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Gluten-Free Caesar Salad

This Gluten-Free Caesar Salad recipe has all of the classic flavor you crave, simply made gluten-free! Enjoy as a side or upgrade to a main dish with one of our tricks!

gluten free caesar salad with gluten free croutons

You know what salad I secretly always love to order at restaurants? Caesar salad.

I know it’s a bit retro and out of fashion (and certainly not as light as some other options), but this classic salad always calls to me! The punchy, creamy dressing, the salty Parmesan, the crunch from the lettuce and crispy croutons–YUM!

That said, it’s not that easy to order gluten-free Caesar salad at restaurants. Between finding a gluten-free caesar dressing and gluten-free croutons, it’s just not alway the easiest. So, when the craving struck recently, I made it at home.

And holy WOW. The dressing has all the traditional Caesar flavor you want, and with our easy gluten-free croutons, you won’t have to miss out at all!

Here’s what you need to make our easy gluten-free Caesar salad recipe…

gluten-free caesar dressing with ingredients for caesar salad

Start With Your Ingredients:

  • Romaine Lettuce. Crisp romaine lettuce leaves get chopped or torn into bite-sized pieces to form the base of this classic salad.
  • Gluten-Free Caesar Salad Dressing. We’re using our gluten-free caesar dressing recipe here, made from mayonnaise, fresh lemon juice, gluten-free Worcestershire sauce, fresh garlic, salt, pepper, and Parmesan cheese. Easy, simple, and delicious with all the classic flavor you crave! (No anchovy paste or anchovies required!)
  • Gluten-Free Croutons. Then, you’ll add some satisfying crunch with our homemade gluten-free croutons. You’ll only need gluten-free bread, butter (or olive oil), and some simple seasonings to make them!
  • Shaved Parmesan Cheese. While I prefer (and HIGHLY recommend!) freshly grated Parmesan for the dressing, I love larger shaved parmesan for the salad for a bigger impact. Feel free to use pre-shaved parmesan for this part!

Why Isn’t Caesar Dressing Gluten-Free?

Some store-bought brands use Worcestershire sauce that is not gluten-free. Worcestershire contains soy sauce, which (despite its name) is usually made with wheat in the United States. To make gluten-free Caesar dressing, you must use gluten-free Worcestershire sauce, like Lea & Perrins.

How To MAke Gluten-Free Caesar Salad, Step By Step

Make The Gluten-Free Croutons

  1. Preheat The Oven & Prep Your Pan. Start by preheating the oven to 375 degrees F. Set out a baking sheet.
  2. Dice The Bread. If you haven’t already, cut the bread into 1-inch cubes.
  3. Coat The Bread. In a large bowl, combine diced bread, olive oil or butter, salt, and any herbs or seasonings you’d like to use. Stir to coat well.
  4. Bake The Croutons. Spread the bread out on the baking sheet. Give the baking sheet a shake to distribute the bread well. (You don’t want any large clumps). Pop the pan in the oven and bake croutons 10-15 minutes, or until they’re golden. I like to stir my croutons halfway through the cooking time to allow them to cook evenly.
  5. Cool & Store. Let the croutons cool, then add to your salad or store in an airtight container at room temperature up to 2-3 days.

Make The Caesar Dressing

  1. Prep Your Ingredients. If you haven’t already, grate the Parmesan cheese with a microplane zester and set aside. Measure all ingredients and have them ready to go.
  2. Start Your Dressing. In a jar, small bowl, or liquid measuring cup, combine mayonnaise, lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, 1/2 clove minced garlic, and the pepper. Whisk to combine.
  3. Add The Cheese. Mix in the Parmesan cheese and stir to combine.
  4. Taste And Adjust. Taste and add more Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, garlic, salt, pepper, or Parmesan, as needed. (I like 1 teaspoon Worcestershire, 1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon, 1/8 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and 1/2 clove garlic)
  5. Serve Or Store. Enjoy immediately, or store in an airtight container in the fridge 4-5 days.

Assemble The Salad

  1. Combine The Ingredients. In a large mixing bowl, combine chopped lettuce, cooled croutons, shaved parmesan cheese, and about 3/4 of the caesar salad dressing.
  2. Toss The Salad. Then, toss with a fork to combine and coat everything well with the dressing, adding more dressing, as desired.
gluten-free caesar

Mix It Up With One Of These Variations

We usually serve this gluten-free Caesar as a side dish, but you can easily upgrade it to a main dish with one of these tricks:

  • Add Chicken! Try it with leftover grilled chicken. Try grilling chicken breast with a lemon marinade, Cajun seasoning, or even simple salt and pepper!
  • Try It With Shrimp. Or, use shrimp for another twist. I love making this lemon dill shrimp to add to a salad like this! Or you can use our Simple Lemon Garlic Shrimp.
  • Roll It Into A Wrap. When I was in college, one of the restaurants on campus would roll caesar salad (croutons and all!) into a spinach tortilla to make wraps. It was delicious! Mission makes gluten-free spinach tortillas that are tasty!

