There’s nothing like a warm and comforting bowl of soup on a cold winter day. This Easy Chicken Tortellini Soup is sure to hit the spot!
The soup is easy to make and loaded with flavor. You’ll love the creamy broth, and the cheesy tortellini is a delicious addition. This soup is perfect for a quick weeknight meal.
Easy Chicken Tortellini Soup
As the cold winter days are upon us, there’s nothing better than a warm, hearty soup to keep you cozy and satisfied. I have tons of delicious soup recipes on my site, like this Green Chile Enchilada Soup or this Creamy Chicken Stew, but today, I wanted to introduce you to another personal favorite – Easy Chicken Tortellini Soup.
I love this soup because it’s fast to make and packed with flavor. The smooth and creamy texture, combined with savory chicken and yummy tortellini, makes it a filling meal that warms you up on a chilly day.
I prefer to make this version with rotisserie chicken for ease and convenience, but you can easily sauté diced chicken along with the onion, adding just a few extra minutes to the prep time.
- Crowd Pleaser: This soup combines the flavors of Italian cuisine with the comfort of chicken soup, making it a hit with family and friends.
- Easy to make: Chicken Tortellini Soup is incredibly easy to make, with minimal prep time and readily available ingredients.
- Versatile: The recipe is highly versatile, enabling you to change it up and make it your own, depending on your preferences and the ingredients on hand. (More on this below.)
- Comforting: A piping hot bowl of this soup offers the perfect antidote to cold winter nights – it’s hard not to feel good while enjoying a hearty, comforting soup like this one.
Ingredients + Tips and Substitutions
- Olive Oil | Olive oil serves as the base for sautéing our veggies. You could substitute it with any other cooking oil or butter.
- Red Onion | Adds depth of flavor to the soup while providing some color and nutrition. Substituting with yellow or white onion works just as well.
- Carrots | Sauteed with the onions and garlic, they contribute sweetness and color. If you are not a carrot fan, feel free to leave them out.
- Garlic | Fresh garlic adds flavor, but you can use garlic powder or minced garlic from the jar. (For every garlic clove, use 1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder or 1/2 teaspoon of jarred minced garlic.)
- Chicken Broth: Substitute with vegetable broth if desired. If you are watching your sodium, use low sodium chicken broth.
- Seasonings: Oregano, salt, and pepper serve to enhance this soup’s flavor. Oregano complements the chicken and tortellini beautifully. If you don’t have oregano, use an Italian seasoning blend.
- Fresh Cheese Tortellini: The star of the soup! Spinach or mushroom tortellini can also be used. I recommend fresh tortellini, but frozen or dried will work.
- Half & Half: This adds creaminess to the soup. For a lighter version, opt for milk, or for a richer version, use heavy cream.
- Shredded Cooked Chicken: I love using rotisserie chicken for its convenience and flavor. Feel free to cook and shred your own chicken for this recipe. You can find tips for this in the FAQ section.
- Fresh Basil: This brings a pop of brightness to the soup. Dried basil can also be used; however, I highly recommend fresh basil.
How to make this Easy Chicken Tortellini soup
1 Saute the vegetables: Add olive oil to a large sauce pot over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the onion, carrots, and garlic. Sauté for 5 minutes until the onion has softened.
2 Bring to a Boil: Add the broth, oregano, salt, and pepper, and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
3 Add the tortellini: Add the tortellini and cook for another 5 minutes, or until the tortellini are cooked.
4 Add the chicken and half and half: Stir in the cooked chicken and the half and half and simmer for another 2 minutes. Adjust seasoning to taste and serve hot in a bowl; garnish with fresh basil and parmesan cheese.
- Adjust the cooking time if you’re using dried or frozen tortellini, as these may need a bit longer to cook; just let the soup simmer until the tortellini reaches the desired texture. (The instructions on the tortellini package will give you an idea of how long you will need to cook the tortellini in the soup.)
- To thicken the soup, use a slurry of cornstarch and water (a tablespoon of cornstarch with 2 to 3 tablespoons of water or broth), slowly stirring it into the pot. Bring the soup to a quick boil, then reduce the temperature and simmer for a few more minutes.
- You will want to serve the easy chicken tortellini soup as soon as it is done cooking, as the tortellini will begin to absorb the soup liquid and fall apart.
- If you are planning for leftovers, for best results, I suggest cooking the tortellini in a separate pot and adding it to your bowl before serving. (Store the tortellini separately and add it to the soup when reheating.)
- Use turkey, ground Italian sausage, or chicken thighs instead of shredded chicken for a different protein option.
- Add a can of petite diced tomatoes for a bit of sweetness and acidity.
