Vegetarian Kale and Romaine Caesar

Raw kale is the perfect foil for garlic and lemon-laced Caesar dressing.  The substantial leaves stand up to the thick, flavorful mix.  I like to add some lettuce, too—to soften up the overall mouthful. You might add another green as well, perhaps a bit of spinach or arugula, or a few herbs. I developed the egg and anchovy-free dressing for my egg-avoiding, vegetarian husband.  You’ll hardly miss either.  The dressing is thick, fragrant and packs a lemony punch.  Just what you’d expect with Caesar.

Try adding some ripe avocado to the bowl—it adds a pleasant creaminess to balance the crunch and chew.

(Serves 6)


  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon drained capers
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 bunch kale
  • 3 to 4 large leaves, romaine or other lettuce
  • 1 small red onion or shallot, shaved into thin slices
  • Olive oil
  • 2 cups cubed, artisan bread (day-old or on the stale side is fine)
  • Parmesan cheese


  1. Place the oil, garlic, capers, mustard, lemon juice, pepper and cheese in the bowl of a small food process or blender.  Mix on high speed until thick and creamy.  Add a bit of water to thin down as necessary.
  2. Rinse kale, remove stems and slice into bite sized pieces.  Rinse and cut romaine into bite size pieces.   Place in a salad bowl with onion.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly toss bread with a bit of olive oil—you don’t need much.  Place on a baking sheet in the oven and toast until golden on at least two sides.  Turn once or twice during cooking.
  4. Toss greens and onion with enough dressing to coat the leaves well (you will probably have one quarter cup or more dressing left over for another day).  Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese and add croutons.  Toss once more to mix.


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2 thoughts on “Vegetarian Kale and Romaine Caesar

  1. It was amazing to see my children joyfully eat large servings of raw kale without complaint! The delicious dressing along and the romaine lettuce seemed to disguise the sometimes tough chewing sensation of kale. Make sure to cut up the kale into friendly bite-sized pieces. Definitely a recipe I will be using often.

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