Have you heard the forecast for this weekend? Here in the northeast, they’re predicting somewhere between 3 and 30 inches of snow (seriously!). In my kitchen, snow days mean one thing: gnocchi with pesto.
Years ago my boyfriend—now husband—and I were homebound thanks to a blizzard with little in the fridge but a package of potato gnocchi and fresh basil. A tradition was born.
But like many traditions, this one has evolved over time. I’ve swapped some of the pasta for veggies and beans, adding satiating fiber and protein—plus color and texture that make the dish far more fun to eat. Added bonus: You get a bigger serving for fewer calories. This year, I learned to make my own gnocchi (way easier than you’d think) in addition to the homemade pesto.
Here’s a super user-friendly version using packaged gnocchi and refrigerated pesto sauce so you can take it easy on your snow day—or any other day.
Original recipe: 690 calories per serving
New version: 495 calories per serving
3 cups broccoli florets
1 cup grape tomatoes
1 tablespoon canola oil
8 ounces potato gnocchi
2 tablespoons vegetable broth
2 tablespoons pesto
1 cup cannellini beans
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Spread broccoli and tomatoes in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle with oil and roast for about 25 minutes, or until broccoli begins to crisp.
2. Boil gnocchi according to package directions. Drain water.
3. In a medium saucepan over low heat, combine vegetable broth and pesto. Add gnocchi, cannellini beans, broccoli, and tomatoes and toss until sauce is evenly distributed.
Rachel Meltzer Warren, M.S., R.D., is a New York-based nutrition writer, educator, and counselor. Her work appears in publications such as Prevention, Women’s Health, Good Housekeeping, Every Day with Rachael Ray, SHAPE, and Fitness. Follow her on Twitter @RMWnutrition.