Perfectly cooked chicken, tender veggies, and soft tortellini in a flavorful creamy soup – easy enough for a weeknight meal, and delicious enough to keep on repeat in your meal rotation for months to come!
As many of you noticed (and emailed/messaged me about, lots! Sorry!), I have been MIA for a while (since last May/June). For anyone wondering if taking a little break after having a baby is a good idea, the answer is a resounding Y.E.S. Especially from blogging and all that comes along with it…
Why? My second son is a blessing we prayed our guts out for (including a round of fertility treatments – that worked!), and I made the decision for myself that I wasn’t going to let anything (including this little blog of mine) take a single second away from soaking in my sweet little babe! That time flew by fast, and still is! I missed blogging, but most importantly, I didn’t miss a second of my baby. I was grateful we were in a position for me to take a break, too. I know not all can afford a step back from blogging, I totally get it. Plus, people warned I’d lose readers, traffic, etc. That didn’t matter to me – blogging wasn’t the center of my life. My kids were. So it was an easy decision.
It was heaven, I tell you. I loved every second of it. Even those late nights and the complete lack of sleep was fine, knowing I didn’t have yet another post to type up, a billion photos to look through and edit, websites waiting for me to submit my photos to for approval, social media to keep up, or another recipe to try out for the 10th time to make sure it’s perfect before sharing it. I still popped over to Studio 5 to cook on TV and share recipes here and there, and I loved it, but everything else was at a complete standstill.
So why am I back? Well, I’m in a place where I feel like I can try to balance blogging back into my life. Also, my husband Ryan is working at a law firm, so long hours are the norm again around here (at least on the weeks where he’s on a tougher case and especially when he’s in the courtroom for a trial). So the evenings are a bit more free for blogging/editing/etc, again. So here I am again! I’m not trying to conquer the food blogging world, or win Instagram. I just have missed sharing recipes from my kitchen to yours. I’ve loved reading through emails from you guys after you’ve tried a recipe and the success has warranted several repeats (and even a permanent spot in your dinner rotations!) I love it. So here I am again. Happy to write to you all again!
Let’s just take a second to talk about this dreamy soup, shall we?
You guys, it’s incredible. I’m usually not a creamy-soup-base gal, but this one pulls you in at first bite! The recipe is super low-maintenance, too. The chicken is cooked right in the boiling soup water, then shredded, then placed right back into the soup. The tortellini cooks within a minute, and the spinach wilts almost instantly in the warm creamy broth. I kept our mushrooms large because apparently I’m the only one in the house who likes mushrooms, and the boys pick them out (including my husband). We served this up with some fresh fruit and a loaf of crusty baguette bread, and were immediately sold on making this one again and again. Enjoy!
Creamy Chicken, Spinach, and Tortellini Soup
Servings: about 6
2 T olive oil
1 heaping cup of chopped yellow onion
1 handful of baby carrots
8oz cremini mushrooms, quartered
3 cloves of garlic, minced
5 C low-sodium chicken broth
2 boneless, skinless, chicken breasts, quartered
1 t dried oregano
1/2 t dried thyme
salt and pepper
1/4 C unsalted butter, cubed
1/3 C flour
2 1/2 C milk
9oz spinach & three cheese tortellini
4 C fresh spinach
1/4 C heavy cream
grated parmesan, for serving
1. In a large pot over medium-high heat, heat olive oil, then add in onions, carrots, and mushrooms. Saute about 3 minutes until onions are translucent, then toss in the garlic and saute 1 minute longer.
2. Add in chicken broth, chicken (raw, don’t worry, it will cook through and add in tons of flavor!), oregano, thyme, then season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, cover with a lid, then reduce heat to medium-low to simmer for at least 15 minutes (chicken must be cooked through, about 165 degrees on a meat thermometer).
3. While chicken is simmering, create the sauce (to make the soup creamier) in a separate pan. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, then whisk in flour. Cook, whisking constantly, for 1 minute. Slowly pour in the milk, then season with a little salt and pepper. Bring to a light bowl, stirring constantly, then set aside for a minute.
4. Remove cooked chicken from the pot and shred on a cutting board with two forks. Add tortellini to the soup, bring to a boil, then immediately bring down to a simmer. Toss in spinach, pour in heavy cream, stir in chicken, stir in white sauce, then remove from heat. Serve warm with a little sprinkle of parmesan cheese.