Tortellini is one of the most beloved Italian dishes out there.
It’s a type of pasta filled with cheese and herbs, usually served in a creamy sauce.
But finding the right sauce for tortellini can be tricky.
Luckily, the possibilities are endless when it comes to sauces for tortellini: you can go classic with Alfredo or Marinara, get creative with pesto or arrabbiata, or add some extra flavor with something like vodka sauce.
The right sauce can really make a dish stand out – so if you’re looking for some inspiration on how to dress up your tortellini, here are 10 of the best sauces that will take your meal to the next level!
What is Tortellini?
Tortellini is a type of Italian-filled pasta that is traditionally made from a thin sheet of egg-based dough, cut into circles and then folded over to form a ring shape.
The filling can vary widely, but typically includes cheese, meat, or vegetables.
Tortellini are usually served in broth as part of a soup dish or with sauce as an entrée.
They can also be served cold in salads or as an appetizer.
Tortellini originated in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy and have become popular around the world due to their versatility and delicious flavor combinations.
While they may take some time to prepare, tortellini are well worth the effort for their unique texture and taste!
The 10 Best Sauces for Tortellini
Tortellini is a delicious Italian dish, but the right sauce can make it even better.
Here are 10 sauces that will pair perfectly with your tortellini dishes and elevate them to another level:
Tomato cream sauce is a creamy, tomato-based sauce made with tomatoes, cream, and seasonings.
It’s a popular pasta sauce that can be used to top any type of pasta, from spaghetti to ravioli.
- Taste: The flavor of the tomato cream sauce is rich and creamy with a hint of sweetness from the tomatoes. The addition of herbs such as basil or oregano adds an extra layer of flavor to the dish.
- Texture: The texture of this sauce is smooth and velvety due to the combination of cream and tomatoes.
- How To Make It: To make tomato cream sauce, start by sautéing garlic in olive oil until fragrant. Then add diced tomatoes and cook for about 5 minutes before adding heavy cream and seasonings such as salt, pepper, oregano, basil, etc. Simmer for 10 minutes before serving over your favorite pasta dish!
White wine sauce is a classic Italian sauce made with white wine, butter, and cream.
It’s often used to top pasta dishes such as tortellini or ravioli.
- Taste: The flavor of the white wine sauce is creamy and slightly sweet from the white wine. The butter adds richness while the cream gives it a velvety texture.
- Texture: The texture of this sauce is smooth and creamy due to the addition of cream.
- How To Make It: To make white wine sauce, start by melting butter in a pan over medium heat. Once melted, add minced garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Then add dry white wine and bring to a simmer for 5 minutes until reduced by half. Add heavy cream and reduce heat to low; simmer for 10 minutes until thickened slightly. Finally, season with salt and pepper to taste before serving over your favorite pasta dish!
Garlic butter sauce is a simple yet flavorful sauce made from butter, garlic, and herbs.
It’s often used to top pasta dishes such as tortellini or ravioli, but it can also be used as a dip for breads or vegetables.
- Taste: The flavor of garlic butter sauce is rich and savory with a hint of sweetness from the butter. The garlic adds an unmistakable garlicky flavor that pairs perfectly with the creamy texture of the melted butter.
- Texture: Garlic butter sauce has a smooth and creamy texture that coats whatever it’s served on or with.
- How To Make It: Making garlic butter sauce is incredibly easy! All you need to do is melt some unsalted butter in a pan over medium heat, then add minced garlic and cook until fragrant (about 1-2 minutes). Finally, stir in your favorite herbs (such as parsley or basil) and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm over your favorite pasta dish!
4. Vodka Sauce
Vodka sauce is a creamy, tomato-based sauce made with vodka, cream, and tomatoes.
It’s often used as a topping for pasta dishes such as tortellini or penne.
- Taste: Vodka sauce has a rich flavor that combines the sweetness of tomatoes with the slight bitterness of vodka and the creaminess of heavy cream. The combination creates an indulgent yet balanced flavor profile that pairs well with many types of pasta dishes.
- Texture: Vodka sauce has a velvety texture due to its combination of heavy cream and tomatoes. The addition of vodka adds complexity to the texture by providing subtle notes of alcohol without making it too thin or watery.
- How To Make It: Making vodka sauce is easy! Start by sautéing garlic in olive oil until fragrant, then add crushed tomatoes and simmer for 10 minutes before adding heavy cream and vodka. Simmer for another 10 minutes before seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. Serve over your favorite type of cooked pasta for an indulgent meal!
Pesto is a sauce made from fresh basil, garlic, olive oil, Parmesan cheese, and pine nuts.
It originated in Genoa, Italy and is traditionally served with pasta dishes.
- Taste: Pesto has a bright flavor that comes from the combination of fresh basil and garlic. The Parmesan cheese adds a salty richness to the sauce while the pine nuts add an earthy nuttiness.
- Texture: Pesto has a thick texture due to the addition of olive oil and Parmesan cheese. The pine nuts also add some crunch to the sauce.
- How To Make It: Making pesto is easy! Start by combining 1 cup of packed fresh basil leaves, 2 cloves of minced garlic, ¼ cup of grated Parmesan cheese, 2 tablespoons of pine nuts (or walnuts), and ½ teaspoon of salt in a food processor or blender. Pulse until everything is finely chopped then slowly drizzle in ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil while continuing to blend until you have reached your desired consistency. Serve over cooked tortellini for an easy weeknight dinner!
Mushroom sauce is a creamy, savory sauce made with mushrooms and other ingredients such as butter, cream, garlic, onion, and herbs.
