Creamy Chicken Gnocchi Soup (Olive Garden Copycat)

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Creamy Chicken Gnocchi Soup has a thick and rich broth with shredded carrots, celery, chopped spinach, gnocchi and chicken hidden throughout. This tastes even better than Olive Garden!

Bring restaurant quality soup to your home. I just love the Italian flavors in the slow cooker pasta e fagioli soup or creamy zuppa toscana too, so be sure to give them a try!

Chicken gnocchi soup in a black bowl.

Creamy Chicken Gnocchi Soup

You guys are going to love the incredible creamy and rich broth. It is flavored with the perfect amount of seasonings and it even has one of my favorite herbs inside…. thyme. The added chicken and gnocchi (which I absolutely love) are so hearty.  When you add in the freshness of the shredded carrots, celery, and spinach this soup is full of flavor! Put this on your list of must try soups! You will not regret it.

This chicken gnocchi soup is full of flavor in every bite. The combination of the vegetables, creamy broth and gnocchi give this soup 5 stars. It is simple to make and so delicious! Make this a complete meal by serving this favorite olive garden soup with homemade breadtwists and a side salad asparagus salad with lemon vinaigrette or antipasto salad.

Pot full of chicken gnocchi soup with a ladle.

Ingredients to Make Gnocchi Soup:

This Olive Garden Copycat recipe has been on my list of soups to make for a few years now. I love all of Olive Garden’s Soups but their Chicken Gnocchi soup is awesome. The best part is that it is so easy to make! It comes together in less than 20 minutes.

  • Butter: Use the butter to make the roux.
  • Olive oil: Add to the pan with the butter onion and celery and garlic.
  • Onion: I keep frozen diced onion in my freezer so that I can easily add it to any dish.
  • Celery: Diced celery gives this soup a great crunch and fresh flavor.
  • Garlic cloves:Minced garlic adds a deep Italian flavor.
  • All-purpose flour: The flour makes a roux which gives the soup its consistency.
  • Half-and-half: The creaminess of this soup.
  • Chicken broth: Add as much as you like depending on how thin you like your soup. For a thinner soup use more broth.
  • Fresh thyme: Earthy and a little bit sweet, with a slightly minty
  • Shredded carrots: I love the sweet flavor the carrots add!
  • Spinach leaves: Chopped so that you don’t have big pieces in your spoonful.
  • Chicken breast: Diced and cooked chicken. Cut into pieces before cooking so it will cook quicker.  Cook it in a little bit of olive oil until it’s just done. Add a little salt and pepper to it if you like.
  • Potato gnocchi: Hint- find this on the pasta isle.
  • Salt and pepper: To taste!

How to Make Gnocchi:

Gnocchi is made from potatoes, flour, and eggs. It seems like an odd combination I would have never thought of, but I am so happy someone did!  Although it does take time to make from scratch, making gnocchi can be so fun!

When I am in the mood and I have the time, I enjoy making it myself.  However, it tastes great store bought too! If you are hoping to try it from scratch here is the breakdown:

  1. Boil Potatoes: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Peel potatoes and add to pot. Once cooked, scoop out inside.
  2. Combine: 1 cup mashed potato, flour and egg in a large bowl. Knead until dough forms a ball.
  3. Cook Gnocchi: Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Drop in gnocchi and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until gnocchi have risen to the top; drain and serve.

Olive Garden Favorite Soup:

  1. Make a Roux: In a large pot add butter and olive oil. Over medium high heat sauté onion, celery and garlic until tender. Next, add the flour to create a roux and cook for another minute.
  2. Add In Liquids: Slowly add the half and half and chicken broth and stir until it starts to thicken.
  3. Spices and Ingredients: The thyme, carrots, spinach, chicken and gnocchi.
  4. Simmer: Allow to simmer for about 5 minutes or until gnocchi is cooked and soup is thickened. (If you want a thinner soup add another can of chicken broth.) Salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.

The process of chicken gnocchi soup.

Tips for the Best Chicken Gnocchi Soup:

  • Gnocchi: It is best to use mini gnocchi if you can find them (or make them mini), they’re the perfect size for soup.
  • Sauce: Don’t let the sauce get too hot or it can separate. Continually stir the sauce to prevent any separation.
  • Spinach: For best results use fresh spinach. The frozen spinach will become mushy in the soup over a long period of time.
  • Vegetables: Dice vegetables small and the same size to have them cook through evenly  in time.

The ingredients in chicken gnocchi soup.

