Spinach Tortellini

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This spinach tortellini recipe is an easy weeknight meal ready in 20 minutes. Fresh tortellini is served in a delicious creamy sauce made with tomatoes, cream, spinach and parmesan cheese.

Spinach Tortellini being scooped out of a pan with a wooden spoon


We didn’t go out to eat often when I was a kid, but when we did it was usually at a local restaurant called Zander’s Cafe. It was unimpressive in both it’s location and atmosphere, but the food was incredible.

Well, during my last pregnancy I craved this creamy spinach tortellini dish I used to get from the aforementioned restaurant, so I decided to recreate it in my own kitchen.

In this recipe, fresh tortellini is served in a delicious creamy sauce made with tomatoes, spinach, cream, and parmesan cheese. It comes together in 20 minutes, so it’s a perfect dish to make when you’re short on time.

One bite of this spinach tortellini transports me back to being a teenager, sitting across the table from my best friend chatting about life in our favorite local restaurant – nostalgia and delicious food collide.

a bowl of Spinach Tortellini garnished with fresh basil and parmesan cheese

Spinach Tortellini: Ingredients & Substitutions

overhead photo of the labeled ingredients in this spinach tortellini recipe
  • Fresh cheese tortellini. I usually choose fresh tortellini. If using dried, it will take longer to cook. You can substitute your favorite pasta of any variety if you don’t prefer tortellini.
  • Salted butter. Unsalted butter works well too.
  • All-purpose flour. you can substitute a gluten-free all purpose flour blend if desired.
  • Onion. I suggest a sweet yellow onion or red onion.
  • Heavy cream. use half and half or whole milk in place of heavy cream, if desired.
  • Diced tomatoes. You can choose a plain variety, fire-roasted or one with Italian seasonings. You can even use fresh chopped tomatoes if you’d prefer.
  • Spinach. Use Frozen spinach can in place of fresh, just remember to chop it up into small pieces.
  • Italian seasoning. Substitute your favorite fresh Italian herbs if you’d like.
  • Parmesan cheese. I don’t recommend substitution Parmesan cheese – use a high-quality variety for the best results.
a bowl of Spinach Tortellini garnished with fresh basil and parmesan cheese

How to make spinach tortellini

Begin this recipe by cooking the tortellini according to the package instructions. Note: fresh tortellini cooks much quicker than dried. If it finishes cooking before sauce is done, drain the pasta and set it aside.

a pot of cooked tortellini to be used in this Spinach Tortellini recipe

While the tortellini is cooking, melt the butter in a large stockpot over medium-high heat.

Once the butter is melted, add the garlic and onion and cook until the onion is soft, about 1-2 minutes.

two photos showing How to make Spinach Tortellini - melting butter & cooking onion with garlic

Then, add the flour and cook for 1 minute.

Next, add the heavy cream, whisk to combine and cook until the mixture just barely begins to thicken.

two photos showing How to make Spinach Tortellini - adding flour and heavy cream

Next, add the tomatoes, spinach, Italian seasoning salt and pepper and parmesan cheese and cook for 3-5 minutes or until the sauce has thickened slightly.

two photos showing how to make the sauce for this How to make Spinach Tortellini recipe

Then, drain the tortellini, add it to the pot, and stir until coated with sauce.

two photos showing how to make How to make Spinach Tortellini - adding tortellini to the sauce

Serve

Serve immediately with fresh parmesan cheese and fresh basil as a garnish (and for flavor). Making some no knead bread or homemade french bread to sop up the delicious sauce is a must as well. This spinach tortellini pairs well with a delicious salad – especially this burrata salad.

Also try this lemon tortellini sauce (easy and delicious) and easy tortellini soup.

Spinach Tortellini being scooped out of a pan with a wooden spoon

Store/freeze

Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days, or in the freezer for 1 month. Reheat in the microwave or over low heat on the stovetop.

Recipe FAQs

Is tortellini pasta healthy?

Tortellini is healthy when served in moderation as part of a well-balanced meal. This spinach tortellini has all the food groups including greens!

What do you serve with tortellini?

