The air fryer is one of the easiest ways to turn TJ’s cauliflower gnocchi from defrosted or directly from frozen to crispy golden brown perfection.
Hi friends! I found a new way to make my beloved Trader Joe’s Cauliflower Gnocchi, and it’s so freaking good!
Don’t get me wrong I love my one pan skillet creamy gnocchi, sheet pan baked gnocchi and sausage, sheet pan gnocchi and red shrimp (yes, I’m obssesed with Trader Joe’s, see 35+ Healthy Trader Joe’s Recipes and Healthy Trader Joe’s Meal Plan and Shopping List), but for best results, those all need the gnocchi to be defrosted before cooking. Now, defrosting only takes a few minutes in the microwave, but still an extra step.
I’ve loved my air fryer since I’ve gotten it. Sweet and spciy dry rub air fryer wings are now a monthly staple in our house. I also use it for fries, veggies, steak, salmon, all kinds of stuff (I highly recommend the skinnytaste cookbook!) So, I had to try it for gnocchi!
I tested Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi in the air fryer straight from frozen and defrosted, so I wanted to share a bit about the differences.
Most methods I use to cook TJ’s gnocchi are always better if you defrost the gnocchi first. But this time, that wasn’t necessarily the case. What I liked about cooking it from defrosted was that the pieces weren’t stuck together, and I didn’t have to flip it as frequently to get an even golden brown finished product.
Surprisingly though, the frozen pieces didn’t stick together in the air fryer that much when placed in directly from frozen. They were easy to break apart after cooking for 5 minutes. Although from frozen, the gnocchi took slightly longer to cook, I think the result was a little less dried out than from defrosted. I think the extra moisture helps keep the gnocchi from drying out in the air fryer.
So, for this method, I’d say from FROZEN is the winner! Now, you should know that you can swap out the seasonings as you see fit. I love this classic salt, garlic, black pepper combo because the gnocchi was delicious enough to eat on its own, but it also pairs nicely with whatever kind of sauce you want to eat with it!
I tried ours with two different sauces, classic marinara, and paremsan cheese. Always a win. And I also tried it with a white cheddar pesto by Williams and Sonoma I got at Costco a few weeks ago. Both were delicious! So white or red sauce works great if you want sauce at all! Like I said, I would eat these as a snack! (I should add them to my list of Healthy Trader Joe’s Snacks!)
Also, I should add I tried this recipe with the Trader Joe’s kale gnocchi and my two-year-old son ate it like it was a tator tot. If that’s not a parenting win, I don’t know what it is. (Especially since I don’t like kale.)
Air Fryer Cauliflower Gnocchi
- Air Fryer
- Preheat air fryer to 380F.
- Toss gnocchi with oil and seasonings.
- Cook for 15 minutes, turn each piece over after 10 minutes.
- Cook for 5 minutes, seperate all the gnocchi set together, then turn over gnocchi every five minutes for 18-20 minutes.