Jump to RecipeJump to VideoLeave a ReviewPin Recipe

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this website.

We can never have enough quick and flavorful cheese tortellini recipes! This Italian sausage and tortellini skillet is an easy dinner that cooks entirely in one pan — and it’s ready in just 30 minutes.

Overhead shot of a pan of sausage and cheese tortellini in marinara sauce with a side of garlic bread.
Table of Contents
  1. Cheese Tortellini Recipes Make Dinnertime Easy
  2. Ingredients
  3. How to Cook Cheese Tortellini with Italian Sausage
  4. Serving Suggestions
  5. Storage
  6. Recipe Variations
  7. Tips for the Best Cheese Tortellini Recipes
  8. Italian Sausage and Cheese Tortellini Skillet Recipe

Cheese Tortellini Recipes Make Dinnertime Easy

Cheese tortellini recipes, like this one-pan Italian sausage and pasta, make easy dinners a breeze — with very little clean up at the end! The tortellini, meat, and vegetables all cook together in about 30 minutes, for a quick dish that the entire family will love. Pair it with garlic bread and a crisp green salad, and a simple, hearty, homemade supper is ready for your busiest weeknights.

What is tortellini traditionally stuffed with?

Tortellini are ring-shaped pasta originally from the Italian region of Emilia. They are typically stuffed with meat, cheese, or spinach, and are sold either frozen, fresh, or dried. In this recipe, I’ve shown fresh 3 cheese tortellini, which includes creamy ricotta, Parmesan cheese, and Romano cheese.

Browning Italian sausage in a cast iron skillet

The Difference Between Tortellini and Ravioli

While both pastas are stuffed with meats, cheeses, or vegetables, they are not quite the same. Ravioli is two layers of pasta that form a pillow-like shape, whereas tortellini is folded into hat-like, ring shapes that are similar to dumplings.

Do you put a sauce with tortellini?

Like any other pasta, tortellini is best when served with a sauce for moisture and flavor. Even if it’s just a drizzle of olive oil or melted butter, you’ll want something to finish off the dish and prevent the pasta from becoming dry and sticky. Here we’re using either homemade marinara sauce or store-bought marinara sauce, which is a simple a blend of olive oil, tomatoes, onion, garlic, herbs, and spices.

Process shot showing how to make cheese tortellini recipes

Ingredients

This is just a quick overview of the ingredients that you’ll need for one of our favorite cheese tortellini recipes. As always, specific measurements and step-by-step cooking instructions are included in the printable recipe box at the bottom of the post.

  • Italian sausage: use mild, sweet, or hot sausage — whatever you prefer. I buy the bulk Italian sausage without casings for ease, but you can also just purchase links and remove the casings before cooking.
  • Onion and garlic: for savory flavor.
  • Fire-roasted diced tomatoes: or sub with regular diced tomatoes.
  • Marinara sauce: use homemade sauce or a jar of your favorite store-bought brand. We love Rao’s marinara sauce for homemade taste with zero effort!
  • Chicken broth: the liquid that the pasta absorbs as it cooks. Water will also work fine.
  • Italian seasoning and garlic salt: for even more flavor.
  • Fresh cheese tortellini: find this cheese-filled pasta in the refrigerated section at your grocery store. It’s near the deli in my local shop. I like this three cheese tortellini variety.
  • Parsley: stir in the chopped fresh herbs at the end for a bright finishing touch.
  • Italian cheese blend (or mozzarella cheese) and Parmesan cheese: because every good Italian pasta dish needs plenty of gooey, melty cheese on top!
Sprinkling cheese on top of a cheese tortellini recipe

How to Cook Cheese Tortellini with Italian Sausage

It doesn’t get much easier than a 30-minute one-dish meal! I’ve included the detailed instructions in the printable recipe card at the bottom of the post, but here’s the quick version:

  1. Brown the Italian sausage and onion in a skillet.
  2. Stir in the tomatoes, sauce, broth, and seasoning.
  3. Add the tortellini.
  4. Cook until the tortellini is tender.
  5. Stir in parsley and sprinkle cheese on top.
Square overhead image of sausage and cheese tortellini in a cast iron skillet.

Serving Suggestions

Here are some sides that go well with cheese tortellini:

Square overhead shot of cheese tortellini and sausage in a white bowl.

Storage

  • This dish is best served immediately while the sauce is warm and the tortellini is fresh.
  • Leftovers will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. 
  • Reheat the pasta and sauce gently over low heat on the stovetop just until warmed through, or put individual portions in a microwave-safe bowl, cover, and warm for about 1-2 minutes. Overcooked pasta will become gummy, so don’t reheat it for too long.
  • I do not recommend freezing the cheese tortellini, as the pasta will have a mushy texture when thawed.

Recipe Variations

  • Swap out the Italian sausage and use ground turkey sausage, ground beef, ground turkey, or ground chicken instead.
  • Add spinach or frozen peas at the end of the cooking time, since these only need a couple of minutes to soften in the dish.
  • Sautéed mushrooms, broccoli, or other veggies are also nice additions.
  • Instead of cheese tortellini, try other varieties such as chicken, sausage, or spinach tortellini.
  • Substitute frozen or dried tortellini for the fresh tortellini. If using dried tortellini, you will likely need to add some extra broth to the skillet, and you will need to extend the cooking time.
  • For a creamy tortellini dish, stir in a splash of heavy cream at the end.
Overhead shot of a skillet of cheese tortellini with Italian sausage.

