Creamy Spinach Tomato Tortellini

December 18, 2019  ·  Published June 14, 2014

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This Creamy Spinach Tomato Tortellini recipe is so easy yet so incredibly delicious! I mean who wouldn’t love a big bowl of cheese-filled, tender tortellini pasta covered with a creamy, parmesan cheese infused, sweet tomato and fresh spinach sauce? Such an comforting dinner!

Serving of spinach and tomato tortellini in a pasta bowl.

Creamy Spinach Tomato Tortellini

Don’t we all love a good tortellini recipe? This one is far beyond good though, it’s seriously crave-worthy! Not only that, but it was so quick and easy to prepare, you can have this ready in 20 minutes.

It’s perfect for a weeknight dinner yet it’s impressive enough to serve to guests. I love a meal like that, one that can fit into both easy weeknight meal and a fancy meal fit for guests. You’ll love this so much you’ll likely want to make it on a weekly basis!

You’ll love how perfectly all the flavors in this dish meld together. You get plenty of freshness, the perfect amount of creamy and just the right amount of spinach, basil, tomato flavor.

I also love that the cheese encased in the tortellini isn’t hidden by the sauce, rather it’s complemented by all the Italian inspired flavors. I may or may not have been sneaking a few pieces off my kids plates when they weren’t looking, just that good.

Creamy Spinach Tomato Tortellini shown in a large skillet.

Ingredients Needed for This Tortellini Recipe

  • Three Cheese Tortellini
  • Butter
  • Garlic
  • Flour
  • Milk
  • Heavy Cream
  • Diced Tomatoes
  • Fresh Spinach, Basil & Oregano
  • Parmesan
  • Red Pepper Flakes

Image of ingredients that go into spinach and tomato tortellini.

How to Make Spinach Tomato Cheese Tortellini

  • Cook tortellini: Bring a pot of water to a boil and cook tortellini according to directions listed on package and drain. Prepare sauce while tortellini cooks, if tortellini finishes before sauce then toss with a little olive oil to prevent sticking.

Tortellini draining in a colander.

  • Make a roux: Meanwhile, in a large and deep skillet or saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add garlic, flour and onion powder and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute.

Making a roux in a skillet.

  • Stir in liquids: While whisking, slowly pour in milk and cream, then whisk until smooth. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture begins barely simmer and thicken.

Whisking milk to roux in skillet.

  • Add tomatoes, spinach and season: Add tomatoes, spinach, basil, oregano and parmesan. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reduce heat slightly and cook several minutes longer until sauce has thickened and cheese has melted.

Spinach, tomatoes, fresh herbs and parmesan added to milk mixture in skillet.

  • Toss cooked tortellini with sauce: Toss cooked and drained tortellini into sauce mixture, thin sauce with a little pasta water or milk as needed.

Adding cooked cheese tortellini to pasta sauce

  • Garnish and serve: Serve warm sprinkled with additional parmesan cheese and optional red pepper flakes.

Finished tortellini recipe in a skillet.

Can I Use Frozen or Shelf Stable Tortellini?

In my opinion the refrigerated cheese tortellini is far superior to dried or frozen but if that’s what you normally buy and have on hand then yes it will work in this recipe.

Close up image of cheese tortellini covered in a tomato and spinach sauce.

What to Serve with Tortellini?

More Delicious Cheese Tortellini Recipes to Try

Creamy Spinach Tomato Tortellini

5 from 27 votes

This Creamy Spinach Tomato Tortellini is so simple and comforting plus its impressive enough to serve to guests when entertaining or to simply curl up with on the sofa. Either way, you'll love it! 

Servings: 5 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 (20 oz.) pkg refrigerated three cheese tortellini
  • 3 Tbsp butter
  • 2 cloves garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 1/4 cups milk (I used 2%, anything but skim works fine)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can petite diced tomatoes (undrained)
  • 1 1/2 cups (packed) chopped fresh spinach
  • 3 Tbsp chopped fresh basil
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh oregano (or 1/2 tsp dry)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
  • Red pepper flakes, for serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. Cook tortellini according to directions listed on package.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large and deep skillet or saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add garlic, flour and onion powder and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute.

  3. While whisking, slowly pour in milk and cream, then whisk until smooth.

  4. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture begins barely simmer and thicken, then add tomatoes, spinach, basil, oregano and parmesan. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

  5. Reduce heat slightly and cook several minutes longer until sauce has thickened and cheese has melted. Remove from heat.

  6. Toss cooked and drained tortellini into sauce mixture, thin sauce with a little pasta water or milk as needed.

  7. Serve warm sprinkled with additional parmesan cheese and optional red pepper flakes.

Nutrition Facts
Creamy Spinach Tomato Tortellini
Amount Per Serving
Calories 580 Calories from Fat 234
% Daily Value*
Fat 26g40%
Saturated Fat 13g81%
Cholesterol 97mg32%
Sodium 777mg34%
Potassium 399mg11%
Carbohydrates 63g21%
Fiber 6g25%
Sugar 9g10%
Protein 24g48%
Vitamin A 1710IU34%
Vitamin C 10.7mg13%
Calcium 362mg36%
Iron 4.7mg26%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Tortellini
Author: Jaclyn
Recipe first published June 13, 2014. Photos and text updated December 18, 2019.

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176 Comments

  • Emily

    Question: What dessert would you recommend having with this? I am thinking something light because it is such a rich dessert, but am not very good at pairing recipes. Thanks in advance!

    Review: I’ve made this a few times now and it is always delicious. If I am sharing it with family, I make it as is. (I have made it once with skim milk and without basil or oregano and that turned out fine too, it’s a very forgiving recipe! But the original recipe is great without alterations) If I make it for myself, I make the sauce with no spinach or tortellini and keep it in the fridge separately. When I’m ready for a single-serve portion, I cook up my tortellini, top it with fresh spinach, and pour reheated sauce on top, then stir together and let sit a couple minutes (until the spinach is wilted). I’ve found that otherwise if I make the dish as is and reheat a serving, the spinach tends to be a bit sad and soggy. My method keeps it feeling fresh like a new meal, but easy like leftovers.

  • Teena

    This sauce is the best! It’s like a cross between Alfredo and red and so yummy! It is now our go-to sauce for everything, shrimp, chicken, penne or fettuccine, anything, so many ways to use it once you have an excellent sauce.

  • Betsy R

    Had all of the ingredients in the kitchen and was looking for something to add leftover Easter ham to and this fit the bill. My husband raved about this recipe and requested that I copy it down before I lost it. I enjoyed it too and found it very easy to put together. Thanks for a very versatile recipe!

  • April

    My family loved this recipe! Very simple to make and I was happy I had most of the ingredients on hand! I only had a can of Organic Diced Tomatoes with Italian Herbs so I just used less basil and oregano. Next time I’ll definitely use fresh basil and oregano which will enhance the flavor! This is a flavorful and pretty entree. I wouldn’t change a thing. I’ll definitely make this recipe again :)