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Tortellini Carbonara

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a close up shot of Tortellini Carbonara on a plate
Tortellini carbonara is a comforting and satisfying dish made with pasta, bacon, and a creamy sauce, perfect for any day of the week.
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Table of Contents
  1. Tortellini Carbonara Ingredients
  2. Substitutions And Additions
  3. How To Make This Tortellini Carbonara Recipe
  4. How To Serve
  5. Storage
  6. Why We Love This Recipe
  7. Frequently Asked Questions
  8. More Recipes You’ll Love
  9. JUMP TO RECIPE
  10. Even More Recipes You’ll Love

There’s something undeniably comforting about a bowl of savory tortellini carbonara. This dish combines tender pasta, crispy bacon, and a rich, velvety sauce for a meal that’s as satisfying as it is delicious.

a close up shot of Tortellini Carbonara on a plate

Tortellini Carbonara Ingredients

Tortellini Carbonara raw ingredients that are labeled
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There’s a certain magic that happens when simple ingredients come together in just the right way. Our tortellini carbonara recipe is a perfect example of this.

The tortellini is perfect for holding onto the creamy sauce, while the bacon adds a smoky, savory element to the dish.

The velvety sauce is made from a simple combination of aromatic garlic, cream, eggs, and tangy parmesan cheese, which adds a salty, nutty flavor and helps thicken the sauce.

Here are the key ingredients in this delicious dish:

  • 1 pound of tortellini
  • 5 bacon slices, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • ½ cup of grated parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup of heavy whipping cream
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • Fresh parsley, chopped (optional)

PRO TIP:

Using a high-quality cheese rather than any processed grated cheese in the shaker container for this recipe will give you the best results.

Substitutions And Additions

TORTELLINI: If tortellini isn’t available, you can substitute it with other stuffed pasta like ravioli or even use a simple pasta like spaghetti or fettuccine.

I prefer using cheese-filled tortellini rather than meat tortellini, which may compete with the other flavors in the dish.

You can also use fresh tortellini, which is found in the refrigerated section of the grocery store.

BACON: You can replace bacon with mushrooms or sun-dried tomatoes for a vegetarian version. They provide a similar umami flavor and texture.

EGGS: If you’re allergic to eggs, you can use a mixture of soft tofu and nutritional yeast to mimic the creamy texture and cheesy flavor.

PARMESAN CHEESE: Feel free to use other hard, aged cheeses like Pecorino Romano or Grana Padano.

HEAVY WHIPPING CREAM: For a lighter version, you can use half-and-half or whole milk. However, the sauce will be less rich and creamy.

How To Make This Tortellini Carbonara Recipe

The timing is critical in this recipe. It’s important to have all your ingredients ready before you start making it.

STEP ONE: Bring a large pot of water with salt to a boil. Add the tortellini to the boiling water and cook according to the package directions until al dente.

Drain the pasta and set it aside.

OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS

Before draining the pasta, reserve some of the pasta water in a separate container. This water can be used to thin out the sauce if it becomes too thick.

STEP TWO: In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until it becomes crispy. Be sure to drain any extra bacon grease using a ladle or paper towels.

Add the minced garlic and cook until it becomes fragrant.

STEP THREE: In a small bowl, whisk together the raw eggs, egg yolks, parmesan cheese, and heavy cream until the egg mixture is well combined.

eggs, egg yolk, parmesan, and heavy cream whisked together

STEP FOUR: Add the cooked tortellini to the skillet with the cooked bacon and garlic, and toss all the ingredients to combine.

cooked tortellini added to the skillet with the bacon and garlic

STEP FIVE: Remove the skillet from heat, wait about ten seconds, then add the cream mixture. Stir the ingredients constantly to coat the tortellini.

The residual heat of the pasta and bacon will cook the eggs and create a creamy sauce.

STEP SIX: Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Garnish your cheese tortellini with chopped fresh parsley, if desired.

STEP SEVEN: Serve your delicious hot pasta immediately, and enjoy!

PRO TIP:

This pasta must be served hot and immediately after preparing it. It does not keep or reheat well.

serve the hot pasta

How To Serve

Serving this tortellini carbonara is all about showcasing its creamy, savory goodness.

Serve it as a main dish with crusty bread or buttery garlic bread to soak up the sauce.

For a complete Italian feast, pair it with a classic Caesar salad. The crisp, fresh flavors of the salad provide a refreshing balance to the pasta.

For a casual, comfort food meal, serve this tortellini carbonara with a side of roasted vegetables.

Stuffed pasta is always a winner and makes for a hearty meal. Check out our baked tortellini and chicken tortellini for two more ways to enjoy this popular pasta.

