This simple dish is a perfect way to showcase Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi. Sausage, mushrooms, spinach, and garlic help make that gnocchi truly delicious. Ready in only 20 minutes!

The first time I made this Sausage & Mushroom Cauliflower Gnocchi for my husband he yelled (I was upstairs and he was downstairs) “This is amazing! I was going to put hot sauce on it but it doesn’t need anything!” And that, my friends, is the highest compliment David can pay me because that man loves his hot sauce.

For this recipe I use Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi. I’ll be the first to admit, there is a lot of hype around this stuff. People LOVE IT. And let me tell you, I SEE WHY.

Trader Joe’s is the first brand thus far that has created a quality cauliflower gnocchi made of mostly cauliflower. Yet it tastes and has the same texture as a regular potato gnocchi. I’m not kidding. What they’ve done is nothing short of magical.

There are other brands trying their hand at cauliflower gnocchi too. Green Giant has one in the freezer section at my Walmart. I’ve used it and it’s also great. Where it falls short is that it contains less cauliflower and it contains wheat flour. So while I think it’s good, Trader Joe’s has definitely created the superior version.

How does Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi compare to a potato gnocchi? From a nutrition standpoint, Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi has less calories and carbohydrates but more fat. It also has more fiber which is a very good thing!

But guess what? You can use any gnocchi you want for this delicious dish! We cook it separately and then add the finished gnocchi back to the skillet at the end. This means you can easily modify your cooking time for that gnocchi if necessary.

For this recipe you’ll need (full list of ingredients and instructions are in the recipe card below):

  • A cooking fat like extra-virgin olive oil, ghee, or butter
  • Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi (or another gnocchi)
  • Fully cooked sausages (I love Applegate and Aidell’s chicken sausage)
  • Sliced mushrooms
  • Fresh spinach
  • Simple seasonings

The key to preparing this dish is in how you cook that gnocchi. Don’t boil it! We want to get some beautiful browning and crispiness on the outside so I recommend a quick pan fry. (That holds true even if you’re using a potato gnocchi. Pan fry all the way, baby!)

The end result is a crispy exterior with a chewy center. It’s just quite perfect really.

After pan frying the gnocchi, you’ll remove it from the pan. Sauté the sausage, mushrooms, and garlic. Season and stir in the spinach. Then add the gnocchi back to the pan.

It’s not hard, folks!

Does this dish taste like cauliflower?

Oh goodness no! Cauliflower gnocchi can have a mild cauliflower taste if you’re eating it completely on its own. But we’re not! This dish doesn’t taste like cauliflower at all! Browning those cuties in ghee adds a rich flavor on its own but then when we incorporate the sausage, mushrooms, and seasonings… no chance you’ll know these are made from cauliflower!

Is Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi allowed on Whole30?

If you’re doing a round of Whole30 I’d say that cauliflower gnocchi would be considered SWYPO. This means that even though the ingredients may be compliant (depending on the brand), it’s still a food that truly captures the feeling of pasta which is not allowed on Whole30. So stay clear of cauliflower gnocchi until you’ve finished your Whole30. (The exception of course being that if you’re doing more of a loose Whole30 then maybe you want to go for it. It’s your call and your Whole30.)

Can you sub potato gnocchi in this recipe?

Heck yes you can! We use potato gnocchi regularly and I pan fry it exactly like I do the cauliflower gnocchi. No need to modify the recipe!

What if you don’t have a Trader Joe’s?

You’re welcome to use another type of gnocchi in this recipe. I’ve tested it with both potato gnocchi and an alternative brand of cauliflower gnocchi with no problem.

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5 from 6 votes

Sausage & Mushroom Cauliflower Gnocchi

This simple dish is a perfect way to showcase cauliflower gnocchi. Sausage, mushrooms, spinach, and garlic help make that gnocchi truly delicious. Make it all in only 20 minutes!


Cauliflower Gnocchi

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, ghee, or butter
  • 12 oz Trader Joe's frozen cauliflower gnocchi

Sausage + Mushrooms

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, ghee, or butter
  • 4 fully cooked sausages, sliced into circles 1/4 inch thick
  • 8 oz sliced mushrooms
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 2 to 3 oz fresh spinach


  • Add 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, ghee, or butter to a large skillet. (I use my 12" skillet.) Once pan is hot, add the gnocchi in a single layer. Sauté the gnocchi on medium-high heat, without flipping, until the side touching the pan is golden in color (about 2 minutes). Don't move them until you've achieved that color and seared the bottom of the gnocchi! Then carefully flip and sauté again. You can shake the pan or gently move the gnocchi at this point until all sides are golden. Total cooking time will be 8 to 10 minutes. Once done, remove gnocchi from skillet and set aside.
  • Add 2 more tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, ghee, or butter to the same skillet you just used for the gnocchi. Add the sliced sausage and mushrooms. Sauté, flipping sausage frequently, for 3 to 5 minutes or until sausage and mushrooms have some browning.
  • Add the minced garlic, salt, pepper, basil, oregano, and paprika. Stir. Sauté until garlic is golden, about one minute.
  • Reduce heat to medium-low. Gently stir in spinach and gnocchi. (Do this carefully so you don't break up your gorgeous gnocchi!) Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until spinach is wilted and gnocchi is warmed.


If using Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi, don’t thaw it. Just add it to the skillet straight from the freezer.


Calories: 403kcal, Carbohydrates: 20g, Protein: 16g, Fat: 29g, Saturated Fat: 12g, Cholesterol: 98mg, Sodium: 1451mg, Potassium: 180mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 371IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Iron: 1mg
Did you make this recipe?Tag @thewholecook and hashtag it #thewholecook on Instagram.

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