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

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!

This Chicken Tortellini 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.

From my Creamy Tortellini Toscana to my Cheesy Bolognese Tortellini Al Forno, to my Creamy White Bean and Ham Tortellini Soup, tortellini just makes everything better!  Because if there is one way to make pasta even more delicious – stuff it with cheeeese!

side view of Chicken Tortellini Soup with cheese tortellini, carrots, celery, onions, garlic and spicess

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.

Shredding chicken on cutting board for Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup

Ingredient Notes

  • 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.

How to Make Slow Cooker Chicken 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

Tips and Tricks for Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup

  • You are going to need a 6 qt. crock pot for this recipe because it makes quite a bit.  If you don’t don’t have a 6 qt crock pot or don’t like leftovers then you can half the recipe.
  • 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.  It is hard to overcook chicken in a broth, but it can be done.  You wan to cook your chicken just until it easily shreds with two forks.
  • 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.
  • While the chicken is resting, add your tortellini to the slow cooker and turn the heat to HIGH if it had previously been on low and cook for approximately 15 minutes or until the tortellini are tender. Take care not to overcook your tortellini because it will continue to cook just by sitting in the hot soup.
  • The “chunkiness” of a soup is totally personal preference.  For a less chunky soup, simply add additional chicken broth.
  • Delicious with crusty bread!
showing how to make Chicken tortellini soup by placing chicken in crockpot

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!

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.

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.

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?!

top view of Chicken Tortellini Soup with cheese tortellini, carrots, celery, onions, garlic and spices in pot

Can 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.

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

Looking For more Crock Pot Soup Recipes?

WANT TO TRY THIS CHICKEN TORTELLINI RECIPE?

Pin it to your SOUP, SLOW COOKER, DINNER or CHICKEN Board to SAVE for later!

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©Carlsbad Cravings by CarlsbadCravings.com

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 Tortellini Soup (Stove Top or Slow Cooker)

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 hrs 10 mins
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 4 hrs

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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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43 Comments

  1. Kecia says

    This looks like the perfect medicine! I know it would make me feel better! I hope you feel better soon!

    • Jen says

      Thank you so much Kecia! Food somehow is always the perfect medicine :)!

  2. Paula Parker says

    Wow! Very hearty and yummy looking. It’s a complete meal. Thank you for the recipe!~

    • Jen says

      You are most welcome Paula – I love meals all in one, so easy and tasty!

  3. Sophia @ NY Foodgasm says

    Well a cold ain’t nothing compared to all those transplants, you are a fighter! Hope you feel better soon, I know this soup would make me feel better!

    • Jen says

      LOL! True that! Just trying not to get pneumonia because that can lead to rejection. But like you said, I think this soup might do the trick 🙂

    • Jen says

      Thanks so much Sheena, I really appreciate it!

      • Anne says

        I can’t get over how easy this is and it took no time. I only have 30% kidney function so i have very little energy and tire easily. This was so easy to make and so delicious even low salt.Thanksvforbshaing. I’ll becsavingbthiscand cooking it again and again. Good luck fighting that pneumonia.

        • Jen says

          YAY! those are the best type of recipes, so happy you enjoyed it! I love the slow cooker for that reason! I had a kidney transplant 3 years ago so I know what its like to have no energy. My prayers are with you and your kidney!

  4. Meredith Elizabeth says

    Another great culinary idea! I love soups. Asians eat a lot of soups and vegetables! To make the best of my time (having 3 kids and being a student) I cook a whole tray of uncut chicken breasts in the slow cooker and freeze. I just defrost the amount I need for a meal and cooking is so much easier and less burdensome. I even put my frozen meets straight into the crockpot. The stuff turns out just fine!

    • Jen says

      What a great idea to cook your chicken for the week in the crockpot! I might just have to start doing that! Thanks Meredith!

    • Jen says

      Love easy and delicious! Thanks so much for visiting and for your kind words on my photos!

  5. Laura (Lauras Little House Tips) says

    This sounds delicious I love Tortellini even with just butter and garlic salt! Take care of you. I have Lupus and immune systems are so bizarre I am thrilled you eat so well. I look forward to trying this recipe 🙂

    • Jen says

      Mmmm, tortellini with butter and garlic salt sounds divine! The body is an amazingly complex! I am just so grateful for modern medicine! Take care of yourself too!!!

  6. Bola says

    Jen,
    Looks like you are already feeling better. Food craving is a good sign.
    Your pictures are just sumptuous! I have pinned this recipe to test out. Hope it turns out as good as yours.

    • Jen says

      Food craving is definitely a good sign – and always a good/happy thing 🙂 Happy you are going to try this! I am sure it will turn out just as delicious because there isn’t really a way to mess this one up! 🙂 Thanks for stopping by Bola!

