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Sicilian Tortellini Bake

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1 pound ground beef
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 (26 ounce) jar pasta sauce
1/3 cup water
2 red bell peppers, chopped
2 (19 ounce) packages frozen cheese tortellini
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, cut into cubes
1 cup milk
1 cup sour cream
1 cup, divided grated Parmesan cheese

Sicilian Tortellini Bake

This delicious main dish casserole combines tender meatballs with tortellini and two sauces!

  • Serves 0
  • Easy

About This Recipe

I have always loved the combination of ground beef, tomato sauce, pasta, and some type of creamy cheesy sauce. The very first was Sicilian Supper, which uses elbow macaroni in a rich cheesy sauce, layered with a tomato beef sauce. Therefore, this recipe for Sicilian Tortellini Bake.

One of the variations is Sicilian Meatball Supper. That version is made with prepared meatballs, and adds corn to the recipe.

But I felt it was time for a change. I thought that tortellini would be a good addition, and I wanted to bump up the flavor and texture in the beef tomato mixture. This recipe for Sicilian Tortellini Bake is the result. It’s a bit more complicated than the original, but still easy to make and very heartwarming.

This is the kind of meal you want when it’s cold outside in the late autumn or early winter, when rain is blowing against the windows and the wind is howling around the chimney. Serve it with a green salad or an old fashioned gelatin fruit salad, with some hot cocoa. Nothing is more comforting.

Tips for the best Sicilian Tortellini Bake:

  • Do not overcook the tortellini. Remember this type of frozen pasta is completely cooked. All you’re doing is thawing it. If you overcook it the pasta will fall apart in the casserole.
  • Use a wire whisk to combine the cream cheese with the milk after it’s heated in the microwave oven. You’ll be amazed at how quickly this mixture becomes a smooth thick sauce.

Why this recipe works:

  • The cream cheese and milk mixture is the easiest way to make a white sauce. It’s always well flavored, smooth and velvety, and delicious. And the microwave is the easiest way to make it.
  • Tortellini, little round pasta shapes filled with cheese, is more interesting than plain old pasta.
  • The ground beef sauce is rich and well flavored too.

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Preheat the oven to 375°F. Spray a 9" x 13" glass baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.


In a large skillet over medium heat, brown the ground beef with the onions, garlic, and mushrooms. Stir frequently to break up the beef.


Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil.


When the beef is cooked and the vegetables are tender, drain the beef. Add the pasta sauce, water, and bell peppers and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.


When the beef mixture is combined and simmering, combine the cream cheese and milk in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 3 minutes, stirring after 1 minute with a wire whisk, until the cream cheese melts and the mixture is smooth and thickened. Stir in the sour cream and 3/4 cup of the Parmesan cheese.


Now cook the tortellini until it is tender, according to package directions.


Drain the tortellini and add it to the prepared baking dish. You're almost done!


Stir the cream cheese sauce into the tortellini in the baking dish until coated.


Carefully pour the ground beef mixture over the tortellini mixture to cover.


Sprinkle everything with the remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until everything is bubbly and browned. Serve.


Linda is a bestselling cookbook author and home economist who has written 54 books (53 cookbooks and Medical Ethics for Dummies) since 2005. She has worked for Pillsbury since 1988, on the Bake-Off and other projects. Linda has been a web presence since 2002, developing recipes and teaching people how to cook.

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