This is my version of Caesar Salad – fresh, crisp romaine lettuce, croutons, Parmesan cheese, black pepper and – the best part – a creamy, garlicky homemade dressing that has no anchovies or raw egg. So easy and so delicious!
Let me apologize right up front to any of you who might have come here looking for an authentic, classic recipe for Caesar salad. This is not that. BUT please don’t run away just yet! My version is just as good (better, in my opinion), has all the required flavors, and it’s really easy!
First, some trivia: Did you know that Caesar salad is not named for Julius Caesar? Although there are a few stories out there as to the exact person in the family who invented it, it first came about in a restaurant in Tijuana, Mexico owned by an Italian immigrant named Caesar Cardini. Now on to the salad…
Those of you who are like me and are grossed out by looking at or touching those fuzzy little fish called anchovies will appreciate the fact that there aren’t any swimming around in this Caesar salad. BUT the flavor of anchovies are part of what makes a Caesar salad. How do we deal with that? Worcestershire sauce (yes, there are anchovies hiding in there).
Another ingredient in classic Caesar salad is raw or coddled eggs. I don’t really want to take a chance with that, so some mayonnaise and Parmesan cheese make the dressing nice and creamy. Easy!
Okay. Let’s talk croutons. Yes, there are some really good bagged croutons out there, and I’m not gonna say I never use them, but I highly recommend making my homemade croutons. It’s easy and only takes a few minutes. They really make this salad extra delicious!
INGREDIENTS YOU NEED TO MAKE CAESAR SALAD (MY WAY):
- Olive oil
- Garlic (or garlic powder)
- Dijon mustard
- Red wine vinegar
- Worcestershire sauce
- Lemon juice
- Parmesan cheese
- Romaine lettuce
- Salt and pepper
SPECIAL EQUIPMENT NEEDED:
- Blender or food processor
HERE’S A QUICK LOOK AT HOW TO MAKE CAESAR SALAD (MY WAY):
The one clove of fresh garlic in the dressing makes it nice and garlicky. If you use fresh garlic, the flavor will intensify a bit as the dressing sits. Add more or less depending on how much you like garlic! You could also use garlic powder instead, and you don’t get quite that strong bite that you get from raw garlic. I’ve done that several times. Delicious.
I recommend using regular olive oil instead of extra-virgin because I think the extra-virgin has too strong of a flavor that can overpower the dressing. I also recommend freshly grated and/or shredded Parmesan cheese. The pre-grated stuff just isn’t the same.
You will get about 1 cup of dressing, which will probably be more than you need to serve four people (2 tablespoons of dressing per serving is usually enough – unless you like lots of dressing on your salad). Store any leftover dressing in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days.
You can easily make this Caesar Salad a meal by doubling up on the salad and adding some grilled chicken, shrimp, steak (my favorite!), or your favorite vegetarian protein if you’re not a meat eater. Sooo good!
I hope you try my version of Caesar Salad and love it as much as I do! Thanks for visiting today!
Caesar Salad (My Way)
- 1 clove garlic, minced, or 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon dry ground mustard
- 1½ tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 6 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons regular olive oil (extra-virgin not recommended)
- 8 cups chopped romaine lettuce
- 2 cups croutons, homemade or store-bought
- 4 tablespoons freshly shredded or grated Parmesan cheese
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Make the dressing:
- Place all of the dressing ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend/process until smooth. The dressing should be on the thicker side. If you would like it thinner, add more olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Assemble the salad:
- In a large bowl, toss the romaine lettuce and croutons with 8 tablespoons of the dressing. (You can add more or less dressing to suit your taste.)
- Divide the salad evenly among 4 salad plates. Top each with 1 tablespoon of freshly shredded or grated Parmesan cheese and some freshly ground black pepper.
- Store any leftover salad dressing in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days.
- Calorie estimate was calculated based on using 2 tablespoons of dressing per serving. If you add more, each additional tablespoon of dressing is approximately 72 total calories (18 calories per serving).
Dressing recipe adapted from Chowhound.