Creamy Sausage Tortellini Soup is the ultimate comfort food. The recipe features sweet potatoes, spinach, garlic, and three-cheese tortellini - all smothered in a creamy delicious broth. This one-pot meal takes only 40 minutes to make and requires minimal cleanup as only one pan is used! Perfect dinner for busy weeknights!
Sausage Tortellini Soup - a well-balanced meal
This recipe has everything: it's delicious, easy to make, and looks beautiful on your dinner table (without much effort) thanks to the vibrant colors of the ingredients. Sausage Tortellini soup is a complete meal: it has protein (Italian sausage), fiber (sweet potatoes and spinach), and carbs (tortellini). The vegetables are combined with sausage and tortellini in a flavorful and creamy broth.
You can't really go wrong with this combination of ingredients - just take a look at this delicious Creamy Sausage Tortellini with Spinach, Tomatoes, and Mozzarella cheese sauce.
Easy one-pot recipe
Not only is the sausage tortellini soup tasty and beautiful, but it is also super easy to make. Everything is cooked in one pan: sausage, vegetables, and tortellini. No need to precook the veggies - they will cook right in the broth retaining all the flavor in the soup. Tortellini is also cooked in the same broth, acquiring the flavor of the soup. The cleanup is a breeze. There is only one pan to clean. What's not to like? It's a perfect recipe to make on a busy weeknight or for company.
Why make sausage tortellini soup
I just can't stop singing praises to this soup. It's one of those unique recipes that combine both comfort food and healthy ingredients.
- Sweet potatoes are rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They are also a good source of antioxidants, such as beta-carotene (that's what makes them orange, by the way!). Beta-carotene converts to vitamin A in your body. Thanks to their fiber content, sweet potatoes are also excellent for gut health.
- Spinach is packed with nutrients and antioxidants. It’s high in fiber and a good source of many vitamins and minerals. Spinach is a great source of vitamins A and C, as well as folic acid, iron, and calcium.
What kind of pot to use for soup?
Use a large, high-sided stockpot with a thick metal base that distributes heat evenly to make the soup. Or, use a large and wide high-sided braiser. To make this soup, I used my Staub 3.5-Quart Braiser with Glass Lid.
What kind of sausage to use?
- Italian sausage. I used crumbled spicy Italian sausage. You can also use sweet or mild Italian sausage.
- Remove the casings. If your sausage comes in links with casings, you can remove the casings and slice the sausage. You don't have to remove the casings and can slice the sausage links with casings on, but I really prefer the texture of the sausage without the casings so I recommend this step!
How to make sausage tortellini soup - step-by-step photos
Add raw crumbled Italian sausage and olive oil to a large pot.
Season with Italian seasoning and paprika (you can use regular or smoked).
Cook the sausage for several minutes over medium heat until it is cooked through.
Add peeled and cubed sweet potato, minced garlic, red pepper flakes, and tomato paste.
Make the broth
Add 6 cups of water. Note: You don't need to use chicken stock as the sausage imparts lots of flavor to the soup. Cook, covered with a lid, for 15 minutes until the potatoes are cooked through.
Add tortellini to soup in the pot and boil for 10 minutes over medium heat, covered with a lid.
Add spinach and cream
Add spinach right in the end.
Stir in until it slightly wilts.
Remove the soup from heat. Add the cream and stir it in.
- Season with salt to taste, about ¼ teaspoon of salt. Note: No salt is necessary if the sausage is very salty. Use your judgment about whether to add salt or not based on how salty the sausage is.
- Add more red pepper flakes (add spice especially if you did not use spicy sausage).
- Top with fresh thyme.
Tips on making it ahead
- Heavy cream. Prepare everything, except adding the heavy cream in the last step. Refrigerate the soup and add heavy cream only when ready to serve, when the soup is warmed up or hot, and removed from heat (to prevent the cream from separating).
- Tortellini. For best results, you can also add tortellini right before serving.
How to store and reheat sausage tortellini soup
- Refrigerate. Store leftover sausage tortellini soup in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. For best results, separate tortellini from the soup and refrigerate them separately to preserve their texture. However, you can keep tortellini in the soup, too, it's not a deal-breaker.
- Reheat. Reheat the soup gently on the stovetop in the large enough pan over medium heat, stirring halfway through. Add extra milk or heavy cream to add creaminess.
How to freeze soup
This soup makes 6 generous servings. If you only make it for one person or for two people, freeze the soup, instead of eating the soup several days in a row. Here are some tips on how to freeze the soup.
- Do not add cream. If you would like to freeze sausage tortellini soup, do not add any cream. Heavy cream tends to separate and become grainy if frozen. Freeze the soup in an airtight container for up to 2 months.
- Freeze the soup in usable portions. Divide it into 4 or 6 containers. Don't freeze it in a single large container.
- Leave space in the container. When freezing the liquid recipes, like soups, leave the space in the container (about 2 inches) as the soup will expand as it freezes.
- Defrost the soup by placing it in the refrigerator for a day or two.
- How to reheat. Reheat the soup gently on the stovetop in the large enough pan over medium heat, stirring halfway through. Add extra milk or heavy cream.
- Pasta. If you don't have tortellini, you can use Agnolotti or ravioli instead. Gnocchi is also a great substitution.
- Sausage. I used crumbled spicy Italian sausage. You can use mild or sweet Italian sausage. Or, us regular or spicy pork sausage (such as Jimmy Dean brand).
- Spinach. This sausage tortellini soup will work equally well with spinach, kale, or Swiss chard.
- Cream. You can use half-and-half instead of heavy cream. To make this dairy-free, use coconut milk.
