This Spicy Tortellini Skillet Dinner is unbelievably easy to make, ready in 20 minutes with only 5 ingredients! It features lightly browned cheese tortellini sauteed with red pepper flakes and paprika, then tossed with tomatoes and topped with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
The little spicy kick is subtle, but you can skip the pepper flakes if desired and it will still be delicious. Try it, your whole family will love it!
👩🏻🍳 Why You'll Love This Recipe
I love serving tortellini for dinner, but sometimes I want something different than pasta with red sauce and meatballs. This spicy tortellini skillet recipe is a great option to spice up tortellini!
With just a few simple ingredients, you can whip up a hearty, spicy meal that's perfect for a quick and satisfying weeknight dinner.
Just like my One Skillet Cheese Tortellini, this spicy tortellini recipe requires fairly little prep time and is ultra-customizable!
🥘 Ingredients Needed
- tortellini - most tortellini comes with at least the filling precooked, so it only takes a few minutes to cook the pasta.
- olive oil
- smoked paprika - this spice brings a depth and warmth to your dish.
- red pepper flakes - responsible for the little kick of spicy heat.
- grape tomatoes - for some added color and extra nutrition.
- Parmesan cheese - this ingredient is optional; some Parmesan over top of your cooked spicy tortellini is the perfect way to bring it all together!
- Boil water and add tortellini, cooking for about 5 minutes.
- Heat olive oil in a pan with paprika and red pepper flakes.
- Mix until combined and fragrant.
- Add the cooked tortellini and saute until slightly browned.
- Toss in the grape tomatoes and heat another 2 minutes or so.
- Top with Parmesan cheese if desired.
It can take anywhere from 2-3 minutes for refrigerated tortellini to 11 minutes for dried tortellini. You'll know the pasta is fully cooked when the tortellini start to float.
The difference is largely visual, as ravioli is square or rectangle and has more of a flat bottom, whereas tortellini is a circular shape. Both contain a filling typically made with ricotta cheese, herbs and spices, and sometimes meat or vegetables.
Yes, it will be slightly more difficult to tell when it's properly cooked since you're removing the floating indicator, but tortellini (and any pasta really) can be cooked directly in the sauce you plan to use to capitalize on flavor and maybe even eliminate some dishes!
💭 Expert Tips and Tricks
- If you're not a fan of spicy food, feel free to omit the red pepper flakes or use a smaller portion. This recipe is delicious with or without the heat!
- Another way to gauge the done-ness of tortellini is to take a bite of one; if the tortellini sticks to your teeth slightly, that's a good sign it's cooked properly. You can also check for an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
This spicy tortellini skillet is great for quick and tasty weeknight meals, and the leftovers are perfect to reheat for lunch throughout the week!
📖 Substitutions and Variations
- Don't have fresh Parmesan? Feel free to use a store-bought grated Parmesan, or even sprinkle with some shredded mozzarella.
- Cherry tomatoes can be used instead of grape tomatoes. You can also dice a full tomato into small pieces.
- For added flavor and protein, add cooked bacon or sausage.
- Pepper Jack cheese is another option for slightly upping the heat factor.
- Want even more spice? Add some chopped peppers, chili powder, or Gochujang.
🔊 What readers are saying...
"I love using cheese tortellini for quick and delicious weeknight meals! I love this recipe, especially the tomatoes!"
- Aunt Bee
🥫 Storage and Reheating
Store your leftover spicy tortellini in an airtight container in the fridge for 5 days or so. Pop it in the microwave for a minute or so to quickly reheat. Add 30 second intervals if it's not fully heated through.
To prevent your tortellini from drying out during reheating, make sure you cover the container (allow an opening for steam to vent). You can even add a teaspoon or two of water before microwaving if the leftovers seem really dry when you take them out of the fridge.
You can also store spicy tortellini in the freezer to extend its shelf life anywhere from 2 to 3 months. When it's time to reheat, allow the tortellini to sit in the fridge to thaw a bit (overnight if you can), then microwave it as normal.
💡 What To Serve With This Dish
This spicy tortellini pairs well with a wide variety of side dishes! I recommend Cheddar Bacon Slow Cooker Bread, Air Fryer Green Beans, Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Carrots, or Bacon Wrapped Asparagus for a full and well-rounded meal!
🍝 More Pasta Recipes You'll Love
- Bacon and Pumpkin Pasta - Have you ever tried bacon and pumpkin as a flavor combination? This unique dish will blow you away!
- Stovetop Mac and Cheese - A simple but classic homemade mac and cheese that every home cook needs in their recipe arsenal.
- Chicken Pesto Pasta with Broccoli - Loaded with veggies and green flavor, this pasta recipe is a full dinner in one dish.
- Best Vegetable Lasagna - This recipe from Cookie and Kate makes the cheesiest vegetarian lasagna!
Skillet Tortellini Recipe
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📋 Recipe Card
Spicy Tortellini Skillet Dinner
- Boil water, then add the tortellini and cook for about 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.20 ounces cheese tortellini
- Heat the olive oil with the paprika and crushed red pepper.1 tablespoon olive oil, 2 teaspoons smoked paprika, ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- Add the tortellini and saute until the pasta is coated and has slightly browned, about 5-6 minutes.
- Add tomatoes and heat for about 1-2 more minutes.1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
- Serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese if desired.fresh Parmesan cheese
- No fresh Parmesan cheese? Skip it or substitute store-bought grated Parmesan. Or even sprinkle with some shredded mozzarella.
- Omit the red pepper flakes if you don't like spicy food (although the amount in the recipe will result in only a mild level of spiciness).
- You can use cherry tomatoes instead of grape tomatoes, or chop a large tomato into bite-sized chunks.
Nutritional information is an estimate. The nutritional values for your final dish may vary based on measuring differences and products used.
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