Variations:

  • Substitutes for Gnocchi: A great substitution is pasta. The small shells or orzo are perfect for adding to this soup as well as rice.
  • Protein: Substitute Italian sausage instead of chicken in the soup. Before adding it to the soup, brown the sausage at the beginning, then add it in.
  • Vegetables: Sneak in extra vegetables like peas, zucchini or asparagus.
  • Thicker Soup: Add extra cream to make it even richer.
  • Chicken: To save time use pre-shredded, cooked chicken from the grocery store.

Slow Cooker Adaptations:

I would still definitely use cooked, diced chicken. Also, go ahead and sauté the veggies and garlic. Then put the chicken and veggies all together in the bottom of your slow cooker. Add the liquids and all the other ingredients except the gnocchi, half and half, and spinach. Cook on low for three to four hours, adding the gnocchi in for the last hour of cooking. Before serving, add the half and half and spinach and stir to combine. The spinach should wilt quickly. Serve.

How to Store Chicken Gnocchi Soup:

It is a bummer that this soup does not freeze well but it does reheat well. Place back on the stovetop and reheat on a low setting and slowly stirring it. This will help the soup from separating.

  • Freezing: Unfortunately you cannot store this soup because of the dairy and gnocchi, it won’t freeze well. The gnocchi will become soggy and the dairy mixture will separate.
  • Storing: If you are planning on lots of leftovers you can cook the gnocchi separately and add to individual servings.
Chicken gnocchi soup with a ladle.

Warm, Comforting Soups to Try:

Creamy Chicken Gnocchi Soup (Olive Garden Copycat)

4.69 from 41 votes
Creamy Chicken Gnocchi Soup has a thick and rich broth with shredded carrots, celery, chopped spinach and gnocchi hidden throughout. This tastes even better than the Olive Garden!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Author Alyssa Rivers
Servings: 8 Bowls of Soup

Ingredients
  

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup onion diced
  • 1/2 cup celery diced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 1 14 ounce can chicken broth for a thinner soup use 2 cans
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh thyme
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 cup fresh spinach leaves chopped
  • 1 cup diced cooked chicken breast I used rotisserie
  • 1 16 ounce package potato gnocchi on the pasta isle
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • In a large pot add butter and olive oil. Over medium high heat sauté onion, celery and garlic until tender. Add the flour to create a roux and cook for another minute.
  • Slowly add the half and half and chicken broth and stir until it starts to thicken. Add the thyme, carrots, spinach, chicken and gnocchi. Simmer for about 5 minutes or until gnocchi is cooked and soup is thickened. (If you want a thinner soup add another can of chicken broth.) Salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.

Video

Notes

Updated on September 10, 2020
Originally Posted on September 7, 2016

Nutrition

Serves: 8

Calories156kcal (8%)Carbohydrates8g (3%)Protein3g (6%)Fat13g (20%)Saturated Fat7g (35%)Cholesterol34mg (11%)Sodium63mg (3%)Potassium113mg (3%)Fiber1g (4%)Sugar1g (1%)Vitamin A387IU (8%)Vitamin C4mg (5%)Calcium74mg (7%)Iron1mg (6%)

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.

Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Italian, Italian American
Keyword creamy chicken gnocchi soup, gnocchi soup
Tried this recipe?Mention @alyssa_therecipecritic or tag #therecipecritic

 

 

 

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Alyssa Rivers

I am Alyssa and the blogger behind The Recipe Critic. I started my blog in June of 2012 as a place to share my passion for cooking. I love trying new things and testing them out with my family.

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  1. I made this tonight and it was wonderful. I had to “make” half-and-half using heavy cream and milk in equal portions. Next time I make it I will put the caroots in with the onion and garlic so they cook longer. Oh and I used leek instead of onion because I needed to use up my leeks. Vrey yummy.

  2. 5 stars
    Absolutely love this recipe! It’s very easy to make adjustments. I didn’t have chicken breasts defrosted, so I used frozen diced chicken, and I always cut back on the thyme; just a couple of shakes.

  3. Why not let me choose to watch your video or not? It is very intrusive. I won’t be back to your site any time soon which is a shame because I love your recipes.

    1. I’m so sorry! You should be able to click on the x on any video or hit the pause button. You can also click “Jump to Recipe” at the very top of the page and it will skip straight down to the recipe card. 🙂

    1. Yes! I would still definitely use cooked, diced chicken. Also, go ahead and sauté the veggies and garlic. Then put the chicken and veggies all together in the bottom of your slow cooker. Add the liquids and all the other ingredients except the gnocchi, half and half, and spinach. Cook on low for three to four hours, adding the gnocchi in for the last hour of cooking. Before serving, add the half and half and spinach and stir to combine.