Other tortellini recipes
Cheese tortellini is an amazing kind of pasta, don't you think? It's stuffed with cheese, after all, or other great fillings. Here are some of my favorite recipes:
- Creamy Spinach Mushroom Tortellini with Caramelized Onions
- Pesto Chicken Tortellini and Veggies (Asparagus and Cherry Tomatoes)
- Creamy Chicken, Asparagus, and Bacon Tortellini
What to serve with sausage tortellini soup
- Simple salad. Serve this soup with a basic arugula salad with lemon zest and balsamic dressing or a simple spinach salad with pine nuts and Parmesan.
- Bread. Serve this with a slice of garlic bread, olive bread loaf, or Italian bread. Warm up the bread in the toaster or in the oven. Breadsticks are a good choice here, too. If you want to venture out and make your own simple loaf - try this easy bread recipe made in a bread machine.
Creamy Sausage Tortellini Soup
- 12 oz sausage such as spicy Italian sausage
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon paprika regular or smoked
- 1 sweet potato large (or use 2 small) peeled, cubed
- 5 cloves garlic minced
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 6 cups water
- 8 oz tortellini I used three-cheese tortellini (refrigerated) - Buitoni brand
- 4 oz fresh spinach
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 4 tablespoons fresh thyme
- Heat olive oil in a large, high-sided pot over medium heat. Add crumbled sausage.
- Cook for several minutes over medium heat, stirring until the sausage is cooked through. Drain all grease. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning and paprika.
- Add peeled and cubed sweet potato, minced garlic, red pepper flakes, and tomato paste.
- Add 6 cups of water. Note: You don't need to use chicken stock as the sausage imparts lots of flavor to the soup.
- Bring to boil. Mix everything well, ensuring the tomato paste dissolves.
- Once the soup is boiling, reduce to simmer (a visible boil), cover the pot with a lid, and cook for 15 minutes until the potatoes are cooked through.
- Add tortellini to soup in the pot, cover with a lid and boil for 10 minutes over medium heat. Note: Use the cooking time indicated on the tortellini package as your guide.
- Add spinach right in the end, stir in until it slightly wilts.
- Remove the soup from heat. Add the cream and stir it in.
- Season with salt and more red pepper flakes (add spice especially if you did not use spicy sausage). Top with fresh thyme.
- Important note: No salt might be necessary if the sausage is very salty. Use your judgment about whether to add salt or not based on how salty the sausage is. If the sausage is not very salty, season with salt to taste, about ¼ teaspoon of salt or less.
- Cream separates as the soup cools off. You might notice that the cream might look separated (or grainy) as the soup cools off. That's no reason for worry. As soon as you warm the soup up on the stovetop or in the microwave oven and stir it well, the texture will get back to normal. The same thing will happen if you refrigerate the soup. The creamy texture will turn grainy (will look separated) after the soup has been refrigerated. Again, once you warm up the soup, the texture will get creamy again.
The nutritional information on this website is only an estimate and is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed. It should not be used as a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
Do you think this would be good served with stuffed sourdough bread w brie and fig jam or cranberry? It seems hardy enough. I was also looking at your mushroom, spinach tortillini carmaized onions. Perhaps that one?
Shelley, I think bread stuffed with brie and fig jam (sounds so delish!) will pair better with the mushroom and spinach tortellini with caramelized onions.
This was delicious!! But i do think you need to add in the instructions that the sausage needs to be drained. I drained about 3 cups of oil and still had some of the deliciousness on top. I also added a Parmesan rind and sautéed onions with the sausage!
Lisa, thank you for pointing that out - I updated the recipe instructions per your suggestion. Surprisingly, the sausage I used did not result in a lot of grease - just a little bit which I liked for the soup - but that sausage was locally produced, I think.
Tried this tonight and was so delicious, love Julia's recipes!
I am so glad you tried this recipe and liked it! Thank you for the comment! 🙂
How mych is a serving size?? One cup, 2 cups?
Ignore my question regarding serving size. I see now it serves six.
Linda, I am glad you found the answer!
This looks delicious, but is that grease floating in the soup? I think I would cook the sausage first and drain all the fat to make this less greasy. But looks good, otherwise.
Good plan, Patricia! The funny thing is that my sausage didn't seem to generate lots of grease, however, it must have! 🙂
Hi, I made your recipe for dinner yesterday and it was wonderful!! I'm a big fan of sweet potatoes and spinach and the combo is just great in this soup I could eat spinach and sweet potatoes every day! Thanks for sharing this recipe!!
Glad you liked the recipe! Spinach and sweet potatoes are such great ingredients, aren't they?
This recipe worth repeating. I used tri-color cheese tortellini. I'll be experimenting with freezing it.
Kelly, I am glad you find this recipe worth repeating - it's a huge compliment to me! Thank you!
I have a matching Staub braising pan - so I was very excited to make it and use my new braised for something, LOL. My SO and I have enjoyed the leftovers from this meal for 2 days now. Thank you!
Glad you got to use your new pan and that you enjoyed this recipe! Thank you for such a wonderful and positive comment!
I saw this recipe on FB. I made it tonight for dinner and it was a hit. I used shredded carrots and artichoke hearts instead of the sweet potatoes, chicken stock, tricolored tortellini, half and half cream and doubled the spinach. Topped it with shaved Parmesan cheese. Yummy!
Janet, I am so glad you gave this recipe a try and enjoyed it! Love your changes! 🙂
Saw this recipe on Facebook yesterday and made it today. So good! Thank you for sharing!!! I used Buitoni tortellini and kale instead of spinach.
Cindy, I am happy to hear you made this recipe that fast - I just posted it. 🙂 Thank you for the comment!!