Tortellini Soup with Beans and Chard

November 7, 2011 · 19 comments

in healthy,pasta,soups and stews,vegetarian


I don’t like tomato soup. I know, it’s blasphemous, right? It’s just that I need stuff in my soup.

This soup has a lot of (good) stuff in it—tortellini, cannelini beans, and swiss chard. It’s sort of reminiscent of pasta fagioli but a little more…bulky. (That is a very accurate and oft-used term in culinary arena, trust me).

This soup is very rustic and comforting, and all the flavors come together nicely. I used herbs de Provence, but Italian seasoning or simply your favorite combination of herbs could easily be used here instead. In fact, this soup is interchangeable in many ways—use your favorite kind of pasta, herbs, leafy greens. Whatever you have on hand.

Although fresh tortellini would be great in this, I used dried because I picked it up on a whim at Trader Joe’s a couple weeks ago (I seem to always pick up at least 2-3 things on a whim there). I used a Parmesan rind in this soup, as I often do with soups like this one. If you have a wedge of Parm (or Romano) and don’t find an immediate need for the rind, you can freeze them for when you do need them. I tend to always have one or two sitting in my freezer, although I’m currently fresh out, which means it’s high time we polish off a wedge of cheese.

Tortellini Soup

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2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. tomato paste
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
8 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 (15 oz.) can diced tomatoes (preferably fire-roasted)
1 (15 oz.) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 Tbsp.  herbs de Provence or Italian seasoning
1  bay leaf
1 Parmesan rind (optional)
9 oz. fresh or 6 oz. dried cheese-filled tortellini
1 bunch swiss chard (or your favorite leafy green), chopped
Parmesan cheese for topping

In a Dutch oven or soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until tender, about 5-6 minutes. Add the garlic, tomato paste, and red pepper flakes and cook an additional minute. Stir in the broth, tomatoes, beans, herbs de Provence, and Parmesan rind. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Stir in the tortellini and chard. Continue to simmer  until tortellini is cooked and chard is tender (dried tortellini will take a little longer than fresh; keep in mind certain greens like kale will take longer to take than tortellini and should be added a few minutes prior).

Ladle soup into bowls and top with freshly grated Parmesan.

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