What Happened To Cheese Tortellini?

Something very strange has been going on.

First of all, tortellini is just about my favorite stuffed pasta shape in the world. And it’s got to be cheese tortellini every time. There’s always been something about meat tortellini that I just don’t trust since you can never be 100% sure of what kind of meat is in there.

So, back to cheese tortellini.

1kg bag cheese tortellini villa ravioliThis is a 1kg bag of tortellini. I think this translates into 4 miles in the United States and can usually serve a family of four. Or me in 2 sittings. The thing is, these bags have been disappearing lately. At first I thought the grocery store was out of them. Then I started to notice smaller bags (like 1/4 of the size) appearing. These small bags could barely feed a family of 2, so you’d have to buy more of them, which ends up being more expensive than buying the 1kg bag. Conspiracy?

But then all of the bags disappeared! There was no tortellini to be found. None at the 4 Brothers. Nil at the Metro. Zip at the Loblaws. Fuck all at Provigo. And none in my goddamn freezer!

Yeah, I get pissed when I can’t find one of my culinary staples.

What’s a more simple and satisfying meal/snack than tortellini with fresh basil or sun dried tomato pesto? Nothing. That’s what.

However, there was a ray of sunshine last night at 1am. I’m riding home from work (yes, I’ve been working some gloriously fucked up hours) and stop in at a 24 hour grocery store. I lock my bike and push my way past the hobos and swaying college girls who haven’t yet figured out how to walk in heels and be drunk at the same time.

My intent was to buy some milk, but it hit me that I should see if they have some and OMFG they did. So I bought three 1kg bags of cheese tortellini.

As I rode home, the frozen pasta in my backpack slowly numbing my spine, I wondered if this was the end of the drought. Is tortellini back? Has this been happening in other parts of the continent?

How’s the tortellini situation where you live?








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  • Mike, I find this all curious. I will have to check to see if the grocers here in Kansas City are not stocking cheese tortellini.  (sad to say, I grate various cheeses onto various pastas, throw in a spice or two and call it wonderful, so no stuffed pastas have made their way home with me) You are in Canada, correct?  Do you have wholesale types of stores there, where the packages are ridiculously large but also ridiculously cheap? If not you might have to have people start shipping it in. (dry ice is a wonderful thing)

    Funny about the drunk girls that can’t walk in high heels.  Quite a mental picture.

  • “What’s a more simple and satisfying meal/snack than tortellini with fresh basil or sun dried tomato pesto? Nothing. That’s what.”


    Glad you found and bought 3 bags!!

    I haven’t been inside a grocery store for weeks. However, I will be going over the weekend. I will let you know if any tortellini is missing in NJ!

  • I can only get the Barilla Cheese Tortellini in a 10oz package, unless I go to Costco, I used to love the Cheese and Basil Agnoloti, but they stopped making that years ago. I prefer the shape of the Agnoloti to the Torts, but it all tastes the same.

  • Oh, I LOVE tortellini and its bigger brother, tortelloni.  I recently bought some fresh pasta tortellini stuffed with chicken and proscuitto and made a simple Alfredo sauce with a hint of lemon juice and zest (thyme and/or basil optional).  YUM!

    Luckily we also have an Italian food import store where everything – and I mean everything – is imported directly from Italy.  No “Mama Lucia’s” in this place.  They normally carry spinach and cheese tortellini.  YUM, again!

    Since I’m in a different “country”, most of our frozen foods are usually the ‘end of the line’ stuff.  I balk at purchasing most pre-fab products, particularly if they are frozen.

    But 3kg of cheese tortellini?  Man, check your cholesterol.  Check it often.


  • Shieldmaiden1196

    I haven’t noticed a tortellini drought in this part of Pennsyltucky but I have noticed Tortellini I Don’t Trust, aka that shelf-stable business that isn’t frozen and expands to 3x the size after boiling. So I can only assume they are filled with soon-to-be-reconstituted cheese powder and not bursting with ricotta-y goodness as they should be.

  • “…swaying college girls who haven’t yet figured out how to walk in heels and be drunk at the same time.”


    So, now that you’ve found some big assed bags of frozen tortellini, *NOW* will you stop being such a bitch? 🙂

  • OMFG?  How dare you!
    What did I say about taking my name in vain?
    And HOW do you know I’m F’ing?  Are you peeping at my cloud window?
    Better hope I don’t catch you!  (I’ve smote entire cities for less ya know)

  • Go to Milano. They have fresh made and packaged frozen. Or in a pinch go to Costco. 
    I can’t get good tortellini in my new neighbourhood. What would you expect? I moved from Little Italy to what is, in essence, Little Israel. However, I can now get top notch humus and Jachnun.

