“Creamy” Vegan Pesto Gnocchi

Okay so this recipe is absolutely as delicious as it is easy! My being a Whole Foods kind of girl I bought most of the ingredients there, but you can really go to just about any store for these things!

Ingredients:
– 1 package of Whole Foods Market fresh gnocchi (gluten free is what I used but feel free to use any kind you want!)
– 1 package of Field Roast Grain Meat apple & sage vegan sausage
– 1/2 a cup of portobello mushroom
– a cup of fresh spinach
– 1/2 a bell pepper
– Salt and Pepper to taste
– 4 tablespoons of your favorite basil pesto
– 1 cup of Cashew ricotta

Cashew Ricotta:
Soak 1 cup of raw cashews in a pot of water, covering with about an inch of water, for at least 1 hour. Pour the cup of raw cashews, drained of excess water, into a blender or food processor. Add the juice of 1 whole lemon, 2 heaping tablespoons of “Braggs” nutritional yeast, 2 cloves of finely chopped garlic (or more if you’re anything like me!), salt and pepper to taste, and about 1/4 cup of water. If you find that your mixture seems to thick, add in a tablespoon of olive oil.

In a skillet on medium/high heat, add 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil. Add 2-3 cloves of finely chopped garlic and begin to saute. Once garlic begins to brown add in your chopped bell pepper. Feel free to chop peppers however you like, however for this I chopped mine into strips so they would pop through the gnocchi.

When the peppers have started to break down, add the slice portobello mushrooms. When the mushrooms begin to brown, add your salt and pepper. If you salt veggies before they cook you will slow down the cooking process and it will take much longer for them to absorb the flavors.

You will notice your peppers and mushrooms will begin to “sweat” out their natural waters. At this time, add your vegan sausage. I like to cut my sausage links into small pieces so that they can crisp up. The sausage will only take about 2-3 minutes to cook with the peppers and mushrooms. Once sausage looks browned on both sides, add in your cup of fresh spinach into the skillet. Stir spinach into your sausage, peppers, and mushrooms. Then turn off the heat and cover the pan. This will allow the spinach to wilt down into the mixture without the need for any extra olive oil.

Follow the instructions on the back of your package of gnocchi for cooking time. Make sure to salt your water because that is the only time you get to season your gnocchi!

When gnocchi is fully cooked, turn skillet back on to a low heat and add gnocchi. Fold in your cashew ricotta, 4 tablespoons of your favorite basil pesto, and 3 tablespoons of the salted starchy water from the gnocchi pot. The addition of the starchy water will allow your sauce to marry to the gnocchi.

Serve in your favorite dish and prepare for the yummiest guilt free meal! Warning- whoever you cook this for will most definitely be coming back over for more!

I hope that you enjoy this recipe and please feel free to message me for any questions or concerns! Send pictures if you try this recipe out!!

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