This Olive Garden copycat vegan chicken gnocchi soup is super creamy, hearty, comforting, and the perfect easy fall dinner recipe. This gnocchi soup is plant-based and vegetarian but will be loved by omnivores alike!
why you’ll love this vegan gnocchi soup
This fall, I’ve been experimenting with new (at least to me) soup recipes. I’ve made my Vegan Zuppa Toscana and I’ve seen a lot of people sharing this chicken and gnocchi Olive Garden copycat soup. I decided to try my hand and veganizing it….and boy! Let me tell you, this creamy vegan chicken gnocchi soup is AMAZING.
It tastes almost like a chicken pot pie filling in soup form. It’s super creamy, hearty, and can definitely be a whole meal on its own.
- Packed with Flavor: we’re adding lots of spices and fresh herbs to make the most delicious soup for fall.
- Easy Recipe: While we do use quite a few seasonings, they’re all relatively simple ingredients that are easy to find. This recipe only takes a few steps and less than an hour to make.
- Comforting and Filling: the pillowy soft gnocchi and the vegan chicken are hearty and add lots of protein to the dish to keep you full longer.
- Great for a Busy Weeknight: this creamy vegan chicken gnocchi soup is ready in under an hour and can feed about 6 people!
- Good for Meal Prep: it keeps great in the fridge and would be great for meal prepping if you wanted to double the recipe.
To make this creamy vegan gnocchi soup, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- Fresh Garlic
- Vegan Chicken: like Morningstar or Gardein
- Potato Gnocchi
- Vegetable Broth
- Non-Dairy Milk: I prefer extra creamy Almond Milk or Oat Milk. We’re using this instead of heavy cream
- Plus a few spices and salt!
- White Beans: sub in white beans for the vegan chicken for a whole foods plant-based protein
- Vegan Chicken Broth: you can use vegan chicken broth or bouillon in place of the vegetable broth
- Cauliflower Gnocchi: feel free to sub in store-bought cauliflower gnocchi for the potato gnocchi (Trader Joe’s makes a great version!)
- Homemade Gnocchi: if you’re feeling ambitious, you can even make your own homemade gnocchi
- Canned Tomatoes: make this into a creamy tomato gnocchi soup by adding in a can of diced tomatoes (or tomatoes with Italian seasoning for even more flavor)
- Nutritional Yeast: for extra flavor, sprinkle in some good ol’ nooch
- Vegan Parmesan Cheese: like Violife
- A squeeze of lemon juice: for a little zest and acid (you could also add a splash of apple cider vinegar)
- Bay Leaf: for additional flavor
what is gnocchi?
If you’re not familiar with gnocchi, it originates from Italian cuisine. While it’s similar to pasta in practice, it’s actually a small dumpling usually made from potatoes.
You can also find gnocchi made from sweet potatoes, pumpkin, cauliflower, and other starchy vegetables. It has a very unique soft texture that pairs well with thick sauces and soups like this!
Most potato gnocchi is accidentally gluten-free, but if you have a gluten allergy, be sure to pick up a brand that specifies that it is gluten-free gnocchi on the package.
- Large Stock Pot or Dutch Oven
How to Make the vegan Gnocchi Soup
This ‘chicken’ gnocchi soup is luckily super easy to make! All you need is a large stockpot and you’re good to go. Below are the main steps:
*Video Tutorial is Above the Recipe Card!*
STEP 1: Start by heating the olive oil over medium-low heat in a large pot or dutch oven.
STEP 2: Next up, add the onion and saute until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic, celery, carrots, diced potatoes, dried thyme, poultry seasoning, garlic powder, dried parsley, salt & pepper, and the veggie stock.
STEP 3: Simmer for 20-25 minutes over medium-high heat until the potatoes soften.
STEP 4: When the potatoes are soft, mash a few of them up with a fork in the pot. Add in the non-dairy milk and fresh thyme.
STEP 5: Cook the gnocchi according to your package’s instructions.
STEP 6: Let simmer for another 10 minutes to continue to thicken. Add the cooked gnocchi and diced vegan chickens into the pot.
📌 TIP: Let the soup finish simmering while the gnocchi cooks.
STEP 7: Cook the soup for 5 more minutes until the vegan chickens are warm.
Serving the Vegan Gnocchi Soup
Spoon the soup while hot into your favorite soup bowl.
Sprinkle with red pepper flakes or spoon on a drizzle of cashew cream.
You can also dip crusty bread into the soup!
You can keep this soup in an airtight container in the fridge for 5-7 days.
It may thicken up more after the first day because of the potatoes and gnocchi, but you can thin it out with a little more veggie stock. Good to go!
- use unsweetened vegan milk: plain unsweetened milk without much flavor works best in this recipe. I prefer extra creamy almond milk or oat milk since they add lots of creaminess.
- mash the potatoes slightly: this step helps thicken the soup
- add the vegan chicken toward the end of cooking: so they retain their texture
Vegan Gnocchi Soup faq
For this recipe, I like to use Gardein’s un-breaded “chicken strips”, like the ones that come in their Teriyaki Chik’n. If using this product, you can place the sauce packet that comes with it back in the freezer for other future recipes.
If you can’t find un-breaded vegan chicken, you could also use diced-up Gardein vegan chicken nuggets or Morningstar vegan chicken nuggets.
A non-dairy milk that is unsweetened and neutral in flavor works best in this soup. I prefer plain oat milk or unsweetened almond milk. You could also use plain unsweetened soy milk. I don’t recommend using coconut milk or other kinds of dairy-free milk with strong flavors.
If you’d like to thicken it up while still hot, there are a few ways you can do so! Note: This soup will continue to thicken as it cools down.
–The first method is to smash up a few more of the potatoes in the soup. The starches in the potatoes will immediately help thicken the broth.
–The second method is to add 1-2 tablespoons of all purpose flour to the soup. To do this, you’ll want to form a slurry by mixing 3-4 tbsp of the broth per 1 tbsp of flour. Then, pour the slurry into the soup and simmer for a few minutes to cook the flour.
Looking for more vegan soup recipes?
- The Best Vegan “Beef” Stew
- 30 Minute Vegan Potato Leek Soup
- Roasted Sweet Potato Carrot Soup
- Easy Vegan Ramen
- Panera Copycat 10 Vegetable Soup
- Italian Pastina Soup
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