Pesto tortellini gratin is a warm, comforting meal, full of flavor!  Salty pancetta, pesto, and tortellini combine with a creamy white cheese sauce to be baked with a crispy Parmesan cheese topping.

Who needs reality TV – if you could follow Handsome and I around on a mundane Tuesday night, you would never slump to the lows of the Jersey Shore ever again. I promise.

See, we are a sippy cup kind of special. You won’t hear us having thought provoking conversation that would eventually lead to the cure for cancer. No sweet poems would pass our lips with candlelight and music filling the air. No long conversations about the duldrums of one’s job.

Nope. You’d see him chasing me around the house with a spoon covered in macaroni  and have to put up with our 45 minute debate over the validity of the word ‘fishes’ backed by only the song from the commercial for Goldfish crackers. Yeah, we keep it classy in this house.

45 minutes, I kid you not, of “Fishes is not a word.” Followed by “But, I love fissshess cuz their soooo delicious.” Debated with “And how many fishes are in a pond?” Answered by more commercial jingles. ” Yes, we are the worlds most interesting couple.

Top that with pesto tortellini gratin, Mr. Dos Equis.

Pesto Tortellini Gratin \\


Pesto Tortellini Gratin

This one’s all me

Pesto Tortellini Gratin \\ PassTheSushi.comIngredients:

  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1/4 cup diced pancetta
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 1/2 teas red pepper flakes
  • 2 tbs flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup fontina cheese, shredded
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1/2 teas cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teas oregano
  • 1 package frozen tortellini (I used Trader Joe’s Pesto tortellini – if you can’t find pesto tortellini, stir in 2 tbs pesto before adding the tortellini to the gratin dishes)
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded


Heat olive oil in skillet over medium heat. Saute diced pancetta until crispy, about 3 minutes. Add onion to pan and saute 5 more minutes, or until onion is soft. Add red pepper flakes.

Sprinkle flour over skillet and cook 2 minutes. Slowly whisk in milk. Once the milk has been whisked in and no lumps remain, add in cheese, thyme, cayenne pepper, and oregano. Let cheese melt and flavors mingle, stirring constantly until thickened.

Meanwhile, cook tortellini to al dente according to package, drain, rinse & heat oven to 350 degrees F.

In greased gratin dishes, individual ramekins or an 8×8 baking pan, divide tortellini up evenly in one layer. Pour sauce over tortellini and sprinkle parmesan cheese on top.

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and bubbling.

Serve and enjoy.


Pesto Tortellini Gratin \\


Oh, and because I have to be fair, ‘fishes’ is indeed a word. Google says so. A word I was thought to never use, but a word….


Be sure to check out my guest post tomorrow over at Eat Yourself Skinny!


  1. Your nights at home sound awesome. Ours combine TV and weirdness, my hubby and I usually have pretty fierce Wheel of Fortune battles! The gratin sounds delicious and I love your dishes. What a great combo!

    1. I wish I could get Handsome to watch Wheel of Fortune and not just reality junk or stupid cartoons!!! /jealous

  2. i think every couple is a little weird. BF and I have our own language. no joke.

  3. YUM! That looks amazing…I love pesto and the fact that you paired it with tortellini is fabulous!

  4. That’s amazing… and I love those mini gratines. yummo!

  5. Mmmm, this looks so hearty and delicious, Kita!! I love tortellini and fontina cheese. I think my husband and I are like you and Handsome. We also sit around and have ridiculous conversations, keeps things fun!!

  6. This gratin looks really good. I love the blog post and dinner conversation.

  7. #1. This post cracked me up. Especially The “sippy cup” comment LOL
    #2. I love pasta.
    #3. I love gratins.
    #4. I love that you added them together.
    #5. I need this melty, cheesy dish in my life!

    1. Shame you didn’t hear the ‘custom fit helmet’ line that comes before sippy cup special. 😉

  8. I can totally identify with the 45 min ‘fishes is not a word’ debate. I imagine this gratin puts an end to all argument. Couldn’t possibly speak while tucking into this! Yum.

  9. Okay so, a couple things:) First of all, this incorporates so many things I love. Gratins, tortellini, and pesto. On their own, they’re all so incredible. It’s never crossed my mind to combine them, and yet that sounds so PERFECT. Secondly, when I see stuff I like on other people’s blogs that I read, I don’t usually make it. I don’t like repeating recipes or having to give a nod to the person who made it; I prefer inventing my own recipes. However, this sounds so good that I have no choice but to make it! Hope you don’t mind. I will most definitely give you credit. I may cook it sooner or later…just depends.
    Thanks for the recipe!

    1. I wouldn’t mind at all and would be happy to know someone else enjoyed my recipe!

  10. You sound like the ultimate couple eating an amazing meal together.

    That Pesto Tortellini Gratin really does looks delicious!

  11. It sounds like a fun night at your house – and the recipe is awesome!

  12. I love your style Kita. I’d hang with you any day and sing Goldfish theme songs with you. Pesto gratin looks amazing. This would be great for the holidays coming up!!

    1. Lol, it can be quite the amusing adventure for anyone who hangs with me. Glad to know you’re up for it ;D

  13. If an eye for photography could be taught, I would beg you for lessons. [sigh] But alas, I can just enjoy your photos. Indeed gratin season is upon us, and I can imagine how amazing this smells as it bakes!

    LOL it sounds like you just have casual fun and random conversations. It makes me think of how our family conversates on a daily basis and while it may not result in a hit reality tv show, I’ve been told we are quite entertaining.

    At what age were we taught not to use the word “fishes”? I saw it on a print-out when Tay was in pre-school but now she even says it’s not a word because fish is plural. Soon she will be correcting my blog posts…

    Sorry for the long comment, I guess I had stuff to say! I hope you have an awesome Friday my friend!

  14. OMG! That is hilarious! My husband and I have conversations like that all the time!

  15. I am loving that gratin. Just pass me a bowl full!

    My hubby and I have had some crazy discussions like that, too. You’d think that after almost 25 years, he’d know I am always right (tee hee)

  16. Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment on my 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies post. I really appreciate the comment.

    This looks like a wonderful recipe. I love the individual dishes of pasta and cheese. Yummy!

  17. Classy is overrated. Your gratin looks like just the ticket for a chilly autumn night, and using frozen tortellini is right up my street. Love those individual baking dishes too!

  18. what brand are those adorable dishes??

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