  • Cheryl, as far as I’m concerned, you can do anything to pasta and it still comes out great. Sometimes I’ll do the same thing (cheese and spice) and it works out fine.

    We have the Costco’s, so I might have to tag along with a member friend and see if they can satisfy the tortellini need.

  • Yes, let me know what the tort situation is in NJ!

    Also, I’m going back tonight for more bags just in case! I’m stocking up for the no-tortellini apocalypse.

  • See, that’s the thing! 10oz is wayyy too small. That’s a quarter of the size of the pictured bag. It’s criminal to do that!

    Need to try Agnoloti now.

  • I don’t think I’ve ever even had tortelloni. I am such a philistine!

    I’ll have to go for the fresh pasta. There are plenty of places around me, so I’m just coping out by relying on the big grocery stores.

    Funny, I have my annual check up tomorrow. I’ll let you know how that goes, cholesterol wise 😉

  • Yes, real ricotta is a must. Those balloon tortellinis actually sound like they might be pierogies.

  • Takes one to know one 😀

    But yeah, having a tortelinni stockpile will placate me for awhile, but if I do run out, you’re gonna hear about it.

  • What are you on about, God? OMFG just means Oven Mitts Feel Good. What’s wrong with that? Now come on down for some tortelinni. What do you prefer? Basil or sundried tomato pesto?

  • Good plan. I’ll check out Milano. Screw these grocery stores with their fascist shelf stocking techniques!

  • Right… because I’m that easy to fool.  We’ll have a nice little chat ’bout that when it’s your time.  Let’s just check the big book on you for a second… okay… Oh, Monday.  We’ll chat on Monday.

  • OK. Now I have to buy some Tortellini – cheese of course!

  • We seem to have a plethora of Tortellini on our shelves, including cheese.  I also love cheese ravioli.  Something else that has disappeared here though is frozen Welsh Rarebit.  I love Welsh Rarebit!  I take an English muffin and toast it, top it with two cooked bacon strips and a slice of tomato and pour the Welsh Rarebit over it.  Honestly, I could eat that every day.  Except I can’t of course, because I can’t find it most of the time.  I really hope your Tortellini situation resolves.  I hate it when I can’t find what I want!

  • No Tortellini shortage here.  Pasta does make a great quick go-to meal doesn’t it?  It is like a blank canvas you can paint any way you like.  I like to saute onions and pancetta, cook the pasta and add it to the pan with a touch of cream and Parmigiano-Reggiano and red pepper flakes.  Add garlic bread and a good wine.  Yum!

  • I’ve noticed the same thing and that the price has sky rocketed. Of course for four miles worth of pasta stuffed with cheese one would expect to pay a bit more. 

  • I got a thing on that Monday. How about June 16 2092?

  • Buy a lot of it. You never know when it might disappear!

  • Well Linda, you’ve introduced me to a new dish. And it’s cheese based! I’ll have to see if it’s available here.

    Ravioli rocks too!

  • I will, I will!

  • So many ways to use pasta, and all of them make me hungry just thinking about them. I think everyone has their own secret recipe when it comes to pasta.

  • Food prices in Canada are getting a little scary. And it’s when they put the pasta in these little designer bags and charge double the price that I really get angry.

  • My mother used to make her own Welsh Rarebit, and I know she used a sharp cheddar and worstershire sauce, but I don’t really know what all is in it.  I may even look up a recipe for us!

  •  Do it! We’ll prepare it and feature it here on WWFC!

  • I’ll find one for you.  I really do love it.  Sinfully cheesy!

  • Yes, I love tortellini as much as the next person, but as I was reading the list of grocery stores in which the tortellini is slowly disappearing, and I read “Metro” I was brought back to my years in NDG living next to a Metro. It also happened to be next to a crack house, but that’s neither here nor there.
    Your posts make me both laugh and nostalgic…not for the crack house, it’s not like I was friends with the crackheads…not that there’s anything wrong with crackheads, it’s just….oh never mind…

  • What’s funny is that no matter where you live in NDG, it’s always going to be next to a crack house. Or maybe it’s better now. Could be a 90’s thing.

  • Anonymous

    I’ve actually heard a few friends complain that the packages are smaller but the price remains the same and/or there isn’t as much as there used to be!

    We have milk/egg allergies so I make my own stuffed pasta goodness. 

  • Yes, and it’s been happening with a lot of products for quite some time! Less for more, and worse quality too.

    Homemade pasta is the best 🙂


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