Chicken Tortellini Soup

Chicken Tortellini Soup is your favorite chicken noodle soup but 1000X better with pillowy, cheese tortellini!

Chicken Tortellini Soup is bursting with juicy chicken, cheesy tortellini and veggies in a steaming hot, savory, salty, perfectly seasoned broth. This soup is an easy meal-in-one made on the stove top or in the crockpot for a satisfying dinner any night of the week.  This Chicken Tortellini Soup is a delicious spin on chicken noodle soup that might leave you never wanting to make “classic” chicken noodle soup ever again!

Chicken Tortellini Soup with cheese tortellini, carrots, celery, onions, garlic and spices in crockpot with soup ladle

 Chicken Tortellini Soup Recipe

  • ORIGINAL RECIPE: I was the very first blogger (as far as I know) to create this Chicken Tortellini Soup years ago.  Since then, a version has been created by numerous bloggers and can be seen all over Pinterest because Chicken Noodle Soup is SO MUCH BETTER with tortellini!   If you love creative spins on Chicken Noodle Soup then you will also love my Thai Chicken Noodle Soup and Miso Chicken Noodle Soup!
  • TORTELLINI! This soup goes beyond basic Chicken Noodle Soup with the same classic, hearty, comforting chicken veggie bath with the bonus of tender pillows of cheesy tortellini in each slurpful.
  • SO EASY: Not only is this the best chicken “noodle” soup I’ve ever had, this Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup has to be one of the easiest meals to make because it’s made in the crock pot.  The ratio of effort to deliciousness is astronomical – AKA my kind of dinner.
  • EXTRA FLAVORFUL: The crockpot is my absolute favorite way to prepare any soup that calls for chicken!  You simply can’t achieve more tender or more tasty chicken any other way!  Same goes for the vegetables. As the chicken and veggies cook, they soak up the garlic, onion, oregano, thyme spiced chicken stock, ensuring every chunky, tender spoonful seeps with flavor as it hotly, soothingly glides down your throat.
side view of Chicken Tortellini Soup with cheese tortellini, carrots, celery, onions, garlic and spicess


 

Chicken Tortellini Soup Ingredients

  • You will want to make sure to use low sodium chicken broth and add salt to taste or your soup will be too salty.
  • That being said, if you feel like your soup is missing something at the end of cooking, it’s probably salt. I probably add an additional ½ teaspoon salt at the end of cooking.
  • You can omit veggies and/or add in any of your favorite vegetables such as mushrooms, spinach, zucchini, corn, tomatoes, etc.  Just be aware you might need more chicken broth if you add more vegetables.
  • The red chili flakes add a nice kick and brighten up the entire soup.  If you aren’t sure how much to use, then start with a pinch and add more to taste at the end of cooking.
Shredding chicken on cutting board for Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup

Can I use shredded rotisserie chicken?

Absolutely!  You will want to add the cooked, shredded chicken to the pot before you add the tortellini so it can get nice and warm.  You don’t want to add the chicken with the tortellini because it will lower the temperature of the entire soup.  You don’t want to add after the tortellini either because you want to serve the soup as soon as the tortellini are cooked.

Can I use chicken thighs?

Yes!  If using chicken thighs, make sure to use bone-in, skinless chicken thighs.  They sill take about the same amount of time to cook as chicken breasts.  You especially might want to consider chicken thighs if cooking on the stove top because they emerge juicer.

What Tortellini Should I Use?

You can use different types of tortellini. I’ve used 3 cheese, 7 cheese and even sweet sausage which was amazing.

Make sure you use fresh, refrigerated tortellini and not any tortellini on the grocery shelves.  Refrigerated tortellini is fresher and tastes far superior.

How to make Crockpot Tortellini Soup

Not only is this the best chicken “noodle” soup I’ve ever had, this Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup has to be one of the easiest meals to make because it’s made in the crock pot.  The ratio of effort to deliciousness is astronomical – AKA my kind of dinner.

To make this Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup, all you do is dice some veggies and throw them in your crockpot, along with some whole chicken breasts (my favorite part, no cutting raw chicken!), seasonings and chicken broth and let it cruise while the savory aroma permeates every nook and cranny of your home.

The crockpot is my absolute favorite way to prepare any soup that calls for chicken!  You simply can’t achieve more tender or more tasty chicken any other way!  Same goes for the vegetables. As the chicken and veggies cook, they soak up the garlic, onion, oregano, thyme spiced chicken stock, ensuring every chunky, tender spoonful seeps with flavor as it hotly, soothingly glides down your throat.

showing how to make Chicken Tortellini Soup by adding carrots, onions, celery, seasonings to a crock pot

How to Make Chicken Tortellini Soup on the Stove Top

Chicken Tortellini is super easy to make on the stove top and can be on your table in less than 45 minutes – most of that is hands off simmering time!

