This Lobster Gnocchi has fresh lobster, potato gnocchi and a flavorful silky parmesan garlic cream sauce. It is the most perfect meal to make for a date night at home or any time you are cooking a special dinner.
The pillowy gnocchi and sweet pieces of lobster combined with the rich parmesan garlic cream sauce make this meal hard to forget. It is incredibly tasty and one you will want to make over and over!
While this dish seems quite fancy, it is actually very simple to make. Like my Scallop Risotto, this dish is perfect to make if you love cooking up shellfish dishes.
What is Gnocchi?
Gnocchi are Italian potato dumplings. They are served in similar ways as pasta. They are delicious with a variety of different sauces, vegetables and a lot of the time can be found in soups!
Boil the gnocchi just like pasta. Drain it before adding it to sauces or soups.
Why You Will Love This Recipe
- The sauce – This creamy parmesan garlic sauce is the silkiest, most delicious sauce. It’s flavored with plenty of parmesan cheese, white wine and fresh garlic.
- The gnocchi – These soft and chewy potato dumplings add the perfect texture in the creamy lobster sauce alongside the pieces of fresh lobster.
- The lobster – Pieces of tender, juicy lobster from fresh lobster tails are cooked in butter before being added to the delicious sauce.
Ingredients for Lobster Gnocchi
You can buy the ingredients you need for this recipe at your local grocery store or from an online retailer.
- Butter – Unsalted butter is used to poach the lobster and it is also used in the cream sauce.
- Salt – I use Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt, if you’re using Morton’s Kosher salt then use about 3/4 of the amount called for.
- Lobster tails – You will need two pounds of fresh raw lobster tails. I used four 8-ounce lobster tails. You will need to remove the meat from the lobster shells before poaching it. Here is a great video showing how to do that.
- Green onion – You will use the white part of the green onions in the cream sauce.
- Garlic – Fresh garlic cloves are going to be best.
- Crushed red pepper flakes – These are used to flavor the cream sauce. They add just a touch of heat.
- Tarragon – Dried tarragon adds great flavor to the cream sauce with a hint of sweetness.
- White wine – A dry white white, like chardonnay is used in the cream sauce.
- Heavy cream – This is the base of the cream sauce.
- Lemon – You will use both the lemon juice and the lemon zest to add a tangy flavor to the cream sauce.
- Parmesan cheese – Fresh grated parmesan is added to the cream sauce.
- Gnocchi – You will prepare 1 pound gnocchi to be added to the cream sauce with the lobster.
- Basil – Fresh basil is added as a garnish.
- Chives – Fresh chives are added as a garnish.
- Kitchen shears – You will need to use kitchen shears to remove the meat from the lobster tails. To see how to do this, watch this video.
- High sided large frying pan – A frying pan is used to poach the lobster and to make the cream sauce.
- Large stock pot – You will use a large stock pot to cook the gnocchi.
- Cutting board – You will need a cutting board to prep your ingredients.
- Sharp knife – Use a sharp knife to cut the lobster, green onions, basil, and chives.
- Colander – A colander is used to drain the gnocchi after cooking.
- Use raw lobster tails. You can buy fresh or frozen, just make sure it’s quality lobster.
- It’s okay if the lobster is slightly underdone, it will finish cooking in the hot sauce.
- Use kitchen shears to cut the underneath of the tail lengthwise. Open the tail and carefully pull the meat out in one piece.
- Reserve a half cup of the gnocchi water after cooking it. You can use it to thin out the sauce if needed.
- Buy a block of good parmesan cheese and shred it yourself as opposed to buying lower quality pre-shredded.
- Cook lobster tails to 140°F. Use a meat thermometer to check temperature. Cooking the lobster past this point in the butter will result in a tough rubbery meat instead of soft and juicy.
How to Make Lobster Gnocchi
Here is how to make this seafood gnocchi dish. For the full ingredient list and instructions, see the recipe card below.
Make the Lobster
Remove the lobster meat from the shells.
In a large frying pan, bring 2 tablespoons of water to a boil and then start whisking in the butter, by the tablespoonfuls. Let the butter melt after each addition before adding more.
Do not allow the butter to boil. You want it to be around 180°F.
Add the lobster tails and allow them to cook for 2 minutes on each side, covering the pan for the last 1-2 minutes of cooking.
Remove the lobster from the pan and set it aside to cool before cutting it into 1-inch pieces.
