Bacon/ Cheese/ Date Night Dinners

Date Night Baked Gnocchi with Bacon

December 14, 2017 (Last Updated: January 6, 2020) by Chris Collins

Date night Baked Gnocchi with Bacon is the ultimate Saturday night dinner for two. This delicious cheesy baked gnocchi is served in a tomato cream sauce and couldn’t be more easy to make!

baked gnocchi served up with wine glass and candle blurred in background

Gnocchi in Tomato Cream Sauce

Oh gnocchi, how I love thee. Soft pillows of comfort, how could you not fall in love? 

There’s a million and one things to do with gnocchi, but today we’re going to stir it through a creamy tomato sauce, plonk in some crispy bacon and baked it in the oven. The cream works perfectly in this sauce as it cuts through the acidity of the tomatoes. The end result is a rich, luxurious sauce that is seriously to die for. If that wasn’t enough to fall in love with this meal already, here’s why else I think (know 😏) you’ll love it:

  • Easy – It’s fool-proof. Seriously, even the most beginner of cooks can master this dish, I promise you that.
  • Versatile – Vegetarian? leave out the bacon. Love spice? Pack it with chilli. Looking for more vegetables? Absolutely stuff it with your favourite veg! On a diet? Erm, possibly not the dish for you. But you get my point.
  • Perfect Date Night Dinner –  Carbs, cheese and bacon. There’s no other way to cook a meal for two on a Saturday night.

How to make Gnocchi in Tomato Cream Sauce (quick summary)

  1. Fry bacon, onion and garlic.
  2. Stir in cream, tomato passata, cherry tomatoes, basil, parsley, smoked paprika and mozzarella.
  3. Simmer until thickened. Stir through boiled gnocchi.

gnocchi in a tomato cream sauce with wooden spoon scooping out gnocchi

Cheesy Baked Gnocchi

Right, creamy tomato gnocchi done. And realistically you could leave it there. BUT, well, isn’t everything better baked in cheese? 

Simply pour your gnocchi into a suitably sized oven safe dish, top with plenty of cheddar and bake in the oven until golden and gooey. By the time you’ve baked it, the top is going to be beautifully crisp and the centre is just going to be a work of art. I also tend to sprinkle some leftover basil and parsley after, you know, just to make it seem more healthy. 

Top Tip – Ensure you only boil the gnocchi until JUST cooked otherwise it’ll turn mushy when you bake it. You want it still a tiny bit firm. 
Be careful! The cherry tomatoes will be ultra hot when the gnocchi comes out.

How to make baked gnocchi in tomato cream sauce - 3 step by step photos

The Ultimate Date Night Dinner

For me, the perfect date night is staying in eating carbs until I fall into a food coma of self loathing and regret. Hmm, sounds like a familiar scenario in the DGBMH household, but by labelling it ‘date night’ it all of a sudden seems justified. Maybe I’m old before my age, but going out on a Saturday night and spending money on average food is not for me. Luckily my hubby agrees and is more partial to an evening eat off. 

This baked gnocchi has to be one of the ultimate easy dinner date recipes for two. Ridiculously quick and easy to cook, but most importantly it’s so comforting and hearty in whichever way you choose to serve it. In excess, it certainly fills the criteria of ‘food coma of self loathing and regret’ which is fab. Always perfect for date night 🤣

What to serve with baked gnocchi?

When it comes to what to have it with (oh yes, there’s more) apart from an entire bottle of red wine, because every date night dinner needs excessive amounts of wine, we’ll always go for a side salad and garlic bread.

If you are going for a side salad I do recommend checking out my Homemade Balsamic Glaze. Not only do I drizzle this stuff on literally everything, but in this case it actually pairs really well with the gnocchi. Baked Gnocchi with Bacon as you’ve probably worked out is quite rich. Adding a side salad with a drizzle of balsamic glaze will balance that out neatly with a hint of acidity and sweetness.

In this instance we just went for some rocket (arugula), sliced olives and olive oil.

Hey whilst you’re here why not check out my other dinners for two?

Date Night Dinner Recipes

date night gnocchi with serving spoon digging in fresh out the oven

Whether you’re looking for dinner date ideas at home, a Saturday night meal with your bestie or just a hearty homecooked meal, baked gnocchi with bacon is here to fulfil all your foodie needs. With it’s rich and creamy interior and crispy cheese topping, this dish is enough to make you fall in love all over again.

If you like the sound of this gnocchi recipe, I’m confident you’ll LOVE these too:

Best Gnocchi Recipes

Alrighty, let’s tuck into this baked gnocchi recipe shall we?!

baked gnocchi plated up with garlic bread and side salad

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How to make Baked Gnocchi with Bacon (Full Recipe & Video)

Date Night Baked Gnocchi with Bacon

Date Night Baked Gnocchi with Bacon

Date night Baked Gnocchi with Bacon is the ultimate Saturday night dinner for two. This delicious cheesy gnocchi bake couldn't be more easy to make!
5 from 4 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dinner / Main Course
Cuisine: date night dinner / Italian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings (click & slide): 2
Calories: 988kcal
Cost per serving: £5 / $6.50

Equipment:

  • 12" Skillet & Wooden Spoon
  • Large Pot & Colander
  • Sharp Knife & Chopping Board
  • Suitably Sized Baking Dish
  • Serving Spoon
  • Cheese Grater

Ingredients (check list):