Tips for the Best Cheese Tortellini Recipes

  • The total cooking time will vary depending on the size and brand of tortellini that you use. Keep a close eye on it and remove the dish from the heat as soon as the pasta is al dente. It will continue to soften in the sauce, and you don’t want it to be overdone and mushy.
  • The cheese will melt on top of the hot pasta with a lid; however, if you like a crispier, browned cheese on top of your dish, feel free to transfer the skillet to the broiler for a couple of minutes at the very end. Just make sure that you’re using an oven-proof skillet (such as a cast iron pan).
  • Use a skillet that’s at least 12 inches in diameter so that it accommodates all of the ingredients. If you don’t have a skillet this size, a Dutch oven will also work.
  • Add other fresh herbs to the skillet for more flavor. Good options include basil, thyme, rosemary, or oregano.
Overhead shot of a bowl of cheese tortellini with Italian sausage.

More Cheese Tortellini Recipes to Try

Square overhead image of sausage and cheese tortellini in a cast iron skillet.

Italian Sausage and Cheese Tortellini Skillet

5 from 1 vote
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings 5 people
Calories 596 kcal
We can never have enough quick and flavorful cheese tortellini recipes, and this 30-minute one-skillet dinner is definitely a winner!

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb. bulk Italian sausage
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon minced or pressed fresh garlic (about 3 large cloves)
  • 1 (15 ounce) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, not drained
  • 1 (24 ounce) jar marinara sauce (about 2 ½ cups total)
  • ¾ cup chicken broth (or water)
  • 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon garlic salt
  • 9 ounces refrigerated cheese tortellini
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, plus extra for garnish
  • 1-2 cups grated Italian cheese blend (or shredded mozzarella cheese)
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Instructions

  • In a large skillet, cook Italian sausage and onion over medium-high heat until the meat is no longer pink and the onion is starting to soften, about 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic; cook until fragrant, about 30 more seconds. Drain off excess grease.
    Browning Italian sausage in a cast iron skillet
  • Stir in tomatoes and their juices, marinara sauce, broth, Italian seasoning, and garlic salt. Stir in tortellini and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until pasta is tender, about 8-10 minutes. Stir occasionally so that the pasta doesn’t stick.
    Process shot showing how to make cheese tortellini recipes
  • Stir in parsley and sprinkle Italian cheese blend and Parmesan cheese on top. Remove from the heat, cover, and let stand until the cheese melts, about 2 minutes. Alternatively, for a crispier browned top, place the skillet under the broiler for a few minutes (just make sure that your skillet is oven-proof!). Garnish with additional fresh parsley, if desired.
    Sprinkling cheese on top of a cheese tortellini recipe

Notes

  • The total cooking time will vary depending on the size and brand of tortellini that you use. Keep a close eye on it and remove the dish from the heat as soon as the pasta is al dente. It will continue to soften in the sauce, and you don’t want it to be overdone and mushy.
  • The cheese will melt on top of the hot pasta with a lid; however, if you like a crispier, browned cheese on top of your dish, feel free to transfer the skillet to the broiler for a couple of minutes at the very end. Just make sure that you’re using an oven-proof skillet (such as a cast iron pan).
  • Use a skillet that’s at least 12 inches in diameter so that it accommodates all of the ingredients. If you don’t have a skillet this size, a Dutch oven will also work.
  • Add other fresh herbs to the skillet for more flavor. Good options include basil, thyme, rosemary, or oregano.

Nutrition

Serving: 1/5 of the recipeCalories: 596kcalCarbohydrates: 37gProtein: 29gFat: 37gSaturated Fat: 14gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 105mgSodium: 2061mgPotassium: 862mgFiber: 5gSugar: 10gVitamin A: 957IUVitamin C: 23mgCalcium: 342mgIron: 5mg
Keyword: cheese tortellini, cheese tortellini recipe, cheese tortellini recipes, tortellini recipes
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Italian
Author: Blair Lonergan
blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

Read More

Square overhead shot of hands serving a chicken pot pie recipe with biscuits
Overhead image of a bowl of chili mac on a dinner table with cornbread
Hands serving a platter of sheet pan sausage and potatoes

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Comments

  1. Teresa Maser says:

    Looking forward to try using these recipes.

    1. The Seasoned Mom says:

      We hope you enjoy them, Teresa!

  2. Lisa says:

    5 stars
    YUMMY! Big hit at our supper table. I added some frozen chopped spinach while frying the pork sausage and onions. Hint from a sneaky mom/gramma — adding chopped frozen spinach when frying hamburger or sausage is good way to sneak spinach into dishes and they don’t even notice!
    I used frozen cheese tortellini but did let it set out for awhile before adding it to the sauce. Next time I am going to add the heavy cream to make it creamy.