This easy Korean inspired gnocchi is tossed with a sweet and spicy Gochujang lime sauce and served alongside a quick pickled cucumber salad. Super simple, delicious and ready in 20 minutes or less!
The inspiration for this recipe came from a traditional Korean dish called Tteok-bokki. It’s a spicy stir fry made with these chewy rice cakes, fish cakes and a dashi broth. I’ve only had it once at a Korean restaurant in Ann Arbor, and loved every bite!
This gochujang gnocchi is a pretty far stretch from that traditional dish—it doesn’t have any fish cakes or stock, but the Korean chili paste (gochujang) based sauce is very similar. Instead of those sticky rice cakes, I use gnocchi, which are slightly more pillowy and go wonderfully with that thick, sweet sauce. Everything is served alongside a quick pickled cucumber to add a nice pop of freshness and balance out those intense flavors. And bonus? It’s ready to eat in less than 20 minutes!
Ingredients in Gochujang Gnocchi
Gnocchi: to make this recipe super quick and easy, I recommend using store bought gnocchi. I used a traditional potato based brand, but feel free to experiment with gluten free or cauliflower gnocchi.
Gochujang: This is a popular fermented Korean chili paste that you can find at many grocery stores and asian markets. It’s sweet, spicy and brings that element of umami that makes this gnocchi dish so delicious.
Lime juice: you’ll need a couple limes worth of juice for the sauce to help cut the sweetness of the gochujang. Fresh juice is ideal, but use whatever’s available.
Honey: Adds a little more sweetness and helps makes the sauce sticky. if you avoid animal products, honey can be substituted with brown sugar,
Soy sauce: Adds saltiness and another element of umami.
Garlic: for a little aromatic flavor.
Cornstarch: This goes in at the end to make the sauce super thick. It also helps the sauce stick to the gnocchi so don’t skip it!
Toasted sesame oil: Easy to forget, because it goes in at the end. There is very little fat in this recipe, so a few teaspoons of sesame oil really help enhance the flavors. If you don’t have toasted sesame oil, just replace with olive or avocado oil and add a few toasted sesame seeds instead.
How to Make Gochujang Gnocchi
Start by making the quick pickled cucumber salad so it has time to sit while you prepare the gochujang gnocchi. Thinly slice one Persian cucumber, a few scallions and throw those in a bowl. Add a couple tablespoons of rice wine vinegar, and then a pinch of gochujaru (Korean chili flakes). Let that marinate for about 10-15 minutes (or longer if you’ve got time!
Next, get a pot of water boiling on the stove. In the meantime, whisk together all the ingredients for the sauce.
Cook the gnocchi is salted water according to the package directions. It should take about 2-3 minutes or until you see them float to the top. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the gnocchi to a skillet. Don’t throw out the water!! The starchy cooking liquid is part of what makes this dish so delicious. Pour the sauce over the gnocchi and heat over medium low.
To finish it off, whisk together some of the cooking liquid with the cornstarch to make a slurry. Add that to the pan and simmer until it begins to thicken. Add some more cooking water if it seems too thick and clumpy. Stir in the toasted sesame oil and that’s it! Serve warm with your cucumber salad and enjoy!
More Recipes to Try:
- Ginger peach meatballs with coconut rice
- Vegan Cacio e Pepe
- Spicy coconut lime curry with crispy tofu
- Honey sesame chickpea lettuce wraps