Cacio e Pepe (inspired) Gnocchi

We bought a fresh pack of potato gnocchi that sat in the pantry for a week or so. Then one night the husband said he’d like to make cacio e pepe again but wanted to add bacon to it.

I know that’s not cacio e pepe. But we do what we want. And if we feel like making gnocchi that is inspired by the flavors of cacio e pepe (a creamy mix of butter and pasta water spiked with black pepper and sharp pecorino) well then, we’re going to. And we’re going to add turkey bacon to it too.

cacio e pepe gnocchi


A package of fresh gnocchi

A block of pecorino, enough to grate into a 3/4 cup

1 tsp fresh ground paper

3 tbsp of unsalted butter

1 package of turkey bacon


Grate your pecorino cheese block to fill a 3/4 cup

Cube your 3 tbsp of unsalted butter

Put the turkey bacon in the conventional oven until crisp (8 – 10 minutes)

Boil salted water and cook gnocchi for 3 minutes. Save your pasta water! Pour about a half cup and set aside.

Save your pasta water!


In a pan, melt your butter on medium heat. Add pepper and give it a light toast.

Add half a cup of pasta water. Then add the gnocchi and remainder of the butter.

Take the gnocchi off the heat and sprinkle generously with the shredded pecorino. Sprinkle with chopped bacon.

This actually came out more successfully than the first time we tried making proper cacio e pepe with spaghetti and a really nice block of pecorino from a small Italian market in East LA. Maybe we had less pressure? Either way, we’re definitely making this again!