Storage

Storing this tortellini carbonara properly ensures you can enjoy its delicious flavors even after the initial serving.

MAKE AHEAD: This recipe is best served fresh, but you can prepare the bacon and garlic mixture ahead of time.

Store it in an airtight container in the fridge, then reheat it in the skillet before continuing with the recipe.

IN THE FRIDGE: Leftover tortellini carbonara can be stored in the fridge for up to three days. Keep it in an airtight container to maintain its freshness.

IN THE FREEZER: While it’s possible to freeze this dish, the cream-based sauce may separate when thawed.

If you choose to freeze it, store it in a freezer-safe container for up to two months. Thaw it in the fridge overnight before reheating.

REHEATING: To reheat, place the pasta in a skillet over medium heat. Stir gently until it’s heated through.

If the sauce seems too thick, you can add a splash of milk or cream to thin it out.

Why We Love This Recipe

There’s a lot to love about this tortellini carbonara.

COMFORTING AND HEARTY: The combination of tender pasta, crispy bacon, and cream sauce makes for a satisfying meal that’s perfect for any day of the week.

VERSATILE: This dish can be served as a main course or a side dish and can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion.

EASY TO MAKE: Despite its sophisticated flavors, this recipe is surprisingly simple to prepare, making it a great choice for cooks of all skill levels.

overhead shot of a wooden spoon grabbing a piece of Tortellini Carbonara

Our tortellini carbonara is a dish that’s sure to impress. It’s a comforting and satisfying meal that’s perfect for any occasion. Whether you’re serving it for a family dinner, a dinner party, or a romantic meal for two, this recipe is a delicious choice that’s sure to please.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use a different type of pasta for this recipe? 

You can substitute tortellini with other types of pasta like spaghetti or fettuccine. However, the cooking time may vary.

Can I make this recipe vegetarian? 

You can replace the bacon with mushrooms or sun-dried tomatoes for a vegetarian version.

Can I use half-and-half instead of heavy cream? 

You can use half-and-half for a lighter version. However, the sauce will be less rich and creamy.

Can I freeze this dish? 

While it’s possible to freeze this dish, the cream-based sauce may separate when thawed. It’s best to consume it fresh or store it in the fridge for up to three days.

Can I prepare this dish ahead of time? 

This recipe is best served fresh, but you can prepare the bacon and garlic mixture ahead of time and store it in the fridge.

How do I make sure I don’t scramble the egg mixture?

For a silky carbonara sauce, you need to make sure that the pasta is hot enough to cook the egg but not too hot to scramble it.

To do this, remove the pan from the heat before adding the egg mixture. Then, quickly stir the mixture into the pasta until it is well
combined.

Some other tricks include using room-temperature eggs or tempering the egg mixture by adding reserved pasta water slowly while stirring continuously.

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a close up shot of Tortellini Carbonara on a plate

Tortellini Carbonara

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Tortellini carbonara is a comforting and satisfying dish made with pasta, bacon, and a creamy sauce, perfect for any day of the week.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound tortellini
  • 5 bacon slices, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • ½ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • Fresh parsley, chopped (optional)

Instructions
 

  • Bring a large pot of water with salt to a boil. Add the tortellini to the boiling water and cook according to the package directions until al dente. Drain the pasta and set it aside.
  • In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until it becomes crispy. Be sure to drain any extra bacon grease using a ladle or paper towels. Add the minced garlic and cook until it becomes fragrant.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the raw eggs, egg yolks, parmesan cheese, and heavy cream until the egg mixture is well combined.
  • Add the cooked tortellini to the skillet with the cooked bacon and garlic, and toss all the ingredients to combine.
  • Remove the skillet from heat, wait about 10 seconds, then add the cream mixture. Stir the ingredients constantly to coat the tortellini. The residual heat of the pasta and bacon will cook the eggs and create a creamy sauce.
  • Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Garnish your cheese tortellini with chopped fresh parsley, if desired.
  • Serve your delicious hot pasta immediately, and enjoy!

Notes

  • Using a high-quality cheese rather than any processed grated cheese in the shaker container for this recipe will give you the best results.
  • Before draining the pasta, reserve some of the pasta water in a separate container. This water can be used to thin out the sauce if it becomes too thick.
  • This pasta must be served hot and immediately after preparing it. It does not keep or reheat well.

Nutrition

Calories: 685kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 39g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 0.04g | Cholesterol: 285mg | Sodium: 937mg | Potassium: 155mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 804IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 320mg | Iron: 4mg
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This recipe was developed, tested, cooked and photographed by the Spaceships Kitchen. From our dinner table to yours, we hope you think it's out of this world!

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