This Crockpot tortellini soup with sausage is a comforting, hearty, and easy to prepare slow cooker soup. Italian sausage, tomatoes, cheese tortellini, a splash of cream, and spinach make this one delicious soup.
This post was originally published on September 17, 2018. I periodically go through old posts and revise them to improve the recipes and update the photos.
Clearly I'm a fan of pasta and Italian sausage in soup because this Crockpot Italian sausage soup, my lasagna soup, this Zuppa Toscana, and this creamy Italian sausage tortellini soup come to mind. I'm sure there's more since Italian sausage is one of my very favorite things to cook with.
This is the perfect soup to come home to. Get everything ready in the morning, and then pop the tortellini in while you're unwinding after work. Or let it cook overnight if that's your thing.
I decided to give this recipe a bit of a facelift because it's been bugging me for a while. It's not that I didn't like it, but I thought it could definitely be improved upon. I added more tomatoes, some cream, more sausage, and new photos. I hope this gives the recipe new life, since I don't think many people have made the old version of this recipe, and that made me a little sad. I can always do better!
How to make slow cooker tortellini soup with sausage
- Crumble the sausage and add it to a skillet along with the onions and sauté for about 7 minutes (add the garlic just before it's done). Drain most of the fat. Add the sausage mix and the remaining ingredients except for the cream, spinach, and tortellini to the slow cooker. Cook on high for 3-4 hours or low 7-8 hours.
- About 30 minutes prior to serving, add the cheese tortellini, cream, and spinach. Season to taste.
This soup is delicious served with fresh parmesan grated over top!
A few recipe notes:
- Use spicy Italian sausage if you want a little heat to this Crockpot tomato tortellini soup with sausage.
- You could skip the step where you sauté the sausage and onion (I have tested similar recipes where I've just thrown raw sausage into the slow cooker), but I do recommend that step because it imparts more flavor into this dish, and you can also drain some of the fat.
- Anything around the amount of tortellini I added in should be fine. I know tortellini package sizes vary, so feel free to add anything around that ballpark amount.
- Keep in mind that the pasta will soak up the soup the longer you leave it, so if you are reheating leftovers, you may need to add more chicken broth if needed.
- If you want to make this soup ahead (or freeze it), I suggest waiting to add the tortellini, cream, and spinach until you're ready to eat it.
- I made this a Crockpot creamy tortellini soup, but, with that said, you can leave the cream out and it'll still taste delicious.
Love tortellini? Try these recipes:
- Creamy Spinach Tortellini Soup with Chicken
- One Pan Tortellini with Sausage
- Tomato Tortellini Soup
- Instant Pot Chicken Tortellini Soup
- Chicken Tortellini Alfredo
- Cheese Tortellini with Butter, Mushrooms, and Crispy Sage
Hope you'll love this slow cooker tortellini soup with sausage!
Questions? Don't hesitate to ask in the comments below.
Crockpot Tortellini Soup with Sausage
- 1 (17.6 ounce) package Italian sausages see note
- 1/2 medium onion chopped
- 2 medium carrots sliced or chopped
- 2 sticks celery chopped finely
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 (28 fluid ounce) can crushed tomatoes
- 1 (14 fluid ounce) can diced tomatoes with juices
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 2 (9 ounce) packages refrigerated cheese tortellini
- 3/4 cup heavy/whipping cream optional
- 2 cups (packed) fresh baby spinach
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Take your sausages out of their casings and crumble them into a skillet. Add the chopped onion. Sauté for about 7 minutes. Add the garlic in towards the end so it doesn't burn. Spoon out most of the fat (you don't need to be precise... fat gives the soup more flavor). Add the sausage mixture to your Crockpot.
- Meanwhile, chop your carrots and celery. Add all ingredients except for the tortellini, spinach, cream, and salt & pepper to the Crockpot. Keep in mind that if you want the soup to cook in 3-4 hours, the carrots will have to be chopped pretty finely. If you're cooking it for 7-8 on low or 4-5 hours on high, you can chop them larger.
- About 30 minutes prior to serving, add in your cheese tortellini, cream, and spinach (I set the heat to "high"). Give it a stir occasionally. Season with salt & pepper as needed prior to serving.
- I used a 5-pack of Johnsonville mild Italian sausages. Anything in that ballpark will work quantity-wise (you can even use ground sausage meat if that's easier). Also, feel free to sub with spicy sausage!
- The leftovers of this soup do soak up the broth a lot, so this soup is best eaten when it's fresh. I suggest adding more chicken broth to leftovers if you need to.
- This is the 7-quart Crockpot I used to make this recipe. My Crockpot was pretty full by the time I added the tortellini.
