Learning to make homemade tortellini is so easy once you get the hang of it! Each piece of fresh pasta is stuffed with a creamy ricotta mixture and goes great with just about any sauce! Make a big batch, because it stores well in the freezer and tastes just as good once it has thawed!
The next time you are craving cheese tortellini, ditch the takeout and make it at home instead. Even though you aren’t used to making your own pasta from scratch, you could even turn this into a fun family or date night. Think of it as a culinary experience or a true Italian-inspired night! I am going to be using my homemade pasta dough, which could be made ahead of time, so you don’t have to do everything at once.
All pasta dishes know the way straight to my heart, but this is a favorite because it goes well with just about any sauce like the best marinara you have ever tasted! For a real Italian dinner, start with this easy salad, fried raviolis for the app, your pasta for the main course, a red wine sangria, and top it off with classic cannoli!
Why You’ll Love This Homemade Tortellini Recipe
- The pasta is rich, light, and chewy! There’s no comparison when it comes to store-bought.
- Adds a new experience in the kitchen.
- Can be made ahead of time.
- Freezes and reheats well.
- Uses pantry staples.
What Ingredients do I Need To Make Cheese Tortellini?
- Homemade Pasta Dough – the dough can be made ahead of time or you can mix it up the same day. Remember that fresh pasta dough needs to rest for a bit before it’s soft and malleable enough to work with it and shape it.
- Semolina and/or rice flour for dusting – this type of flour makes the pasta less sticky when rolling, and is very smooth. It also allows the sauce to attach to pasta, infusing more flavor from the sauce.
- ricotta cheese
- grated parmesan cheese – try to use fresh, it makes a big difference!
- sea salt
- coarse black pepper
Before You Start have a damp paper towel or plastic nearby to wrap the dough when you aren’t using it because it tends to dry out quickly. Also, keep a small bowl of water nearby to seal the pasta.
How to Make Homemade Tortellini
PREP: Divide the dough into a couple of sections, keeping the other wrapped. Roll out the dough using a pasta machine or rolling pin so it’s very thin. Use a round cookie cutter to make as many 3-inch circles as possible.
MIX: Stir together the cheeses and spices placing a teaspoon of filling into the center of each circle.
FOLD: Moisten the edges with wet fingers or a pastry brush, and fold in half to create a half-moon shape. Then pinch the ends together to form tortellini. Repeat for the rest of the pasta. Keep your work surface floured as needed so they don’t get sticky.
COOK: Boil a large pot of salted water over medium heat, and add the tortellini. Cook until they begin to float on top. Transfer to a parchment-lined pan and freeze for 30 minutes. Then use in your favorite tomato sauce or cream sauce.
- Using a pasta machine is much easier for getting the dough thin, but you can use a rolling pin as well.
- If you would like, the dough sheets can be lightly spritzed with water to keep them from drying out.
- Instead of cheese, you can stuff tortellini with meats such as beef or pork.
- This pasta also goes great with ham or prosciutto, in soups, or in a simple garlic butter sauce.
Tortellini was originally only served to rich people prior to the 19th century!
Store the pasta in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days before using. To freeze, once they have been flash frozen, transfer them to a freezer bag to keep them fresh for 3 months.
Yes, this type of pasta is always filled with a blend of cheeses or meat and cheese.
How to Make Tortellini
- ½ recipe Homemade Pasta Dough
- Semolina and/or rice flour for dusting
- 8 oz. ricotta cheese drained
- 1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon coarse black pepper
- ½ cup finely chopped parsley
- Divide the pasta dough into 2-3 sections. Work with one section at a time, keeping the remaining sections wrapped.
- Use a rolling pin or a pasta machine to roll the dough as thin as possible. With a pasta machine, roll the dough on gradually smaller settings until you can roll it out on the thinnest setting.
- Use a 3” round biscuit cutter to cut circles out of the rolled dough. Gather the scraps together, re-roll the dough and cut out additional circles. Keep the rounds covered with plastic wrap or a damp paper towel to keep everything moist. The dough will dry out quickly. Continue rolling out and cutting the dough.
- Stir together drained ricotta, parmesan, salt, pepper, and parsley.
- Place one teaspoon of the ricotta mixture in the center of each circle.
- Use a pastry brush or your finger to moisten around the edge of the circle with water and then fold in half to form a half moon, sealing the filling in the center.
- Fold the two points of the half moon back to meet each other and press the ends together to form the tortellini.
- Continue for the remaining circles. Sprinkle with flour as needed to prevent pasta from sticking to the board or to the other tortellini.
- Cook tortellini in a pot of salted, boiling water until it floats to the top. Or spread in a single layer on parchment paper and freeze; then, transfer to a freezer baggy or storage container and keep frozen for up to 3 months.