Italian Sausage, Tortellini and Cabbage Soup

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Oh my goodness, I’ve never made this before and yes it’s a recipe I concocted myself with what I had in the pantry on a cold wintery night. I looked at a recipe and changed it to suit my taste. I used the mixed Buitoni Mixed Cheese Tortellini I also cooked my own Great Northern Beans (dry beans cooked in chicken broth and then I used the broth again for the soup). It’s the layering of flavors that gives this that insatiable taste that makes people crave a good recipe like this I think. It’s easy and just toss in your favorite herbs or spices. I would have added some fennel but since I’m serving it for a card club luncheon and know that one of the guests doesn’t like fennel – I left it out. Like most soups, it’s better the next day when you reheat.


  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 lb sweet Italian sausage, bulk, or removed from casings
  • 1 large yellow onion, minced
  • 2 stalks celery, minced
  • 3 large carrots, sliced thin
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-1/2 cups white wine or champagne
  • 1 (15-oz) can of great Northern beans, drained
  • 2 qts vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne
  • 1 tbsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt, more to taste
  • 1 (2-lb) cabbage, shredded
  • 2 – 3 bay leaves
  • 1 (10-oz) pkg (refrigerated) cheese-filled, spinach-filled or combination of both tortellini
  • 1/2 cup chopped parsley, loosely packed
  • 1/2 cup to a cup of freshly grated Parmesan or pecorino cheese for garnish


Heat the oil on medium-high heat in a large (8-quart) pot. Cut the sausage into bite size pieces; put it into the pot in a single layer. When the sausage has nicely browned, remove it with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add the minced onion and celery; sauté for 3-4 minutes, stirring often. Add the minced garlic and cook for another 5 minutes.

Add the wine, chicken stock, cabbage and carrots; bring to a rolling boil. Reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook for 10 minutes.

Add the bay leaves, salt, Italian seasoning, garlic and onion powders, cayenne, black pepper and browned sausage. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and simmer for 45 minutes, add beans and tortellini; uncover and continue cooking until the cabbage is tender, about another 20 – 30 minutes.

To serve, sprinkle on chopped parsley and grated cheese.

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