- You can make this soup without the cream and it'll still taste good.
- Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy only and should be construed as an estimate rather than a guarantee. Ingredients can vary and Salt & Lavender makes no guarantees to the accuracy of this information.
This is so good. I loved that it didn’t overcook, since I had it in the crockpot ALL day while at work. I cooked the sausage the night before so I didn’t have to worry about that. I will make it again and add more sausage. I might even add big chunks of zucchini, too. I might substitute in mini ravioli instead of tortellini…or mix them both. It’s filling, comforting, and even more delicious the next day. Make extra!
I'm so happy that you enjoyed it!! Thanks for your review! 🙂
Made this yesterday;
How big is a serving size to get 6 servings? Making this now! Thanks!
Hi Renae! It's 1/6 of the recipe, and I don't know any info beyond that (like oz/grams/etc.) - sorry! I provide the nutrition info as a courtesy to give readers a general idea, but it's simply as estimate generated by software that pulls the info from a database. I'm not a trained nutritionist (or good at math), so I don't feel comfortable providing anything beyond that. In any case, I hope you enjoy the soup! 🙂
Angela Marcey says
This is a new favorite. Swapped half and half for the heavy cream and used kale instead of spinach, I think it holds up better in soups. Delicious!
I'm so glad you enjoyed it, Angela!! 🙂
I could only find frozen tortellini cause our store was out of refrigerated. Is there really much difference in cooking? I defrosted them but I have yet to put them in
Hello! I don't think there's much difference at all. You could even put them in frozen next time. 🙂
Delicious and easy! I added a 1/4 red pepper flakes for some spice as well as the hot Italian sausage.
We cook the tortellini separate and add to our bowls so it doesn’t soak up the liquid and become soggy for leftovers.
Edit: 1/4 tsp
Excellent!! Glad you enjoyed it!
Valerie S Vincent says
I am making this now and realized I don't have any celery. Should I put in celery seed, or just not put anything in for a replacement. Just wondering if the taste will have an impact on it.
I'd probably just leave it out. A pinch of celery seed won't hurt, though. 🙂 Hope you like the soup!
So I’m going to make this tonight. I only have a roll of ground sausage. Should I use all of it or half of it? Thank you in advance! 😊
How big is the roll? Here in Canada I don't think we get those (I just buy a pack of sausages and take it out of the casings). I'd just use whatever is closest to the weight suggestion in the recipe. Doesn't have to be exact. Hope you enjoy the soup!
Rebecca D Schwermer says
I've made this soup many times, just on the stove top, and it is always a hit with my whole family!! Easy to make, easier to devour! Thanks for a winning, easy to prepare, healthy, hearty dinner that all - even kids, enjoy.
That makes me so happy!! So glad it's a hit in your home. 🙂
We love this! We prefer it with the cream, it just adds something to it. I use the tortellini that has spinach in it.
Agreed! 🙂 I'm happy you like this one, Charlotte!
Erika Fisher says
What is the worst that will happen if I accidentally added the cream with all the other ingredients??!
So, the worst that could happen is the cream could curdle/separate, but it should still taste fine. 🙂
What would be a good meat to sub in for Italian sausage? My family is not a fan!
What about another kind of sausage? Or maybe chicken?
Hi! Is that nutritional information an estimate per serving or for the whole batch that the ingredients make?
Miranda @ Salt & Lavender says
Hi KB! It's per serving, in this case 1/6 of the recipe. Enjoy!
What brand tortellini did you use? I can only find the dry tortellini
Hi! I'm in Canada, so I am not sure if that would help you. I literally just buy what's in the refrigerated section. With that said, this is a Crockpot recipe, so you could probably just cook it for a bit longer.
Hearty Soup, I left out the cream since I made a big batch and wasn't sure how it would be leftover with cream. It was great without it, I will be making this again in the fall/winter.
So glad you enjoyed it!!
Bambi Lovesee says
I love this soup! I leave out the carrots and celery and add zucchini 30 minutes before the cream, tortellini, and spinach. It’s turned into a family favorite. I also added a tbsp of Italian seasoning. Yummy!
I'm so happy your family likes it and you've tweaked it to your liking! Thanks for leaving me a review. 🙂
Can I cook it for 6 hours on low?
I think that should be fine, but still add the tortellini & cream in towards the last 30 min or so. Hope you enjoy the soup 🙂
Jennifer Bockelman says
I’ve made this soup 3 times in the past 6 weeks! New household favorite!
Fabulous!! Thrilled to hear that, Jennifer. 😀
My family and I absolutely loved this recipe. I did however substitute kale for the spinach and added grated mozzarella cheese which was so good
I see that the sausage is sliced not crumbled in the photos? Which is it best?