  • 14oz / 400g Gnocchi
  • 2 cups / 500ml Tomato Passata (Pureed Tomatoes)
  • 1/4 cup / 60ml Double/Heavy Cream, at room temp
  • 4.4oz / 125g Mozzarella Balls (can sub shredded)
  • 1 cup / 100g Cheddar Cheese, or as needed
  • 8-10 small Cherry Tomatoes
  • 4 rashers Smoked Streaky Bacon, chopped
  • 1 medium White Onion, finely diced
  • 1 clove Garlic, finely diced
  • 1 handful Fresh Parsley, finely diced (save some to serve)
  • 1 handful Fresh Basil, finely diced (save some to serve)
  • 1 tsp Smoked Paprika
  • Olive Oil, as needed
  • Salt & Pepper, to taste

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 390F/200C.
  • In a pan, fry up 4 rashers of chopped bacon in a little olive oil until it just begins to brown. Add 1 medium diced onion and then 1 clove of minced garlic, fry until browned and fragrant.
  • Pour in 2cups/500ml tomato passata and stir through 1/4cup/60ml cream until fully blended. Add a handful of parsley & basil, 8-10 cherry tomatoes, 1 tsp smoked paprika and stir through 4.4oz/125g mozzarella until melted and gooey. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Pop 14oz/400g gnocchi in salted boiling water and cook until they just start to float (2mins). Drain and stir through your sauce.
  • Place in a suitably sized baking dish, top with cheese and bake for around 15-20mins or until golden and crispy on top and bubbling in the centre. 
  • Serve with an extra sprinkle of leftover herbs.

Quick 1 min demo!

Notes:

a) Gnocchi - The aim of the game is to JUST about cook the gnocchi. Whatever it says on your packet instruction take 1 minute off. You want to release some starch so it doesn't go too gloopy in the oven, but you don't want to completely cook the gnocchi and cook it further in the oven as it will be too soft.
b) Cherry Tomatoes -If you're adding cherry tomatoes be careful as they will be incredibly hot when they come out the oven.
c) Pasta - You can sub pasta instead of gnocchi, just use 7oz/200g instead (penne works great).
d) Dried Herbs - Definitely opt for fresh, dried herbs won't have enough time to infuse into the sauce.
e) Calories - based on using 1 tsp olive oil to fry, 1 cup cheddar to top and divided by two. Hey, it's date night, treat yourself!

Nutrition:

Nutrition Facts
Date Night Baked Gnocchi with Bacon
Amount Per Serving
Calories 988 Calories from Fat 626
% Daily Value*
Fat 69.51g107%
Saturated Fat 34.096g170%
Trans Fat 0.667g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2.783g
Monounsaturated Fat 16.933g
Cholesterol 180mg60%
Sodium 1475mg61%
Potassium 1072mg31%
Carbohydrates 55.14g18%
Fiber 6g24%
Sugar 14.89g17%
Protein 38.65g77%
Vitamin A 3942IU79%
Vitamin C 34.3mg42%
Calcium 802mg80%
Iron 2.97mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition is based on the absence of salt unless stated as a measurement in the ingredients. Cost is worked out based on ingredients bought from UK supermarkets, then divided by the number of servings. In both instances these values are just for guidance. Please check out my FAQ Page for more info.
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16 Comments

  • Reply
    Nisha
    June 8, 2019 at 12:54 am

    I tried making this. Turned out incredible! Thank you 🙂

    • Reply
      Chris Collins
      June 8, 2019 at 12:43 pm

      That’s awesome to hear! Thanks for coming back and letting me know 🙂

  • Reply
    Agness of Run Agness Run
    December 19, 2017 at 10:34 am

    This seems like a truly appetizing dish, Chris. A prefect combination of some of my favourite ingredients. What kind of onion do you use?

    • Reply
      Chris
      December 19, 2017 at 11:13 am

      Definitely one of my favs! Here I use white onion. Thanks for reminding me to put that in the recipe!! 🙂

  • Reply
    Jillian
    December 15, 2017 at 5:04 am

    5 stars
    I love Gnocchi and adding bacon is like the cherry……no wait, the bacon on top!

    • Reply
      Chris
      December 15, 2017 at 11:59 am

      Haha love it!!

  • Reply
    colleen kennedy
    December 15, 2017 at 3:49 am

    Yesssss! This is perfect for date night or any night in my book! Yummo!

    • Reply
      Chris
      December 15, 2017 at 11:58 am

      You’re so right, any night as an excuse!!

  • Reply
    Chichi
    December 15, 2017 at 2:55 am

    5 stars
    This dish is so calling my name. Looks de-li-ci-OUS..

    • Reply
      Chris
      December 15, 2017 at 11:58 am

      Thanks, Chichi! 🙂

    • Reply
      Reemie
      September 27, 2020 at 1:48 am

      5 stars
      Made this for dinner tonight. Wow, talk about delicious!!! Thank you for this recipe.

      • Reply
        Chris Collins
        September 27, 2020 at 11:38 am

        That’s awesome to hear! Thanks so much for popping back for a review 🙂

  • Reply
    Haley D. Williams
    December 15, 2017 at 2:13 am

    I seriously have to make this. The gooey cheese looks delish!

    • Reply
      Chris
      December 15, 2017 at 11:57 am

      Allllllll about the gooey cheese!

  • Reply
    Lisa Bryan
    December 14, 2017 at 11:29 pm

    5 stars
    All that bacon cheesiness looks divine – yum!

    • Reply
      Chris
      December 15, 2017 at 11:57 am

      Divine is the certainly how it tasted! 🙂

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