The Gay Globetrotter

Classic Caesar Salad

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This classic caesar salad is the perfect blend of crisp romaine lettuce, crunchy croutons, and parmesan cheese tossed in a delicious caesar salad dressing.

We love serving homemade caesar salad with pasta dishes like shrimp scampi and tuscan chicken pasta, just add garlic bread

A bowl of classic caesar salad next to caesar salad dressing.

Homemade caesar salad is SO much better than storebought, it’s always fresh tasting and the easy dressing will be your new favorite. It even works as a dip for fries! 

Fun fact: caesar salad isn’t named after Julius Caesar like most think, it’s actually named Caesar Cardini and has Italian and American roots. 

What Kind Of Cheese Is In Caesar Salad

Parmesan parmesan parmesan! Parmesan cheese is the secret to success in any classic caesar salad, or caesar salad dressing. 

Don’t use the grated stuff you find in a can, grab a small block of fresh parmesan cheese. Your taste buds will thank me. 

When slicing it, use the slicing tool on a box grater and aim to create consistent, thin slices to add to the salad. 

Caesar salad dressing being poured over caesar salad.

What’s In A Caesar Salad?

A classic caesar salad has:

  • Romaine lettuce – light and crisp with dark greens
  • Croutons or crostini made from baguettes
  • Parmesan cheese – known for it’s rich, nutty flavor
  • Creamy dressing – made with parmesan cheese, and full of flavor from the anchovy paste.

If you didn’t know that caesar dressing had anchovy paste, don’t be alarmed. You can omit them if you want, but I highly suggest adding it. You can’t tell it’s in there, and it really fills out the caesar salad dressing flavor. 

If you do omit it, you may find the dressing is lacking something. 

A caesar salad being tossed in a serving bowl with parmesan cheese and croutons.

My Favorite Caesar Salad Additions

Caesar salad has so many customizations, it’s super fun to get creative with. Some of my favorite additions include:

  • Bacon
  • Avocado 
  • Green onions
  • A squirt of fresh lemon juice

Below are some fun variations on a classic caesar salad to try if you’re looking to create a meal out of it:

  • For shrimp caesar salad, add 1 cup of grilled shrimp.
  • For chicken caesar salad, 1 cup of cooked chicken (grilled chicken is delicious).
  • For caesar salad with salmon, add a salmon fillet while serving. 
  • For grilled caesar salad, just grill the full romaine hearts on high heat for 2-3 minutes before slicing. 

A big bowl of caesar salad topped with croutons.

How To Make Caesar Salad Dressing Homemade

To make homemade caesar salad dressing:

  1. Combine all ingredients except oil in a food processor or blender.
  2. Slowly add the oil, bit by bit, to the food processor. This will help it emulsify with the egg yolks and lemon juice, which creates a mayonnaise style dressing. It should take about 2 minutes to fully add the oil, and the result should be creamy. 

If you don’t use all of the caesar dressing, you can store it in the fridge for up to a week.

Tips For Making Caesar Salad

  • Caesar salad shouldn’t be tossed with dressing until right before you serve, or the romaine lettuce will get soggy. I like to add everything to a bowl then keep it in the fridge until it’s time to serve dinner. 
  • Add dressing slowly. You can always add more, but you can’t remove it. 
  • Pepper is your friend, it’s amazing in caesar salad no matter how much you want to add!
  • If you are adding hot protein such as chicken, add it right as you are serving so the lettuce doesn’t wilt. 
  • We love making homemade croutons for caesar salad if we have the time by flash frying some crusty baguette pieces in olive oil and garlic powder. 
  • Ripping the lettuce rather than chopping it will help it stay fresh longer.

A close up of caesar salad with croutons, pepper, and dressing.

More Delicious Salad Recipes

Rate this Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Classic Caesar Salad

Prep Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 15 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Bailey
This classic caesar salad is the perfect blend of crisp romaine, crunchy croutons, and parmesan cheese tossed in a delicious caesar salad dressing.
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  • 2 heads romaine lettuce chopped, about 6 cups
  • 1 cup croutons
  • 2/3 cup parmesan cheese shaved
  • pepper to taste

For The Dressing

  • 2 cloves garlic peeled
  • 1 egg room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon anchovy paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper each
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese shredded
  • 1/2 cup olive oil


  • Combine all ingredients for caesar dressing except olive oil in a blender until combined. With the blender running, add olive oil slowly until incorporated, about 2 minutes.
  • Add all ingredients for caesar salad to a bowl. Add dressing to taste, and toss well to combine. Serve immediately.
Calories: 399kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 34g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 457mg | Potassium: 810mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 27436IU | Vitamin C: 16mg | Calcium: 298mg | Iron: 4mg

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A big serving bowl of classic caesar salad next to caesar salad dressing.