Creamy Tomato Tortellini Soup
on Nov 29, 2023
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Ready in 30 minutes or less, this tomato tortellini soup is vegetarian comfort food that will keep you cozy during the chilly months. The broth is creamy and full of flavor with crushed tomatoes, rosemary, oregano and parmesan. You can use whatever kind of fresh tortellini you want. The soup also has chopped kale stirred into it.
If you’re interested in another Italian soup recipe, try this pasta e fagioli with plenty of pasta and beans.
Table of Contents
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Store-bought fresh pasta is one of the most tasty and convenient things at the grocery. This is especially true for filled pastas like ravioli and tortellini that you probably aren’t making from scratch at home. Of course you can serve them tossed in tomato sauce or basil pesto, but tortellini is fantastic as the feature ingredient in soup.
This tomato broth is wonderful. Period. With both tomato paste and crushed tomatoes, it has intense tomato flavor that is enhanced with a mix of dried rosemary and oregano. Also, stirring in a little heavy cream and some parmesan adds richness and softens the sharpness.
If you‘re looking for a filling vegetarian soup, this recipe delivers. During the fall and winter months, soup is great for lunch or dinner. Options like this creamy tomato tortellini soup recipe are enough for a meal.
This is what you need:
- Tortellini: You can use any variety you find in the refrigerator case at the grocery. That includes cheese tortellini or spinach tortellini. I prefer using fresh rather than frozen tortellini because they end up with better texture when you cook them, and they are slightly larger.
- Onions, carrots & celery: This trio of veggies is the base for so many soups and stews. Sautéing them is the first step before you add the aromatics, tomatoes, tortellini and everything else.
- Tomatoes: I use a large can of crushed tomatoes.
- Tomato paste: To go all in on tomato taste, I stir in tomato paste with the minced garlic and spices.
- Spices: The soup is seasoned with dried rosemary, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.
- Garlic: I include 3 minced garlic cloves. This may sound like a lot, but it balances out with everything else in the soup.
- Kale: I take advantage of the heat in the broth, which gently wilts the greens. You can substitute with baby spinach, but then I recommend waiting to stir it in last because they will wilt faster than kale.
- Vegetable broth: Use low-sodium vegetable broth, so you can control the seasonings. If you don’t need the soup to be vegetarian, you can substitute with chicken broth.
- Heavy cream: The recipe only calls for a half cup, but this adds enough creaminess and richness. Also, it takes off the edge of the acidity of the tomatoes.
- Parmesan: Along with the cream, I stir in grated Parmesan cheese, which melts almost immediately. I also top each bowl with a little more.
- Olive oil: You will need oil for sautéing the onions, carrots and celery.
- Parsley: I garnish the soup with chopped fresh herbs once I ladle it into bowls. You can also use fresh basil.
How To Make Tomato Tortellini Soup
1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot or dutch oven over medium heat.
2. Sauté the onions, carrots and celery. Give them 4 minutes to begin to soften.
3. Stir in the minced garlic, tomato paste, rosemary, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
4. Pour in the crushed tomatoes and veggie broth. Bring the soup to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer on low for 12 minutes until the soup thickens a little.
5. Add the tortellini and kale. Simmer until the tortellini is just al dente (1 minute less than the package cook time) and the kale leaves wilt.
6. Stir in the heavy cream and Parmesan cheese. Remove the pot from the heat before you do this. Divide the soup into bowls and top with additional parmesan and chopped parsley.
Because this soup has tortellini, it really eats like a meal and is very satisfying. You can serve it with a salad such as an Italian chopped salad, a basic arugula salad with lemon vinaigrette or a brussels sprout Caesar salad. Or you can also keep it to just soup and a hunk of good bread with a nice crust for dipping. You deserve bonus points if it’s garlic bread.
Storage, Leftovers & Make-Ahead Tips
You can store the soup in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 days. Please keep in mind that the longer the tortellini sits in the tomato broth, the more it will soften. That’s why I like spooning the tortellini into a separate container, so then it will keep more of its bite.
When you reheat the soup, warm the broth in a pot over low to medium heat on the stovetop, bringing it to a quiet simmer. When the broth is warm, but not quite as hot as you want it, add the cold tortellini, which should take only a minute or so to reheat.
If you are making this soup for meal planning, then just simmer the amount of fresh tortellini you are going to eat in a single sitting. This would be the best way to get the tortellini al dente each time.
Pasta in soup is not freezable because it will be mushy when you thaw and reheat it. You can store the tomato broth in the freezer up to 1 month and add new pasta when you warm it again.
Do not overcook the tortellini. Getting that al dente bite for pasta in soup can be a challenge. If anything, you should lean on the side of undercooking it. The last thing you want is for it to be is soggy.
Taste the soup to check the seasonings. You may need to add more salt and pepper. When you sprinkle in salt, it is meant to activate all the flavors in a dish. As long as you don’t overdo it, you won’t end up with something that’s too salty.
If you prefer smooth and creamy tomato soup, you can blend the broth. Go through all the steps in the recipe. Add the kale, but wait to stir in the tortellini. Give the kale a couple minutes to wilt. Then you can use an immersion blender in the pot or transfer it to a high-powered blender. Then return the pureed soup to the stove and then add the tortellini to cook it.
My recommendation is to use fresh tortellini that you find with the refrigerated pasta at the grocery. It’s better than frozen when it comes to the overall texture, bite and flavor.
As mentioned, heavy cream adds richness to the tomato broth and mellows its acidity. If you don’t want to add it, the soup will have more sharp tomato flavor.
It’s best to do this in a pot on the stove. Then you can reheat the broth and just before it’s ready, you can add the tortellini. If you microwave the soup with the tortellini, it will get very soft.
Creamy Tomato Tortellini Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion, roughly chopped
- 1 medium carrot, finely diced
- 1 celery stalk, finely diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
- 4 cups low sodium vegetable broth
- 8 ounces fresh tortellini
- 1 cup chopped kale
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan plus more for serving
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley plus more for serving
- In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Sauté the onions, carrots and celery until they start to soften, about 4 minutes.
- Add the garlic, tomato paste, rosemary, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Continue cooking until the vegetables are fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Pour in the tomatoes and vegetable broth. Bring the soup to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer on low for 10-12 minutes until the soup thickens slightly.
- Add the tortellini and kale. Simmer until the tortellini is just al dente (1 minute less than the recommended package cook time) and the kale leaves wilt.
- Remove the pot from the heat. Stir in the heavy cream, Parmesan and parsley.
- Divide the soup into bowls. Garnish with additional grated Parmesan and chopped parsley before serving.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.