Make the Gnocchi
Cook the gnocchi according to the package instructions, adding 2 teaspoons of salt to the water before boiling.
Reserve 1 cup of the water before draining the gnocchi. Set the gnocci and water aside until the sauce is ready.
Make the Sauce
Remove ¾ cup of the melted butter from the frying pan and discard.
Add the green onions, garlic, crushed red pepper, tarragon, and salt to the butter in the frying pan. Cook this over medium-low heat for about 2 minutes.
Add the white wine and cook until it is reduced by half.
Next add the heavy cream, bring the mixture to a boil then allow it to simmer for 40 minutes, stirring it occasionally.
Add the lemon juice and zest and stir it to combine.
Finally, add the lobster and gnocchi, stirring to combine. If the sauce is too thick, add some of the reserved gnocchi water. Add a little at a time, until desired consistency is reached.
Spoon into serving dishes and top with basil and chives. Serve immediately.
Store leftover lobster gnocchi in an airtight container, or covered tightly with plastic wrap, in the refrigerator for up to three days. Reheat in a sauté pan, stirring frequently with a rubber spatula.
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Gnocchi is a potato dumpling that is often served like pasta in various sauces, with vegetables and often found in soups. Gnocchi doesn’t have much flavor on its own so adding sauces and seasonings gives these soft and chewy dumplings their flavor.
Use kitchen shears to cut the underneath of the tail lengthwise. Open the tail and carefully pull the meat out in one piece. Here is a quick and easy to follow video showing how to remove the lobster meat.
Fresh lobster tails are going to be best, but frozen would work well too. To use frozen lobster tails, fully thaw the tails in the refrigerator before removing the meat from the shells. It is important, for taste and texture, to use high quality lobster.
Most importantly, make sure you’re buying raw lobster tails, not pre-cooked. Never thaw the lobster tails in water, they will become full of water.
Rinse the shells off with cold water to wash away any dirt. Pull off any veins. Do not submerge the tails in water because the meat will absorb a lot of the water.
You can remove the lobster tails from the pan when they reach 140°F. They will continue cooking once taken off the heat. They will also cook slightly more when added to the sauce. If you overcook the lobster meat it will become tough and rubbery.
Use a thermometer to check the temperature of the lobster. The meat will turn white and become firmer.
- Tarragon – Use ¾ teaspoon of fresh tarragon in the place of the ¼ teaspoon dried.
- White wine – Use chicken or vegetable stock instead of the white wine.
- 2 tbsp water
- 16 tbsp unsalted butter
- 2½ tsp kosher salt diamond crystal, use ¾ the amount if using morton's kosher salt
- 2 lbs lobster tails shelled
- 4 stalks green onion white part only, sliced very thin
- 4 large cloves garlic minced
- ¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- ¼ tsp dried tarragon
- 1 tsp kosher salt diamond crystal
- ¼ cup white wine dry like chardonnay
- 4 cups heavy cream
- juice + zest of 1 lemon
- 4 oz parmesan cheese shredded (I prefer to shred my own)
- 1 lb gnocchi
- 2 tsp salt
- ½ cup gnocchi water
- ½ cup fresh basil chiffonade
- ¼ cup chives sliced thin
- Cut the bottom side of the lobster shells then carefully remove the tail meat in one piece
- Boil 2 tbsp water in a large frying pan then immediately start adding butter, 1 tbsp at a time. Whisk butter until melted between each addition. Do not boil the butter, you want it to be around 180°F
- Once all the butter is melted, add the lobster tails. Cook for 2 minutes each side, covering the pan for the last 1-2 minutes. I used 4-8oz lobster tails
- Remove lobster from pan and set aside to cool
Making the Sauce
- Remove ¾ cup butter from the lobster pan and set aside. Add green onions, garlic, crushed red pepper, dried tarragon and salt to the frying pan then cook for 2 minutes over medium-low heat
- Add white wine and reduce by half
- Add heavy cream then bring to a simmer for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally
- Stir in lemon juice and zest
- Add parmesan cheese, whisk until smooth
- Add cut lobster and gnocchi. Thin the sauce with the reserved gnocchi water if too thick
- Garnish with basil and chives, serve immediately
- Cook gnocchi according to package directions. Add 2 tsp kosher salt to water before boiling the gnocchi. Drain and add to the finished pasta sauce