  7. alyssa says

    Silly question… but do you remove the bay leaf when its done cooking? (I have mine in the crockpot now and my goodness, my house smells amazing) GREAT recipe!

    • Jen says

      Sorry, I should clarify that! Yes, remove the bay leaf when you are ready to eat. Thanks Alyssa and enjoy!

  8. Jenny Smith says

    I have made this soup at least 6 or 7 times! It is a hit every single time and the perfect meal to deliver to someone because there is always enough for my family too! You are awesome! Thanks for all your great recipes!

    • Jen says

      Hi Jenny, I am so happy you love my soup, that makes me so happy! What a great idea to make this to share as well! I am having lots of fun sharing my recipes so I love hearing when others enjoy them, thank you!!!

  9. AdamSch. says

    This is a keeper! I’ve sharred it with my mom and all 5 siblings who then fed it to their family’s… my dad even liked it not to mention all 18 grandchildren! My twist on it: 1/2 onion-diced, 1/2 tbs ISH cumin, and 1 tbs ISH fresh minced garlic and that really punches up flavor without adding too much spice or heat for the kids (plus that means they get all the folic acid from the onion which is the only veggie my kids won’t eat without a fight… I always love it when I mention… “you know I put onion in there?” and they stand there “shell shocked” lol Thanks for posting a great recipe!

    • Jen says

      YAY! I am so happy you loved it and have shared it with your ENTIRE family – awesome! I love the additions you added – I will definitely have to incorporate them next time – especially the cumin – I LOVE cumin but wouldn’t have thought to add it to this soup, can’t wait to try it! Thanks so much for letting me know how much you loved it!

  10. HikariLynn says

    I tried this soup recipe today and OMG!! the broth was amazing!! i was a little apprehensive about the red pepper flakes in a chicken noodle soup but the subtle heat is really nice I will definitely make again!! … but without the tortellini.. i wasnt really a fan of that.. ill make it again but stick with traditional noodles ^^

    • Jen says

      I’m so glad you liked the broth -even with the red pepper flakes! I have found that if you don’t use high quality tortellini, its just not the same – but either way, I am glad you have a great base you can add whatever noodle you want to! thanks!

  11. Chelsea says

    This has been my go-to potluck soup, as well as family favorite for a couple of years now. Thank you so much for this amazing recipe. It is my never-fail favorite fall time meal.

    • Jen says

      That is awesome Chelsea, I LOVE hearing this has been such a favorite for years! Thank you so much for making my day!

  12. Shanna says

    Could you use different noodles, like egg noodles in the the crockpot as well? Would you use the same amount of chicken stock?

    • Jen says

      Hi Shanna! I hesitate cooking any other noodle other than tortellini in the crockpot as they tend to get gummy if the crockpot isn’t hot enough – but you can definitely try it! Instead, I would ladle out some of the broth from the crokpot, cook the noodles on the stove and then return it all back to the crockpot. Hope this helps!

  13. Allie says

    This soup was terrific! I made it today…….so easy…………..I didn’t have fresh tortellini but I did have cheese-filled dried which I cooked separately……(not too long) and added the last minute.

    I have to tell you how much I appreciate all your extra notes which gives me a heads up on what to watch out for.
    By now, I’ve made many your recipes and told husband tonight after eating a bowl of this soup, “Carlsbad Cravings has done it again!”

    • Jen says

      YAY! Thank you so much for your kind comment Allie! I’m so happy you made this soup already Allie and both you and your husband loved it! Please tell your husband thanks from me too 🙂

  14. Cate says

    Is it ok to refrigerate the left overs with the tortellini in it ?

    • Jen says

      Yes! Unlike wontons, tortellini will not fall apart,, just make sure to not overcook them initially. The tortellini will absorb some of the broth when refrigerated, so you will want to add some additional liquid when reheating.

  15. Jennifer Fulk says

    I made this a couple weeks ago and I’m getting ready to make it again. My whole family loved it. I used the stove top directions because I didn’t think my crock pot would be big enough. I used refrigerated tortellini that I had froze. I added them in frozen and cooked an additional minute. Came together quickly and was so comforting and delicious. Leftovers were good too!

    • Jen says

      Thank you so much Jennifer! Recipes that earn a repeat is the ultimate compliment!

  16. Jeff Rattner says

    The chicken tortellini soup looks awesome. I am going to do it for our neighborhood annual soup party. What’s your take on using rotissori chicken and shredding it instead of the chicken breasts?

    • Jen says

      Thanks Jeff! I love using shredded rotisserie chicken, it will taste great in this recipe!

  17. 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!

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