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Several bowls of tortellini in brodo on a wooden background.

Slow-Cooker Beef Broth with Tortellini or Pasta (Tortellini in Brodo)

  • Author: Taming of the Spoon
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 14 hours 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 14 hours 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: Italian


A comforting soup of tortellini served in an incredibly rich and flavorful broth.



For the broth

  • 1 pound beef shank
  • 2 pounds turkey wings, cut apart at the joints
  • 1 large yellow onion, unpeeled, roots trimmed away, cut into large pieces
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and cut into large pieces
  • 1 stalk celery with leaves, cut into large pieces
  • 2 sprigs fresh parsley
  • 1 large bay leaf, torn in half
  • 3 quarts cold water
  • Kosher salt to taste

For serving

  • 9 ounces cheese tortellini or your favorite fresh pasta shape
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, optional


  1. Simmer: Place beef shank, turkey wings, onions, carrots, celery, parsley, and bay leaf in the insert of a 6-quart slow cooker. Add the water then cover the slow cooker and cook on low heat for 14 hours.
  2. Strain: Remove bones and any large pieces of meat and vegetables from the cooked broth with tongs or a slotted spoon. Strain the broth through a fine mesh strainer into a large bowl. Discard the solids. Transfer the bowl to an ice bath, being careful to not let any water get into the broth, and let cool to room temperature. Then refrigerate the broth until chilled. Once chilled, remove the hardened layer of fat from the surface of the broth, and discard.
  3. Serve: To serve, reheat broth in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring broth to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and then generously season the broth with kosher salt to taste. Add pasta and cook, stirring gently, until pasta is just tender, about 6-8 minutes. Ladle pasta and broth into serving bowls, and top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.


  • Different slow cookers cook at different temperatures. You want to make sure your stock stays at a low simmer during the cooking time. If your slow cooker’s low setting isn’t hot enough to keep the stock at a simmer, adjust the temperature to a higher setting.
  • The longest time setting on my slow cooker is 12 hours. So, towards the end of the cooking time I turn off and immediately re-start my slow cooker setting the time for the remaining required cooking time.
  • If you can’t find turkey wings, you can substitute them with chicken wings, chicken legs, or a combination of wings and legs.
  • To get a really clear broth, strain it through a small strainer lined with a coffee filter. It takes longer than using a fine mesh strainer and you will need to change out the coffee filter often but the resulting broth is beautiful.
  • I recommend using a fresh pasta rather than a dried pasta. Fresh pastas can be found in the refrigerated section at most grocery stores.
  • Recipe adapted from The Splendid Table cookbook.

Keywords: pasta in brodo, tortellini in brodo

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