Worth it? absolutely.
But still, shortcuts are nice.
I find it usually means skipping a ‘homemade’ step for a ‘convenience’ step. And guys, I looove me some convenience but I think we all need to admit, it’s not always worth it flavour-wise.
Except when it comes to CHEESY GNOCCHI BAKE!!!
There is zero sacrifice here. Cross my heart. I served this at a dinner party and these words left the lips of one of our guests ‘this is even better than lasagna’. Better.
I tested this recipe in a whole bunch of different ways, but I had such a hard time settling on a final version for the blog because they were all flipping amazing. What this means is, there is a ton of flexibility in the recipe.
Substitute the mushrooms and pepper for your veg of choice or anything you have kicking around in your fridge that needs to get used up STAT. Onions, spinach, zucchini, eggplant would all be excellent. You can even go veggie free. The sauce to gnocchi ratio is extremely forgiving because the gnocchi itself is so starchy that it will thicken the sauce no matter what you decide to add.
Surely, this tomato sauce is familiar to you by now. It’s a staple in both mine and Dara’s homes. This is our Simple 3 Ingredient Tomato Sauce recipe with some added basil. We’ve also used this sauce in our Eggplant Parmesan recipe. I. can’t. get. enough.
If you want to save even more time on this recipe, you can also use a good quality store bought sauce. There are lot of good ones our there.
One of my favourite sacrifice-free shortcuts in this recipe is the random dolloping of ricotta cheese over the dish rather than the messy and impossible task of spreading it evenly over lasagna noodles.And the layering process will take less than 5 minutes. Huge savings.