I like to sere it with fresh parmesan cheese and fresh basil as a garnish (and for flavor). Also, baking some no knead bread or homemade french bread to sop up the delicious sauce is a must as well. This spinach tortellini pairs well with a delicious salad – especially this burrata salad.

a bowl of Spinach Tortellini garnished with fresh basil and parmesan cheese

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Spinach tortellini

Laura
This spinach tortellini recipe is an easy weeknight meal ready in 20 minutes. Fresh tortellini is served in a delicious creamy sauce made with tomatoes, cream, spinach and parmesan cheese.
5 from 12 votes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 12 Servings
Calories 318
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Total Time20 minutes

Ingredients  

Instructions 

  • Cook the tortellini according to the package instructions – fresh tortellini cooks much quicker than dried. Drain and set aside if it finishes cooking before sauce is done.
  • While the tortellini is cooking, melt the butter in a large stockpot over medium-high heat.
  • Add garlic and onion and cook until onion is soft, about 1-2 minutes.
  • Add flour and cook for 1 minute.
  • Add heavy cream and whisk to combine. Then cook until the mixture just barely begins to thicken.
  • Add tomatoes, spinach, Italian seasoning salt and pepper and parmesan cheese and cook for 3-5 minutes or until the sauce has thickened slightly.
  • Drain the tortellini, add it to the pot, and stir until coated with sauce.
  • Serve immediately with a sprinkle of fresh parmesan cheese and chopped fresh basil.

Video

Notes

Ingredient Substitutions

  • Fresh cheese tortellini. I usually choose fresh tortellini. If using dried, it will take longer to cook. You can substitute your favorite pasta of any variety if you don’t prefer tortellini.
  • Salted butter. Unsalted butter works well too.
  • All-purpose flour. you can substitute a gluten-free all purpose flour blend if desired.
  • Onion. I suggest a sweet yellow onion or red onion.
  • Heavy cream. use half and half or whole milk in place of heavy cream, if desired.
  • Diced tomatoes. You can choose a plain variety, fire-roasted or one with Italian seasonings. You can even use fresh chopped tomatoes if you’d prefer.
  • Spinach. Use Frozen spinach can in place of fresh, just remember to chop it up into small pieces.
  • Italian seasoning. Substitute your favorite fresh Italian herbs if you’d like.
  • Parmesan cheese. I don’t recommend substitution Parmesan cheese – use a high-quality variety for the best results.
  •  

Store/freeze

Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days, or in the freezer for 1 month. Reheat in the microwave or over low heat on the stovetop.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.5cup | Calories: 318kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 562mg | Potassium: 145mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1108IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 160mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Recipe Rating




12 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This was absolutely delicious! Simple ingredients I had on hand came together for something wonderful and easy to throw together! We added grilled chicken and I may have forgotten to add the parm cheese (whoops!) and it came out fabulous. Definitely going to be a staple in our house.

  2. 5 stars
    I ran to the store, but made an oopsy and FORGOT THE TOMATOES. Thankfully, i had Rotel Tomatoes and Green Chilies on hand and used that instead. Added some really good spice to it. And my family had seconds. Thank you. This was perfect.

  3. 5 stars
    Mom-win with this recipe. The homemade sauce recipe really elevates store bought tortellini! Substituted half and half for heavy cream, and it was still delicious. Thanks for sharing!

  4. 5 stars
    This was delicious. I added chicken broth to keep the sauce a little thinner and added pulled rotisserie chicken for a little more protein. It was most yummy! Thank you for sharing.

  5. 5 stars
    This was SO delicious and incredibly easy! I made a few adjustments based on what I had on hand: a package of spinach and cheese tortellini; whole milk; omitted the spinach; a can of stewed tomatoes that I finely diced; omitted the Italian seasoning.

    I could see this sauce being really great with penne or fettuccine! Do you think the sauce makes enough to go with a package of regular pasta, or would it be a good idea to double the recipe?

    1. Hey Blair! I’m so glad you love it! I worked hard to create this recipe to taste just like my favorite restaurant! 🙂 I’m sure the sauce could be used on all sorts of different pastas! You’d probably want to double it!