It can be served over pasta dishes like tortellini or ravioli.
- Taste: The flavor of mushroom sauce is earthy and savory with a hint of sweetness from the mushrooms. The addition of herbs like thyme or rosemary adds an extra layer of flavor to the dish.
- Texture: Mushroom sauce has a smooth texture that coats the pasta nicely without being too heavy or overpowering.
- How To Make It: Making mushroom sauce is easy! Start by sautéing some chopped onions in butter until they are soft and translucent. Add minced garlic and cook for another minute before adding sliced mushrooms. Cook until the mushrooms are softened then add some white wine to deglaze the pan (optional). Add cream and simmer for about 10 minutes until it thickens slightly. Finally, season with salt and pepper to taste before serving over your favorite pasta dish!
Alfredo sauce is a creamy white sauce made from butter, cream, and Parmesan cheese.
It’s often served with pasta dishes such as fettuccine or tortellini.
The dish was created in Rome by chef Alfredo di Lelio in the early 1900s and has since become popular around the world.
- Taste: Alfredo sauce has a rich, creamy flavor that is slightly salty due to the Parmesan cheese. It also has a hint of nuttiness from the butter and cream used to make it.
- Texture: Alfredo sauce is thick and velvety smooth, making it perfect for coating noodles or other types of pasta.
- How To Make It: Making homemade Alfredo sauce is easy! Start by melting butter in a pan over medium heat until it starts to bubble. Add heavy cream and bring to a simmer while stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low and add grated Parmesan cheese, stirring until melted into the mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste before serving over your favorite type of pasta!
Lemon garlic cream sauce is a creamy, flavorful sauce made with butter, garlic, lemon juice, and heavy cream.
It’s a simple yet delicious accompaniment to many dishes such as pasta, fish, chicken, and vegetables.
- Taste: The combination of the tartness from the lemon juice and the richness from the heavy cream creates an incredibly flavorful sauce that pairs perfectly with tortellini. The garlic adds a subtle hint of spice that complements the other ingredients nicely.
- Texture: This sauce has a smooth texture due to its creamy base. It coats whatever it is served over evenly without being too thick or thin.
- How To Make It: Making this delicious sauce is easy! Start by melting butter in a pan over medium heat. Add minced garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Pour in heavy cream and bring to a simmer before adding freshly squeezed lemon juice and salt to taste. Simmer for 5 minutes until slightly thickened then serve warm over your favorite dish!
Carbonara sauce is an Italian pasta dish made with eggs, cheese, bacon or pancetta, and black pepper.
It is a creamy sauce that coats the pasta and gives it a rich flavor.
- Taste: The combination of egg yolks, Parmesan cheese, and bacon creates a savory flavor that pairs perfectly with tortellini. The black pepper adds a subtle spiciness to the dish.
- Texture: Carbonara sauce has a thick texture due to the egg yolks and cheese which help to thicken it up. The bacon or pancetta also adds some crunchy texture to the dish.
- How To Make It: Making carbonara sauce is easy! Start by cooking your bacon or pancetta in a pan until crispy then set aside on paper towels to drain off any excess fat. In another bowl whisk together two egg yolks with 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese and freshly ground black pepper until combined. Heat up your cooked tortellini in boiling water for about 2 minutes then drain off the water before adding it back into the pot along with the bacon and egg mixture. Stir everything together until the sauce is creamy and the pasta is coated. Serve with more Parmesan cheese and freshly ground black pepper.
Sun-dried tomato sauce is a type of pasta sauce made from sun-dried tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, and herbs.
It has a deep red color and a rich flavor that pairs well with tortellini.
- Taste: Sun-dried tomato sauce has an intense flavor that is slightly sweet and tangy. The tomatoes are usually marinated in olive oil before being added to the sauce, which adds depth to the flavor.
- Texture: The texture of sun-dried tomato sauce can vary depending on how it’s prepared. If you use whole sun-dried tomatoes, the texture will be chunky; if you use chopped or pureed tomatoes, it will be smoother.
- How To Make It: Making sun-dried tomato sauce is easy! Start by heating some olive oil in a pan over medium heat and adding minced garlic. Cook until fragrant then add your choice of chopped or pureed sun-dried tomatoes (or both). Simmer for 10 minutes then season with salt and pepper to taste. Finally, stir in fresh herbs like basil or oregano and serve!
In conclusion, there are a variety of sauces that can be used to enhance the flavor of tortellini.
From creamy tomato sauces to garlicky butter sauces, there are plenty of options to choose from.
The best sauces for tortellini include tomato cream sauce, garlic white wine sauce, garlic butter sauce, vodka sauce, pesto, mushroom sauce, Alfredo sauce, lemon cream sauce, carbonara sauce, and sun-dried tomato sauce.
Each of these sauces has its own unique flavor and texture that can take your tortellini dish to the next level.
So the next time you’re making tortellini, experiment with a few of these sauces and find the perfect flavor combination for your dish.
The 10 Best Sauces for Tortellini
- Tomato Cream Sauce
- White Wine Sauce
- Garlic Butter Sauce
- Vodka Sauce
- Mushroom Sauce
- Alfredo Sauce
- Lemon Garlic Cream Sauce
- Carbonara Sauce
- Sun-dried Tomato Sauce
- Select your favorite recipe.
- Organize all the required ingredients.
- Prep a sauce recipe in 30 minutes or less!
Jenny has always been passionate about cooking, and she uses her platform to share her joy of food with others. Her recipes are easy to follow, and she loves giving tips and tricks to help others create their own unique culinary creations.