This easy chicken tortellini soup recipe is a simple meal that has plenty of comforting cheese tortellini and juicy shredded chicken in an irresistible broth! It's ready in just 40 minutes.
Want to make this soup in your Instant Pot? Try my Instant Pot chicken tortellini soup!
Why it's so tasty
I think one of the most underrated things to eat is healthier comfort food. In this soup you've got cheesy pasta, a simple yet unbelievably flavorful broth, and it's filling without being calorie dense. I love a comforting chicken noodle soup, but something about using pillowy cheese tortellini instead of noodles makes it next-level cozy. You won't feel guilty about going back for seconds!
This chicken soup is also super simple to make with everyday ingredients, which is good news for a cold day or when someone in your family is feeling a little under the weather! No fuss here. Just a piping hot bowl of soup fast. Total bliss.
Only a handful of ingredients
- Olive oil - for sautéing the aromatics
- Onion, celery, carrots - this is a classic mirepoix that's the tasty base for many soups
- Garlic - I used two cloves, but use what your heart tells you is best
- Italian seasoning - it's a delicious and versatile blend of dried herbs that comes in one convenient jar
- Chicken broth - infuses more flavor than water would
- Chicken - this soup is a great way to make use of leftover chicken, or you can buy a rotisserie chicken for it like I did
- Tortellini - I used three cheese tortellini for this recipe from the refrigerated section of the grocery store. Choose any cheese variety, and the quantity is pretty flexible!
- Salt & pepper - as with any soup, seasoning it enough is important
- Parsley - a little chopped Italian parsley at the end adds some freshness and contrast to this hearty soup, but you can skip it if you don't have any
- It's no problem halving the recipe. Simply halve the quantity of each ingredient.
- Measuring out 8 cups of chicken broth is easy. All you need is to use two 32 oz cartons!
How to make chicken tortellini soup
This is an overview with step-by-step photos. Full ingredients & instructions are in the recipe card below.
Add olive oil to a large pot or Dutch oven and sauté the onion until softened. Stir in the celery, carrots, garlic, and Italian seasoning. Cook for a few more minutes.
Add in the chicken broth, bring to a boil, and then simmer until the veggies are tender. Stir in the cooked chicken and tortellini. Continue cooking until the pasta is cooked through. Season with salt & pepper and dig in!
- You can absolutely make this in your slow cooker! Instead of using the pre-cooked chicken, I would suggest 3-4 raw chicken breasts or 6 chicken thighs.
- Cook it on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours, and test to make sure the chicken is cooked through and shreds easily.
- Then simply add the tortellini in with about 30 minutes to go.
Substitutions and variations
- Want to make it lemony? Try stirring in 1 tbsp lemon juice or more to taste.
- You can use meat-stuffed tortellini if you prefer. Just be sure to read the package directions carefully for the cook time to ensure they're cooked through in the soup.
- Easily add in a handful or two of fresh baby spinach or any other veggies you'd like. Frozen corn would be a great option to toss in near the end of the cooking time.
- Uncooked chicken breasts or thighs will work. Just add them in during step 3, and then cook for 15-20 minutes or until cooked through before adding the tortellini.
- You can sub for frozen or dried tortellini, but keep in mind that it will take longer to cook than the refrigerated kind.
Leftovers and storage
- You can keep the soup in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- The tortellini will soak up the broth over time. To avoid this, just add it separately as needed when you're reheating it. You can either take it out of the soup and store it in a separate container, or simply cook more pasta when you're ready to eat leftovers. It'll cook right in the broth as you warm it up.
- You can freeze the broth portion, but cooked pasta freezes badly and changes the texture. Again, add in the tortellini when reheating for best results!
Will you make this easy tortellini soup? Talk to me in the comments below!
Easy Chicken Tortellini Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 medium onion chopped
- 3 sticks celery finely chopped
- 3 large carrots peeled & chopped or sliced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 8 cups chicken broth
- 2 cups cooked chicken (or more, to taste)
- 2 (9 ounce) packages refrigerated cheese tortellini
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Chopped parsley to taste
- Add the olive oil and onion to a large soup pot. Sauté over medium-high heat for 5-7 minutes (it's ok if onion lightly browns).
- Add the celery, carrots, garlic, and Italian seasoning to the pot. Give it a good stir and continue cooking for a few more minutes.
- Add the chicken broth to the pot. Increase the heat to high, and once it starts to boil, reduce the heat to a rapid simmer and let it cook for 10 minutes or until the veggies have softened to your liking.
- Add the chicken and tortellini to the pot. Increase the heat to medium-high and let the soup cook for a few more minutes until the tortellini is cooked. If it starts to boil furiously, you may need to turn the heat down again.
- Season with salt & pepper as needed and garnish with the chopped parsley. Serve immediately.
- The tortellini will soak up the broth the longer it sits, so this soup is best eaten right away. The leftovers are still tasty, but you may need to add more water or chicken broth. If you're planning on having lots of leftovers, don't add all the tortellini to the soup - keep the broth separate and add uncooked tortellini to the soup as needed when reheating it (it cooks fast).
- See my tips within the blog post if you want to make this soup in your slow cooker. Or check out the Instant Pot version.
- Serves 4-6 depending on portion size/what it's served with.
- 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 recipe was originally published on April 5, 2018. It's been updated with new photos and better instructions but is the same great recipe!