- For a vegetarian version, use vegetable broth and swap chicken with mushrooms.
- Add peas, fresh baby spinach, or kale to amp up the nutrition.
- Add some cannellini beans or other white beans for extra protein and fiber.
- For a more intense cheesy flavor, add 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese to the soup when simmering.
- Sprinkle some crushed red pepper flakes into the soup for a spicy kick.
Allow the soup to come to room temperature, then store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. The tortellini will soak up some of the leftover soup liquid, and you may want to add additional milk/broth when reheating.
Slow Cooker Instructions:
You can easily prepare this soup in a slow cooker. If using a slow cooker, place raw chicken breasts at the bottom of the slow cooker pot and add the chopped vegetables, seasonings, and chicken broth. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Shred the chicken, and add the tortellini and half & half to the pot. Slow-cook the soup for 15 to 30 minutes or until the tortellini has reached the desired tenderness.
What type of Tortellini is best for this Soup
Tortellini is readily available in refrigerated, frozen, and dried forms with various fillings, ranging from cheese and spinach to chicken. I recommend refrigerated cheese tortellini in this recipe for optimal results as it reduces the preparation time and delivers a larger and softer texture than dried or frozen tortellini.
Can I use other types of pasta?
Yes, any type of noodles or pasta would be fine, although the cooking time will vary depending on the type used.
How would I make this recipe with uncooked chicken?
If you don’t have any precooked chicken on hand, don’t worry. You can still make this recipe. You have a couple of options:
1. You can slice your chicken into bite-sized pieces and saute the raw chicken with the onions, garlic, and carrots. Then, continue with the recipe as written.
2. Cook your chicken separately and add it to the recipe as directed. I have three different ways I like to prep my chicken for use in recipes throughout the week.
- The first is poaching boneless skinless chicken breasts in the microwave. To do this, place the chicken in the bottom of a Pyrex dish (make sure the dish is not so big it will interfere with the rotating plate in your microwave.), add enough water to mostly cover the chicken, then cover the dish with plastic wrap. (If your chicken pieces are huge, I recommend cutting them into even-sized pieces.) Cook the chicken on high for about 11 minutes. (11 minutes does cook 4 huge chicken breasts [cut into smaller pieces] in my 1100-watt microwave. All microwaves are different, so check your chicken for done-ness using a thermometer.)
- The second is pan-frying a family pack of tenderloins seasoned with salt and pepper and sometimes a little paprika. You can then dice this chicken or shred it as needed for your recipes.
- Thirdly, I will often pressure cook a large amount of chicken at the beginning of the week and use it in everything from soups to chicken salad.
Can I use leftover turkey instead of chicken?
Definitely! This soup is a great way to use up leftover turkey after Thanksgiving.
Can This Soup be Frozen
You can freeze this soup with a caveat. The tortellini does not do well once defrosted. So, if you plan to freeze leftovers, I recommend either cooking the tortellini separately and adding the desired amount to your serving bowl or removing the tortellini from the soup and freezing them separately.
More Soup Recipes
Did You Make This Chicken Tortellini Soup Recipe?
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This easy chicken tortellini soup is the perfect comforting meal for busy weeknights. Made with pre-cooked chicken and fresh tortellini, it’s ready in just about 30 minutes.
- 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1 large red onion chopped
- 2 cups diced carrots
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 cups chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 package (9oz) Fresh Cheese Tortellini (about 3 cups)
- 1/2 cup half & half
- 1 1/2 cup shredded cooked chicken
- Optional: 2 tablespoons fresh chopped basil and/or parmesan cheese for garnish
- In a large sauce pot over medium-high heat add the olive oil, once hot add the onion, carrots, and garlic. Sauté for 5 minutes until the onion has softened.
- Add the Chicken broth, oregano, salt, and pepper, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add the tortellini and cook for another 5 minutes, until the tortellini are cooked. Add half and half and cooked chicken and cook for 2 minutes.
- Adjust seasoning to taste and serve hot in a bowl, garnish with fresh basil.
- Serving Size: 1/4 of recipe
- Calories: 472
- Fat: 15
- Carbohydrates: 39
- Fiber: 5
- Protein: 34
Keywords: chicken tortellini soup, easy chicken tortellini soup
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About the Author
Jamie Sanders is a wife and mom of 2, located in the heart of Texas. She founded Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom in 2011 as a place to share creative ideas and family friendly recipes. Her work has been featured on Martha Stewart, Woman’s World, HuffPost, TODAY, Pioneer Woman, HGTV, CNET, Good Housekeeping, Yahoo, Oprah Daily, and Redbook, plus many other publications. To date, she had given away just under a million free pdf sewing patterns.