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Supercharged Paleo Caesar Salad

Updated: Dec 21, 2023

No dairy, no gluten, ALL the deliciousness! Your favorite classic Caesar just got a facelift!

Supercharged Paleo Caesar Salad

Give 'em what they love!

My family LOVES Caesar salad. One of our "easy buttons" is bagged Caesar salad kits, which have many pros and cons:

On the plus side, most of my monsters can easily put the kit together and "make the salad" for dinner. Having something the kiddos can independently help with is definitely a win.

However, on the downside, these kits generate loads of plastic waste (which we don't love), and we often have to hold back ingredients, depending on who is eating. Monster 2 doesn't do gluten, and most of the monsters have dairy issues that flair up now and then. So the croutons, extra cheese, and even dressing might have to be avoided on any given plate. Paleo is easiest for our fam.

So we set out to reimagine the Caesar salad and make the perfect paleo version.

Paleo Caesar salad

Supercharging Caesar Salad

Step one was pretty obvious--you can't have a Caesar salad without the Caesar dressing! So we came up with a delicious, dairy-free version, super creamy and full of savory umami flavor. We make our creamy dressing in the blender with fresh lemon juice, egg yolk, cheesy flavor from nutritional yeast, whole-grain or Dijon mustard, and of course, the secret ingredient--but that's another post!

With the dressing figured out, the next step was croutons. My first thought was to go the traditional route, cubing and crisping up bread in garlic-infused olive oil--simply substituting our paleo focaccia for traditional wheat bread. However, I knew from past attempts that, unlike traditional croutons that can be made well in advance, these would only be good if served immediately. I was looking for something a little less labor intensive.

Yummy, Crunchy, Easy Paleo

I thought and thought about what kind of crunchy crouton-replacement I could come up with. The answer was in my pantry:

Simple Mills Almond Flour Crackers.

Simple Mills Almond Flour Crackers in Gluten Free Caesar Salad

Now, this is not a sponsored post, but this brand tends to be pretty great for paleo on the go. Made with almonds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, tapioca starch, cassava flour, and simple seasonings, these delicious crackers don't taste like weird health food, but they are completely vegan and grain free. With the flavor profile I was going for in my salad, I knew the Rosemary & Sea Salt variety would be perfect.

Simply grab a big handful of the crackers and gently squeeze to crush/crumble the crackers over the top of the salad right before serving!

Now that is an easy-button I can get behind!

Paleo Dairy Free Gluten Free Caesar Salad

Cranking our paleo Caesar salad up a notch

So we'd figured out the essentials: homemade dressing and a stand-in for croutons. But with the removal of dairy from the salad, that would mean no parmesan cheese topping, the final critical component. Our dressing was so full of savory complexity that the cheese wasn't really needed in the flavor department, but the salad still felt incomplete. We wanted some bonus toppings to add a little flair. Since paleo is all about maximizing nutrients, we figured it didn't hurt to boost the nutritional profile of the salad as well.

For extra protein, color, and creaminess, we added some chopped hardboiled eggs, a nod to the egg yolk in the dressing. Pastured eggs provide that intense-orange-gold yolk color.

Then, for a hearty dose of vitamin C, vibrant crimson color, and a flavor that perfectly complements the savory, lemony dressing, we add chopped roasted red bell peppers.

Of course, if desired, you could turn it into a chicken Caesar salad with the addition of grilled chicken breast, or top it with anything from grilled shrimp to pine nuts, sunflower seeds or fresh herbs--whatever gets your people excited to dig into a big bowl of romaine lettuce!

If romaine is not your thing or you REALLY want to supercharge your salad, switch the greens up as well, and make a kale Caesar salad instead! A mixture of romaine and kale is also an option.

If dairy is not a concern for you, of course you can use any variety of store-bought salad dressings or your favorite homemade classic Caesar dressing and still enjoy these ideas for a pretty darn good Caesar salad, amped up and gluten free!

We hope you and your taste buds love our new recipe for a fresh spin on Caesar salad!

Supercharged paleo Caesar salad

Here's what you'll need:

  • Romaine lettuce (or kale, or a mix!)

  • Dairy-Free Caesar dressing

  • Chopped hardboiled eggs

  • Chopped roasted red bell peppers

  • Simple Mills Rosemary & Sea Salt Almond Flour Crackers

Here's what you'll do:

  1. Arrange your desired amounts of romaine, dressing, eggs, and roasted red peppers on a serving platter, or toss the ingredients together in a bowl. Alternatively, toss the greens with the dressing, and arrange remaining ingredients on top.

  2. Crush a handful or two of the crackers over the top. Enjoy!

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Hey Y'all!

I'm the Monster Momma.

I'm a Christ-follower, wife, mother to five sweet paleo monsters, writer, and

paleo food fiend.

Join me and my family on our paleo journey!

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