant? It tastes like a slightly more bitter, nutty broccoli and it’s so good! f you don’t like it, or if you cant fine it, feel free to substitute broccoli florets instead. You can also leave it out and toss the chicken and gnocchi with baby spinach before serving; it will only take a few minutes for spinach to wilt so don’t put it in the oven.
- Parmesan shreds. For that little extra something-something when you serve it.
What kind of gnocchi should I use?
For this recipe, you’ll want to use dried gnocchi. It’s shelf stable and sold in a vacuum sealed packet, usually in the same aisle as pasta.
Do I need to boil the gnocchi first?
No! That’s the beauty of this recipe. Use it straight from the packet. It will plump up and soften in the oven.
WOW! Do you have any other recipes like this one?
I sure do! Check out my Lemon Parmesan Gnocchi with Asparagus. It’s one of my most popular recipes – everyone who makes it loves it!
Can I make this recipe with chicken breasts instead of thighs?
Yes. If you prefer to use chicken breasts, go for boneless, skinless cutlets. If yours are very thick, they might need an extra 5 minutes in the oven, so keep an eye on them.
My gnocchi stuck to the pan.
Ugh, that stinks. Lining your pan with parchment paper (not foil) definitely helps. Also, make sure the gnocchi is evenly coated with the lemon and oil mixture before spreading it on the pan. This will help it crisp up and keep it from sticking. Giving the gnocchi and good stir halfway through the cooking process will also help keep it from sticking.
Can I use fresh gnocchi?
I haven’t personally made this recipe with fresh gnocchi, but several commenters have and say they love it!
More healthy sheet pan recipes you’ll love
- 20 Easy Sheet Pan Dinners
- Sheet Pan Mediterranean Chicken Thighs
- Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas
- Baked Chicken Thighs with Root Vegetables
- Sheet Pan BBQ Chicken
- Sheet Pan Spanish Style Potatoes with Chorizo
You’ll also love my Healthy Eating One Pot Cookbook!
Sheet Pan Chicken and Gnocchi with Broccoli Rabe
- ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs preferably organic
- 16 ounces gnocchi shelf stable
- 1 small lemon thinly sliced
- salt and pepper
- 1 bunch broccoli rabe or broccolini
- Parmesan shreds for serving (optional)
- Heat your oven to 450ºF. Line a rimmed sheet pan with parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Add the chicken, gnocchi, and lemon sliced and mix well to coat.
- Spread the chicken and gnocchi mixture onto your prepared sheet pan in an even layer.
- Bake for 15 minutes. Stir well, then add the broccoli rabe to the pan. Bake for another 15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
- Top with parmesan, if desired.