  1. You will need a large Dutch oven or Soup pot for this Chicken Tortellini recipe otherwise it won’t fit!  Alternatively, you may halve the recipe.
  2. First, you’ll saute your onions, carrots, celery and garlic then add all the rest of your Chicken Tortellini Soup ingredients EXCEPT the tortellini.  Simmer for 20-25 minutes or just until the chicken is tender enough to shred.
  3. Remove the chicken to a cutting board while you simmer your tortellini for 5 minutes or so then add chicken back to the pot.  How easy was that?!

Can I make Chicken Tortellini Soup Ahead of time?

You can either prep the soup or mostly make the soup ahead of time.

To prep Chicken Tortellini Soup, chop all your vegetables and keep them in airtight containers or plastic bags in the fridge.  You can even measure out all the seasonings and keep them in an airtight container.

You can make your soup in advance but if you aren’t serving right away then don’t add the tortellini yet. Instead, keep the soup warm.

For the slow cooker, add tortellini about 15 minutes before you are planning on serving, and turn temperature to HIGH for approximately 15 minutes.

For the stove top, add tortellini to the soup about 5 minutes before serving and simmer 3-5 minutes.

showing how to make Chicken tortellini soup by placing chicken in crockpot

Tips and Tricks for Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup

  • Salt to taste: If you feel like your soup is missing something at the end of cooking, it’s probably salt. I probably add an additional ½ teaspoon salt at the end of cooking.
  • Customize veggies: You can omit veggies and/or add in any of your favorite vegetables such as mushrooms, spinach, zucchini, corn, tomatoes, etc.  Just be aware you might need more chicken broth if you add more vegetables.
  • Red chili flakes: These add a nice kick and brighten up the entire soup.  If you aren’t sure how much to use, then start with a pinch and add more to taste at the end of cooking.
  • Use a large slow cooker: Use a 6 quart or larger slow cooker because the tortellini expands while it cooks. If you don’t don’t have a 6-quart crock pot or don’t like leftovers then halve the recipe.
  • Let the chicken rest: Remove the chicken to a cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes. While the chicken cooks, the juices are forced to the middle of the meat.  The resting time allows for the redistribution and reabsorption of the juices throughout the chicken.
  • Adjust consistency: The “chunkiness” of a soup is totally personal preference.  For a less chunky soup, simply add additional chicken broth.
  • For serving: Delicious with crusty bread!
top view of Chicken Tortellini Soup with cheese tortellini, carrots, celery, onions, garlic and spices in pot

How to Store Chicken Tortellini Soup

Chicken Tortellini Soup keeps very well as long as the tortellini isn’t overcooked initially.  Store Chicken Tortellini Soup in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.  Gently warm on the stove top or microwave when ready to eat.

cutting celery, onions, carrots on cutting board for Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup

Can I freeze this Chicken Tortellini Soup?

As far as freezing this Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup – the answer is Yes and No.  No, I don’t recommend freezing this Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup WITH the tortellini.  Yes, you can freeze this Chicken Tortellini Soup WITHOUT the tortellini.

Most soups that are not cream-based freeze well but soups with pasta in them do not. The general rule with pasta is that it continues to absorb liquid when the liquid is in liquid state. Freezing will stall the process a bit but when defrosted and reheated the pasta basically turns into mush.

If you want to freeze this Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup to eat later, then it works great because you can make the soup, shred the chicken but DON’T add the tortellini.  Let the soup cool completely then freeze the soup and the tortellini separately.

If you want to make this soup, eat it, and freeze the leftovers, then you run into problems.  There are two different ways around this.  You can use one 9 oz. bag of tortellini (instead of 20 oz.) and add it directly to the soup then gobble up this tortellini in your soup servings before you freeze it (so there is no tortellini left to freeze).  Then simply reheat it with an additional 9 zo. bag of tortellini.

The other way is to boil your tortellini separately, add it to individual servings so you can freeze the soup and tortellini separately.

But whether you eat, freeze or don’t freeze, you are going to fall in love with the depth of flavor and abundance of texture in this Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup!

top view of two hands holding a bowl of Chicken Tortellini Soup cheese tortellini, onions, celery, carrots

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Chicken Tortellini Soup in a tan bowl with cheese tortellini, onions, celery, carrots with a brass spoon
cheese tortellini, carrots, celery, onions, garlic and spices in crockpot with soup ladle for This is the BEST Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup you will ever try!  It's super easy, seasoned to perfection and a comforting, satisfying dinner any night of the week!  

