Vegan Caesar Salad
The classic Caesar salad has met its match with this vegan version. Mix together kale and romaine for added flavor and texture, toss with an easy cashew-based dressing, and top with homemade pepita Parmesan cheese and crunchy chickpea croutons. Consider this Caesar Salad 2.0.
for 4 servings
Vegan Caesar Dressing
- 4 oz raw cashews (110 g)
- ¼ cup filtered water (60 mL)
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 tablespoons caper, drained
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground kelp, or nori
- 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ⅓ cup roasted pepitas (20 g)
- ¼ cup nutritional yeast (25 g)
- 2 ½ teaspoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
Crunchy Chickpea Croutons
- 1 can chickpeas, drained and dried
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 5 oz romaine lettuce (150 g), roughly chopped
- 5 oz lacinato kale (150 g), cut into 1 in (2.54 cm), massaged
- kosher salt, to taste
- Calories 543
- Fat 34g
- Carbs 42g
- Fiber 12g
- Sugar 7g
- Protein 20g
Estimated values based on one serving size.
- Make the vegan caesar dressing: In a high-powered blender, combine the cashews, water, garlic, capers, kelp, Dijon mustard, and nutritional yeast. Blend on medium speed until the cashews are mostly broken down and the dressing is starting to become thick, then add the lemon juice and blend on medium-high speed until completely smooth, scraping down the sides as necessary. With the blender running on medium speed, stream in the olive oil to emulsify. Add the salt and pepper and pulse to incorporate. The dressing will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
- Make the pepita parm: In a food processor, pulse together the pepitas and nutritional yeast until broken down to a texture similar to grated Parmesan cheese. Add the olive oil and salt and pulse until the crumbs are moistened and starting to clump together. The pepita parm will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days.
- Make the crunchy chickpea croutons: Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
- On an unlined baking sheet, toss the chickpeas with the olive oil, salt, garlic powder, and pepper until the chickpeas are well coated.
- Roast for 18–20 minutes, turning the pan halfway through, until the chickpeas are crispy on the outside and somewhat tender on the inside. The chickpea croutons will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
- Assemble the salad: In a large bowl, season the romaine and kale with a couple of pinches of kosher salt. Drizzle with ⅓ cup of the dressing and toss until well coated. Add up to ⅓ cup more dressing until dressed to your taste. Add half of the chickpea croutons and ¼ cup of the pepita parm and toss to incorporate. Top with the remaining chickpeas and more pepita parm. Season with freshly ground black pepper. Serve immediately.
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