These Trader Joe's Cauliflower Gnocchi Waffles Are Truly Ingenious

This jaw-dropping creation using Trader Joe's fan-favorite cauliflower gnocchi comes straight out of the kitchen of @traderjoeslist.

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Cauliflower Gnocchi Waffles
Photo: LumiNola/Getty

From cacio e pepe and pasta alle vongole to carbonara, Trader Joe's Cauliflower Gnocchi can easily shape-shift into healthier homemade versions of the fanciest dishes at an Italian restaurant. But if you're only using these little gnocchis to sub into your fave pasta dishes, you're missing out.

Case in point: These low-carb cauliflower gnocchi waffles from @traderjoeslist, aka Natasha Fischer. Each adorable waffle coming out of Fischer's tiny waffle iron (Buy It, $10, target.com) is jam-packed with the ever-so-versatile gnocchi—and nothing else. Meaning, there's plenty of room for innovation. "You can have these waffles for breakfast, lunch, or dinner," says Fischer. Of course, most waffles are that versatile, but because they're cauliflower gnocchi (and not inherently sweet), it just makes more sense to have them at any meal, she says.

For a breakfast that comes together in a pinch, top the gnocchi waffles with a pat of butter, a drizzle of maple syrup, or a handful of fresh berries. When your taste buds are screaming for something savory, smear on some pizza sauce, sprinkle on mozzarella and parmesan, garnish with fresh basil or pepperoni, and lightly toast it in the oven to create a one-of-a-kind pizza waffle that's way more delicious than freezer-burned pizza bagels. There are simply no wrong answers here.

Not to mention, they're a great healthy alternative to normal waffles. Each cauliflower gnocchi waffle is free of added sugars, wheat, and eggs, and is loaded with fiber—packing about 6 grams per 4-inch waffle, which can help you feel full faster and keep constipation at bay, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. And if you're keeping an eye on your carb intake, you'll be pleased to know that each waffle—which is about 75 percent cauliflower—contains just 22 grams of the macronutrient. That's only 38 percent of the carbs you'll find in a plain wheat waffle of roughly the same weight, per the United States Department of Agriculture. Just top it with a jammy egg and feta cheese if you want to up your protein intake. (For an equally delicious, low-carb breakfast bite, turn to the chaffle, aka cheesy waffles.)

Mouth watering yet? Same. Follow Fischer's recipe below to turn the TJ's staple into a dish that's sure to forever change the way you look at gnocchi.

Trader Joe’s List’s Cauliflower Gnocchi Waffles

Makes: 2-3 4-inch waffles

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Preheat waffle maker. (Note: If you have a larger waffle maker, this recipe might yield 1 or 2 bigger waffles, depending on the size of your appliance.)
  2. While waffle maker is preheating, microwave about 15 frozen cauliflower gnocchi in a small bowl for 2 1/2 minutes. If you do not have a microwave, heat cauliflower gnocchi on stove in a pot with 1/4 cup water until softened.
  3. Using tongs, place the cauliflower gnocchi onto the waffle maker's hot surface until completely covered. Close the lid and cook until edges are golden, about 1 to 2 minutes.
  4. Remove cauliflower gnocchi waffle from waffle maker with tongs and arrange on plate.
  5. Add favorite toppings and serve.
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