One-Pan Creamy Lemon-Dill Tortellini

published Jan 14, 2024
One-Pan Creamy Lemon-Dill Tortellini Recipe

You only need 20 minutes to make this weeknight pasta — it’s a keeper.

Serves3 to 4

Prep10 minutes

Cook10 minutes

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Lemon dill tortellini in skillet.
Credit: Kelli Foster

I’m a latecomer to the wonders of tortellini. This all changed once I tried Kelli’s Dinner Therapist recipe for Tortellini Piccata. I couldn’t get enough of those plump little pockets full of cheese tucked into a bright and buttery piccata sauce. I’ve now fully embraced the magic that is store-bought tortellini, so much so that I just had to pair it with a rich, creamy sauce that’s bursting with the fresh flavors of lemon and dill. Meet: creamy lemon-dill tortellini. 

This weeknight pasta has a minimal ingredient list and comes together in 20 minutes. And, it really cooks in a single pan! You don’t need to break out another pot just to boil water for cooking the tortellini — it’s a nifty technique I picked up from Kelli’s fabulous recipe. So whether you already love this must-have grocery item or you’re new to it as well, this one-pan meal is sure to be a keeper. 

Key Ingredients in Lemon-Dill Tortellini

  • Lemon: Freshly grated zest and squeezed juice brings brightness and balances the rich sauce. 
  • Dill: A hefty amount of finely chopped dill fronds adds a fresh, citrusy flavor to complement the lemon. 
  • Heavy cream: Combine with chicken or vegetable broth to yield a creamy, flavorful sauce. 
  • Egg yolk: Mixing a yolk with some Parmesan cheese creates a paste that adds body to the velvety sauce. 
  • Cheese tortellini: This recipe works with either refrigerated or frozen tortellini. I’m a fan of Rana’s cheese tortellini, but it would also be delicious with meat-filled tortellini or even ravioli. 
Credit: Kelli Foster

How to Make Creamy Lemon-Dill Tortellini

  • Prep the ingredients. Finely grate Parmesan cheese and beat with an egg yolk. Zest and juice the lemon, and finely chop some dill. 
  • Combine everything in a skillet. Bring garlic, lemon zest, heavy cream, and broth to a simmer, then add tortellini and cook until tender. 
  • Finish the tortellini. Add lemon juice, dill, and Parmesan-egg mixture and stir vigorously to combine. Sprinkle with more Parm if you like. 

What to Serve with Lemon-Dill Tortellini

Since the tortellini is rich and creamy, I like to serve it alongside something that’s a bit lighter like roasted or sautéed veggies, or a salad. Lightly toasted baguette or sliced French or Italian bread would also be  great for swiping through any extra sauce. 

One-Pan Creamy Lemon-Dill Tortellini Recipe

You only need 20 minutes to make this weeknight pasta — it’s a keeper.

Prep time 10 minutes

Cook time 10 minutes

Serves 3 to 4

Nutritional Info


  • 1 ounce

    Parmesan cheese (1/2 cup firmly packed freshly grated or 1/3 cup store-bought grated), plus more for serving

  • 1

    large egg yolk

  • 1 clove


  • 1

    medium lemon

  • 1/2 medium bunch

    fresh dill

  • 1 1/4 cups

    heavy cream

  • 1 1/4 cups

    low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    kosher salt, plus more as needed

  • 1/4 teaspoon

    freshly ground black pepper, plus more as needed

  • 20 ounces

    refrigerated or frozen cheese tortellini (do not thaw)


  1. Finely grate 1 ounce Parmesan cheese (about 1/2 packed cup) or measure out 1/3 cup store-bought grated, and place in a small bowl. Add 1 large egg yolk and beat with a fork until a uniform, thick paste forms.

  2. Mince 1 garlic clove. Finely grate the zest from 1 medium lemon (about 1 teaspoon), then juice the lemon (2 tablespoons). Pick the fronds from 1/2 medium bunch fresh dill and finely chop until you have 1/4 packed cup.

  3. Place garlic, lemon zest, 1 1/4 cups heavy cream, 1 1/4 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper in a large skillet. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring to combine. Add 20 ounces refrigerated or frozen cheese tortellini (it will be halfway submerged in the sauce). Cook, stirring frequently to prevent the tortellini from sticking, until tender and warmed through, about 6 minutes for refrigerated tortellini or 10 minutes for frozen tortellini.

  4. Remove the skillet from the heat. Add the lemon juice, dill, and Parmesan cheese-egg mixture. Stir vigorously to combine. Taste and season with more kosher salt and black pepper as needed. Top with grated Parmesan cheese if desired.

Recipe Notes

Storage: Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Reheat with a few splashes of heavy cream or broth.