Amy Clark

Pesto Chicken Tortellini Soup

I am rejoicing this week because I finally won a food victory in our house. After years of trying different soups on my family, we have finally settled on a soup that the whole family will eat. And not just eat, but LOVED to eat. A soup that every single family member asked for seconds on, quietly slurped away with no  noise at the table, and all asked for seconds on. If I had ever been a good cheerleader, I would have done a high kick and had us build a tower together because I was really that pumped. My parents can attest to the fact that I had great spirit, but was no cheerleader, so you will just have to pretend that this really happened. Can’t you just envision me screaming, “V for Victory,” at the top of my lungs and throwing my fists wildly in the air?

This tortellini soup brought together all of the flavors that my family loves, but is a versatile recipe that could be created with what is at your supermarket that day or what your family loves to eat. For our vegetarian readers, the chicken tortellini and chicken broth can easily be switched to a cheese-filled tortellini with vegetable broth instead. I used basil pesto in this, but you could also try a sun-dried tomato pesto or omit the pesto altogether if it is not a favorite of your family. Versatility is the beauty of a good soup recipe  and this recipe is quite versatile!

The broth for this is so rich and flavorful, thanks to the addition of the pesto, and the tortellini is tender and mixed with the brightness of the flavors from the diced tomatoes and spinach. It is delicious and satisfying. I served this with a little of my favorite bread, made in my bread machine,  which is perfect for mopping up the last of the broth. My Portuguese White Bread is a family favorite and is made from items that are already lurking in your pantry. It is the perfect accompaniment to the bold flavors of this tortellini soup.

May I say it is so fun when you can develop the cooking confidence that you see a recipe and can I just use it for inspiration and create something entirely different with what your family loves? That is what happened with this recipe which has given me a new quiet confidence in the kitchen.

If your family doesn’t love soup, this is the recipe to try on them. Don’t forget to get that old cheerleader uniform dry cleaned for this occasion! Rah-Rah-Rah!

Pesto Chicken Tortellini Soup

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cans petite diced tomatoes (14.5 ounces)
8 cups chicken broth
1 pound chicken herb tortellini or tortellini of your choice (I used the refrigerated kind, but you can also use the dried pasta)
9 ounces spinach, chopped roughly
1/4 cup basil pesto

In a large pot, saute the garlic in the olive oil. After a minute or so, add the diced tomatoes and chicken broth to the pot. Bring the broth to a rolling boil and then add in your tortellini. Cook tortellini as directed on package. In the last minute of cooking time, mix in your roughly chopped spinach and stir in the 1/4 cup of basil pesto. Ladle into bowls and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese on top. Side Note: When reheating, feel free to add some additional chicken broth to thin the soup, as the tortellini will absorb the liquid!

Portuguese White Bread

1 cup water
3 tablespoons margarine
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups white flour
1 1/2 teaspoons bread machine yeast

Add all ingredients in order listed into your bread machine. Choose the”basic” cycle and wait for the perfect loaf of white bread to appear! Yes, it is that simple!

Published September 27, 2010 by:

Amy Clark

Amy Allen Clark is the founder of MomAdvice.com. You can read all about her here.

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