First time I tried making gnocchi (or any pasta type). I followed the orders but my gnocchi are pretty sticky (maybe there's a better word?).

It feels like a pasta that was overcooked on a low flame and so it took a lot of time to be ready.

What can be the cause? Too much or too little flour?

The ingredients are:

  • 3 medium-big beets
  • 1 medium-big (white) potato
  • I think that almost 1kg of whole wheat flour
  • Salt

The beets and potato were wrapped in aluminium foil in the oven until soft, and then blended - then started adding flour until it reached a form that I can roll it to cut pieces.

I still have a lot of it, anything I can do to fix the dough?

And how long can I keep it (fridge/freezer?) in case I don't have enough of the ingredients to fix it at the moment?

Photos of the gnocchi and dough:

  • How the dough behave - (link to GIF, can't compress it more to upload it here)

  • The inside:

    enter image description here

  • The rest of the dough

    enter image description here


  • The problem may that you overworked the potatoes. When you say you ‘blended’ the veg, how did you do that? In a food processor? Also, can you link the source recipe, I don’t know what weight your veg came to, but a kilo of wholemeal sounds like a lot. This recipe for example only uses 1/4 kilo theironyou.com/2012/12/beet-and-potato-gnocchi.html?m=1
    – Spagirl
    Commented Jun 16, 2018 at 14:33
  • I blended them with a hand food processor, how can I know if I overworked them? I continued just until it became smooth. I also thought that it's too much flour, unfortunately I thought that it was to sticky before :(. The recipe is in Hebrew, so I don't think there will be much use in sharing it, but it said to add flour until I can create a roll from (even if it's sticky) Commented Jun 17, 2018 at 13:11
  • If you overwork then I believe it releases or changes the structure of the starch and makes it pasty and gluey. The recipe I linked suggests a potato ricer or food mill but specifies not to actually mash the potato.
    – Spagirl
    Commented Jun 17, 2018 at 16:44

2 Answers 2


The beets probably contributed more liquid than planned. I would try blending them, then straining them through a chinois (use the back of a spoon to push out even more liquid after you allow gravity and a pinch of salt to do its work), and then blending the rest of the ingredients together using your hand-operated food processor.

Adding more flour at this point is just going to expand an already engorged gluten network resulting in really chewy gnocchi, so I wouldn't do that. I don't think there's a great way of saving the batch you had.

So, dis-engorge the beetroot prior to starting by cutting it into slices, lightly salting it, processing it, then straining it, and you should find your instincts to add more flour have diminished the next time you try it.

  • Thanks, that's pretty much what I did except the straining with salt part, next time I'll also try that to extract more liquids. I'll try to diminish the amount of flour! The dough should be sticky in a way that it really stick to my hands? Commented Jun 18, 2018 at 15:39
  • 2
    @arieljannai I think "tacky" is the best word to describe how sticky it should be. It should feel sticky, but you should not have to work very hard to get it off your fingers. I'm actually going to try what I could deduce of your recipe later this week because it sounds very tasty and I have extra beets with no other plans for them :)
    – user293
    Commented Jun 18, 2018 at 15:59
  • Thanks! I hope yours will be actually good! I'd really appreciate it if you could take a photo of the correct texture/tackiness/stickiness so I'll have a better idea of it, and good luck :) Commented Jun 18, 2018 at 16:07

Unfortunately, unless your recipe provides some reference weights/sizing for what "medium-big" means, it is difficult to say whether or not you got the ingredient proportions correct. I think it is possible that your idea of "medium-big" is larger than the recipe writer's idea, so your dough is too wet.

You should be able to freeze your dough for several months without issues. The longer it is frozen, the more moisture is likely to be extracted, which actually may help your situation. It's worth trying, as it doesn't require more effort at this point.

I don't think more flour is going to be a good option for the current dough. You might want to try this again with slightly smaller beets and potatoes.

  • Unfortunately keeping it for a long time is not really an option, since it will take too much room in the freezer, but maybe I can try a small amount to test it in the future and see if this method helps Commented Jun 18, 2018 at 15:40

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