Spinach & Ricotta Tortellini in a Burnt Butter & Sage Sauce


This is a wonderful and vegetarian friendly pasta dish that originates from the Emilia Romagna region of Italy. Fresh pasta dough is cut into circles, filled with spinach, ricotta, optional nutmeg and lemon zest and then folded into little rings and cooked in a simple burnt butter and sage sauce. You will need a pasta machine to be able to roll out your pasta dough, but if you don’t happen to have a machine or don’t want to make it, you can actually use wonton skins as a little hack.

Makes- 60 tortellini
Serves- Serves 4
Ingredients- 10
Cooking time- 1 hour
Skill Level- Medium



  • 300g of tipo 00 flour or plain flour, sifted plus extra for dusting
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 250g of spinach
  • 500g of ricotta
  • 150g of parmesan cheese
  • 1 lemon, juice and zest needed
  • 1 pinch of grated nutmeg, optional


  • 125g of butter
  • 1 small bunch of sage

Watch the process

@__jessicanguyen Fresh, homemade pasta...Spinach and Ricotta Tortellini in a burnt butter and sage sauce 🧀🍝 #foodtiktok #foodtok #foodies #pastarecipes #pasta ♬ original sound - Jessica Nguyen - JESSICA NGUYEN-HOME COOK


  1. Prepare your pasta dough by placing 300g flour into a large clean surface or bowl. Make a well in the centre of your flour, crack in 3 eggs, add a pinch of salt and begin whisking your eggs and slowly incorporating the flour into the eggs a little bit at a time.
  2. Once the egg mixture becomes thick, use your hands to knead the dough for about 10 minutes until all the flour has been incorporated. Cover the dough with either an inverted bowl or wrap in cling wrap and allow to rest for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Prepare your tortellini filling by blanching 250g spinach in some salted boiling water for 3 minutes until soft and tender. Drain into a colander and allow to cool down.
  4. Make sure you squeeze out as much water as possible in the spinach. Use paper towels to absorb remaining moisture, before finally chopping up and placing into a bowl.
  5. Add in 500g ricotta, 2-3 tablespoons worth of finely grated parmesan, 1 pinch of grated nutmeg, the zest of 1 lemon and a pinch of salt and pepper. Mix to combine.
  6. Your pasta dough should now be smooth and pliable. Generously flour your benchtop with flour and use your hands to shape into a large disk and cut into quarters with a knife.
  7. Use the pasta rolling attachment of your pasta machine, and start by using the widest setting (normally 1) and gently feed your pasta through once. Fold your pasta into thirds and then feed it again but flip your pasta sheet 90 degrees so it stretches it out in the opposite direction. This process is called lamination which gives the dough a nice texture. Repeat one more time.
  8. Then turn your setting to the next level (from 1-2) and feed your pasta dough through the roller. Repeat at least 5 times, each time increasing the roller setting. You may need to cut your sheet in half as the length will increase significantly as you stretch the dough. I use a Kitchen Aid pasta roller attachment and normally stop at 7 or until my pasta sheet is thin and nearly translucent.
  9. Once your pasta is fully rolled out, grab a round cookie cutter or even a water glass and cut out as many pasta circles as you can.
  10. Then add a teaspoon of your spinach and ricotta mixture into the centre of the dough circles.
  11. To fold into tortellini, dip your finger into some water and trace the perimeter of the dough and then fold in half. Then take the corners and bring them together so they create a circle. Pinch to seal! Repeat for the remaining dough
  12. To cook, simply cook in salted boiling water for 2 minutes or until the tortellini floats to the top.
  13. To prepare your sauce, simply melt 125g butter in a pan over medium heat. Once melted throw in a small bunch of sage leaves and continue to cook on medium/high until the butter starts to brown with little burnt flecks forming. As soon as the butter turns golden, turn down the heat to low until the pasta is cooked and ready to be added in. Once your pasta is ready, add to the pan and use a spoon or spatula to coat all the tortellini in the sauce and cook for a further minute.
  14. Transfer to a platter and garnish with a generous amount of freshly grated parmesan and a squeeze of lemon.


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