  4. OMG this is so delicious! I was sorta afraid to try it, but I’m so glad i did. I doubled the recipe and almost followed to the T. But I didn’t have any half & half so I used 1 !/2 heavy cream & 1/2 cup of regular milk. Didn’t have fresh thyme, so I used ground thyme 1/4 tsp. And 2 tbsp of chicken flavor better than bouillon and it gave it such a wonderful flavor. I can’t wait for my husband to come home & try it. I know he will love it. I can eat soup everyday. And since it is winter in Southern California I got to have my soup. Thank you so much for this recipe. Oh by the way I cooked the shredded carrots, celery, onions & garlic all together first. Thanks Again

  5. This is a amazing soup. Never tasted gnocchi before. Definitely will make it again maybe with handmade gnocchi and some fresh bread.

  6. I would suggest cooking finely grated carrots with the onions and celery to tenderize and add the fresh spinach LAST to wilt or it will be overcooked.

  7. 5 stars
    I made this delicious soup and I must say that I liked mine better, I changed a few things. My family loved it as well .

  8. 5 stars
    Hi, Harry is here! All of these are delicious! but If you are searching for Best West African Peanut, Pepper, Vegan Soup & Red Sauce for delicious lunch and healthy food. EgunsiFoods.com Can help you with that because EgunsiFoods is a good-tasting online & offline West African soup brand trusted by partners like Whole Foods Market and Fresh-direct. Their customer’s favorites are vegan soup, peanut soup, tomato soup, red sauce soup, and Egusi soup. EgunsiFoods was featured in The New York Times. Shop now and get a discount on your first order.

  9. 5 stars
    At the request of my daughter who had seen this recipe, I made this soup and she and her family loved it. I continued to make it each time she requested it. In late April of this year she asked me to make the soup once again. I doubled the recipe because my whole family was here. That evening my daughter sat across fro me and kept saying “Mom, this soup is so good”.! So thank you so much for your recipe. My daughter had cancer and passed away three days after eating the soup and I have always felt so good that I could make it for her because it was the last thing she ate . . .that’s how much she loved it. Today for the first time since then I am once again making the soup for a friend who has cancer. And again I say thank you so much. If food could be a blessing, your soup is certainly one!!

    1. I’m battling cancer my self and was touched by your story I’m definitely making this. Blessings to you and your Family…

  10. 5 stars
    This was delicious! I thought it was flavourful and tasted just like Olive Garden. I used less stock as I wanted it to be thicker. I found it only gave me 4 servings but was filling. I used lots of salt pepper and Parmesan cheese too! Amazing.

  11. Everything turned out amazing! The only problem I had was my carrots and celery weren’t tender! I don’t know what happened!

  12. I’ve just finished the gnocchi soup. It looks delicious but I must say that unless you’re using pre-shredded carrots & pre-diced onions & celery, the 5 minute prep time is a joke. Yes, normally I would use such conveniences but I forgot them when rushing through the store. I also had to add extra flour & seasonings. It would be nice if you could remind us that pre-shredded & pre-diced veggies will make things go more quickly! Now it’s time to dish up. Bon appetit!

  13. Just made this a few hours ago and it’s amazing ! As per my moms habit of not measuring spices I added all the spices to taste didn’t really measure anything so I’m sure it was double if not a little more than recommended for the recipe (I did double the whole thing). I also cooked and seasoned my own chicken breast cubed, they were seasoned with chicken knorr. So I’m sure it added additional seasoning since I didn’t find it bland at all like some of the comments have said. I also per recommendations in the comments drastically reduced the amount of fresh thyme. Over all amazing! I might try making my own gnocchi next time as I wasn’t too fond of the package kind seemed a little too dense.

  14. Made this for the very first time, didn’t have half and half so just used whipping cream and extra chicken broth. Did everything else the same. Was so tasty and delicious and easy to make. Will definitely make it again.

  15. 4 stars
    I just had this soup at OG for the first time. It had a strong chicken flavor, but only two tiny pieces of white meat chicken in it. I used four chicken thighs and then cooked the onions, celery, and garlic in that. Added 1/2 c flour. Added 32 oz. broth, carrots, thyme, and spinach. I then added 1 c. half/half. I have a concentrated chicken base that is used in restaurants by Minor’s. It lasts for two years in the fridge. Got it on Amazon. I added 1/2 tsp. and let it simmer. I added 1/4 tsp. and was happy with the taste. And then the gnocchi. It’s a good soup. Next time I will leave out the celery and the thyme and see if it increases the chicken flavor. Thank you Alyssa.

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