It is crumbled. I'd suggest crumbling it since it's kinda tricky to slice soft Italian sausage (it's pretty mushy). You might be looking at the carrots?
This soup is excellent! A big hit with my family (3 kiddos loved it). Thank you for sharing.
Wonderful!! You're very welcome.
Hi! It's slow cookin' as we speak! 🙂 Can I use frozen tortellini or would I have to boil it first???
Frozen tortellini will be fine. 🙂 They thaw fast.
Carli Aldridge says
This is the best soup I’ve ever made! I didn’t change a thing, I followed the recipe exactly. My husband raved about it. Definitely putting it in the monthly rotation.
Wonderful!! 🙂 Thanks so much for commenting.
This looks delicious and I can't wait to make it! Can you sub any pasta/rice for the tortellini?
Hi! I think you'd probably be good with most pasta or white rice, but cooking time will vary. Rice will likely take longer. The refrigerated tortellini cook super quickly.
Barbara Guido says
I want to try this. It works fine if I do it on HIGH at 4-5 hours?
I think 5 hours might be a bit of a stretch on high heat... it'll be done around 3 hours.
I was wondering with the final step - adding the spinach, cream, and tortellini - if that is about 30 minutes on high or low? Thanks! Can't wait to make this this weekend!
Hi! Good question. I should have been more detailed in the recipe. I usually would crank up the heat to high for this step. I will update!
Thanks so much!
Can you somehow report the old recipe. It was the best soup ever and I don’t want one thing to change
You're lucky... I happen to have the old recipe saved. I just emailed it to you!
Imani B says
Hi what is the old recipe? Would you be able to come email me
Barbara Magnett says
Do you boil the noddles first or put straight in crock pot
They cook really quickly in the soup... so put them in raw.
Beth Wieczynski says
Officially obsessed with this soup. I ate it for lunch and dinner three days straight!
Love that!! 🙂
Does frozen spinach work?
I find frozen spinach can disintegrate rather quickly so there's a chance it'll fall apart completely and be kinda mushy. I'd definitely thaw and squeeze the water out first if you want to try, though.
Nancee Kinghorn says
Could you use ravioli instead of tortellini?
Was a family favorite. Perfect for fall and winter!
Yay! So glad to hear it!
Absolutely delicious! My almost 4 year old loves it and my husband. I just kept hearing "it's so good!" I totally forgot to put in the heavy cream - right when we finished our first bowl I remembered but honestly it was amazing without and I'm sure it is with! Pretty much every recipe I've tried of yours has been delicious. I am beyond thankful to run across your blog. I honestly feel like you've made me a better cook. And I love that I can come to your blog and be confident the recipe will work out. Thank you so much!
So glad it worked out even without the cream! And thank you for your kind words.. so glad you found me 🙂
I finally made this on Sunday and my husband and I loved it! Another hit!
I did not have time to saute the sausage first but it still tasted great. I substituted Italian chicken sausage, plus I added 1 lb of the carrots and more celery. Used the heavy/whipping cream, but very nice to know that half & half is ok, since I always have that for my coffee.
Love, love, love your recipes so far. Thank you!!!
I am so happy to hear you enjoyed it!! 🙂
I made this tonight, exactly as written, and it was absolutely yummy!! I used spicy sausage, which I think really elevates the flavor. I put the whole package of tortellini in, so I know the leftovers will be a bit swollen, but I don't care! Thanks for a great recipe; I will definitely be making this again. 🙂
I am so happy you liked it!!
Hi again Natasha!
This looks delicious and easy and I'm excited to make it soon!
When you say 2 cups (packed) fresh baby spinach - how does that translate to an 8oz bag of fresh baby spinach? Do I get 2 bags or put the raw spinach in a measuring cup? Are the 2 cups the raw spinach or cooked? I've googled and I'm still confused! LOL
Thanks in advance!
Hi!! I take the raw spinach and smoosh it down in the measuring cup. ☺️ One 8 once bag will leave you with plenty. ♥️
Marinela Ortiz says
Hi there, I was trying to find where the ingredients are by using voiceover on my phone. I am visually impaired but I do you love to cook especially when I comes to using crockpots since they are so easy to use. And wondering where I can find the ingredients or what kind of ingredients I need to use or the measurements? Is there any way of looking at them? Thanks!
Hi! Just sent you an email. 🙂
Very excited for this meal tonight, it’s currently in the crock pot on low. I cannot believe how simple it was to prepare! Do you think cooking the tortellini on the side and adding each person’s desired amount would yield the same flavours? I’m thinking for storing left overs the noodles on the side would save the amount of broth?
