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Slow Cooker Creamy Tortellini Soup

Slow Cooker Creamy Tortellini Soup Categories:
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    1 pound (500 g)  ground Italian sausage, (or ground chicken, turkey or beef), browned*
    1  onion, chopped
    2 large  carrots, chopped
    2 stalks  celery, chopped
    4 cloves  garlic, minced
    1 tablespoon  Italian seasoning
    2 teaspoon  beef bouillon powder, (or chicken)
    1/2 teaspoon  salt
    4 cups  beef broth, (or chicken or vegetable broth -- I use low sodium)
    1/4 cup  cornstarch mixed and dissolved in 1/4 cup water
    36 ounces  evaporated milk
      half and half, alternative
    12 ounce  packet three cheese tortellini, (I used dried not fresh; choose any flavour you like)
    5 cups  fresh baby spinach
    1 cup  milk

Place the browned sausage, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, Italian seasoning, beef bouillon powder, salt, and broth in a 6-quart / litre slow cooker bowl. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 7 hours.
Uncover and skim any fat that is sitting on the top of the soup with a spoon; discard. Stir in the cornstarch mixture with the evaporated milk (or half and half or cream). Add the tortellini and mix well. Cover again and cook on HIGH heat setting for a further 45 minutes until the soup has thickened, and the tortellini is soft and cooked through.
Add in the spinach, pressing the leaves down to completely submerse into the liquid. Cover again for a further 5-10 minutes until the leaves have wilted.
Pour in milk in 1/3 cup increments, as needed, to reach your desired thickness and consistency (I needed 1 cup); taste test and season with extra salt ONLY if needed, and pepper to suit your tastes.
Serve with crusty warmed bread

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