Vegan Caesar Salad, a plant-based twist made with vegan caesar dressing, plant-based Parmesan cheese, and crispy chickpeas for protein, fiber, and flavor.
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
- 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.
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.
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!
❓ Recipe questions + quick tips
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.
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.
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.
🧊 How to store
- Refrigerator storage: Store leftover salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days.
- Freezer storage: Freezing is not recommended.
👉 More vegan caesar recipes
FREE MeAL PLANNING GUIDE
Vegan Caesar Salad
- 1 baking sheet
- 1 large mixing bowl
- 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.