Yay!! I hope you enjoy it! I think that should be fine. 🙂
I substituted an 8oz container of herb and garlic cream cheese for the cream. It was delicious!!! 😋
Made this soup after eyeing it up for awhile...so good and super easy to made. Everyone loved it and has asked me to make it again soon.
Yay!! So glad it was a hit! 🙂
What’s your recommendation for doing this stove top rather than crockpot?
I would do it in a similar way... just for step 2 cook it in a normal pot. Bring the soup to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer until veggies are tender (i would guess 15-20 min), then add the tortellini, spinach, and cream in and warm thru maybe another 10 min?
Neysa tuma says
Crowd pleaser for sure! I did change the recipe a bit. I left out the celery and spinach. In their place I added baby portobello mushrooms, chopped zucchini and leeks. I also used spicy ground Italian sausage and deglazed it 3-4 times with white wine before putting it all in the crockpot. I didn't want the spicy sausage taste to overwhelm the other flavors...deglazing helps with that. Thank you for this great recipe.
So glad you liked it! I love the white wine idea!
Elizabeth N says
As soon as I saw this on IG I knew I was going to make it! I made it for dinner tonight and my husband and I both loved it! Can't wait for leftovers! This will be part of the regular rotation this winter for sure!
I'm SO pleased to hear that!! Thanks for following along. 🙂
Kathie Peoples says
I have another recipe that calls for fennel in it. Do you use???
Hmm... you could try doing a search for my blog (use the search bar) to see what other recipes I have with fennel. I don't use it too often, though!
Girlfriend! This was so dang delicious! My husband and kiddos (ages 15 & 20) couldn’t stop raving about how good it was. A couple of things I did differently: I used my 6.5 quart pot instead of a crockpot. i used hot Italian sausage and cooked everything for about 1.5 hrs. before I added the cream, spinach and tortellini. Instead of the fresh refrigerated tortellini, I used the Barilla Collezione Selection Artisanal three cheese tortellini. OMG, this is a winner!!
I am so happy to heat that, Bobbie!! Thanks for letting me know! 🙂
Is there anyway this recipe can be amended if I don’t have a crockpot or an instant pot/pressure cooker ??
Hi! Yes, but I haven't tested it. I'd follow a similar process, but obviously cook it for way less time. Like add the cream, spinach, tortellini etc. in around the last 10 minutes or so maybe? I also have a similar recipe for the stovetop that you could use either instead or as a guide: https://www.saltandlavender.com/italian-sausage-tortellini-soup/
Can you use half-in-half instead if heavy cream?
That should be fine for this recipe.
Do you think it would still be good with our celery and carrots ? Thanks!
I think it would still be good without those, yes.
If I don’t have the crushed tomatoes, what would you recommend? Putting in less chicken broth to even it out? Thank you!!
Yes, but do you have any other type of canned tomatoes? It definitely makes a difference to the taste of the soup.
Sheila Reinhardt says
I do not have heavy cream do you think I could use sour cream or evaperated milk? We like spice so I have added chilli peppers.
Hmmm.. Sour cream will give it a tangy flavor, but why not! I can't say I've tried evaporated milk in soups before, but if you have, I don't see why it wouldn't be ok in a pinch!
Thank you so much for this DELICIOUS recipe. My husband and I loved it. I served it with a crisp green salad and olive bread with EVOO. What a hit! I will be making this one again.
You are very welcome!! I am so happy you liked it. Sounds like a delicious meal.
Hi there! Could this work in the Instant Pot?
Hi Emma! I think so. I'd just add the tortellini, spinach, and cream after you release the pressure. Maybe sauté the ingredients as instructed (but do it in the IP), then cook on high pressure for 8 minutes, do a quick release, and then take the lid off, press the "sauté" button, and add the remaining ingredients for like 5 min or so. Let me know how it goes!
Amy Lloyd says
Yummm I made this recipe tonight and it was delicious! I adapted it for the Instant Pot, following your suggestions. Sautéed the sausage with onion (in the IP), then added garlic. Added the tomatoes, veggies, and broth. Turned the IP to high pressure for 8 mins, then did a quick release. Switched back to sauté mode, then added pasta, plenty of spinach, and cream. It took maybe 5 minutes until the tortellini floated to the top and everything was good to go!
Wonderful! So glad it worked out. ❤️
Mary Ann | The Beach House Kitchen says
I love hearty, slow cooker soup recipes like this for fall Natasha! My husband Tom will LOVE it!
Thanks so much, Mary Ann! 🙂