Vegan Caesar Salad

Vegan Caesar Salad, a plant-based twist made with vegan caesar dressing, plant-based Parmesan cheese, and crispy chickpeas for protein, fiber, and flavor.

a vegan caesar salad on a white plate on a wood table

Love caesar salads but not sure how to make them vegan? You’re in the right place! This super simple plant-based caesar is full of flavor…you’re never know it’s not vegan.

👉 Ready to learn how to make a vegan caesar salad? Let’s do it!


🎥 Recipe video

YouTube video

🥬 Ingredients

  • Romaine lettuce: the foundation of a caesar salad, providing a crisp and refreshing base for the other ingredients
  • Chickpeas: great source of protein and fiber that can be used to add texture and flavor
  • Vegan Caesar dressing: creamy and tangy dressing that is the key component of a caesar salad, traditionally made with anchovies and Parmesan cheese, but made vegan with substitutes (try my homemade caesar dressing!)
  • Croutons: crunchy and flavorful addition to the salad that can be made at home with sourdough bread.
  • Vegan Parmesan cheese: a substitute for traditional Parmesan cheese that is made with plant-based ingredients and adds a nutty and salty flavor to the salad. I like Violife shaved Parmesan cheese.
  • Olive oil: adds flavor and richness to the chickpeas when roasted with salt and pepper.
  • Recommended tools: baking sheet, mixing bowls

🥣 How to make (step-by-step photos)

1️⃣ Step One: Roast chickpeas

The first step to make this plant-based caesar salad is to make the crunchy roasted chickpeas! To do this, first heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (about 200 degrees Celsius).

Then add chickpeas to a sheet pan, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Cook until chickpeas are crispy, about 15 minutes, stirring to brown all sides. When done, remove from oven and let cool.

a roasting pan with crispy baked chickpeas on a white table
Roast chickpeas

2️⃣ Step Two: Prep and cut romaine lettuce

While the chickpeas are roasting, remove romaine lettuce leaves from the core and then wash and remove excess water by using a salad spinner or laying flat to dry.

Then stack the leaves and cut into 1 inch thick strips, removing any hard white stems.

cut romaine lettuce on a cutting board with a bowl of caesar dressing
Wash and cut romaine lettuce

3️⃣ Step Three: Toss caesar salad

Add sliced romaine to a large bowl and add vegan caesar dressing, tossing to coat the lettuce in the dressing.

Then transfer salad to a plate and garnish with roasted chickpeas (optional), croutons, and parmesan cheese. Then enjoy!

a white plate with vegan caesar salad with croutons, chickpeas, and shaved vegan parmesan cheese on a white table

❓ Recipe questions + quick tips

What can be used as a substitute for anchovies in the dressing?

A popular substitute for anchovies in caesar salad dressing is capers. Capers are small, salty, and briny, which can add a similar flavor to the dressing as anchovies. Another option is miso paste, which can add a similar depth of umami flavor to the dressing. Try my favorite Homemade Caesar Dressing recipe using tahini, capers, and white miso paste.

What are some good alternatives to Parmesan cheese for a vegan version of caesar salad?

Nutritional yeast, vegan Parmesan cheese made with cashews and nutritional yeast, and tofu crumbles or vegan feta cheese can be used as alternatives to Parmesan cheese in a vegan caesar salad. I like using a shaved vegan parmesan cheese, like this option from Violife.

How can I add protein to my vegan caesar salad?

To add protein to a vegan caesar salad, options include adding legumes such as chickpeas or white beans, marinated tempeh, roasted or grilled tofu, and nuts and seeds such as almonds, pumpkin seeds, or sunflower seeds.


💡 Ideas for serving

  • As a side dish. Caesar salad makes a great side dish for a variety of main courses.
  • As a main dish. Adding protein to your Caesar salad can make it a complete meal, like the chickpeas in this recipe.
  • In a wrap or sandwich. Turn your Caesar salad into a portable meal by wrapping it in a tortilla or pita, or by layering it on bread for a sandwich. This is a great option for a quick and easy lunch or on-the-go meal.
a plant-based caesar salad on a white plate with a gold fork

🧊 How to store

  1. Refrigerator storage: Store leftover salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days.
  2. Freezer storage: Freezing is not recommended.
a close up photo of a vegan caesar salad on a white plate

👉 More vegan caesar recipes

Want more recipes with plant-based caesar salad or dressing? Try my homemade Vegan Caesar Dressing or my Buffalo Cauliflower Wrap with Caesar Salad.

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a white plate with vegan caesar salad with croutons, chickpeas, and shaved vegan parmesan cheese on a white table

Vegan Caesar Salad

Kristina Todini, RDN
Vegan Caesar Salad, a plant-based twist on traditional Caesar salads made with vegan Caesar dressing, plant-based Parmesan cheese, and crispy chickpeas for protein, fiber, and flavor.
5 stars (2 ratings)
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Main Dishes, Salads + Side Dishes
Cuisine Gluten Free, Vegan
Servings 4 servings
Calories 311 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 baking sheet
  • 1 large mixing bowl

Ingredients
  

Instructions
 

  • Roast chickpeas: Heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (about 200 degrees Celsius). Add 1 can chickpeas to a sheet pan, drizzle with 2 teaspoons olive oil, and sprinkle with 1 pinch salt and pepper. Then cook until chickpeas are crispy, about 15 minutes, stirring to brown all sides. When done, remove from oven and let cool.
  • Prep and cut romaine lettuce: Remove leaves from 1 head romaine lettuce and then wash and remove excess water by using a salad spinner or laying flat to dry. Then stack the leaves and cut into 1 inch thick strips, removing any hard white stems.
  • Toss salad: Add sliced romaine to a large bowl and add 4 fluid ounces vegan caesar dressing, tossing to coat the lettuce in the dressing. Then transfer salad to a plate and garnish with roasted chickpeas, 2 cups croutons, and ½ cup shaved vegan parmesan cheese.

Video

YouTube video

Notes

Prep ahead: This salad is best made fresh, but you can store for 1-2 days before serving. Make the roasted chickpeas ahead of time to cut down on prep.
Leftovers and storage: Store leftover salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days. Do not freeze.
Nutrition notes: Nutrition information is calculated for all ingredients listed. This recipe is plant-based and can be gluten if you use gluten free croutons.

Nutrition

Serving: 1servingCalories: 311kcalCarbohydrates: 21gProtein: 5gFat: 24gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 10gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 12mgSodium: 620mgPotassium: 414mgFiber: 5gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 13641IUVitamin C: 6mgCalcium: 87mgIron: 3mg
Keyword vegan caesar salad
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