Chicken and Tortellini Soup (Crock Pot or Stove top)

Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup is your favorite chicken noodle soup but 1000X better with pillowy, cheese tortellini and super easy made in the crock pot! This Chicken Tortellini Soup is bursting with juicy chicken, cheesy tortellini and veggies in a steaming hot, savory, salty, perfectly seasoned broth that might leave you never wanting classic Chicken Noodle Soup ever again!
Servings: 8 -10
Total Time: 4 hours 10 minutes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours

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Ingredients

Instructions

Slow Cooker Instructions

  • Add uncut chicken to the bottom of a 6 qt. slow cooker, followed by vegetables. Add all of the remaining ingredients except for the tortellini. Give the top ingredients a stir. Cover and cook on low heat 6 – 7 hours or on high for 3-4 hours OR just until the chicken is tender enough to shred and the vegetables are tender.
  • Remove chicken to a cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, add tortellini to the slow cooker (turn to high heat if on low) and cook approximate 15 minutes. (DON’T add tortellini if you are not serving immediately, rather wait 15 minutes before you are going to serve).
  • Shred chicken and and add back to slow cooker with tortellini. Tortellini should be about cooked by this time. When tortellini is completely cooked, taste and add additional salt and pepper if desired (I like quite a bit more salt). For a less chunky soup, add additional chicken broth. Serve warm.

Stove Top Instructions

  • Heat one tablespoon olive oil in a large Dutch oven or stock pot over medium high heat. Once hot, add onions and cook 3 minutes. Add carrots, celery and garlic and cook an additional one minute.
  • Add chicken and all remaining ingredients EXCEPT tortellini and simmer until chicken is cooked through and tender, approximately 20-25 minutes.
  • Remove chicken to a cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes then shred.
  • Meanwhile, if your veggies aren’t fork tender, then continue to simmer the soup. Once tender, add tortellini and simmer just until tender, about 3-5 minutes. (DON’T add tortellini if you are not serving immediately, rather wait 5 minutes before you are going to serve to add and simmer).
  • Taste and add additional salt and pepper if desired (I like quite a bit more salt). For a less chunky soup, add additional chicken broth. Serve warm.

Notes

*It might seem like there is a lot of chicken stock while cooking, but it is needed to balance all the tortellini that is added at the end.
***You can mix up the type of tortellini you use.  I’ve even used sweet sausage and and it was amazing!
***You can buy a 9 oz. package of tortellini instead and half the recipe.  I suggest halving if you don’t have a large crockpot or soup pot because it won’t all fit!

HOW TO FREEZE

I don’t recommend freezing this Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup WITH the tortellini but you can freeze it without the tortellini (see details in post).
  • If you want to freeze this Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup to eat later, then it works great because you can make the soup, shred the chicken but DON’T add the tortellini.  Let the soup cool completely then freeze the soup and the tortellini separately.
  • If you want to make this soup, eat it, and freeze the leftovers, then there are two different ways to do this.  You can use one 9 oz. bag of tortellini (instead of 20 oz.) and add it directly to the soup then gobble up this tortellini in your soup servings before you freeze it (so there is no tortellini left to freeze).  Then simply reheat it with an additional 9 zo. bag of tortellini.
  • The other way is to boil your tortellini separately, add it to individual servings so you can freeze the soup and tortellini separately.

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47 Comments

  1. Melissa says

    I made this recipe tonight and have made it many times before. It is the best!!

    • Jen says

      I love hearing that, thanks so much Melissa!

  2. Diana says

    Made this tonight. Made some mistakes. I cut up the chicken before I put in crockpot because I didn’t read the recipe right. That’s really not a big deal, but I could have saved myself some effort. I added baby spinach in the last 30 minutes. I probably should have waited until the last five minutes.

    Those things have nothing to do with Jen, just my bad.

    The soup was well loved by my family and I’ll make it again.

    • Jen says

      Thanks Diana, I’m so glad the family loved it! It sounds like the “mistakes” didn’t affect the final verdict!

  3. Amy Dunkley says

    Quick question, if I’m using rotisserie chicken, do I still make it the same way and same amount of time?

    • Jen says

      You will want to add the cooked, shredded chicken to the pot before you add the tortellini so it can get nice and warm.  You don’t want to add the chicken with the tortellini because it will lower the temperature of the entire soup.  You don’t want to add after the tortellini either because you want to serve the soup as soon as the tortellini are cooked. Hope this helps!

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