FAQ + Tips And Tricks For The Best Gluten-Free Caesar Salad:

Is Caesar Salad Gluten-Free? Regular Caesar salad is NOT gluten-free, since it’s made with traditional (wheat-based) croutons and can contain wheat in the dressing. For caesar salad to be gluten-free, you must make a gluten-free caesar dressing and use gluten-free croutons.

Make-Ahead Tips. If you’re making this salad in advance, it’s best to make and store the components separately, then assemble right before eating so the lettuce and croutons don’t get soggy. Wash and chop the lettuce, make the dressing, make the croutons, and shred the parmesan cheese and store in separate containers until a few minutes before you eat.

How Long Does Caesar Dressing Last? If you’ve made my recipe below, it should keep for 4-5 days in the fridge.

Are There Store-Bought Gluten-Free Croutons? Yes! Homemade will taste WAY better (really!), but you can sometimes find gluten free croutons in stores. Here are 4 brands to try!

WE SUGGEST:

Don’t forget to leave a star review and comment below when you make our gluten-free meatloaf recipe. I can’t wait to hear how it goes!

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gluten free caesar salad with gluten free croutons

Gluten-Free Caesar Salad


  • Author: Emily Dixon, One Lovely Life
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 6 side salads 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Description

This Gluten-Free Caesar Salad recipe has all of the classic flavor you crave, simply made gluten-free! Enjoy as a side or upgrade to a main dish with some chicken or shrimp!


Ingredients

Scale

For The Croutons:

  • 4 slices gluten-free bread, diced into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 Tbsp melted butter (or olive oil)
  • 1/8 tsp salt (or more, to taste)
  • Optional: 1/8 tsp pepper, 1-1 1/2 tsp. fresh herbs (like rosemary, dill, or oregano) or 1/8-1/4 tsp. dried herbs (like dill, rosemary, or Italian seasoning), 1 clove garlic, finely minced, or 1/4 tsp. garlic powder

For The Gluten-Free Caesar Dressing:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise (we recommend best-quality mayo, like Hellmans or Best Foods)*
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 11 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard (we recommend Annie’s)
  • 1/21 teaspoon gluten-free Worcestershire sauce (like Lea & Perrins)
  • 1/21 clove garlic, very finely minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper (or more, to taste)
  • 1/81/4 teaspoon kosher salt (more or less, to taste)
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese***

For The Salad:

  • 9 cups Romaine lettuce cut or torn into bite-sized pieces (about 2 heads romaine)
  • 1/31/2 cup shaved Parmesan cheese (or more, to taste)

Instructions

First, Make The Croutons:

  1. Preheat The Oven & Prep Your Pan. Start by preheating the oven to 375 degrees F. Set out a baking sheet.

  2. Dice The Bread. If you haven’t already, cut the bread into 1-inch cubes.

  3. Coat The Bread. In a large bowl, combine diced bread, olive oil or butter, salt, and any herbs or seasonings you’d like to use. Stir to coat well.

  4. Bake The Croutons. Spread the bread out on the baking sheet. Give the baking sheet a shake to distribute the bread well. (You don’t want any large clumps). Pop the pan in the oven and bake croutons 10-15 minutes, or until they’re golden. I like to stir my croutons halfway through the cooking time to allow them to cook evenly.

  5. Cool & Store. Let the croutons cool, then add to your salad or store in an airtight container at room temperature up to 2-3 days.

Then, Make The Dressing:

  1. Prep Your Ingredients. If you haven’t already, grate the Parmesan cheese with a microplane zester and set aside. Measure all ingredients and have them ready to go.

  2. Start Your Dressing. In a jar, small bowl, or liquid measuring cup, combine mayonnaise, lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, 1/2 clove minced garlic, and the pepper. Whisk to combine.

  3. Add The Cheese. Mix in the Parmesan cheese and stir to combine.

  4. Taste And Adjust. Taste and add more Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, garlic, salt, pepper, or Parmesan, as needed. (I like 1 teaspoon Worcestershire, 1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon, 1/8 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and 1/2 clove garlic)

  5. Serve Or Store. Enjoy immediately, or store in an airtight container in the fridge 4-5 days.

Assemble The Salad:

  1. Combine The Ingredients. In a large mixing bowl, combine chopped lettuce, cooled croutons, shaved parmesan cheese, and about 3/4 of the caesar salad dressing.

  2. Toss The Salad. Then, toss with a fork to combine and coat everything well with the dressing, adding more dressing, as desired.

Notes

Make-Ahead Tips. If you’re making this salad in advance, it’s best to make and store the components separately, then assemble right before eating so the lettuce and croutons don’t get soggy. Wash and chop the lettuce, make the dressing, make the croutons, and shred the parmesan cheese and store in separate containers until a few minutes before you eat.

  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Salad
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: gluten free caesar salad, gluten free caesar salad recipe

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