This Kale Caesar salad is delicious and full of flavor. Made with a traditional Caesar dressing filled with fresh and crunchy croutons, and shaved parmesan. It’s perfect as an elegant, but healthy side dish or main course.
Why This Salad Is So Good
- This Kale Caesar Salad with homemade Caesar dressing is creamy, rich, and tangy.
- It’s filled with crunchy bites of fresh croutons and slices of parmesan.
- The homemade Caesar dressing is effortlessly made by processing the ingredients in a food processor!
- Use an immersion blender: For a super easy Caesar salad dressing, you can use the same ingredients, but process with an immersion blender, following the steps in my Whole30 Caesar Dressing recipe.
- Use prepared mayonnaise: Out of a neutral oil and eggs? Replace the egg yolks and oil with 3/4 cup mayonnaise.
- Make it vegan or vegetarian: Making Caesar salad dressing vegetarian or vegan is surprisingly simple. Just follow the substitutions on the Minimalist Baker’s 5-Minute Vegan Caesar Dressing recipe.
- Making great croutons: Tearing instead of cutting the bread helps gives the croutons their crispy texture and provides lots of nooks and crannies for the dressing to fill.
- Tender kale: Use your hands to incorporate the dressing and “massage” the leaves during this process. This helps produce more tender raw kale leaves.
- Topping the salad: Use parmesan cheese shaved with a vegetable peeler to top your kale Caesar salad. The homemade Caesar dressing is the star of the show, and grated parmesan can take away from the flavor and make the dressing too clumpy.
More Salads And Dressings You’ll Love
- Whole30 Caesar Dressing (Dairy-Free Caesar Dressing)
- Strawberry Goat Cheese Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Whole30 Ranch Dressing (“Dump Ranch,” Paleo, Dairy-Free)
- Healthy Chicken Cobb Salad (Dairy Free, Whole30)
- The Best Spinach Salad with Apples, Cranberries, and Maple Vinaigrette
- Chef Salad
- Miso Dressing
For the Salad
- 1 large bunch kale thick stems removed, leaves roughly chopped; approximately 8 cups total
- shaved parmesan
For the Croutons
For the Caesar Dressing
- 6 flat anchovies from jar or can of anchovies
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 egg yolks from large eggs
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice more or less to taste
- ¾ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 6 tablespoons avocado oil or other neutral oil
- 3 tablespoons fresh, finely grated parmesan
- Large bowl
- Large baking sheet
- Medium bowl
- Cutting board
- Sharp knife
- Food processor or blender
- Preheat oven to 375° Fahrenheit. Place roughly chopped kale leaves in large bowl and set aside.
- Place torn bread pieces on baking sheet and drizzle olive oil over, then sprinkle salt and pepper over. Use hands to toss and coat bread pieces fully in oil, then spread bread out across baking sheet in one even layer.
- Place baking sheet in preheated oven. Bake 10 minutes, tossing bread occasionally to brown evenly. After 10 minutes, transfer croutons to medium bowl and set aside. Note: for crispier croutons, bake croutons up to 15 minutes total, tossing croutons occasionally. When desired doneness is achieved, transfer croutons to bowl and set aside.
- With sharp kitchen knife, roughly chop anchovies and garlic clove, then transfer ingredients to food processor bowl. Add egg yolks, lemon juice, and dijon mustard.
- Secure lid on food processor and process ingredients until anchovies and garlic are finely chopped. Keep food processor running and slowly drizzle neutral oil into food processor bowl, drop by drop. Mixture should become thick after approximately 50% of oil has been added.
- Once mixture thickens, continue adding oil slowly, now in 1-tablespoon increments rather than drop by drop.
- When all oil is incorporated, add grated parmesan to food processor. Pulse 1 to 2 times or until parmesan and dressing mixture are just combined.
- Pour desired amount of salad dressing over kale leaves in large bowl. Use hands to gently massage dressing into kale, making sure to coat as many pieces as possible. When satisfied, top salad with croutons and parmesan shavings, then serve immediately.
- Blending Dressing: Instead of a food processor, you can use an immersion blender to make the dressing. Just follow the steps in my Whole30 Caesar Dressing recipe.
- Caesar Dressing: If desired, replace egg yolks and neutral oil with ¾ prepared mayonnaise.
- Parmesan: Top your salad with shaved parm, not grated. Grated parm will make the dressing look clumpy, but shaved parm will stay nice and pretty.
- Make it Vegan/Vegetarian: See the Minimalist Baker’s 5-Minute Vegan Caesar Dressing recipe.
Number of total servings shown is approximate. Actual number of servings will depend on your preferred portion sizes.
Nutritional values shown are general guidelines and reflect information for 1 serving using the ingredients listed, not including any optional ingredients. Actual macros may vary slightly depending on specific brands and types of ingredients used.
To determine the weight of one serving, prepare the recipe as instructed. Weigh the finished recipe, then divide the weight of the finished recipe (not including the weight of the container the food is in) by the desired number of servings. Result will be the weight of one serving.