Are you looking for a vegan gnocchi sauce recipe that is made without cream? Then, search no longer and try the absolute best tomato pumpkin sauce gnocchi made with coconut milk. This fall pasta dish combines three flavors that go incredibly well together and will make you lick your plate! You might also want to have a look at this ultra-creamy pumpkin puree pasta!
Why this recipe works
Not sure what to expect? It is a savory pumpkin pasta dish drowned in a thick and creamy tomato sauce made with pumpkin puree. It's slightly sweet and doesn't taste like coconut milk.
- It's the perfect flavor combination. The beauty of this sauce is the balance between the subtleness of the pumpkin and the acidity tomato that is present but not overpowering. Pumpkin puree add richness to the sauce, while sage and nutmeg add depth.
- It's super versatile. The pumpkin sauce tastes great over gnocchi, other types of pasta or even in a lasagna.
- It's allergen-friendly. This pumpkin sauce gnocchi recipe is vegan and gluten-free. Coconut milk is used to replace cream and make this pumpkin sauce dairy free. It also nut-free as the sauce is made without cashews. We love it because it fits a variety of diets while being uncomplicated and delicious.
Key ingredient tips
This recipe is made from pantry ingredients and comes together in less than 30 minutes. Here are some things to consider when grocery shopping.
Coconut milk. You will need canned, full-fat coconut milk for this recipe. Sometimes, the cream and the coconut water separate (especially if the can has been standing still in your pantry for a while). If it's the case, scoop off the cream floating at the top. Use about ¼ cup of cream and ¼ cup of coconut water for 2 servings.
100% Pumpkin puree. Make sure it's made from steamed pumpkin only. You can buy it canned or make your own pumpkin puree from scratch. Don't use pumpkin pie filling.
Tomato paste. It's usually sold in tubes or tiny cans. Don't substitute it with tomato sauce. The tomato paste adds depth to the sauce without making the tomato overpowering.
Add spinach. If you want to add veggies, feel free to stir spinach into the sauce.
Step-by-step with pictures
Start with the vegan sage butter. Melt the vegan butter in a saucepan and infuse it with sage leaves. When the leaves are crispy, remove them from the pan and add the minced onion and garlic. Sauté until tender.
Add the tomato paste and the spices. Cook the tomato paste over medium-high heat until it gets dark and slightly sticks to the saucepan.
Simmer the sauce. Add the pumpkin puree, coconut milk and plat-based milk to the saucepan. Give it a good stir. Let it simmer over low heat while you cook the gnocchi.
Cook the gnocchi. Bring water to a boil and cook the gnocchi. When they are done, drain them and add them to the sauce.
Pro tip: you know the gnocchi are cooked when they start floating at the surface.
Storage and reheating tips
Storage tips. You can either store the sauce separately or the gnocchi and the sauce already mixed together. Put leftovers in an air-tight container and store them in the fridge for up to 2 days. The sauce will keep fresh for about 3 days if stored separately.
Reheating tips. Before reheating the gnocchi, add a splash of dairy-free milk or (coconut) water. Microwave them in a bowl covered with a plate. This allows the gnocchi to steam and become soft again. You can also reheat them in a saucepan with a lid on.
Freezing tips. Double the amount of sauce and freeze it away to eat with pasta later on or use in a lasagna. You can also freeze the gnocchi and the sauce already mixed in for up to 3 months for a quick dinner.
Frequently asked questions
You can either make more sauce to store in the freezer or use the pumpkin puree in your lattes or in other recipes. We love this pumpkin puree pasta.
Coconut water is extremely hydrating and can be drunk as is. You can also add it to smoothies, soups or stews.
A 15 oz can of pumpkin puree yield almost two full cups.
More weeknight pasta recipes
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Tomato Pumpkin Sauce Gnocchi with Coconut Milk
- 1 yellow onion
- 1 clove of garlic
- 2 tablespoons vegan butter
- 6 fresh sage leaves
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper optional
- ½ teaspoon mild paprika powder or smoked paprika
- ¾ cup (200 g) pumpkin puree* canned or homemade
- ½ cup (120 g) plant-based milk alternative
- ½ cup (120 g) full-fat coconut milk* scopp off the solid cream floating on top
- 1 pinch of salt
- 2 servings of gluten-free gnocchi I use the brand Schär
- Mince the onion and the garlic.
- Melt the vegan butter in a saucepan. Add the sage leave and stir for 2 minutes over medium heat until crispy. Remove them from the saucepan and set aside.
- Add the onion and the garlic. Sauté until tender.
- Add the tomato paste, nutmeg, cayenne pepper and paprika to the pan. Cook it down until it slightly sticks to the pan.
- Add in the pumpkin puree, coconut milk (see notes) and plant-based milk. Simmer over low heat for 10 minutes.
- In the meantime, cook the gnocchi according to the directions on the package. You know they are cooked when they float at the surface. Drain them.
- Add the gnocchi to the saucepan with the sauce and give it a good mix. Serve with the crispy sage leaves.
- You can use canned or homemade pumpkin puree. Here's how to make your own in 3 different ways.
- If the coconut cream and coconut water form separate layers in the can use ¼ cup of coconut cream (60 g) and ¼ cup (60 g) of coconut water per 2 servings.
- You can use 3 to 5 ounces of gnocchi per serving.
- Storage tips: you can store leftover sauce in an air-tight container for up to 3 days. Gnocchi eftovers should be eaten within 2 days and stored in the fridge.
- Reheating tips: add a splash of dairy-free milk or water and reheat the gnocchi in a pan with a lid or in the microwave. If using the microwave, cover the bowl with the gnocchi with a plate that you turned upside down.
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