Caesar dressing is a classic everyone loves, and the homemade version is infinitely times better than anything you’ll find in a bottle. Give this recipe a try and you’ll realize it’s much easier than you may think!
How to Make Caesar Dressing
- Mince garlic
- Create a paste by chopping anchovies and garlic together
- Add egg yolks and dijon mustard
- Whisk to combine
- Slowly stream in olive oil (or a mix of olive oil and neutral flavored oil), while whisking constantly
- Stir in lemon juice, parmesan cheese, and season to taste.
Substitutions for Anchovies in Caesar Dressing
If you don’t want to use oil-packed anchovies as I did for this recipe, you can substitute with 2-3 teaspoons of anchovy paste. You can also skip the anchovies all together and add a couple teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce.
Is It Safe To Eat Dressing with Raw Egg Yolks?
The answer is usually but not always. Make sure you use fresh eggs from a reputable source for this recipe.
You can also pasteurize your egg yolks at home. To do so, fill a pot with about an inch of water and bring it to a simmer. Place yolks in a heat proof bowl which is large enough to fit over the pot without sliding in.
Whisk yolks over the steaming water constantly until they reach about 135F. Just make sure you don’t scramble your eggs!
Ideas for Caesar Salad Variations
- Classic: Romaine or baby gem lettuce, garlic parmesan croutons, and shavings of parmesan cheese
- Add chicken: Add chopped chicken thighs or breasts or shredded rotisserie chicken to your favorite version of this salad
- Try chicories: Try lettuce from the chicory family, such as endive, escarole or radicchio
- Go for Kale: Try my recipe for Kale Caesar Salad with Polenta Croutons
- Kale Caesar Salad with Polenta Croutons
- Spring Vegetable Salad with Buttermilk Poppy Seed Dressing
- Herbed Chickpea and Quinoa Salad with Tahini Yogurt
- Farro, Beets and Goat Cheese with Dijon Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Orange and Fennel Salad with Radicchio
- Pear and Pomegranate Salad with Pistachios
- Kale and Apple Salad with Blue Cheese and Glazed Walnuts
- Golden Beet Salad with Goat Cheese Spread and Pesto
- Sesame Crusted Tuna Salad with Mango Dressing
- Kale Salad with Spiced Maple Cashews, Dates & Pomegranate Molasses Dressing
- Shaved Cucumber Salad with Feta Yogurt Dressing
- Apple Cider Vinegar Dressing
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This classic Caesar Dressing packs a punch and is so much tastier than the store bought stuff.
- 1 medium clove garlic, minced
- 5–6 oil packed anchovy fillets*
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil*
- 4 tsp lemon juice, or to taste
- 2 tbsp freshly grated parmesan cheese, preferably parmigiana reggiano (4 tbsp if grated with microplane)*, plus more for serving
- Kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper
- Make garlic-anchovy paste: Place minced garlic and anchovies on a cutting board. Sprinkle with salt to act as an abrasive. Finely chop mixture and scrape with back of knife to form a paste like consistency.
- Make dressing: In a medium bowl, whisk together anchovy garlic mixture, egg yolks and Dijon. Place a dish towel under the bowl to stabilize it. Drizzle in oil starting drop by drop, while whisking constantly. Drizzle in olive oil more quickly once mixture starts to thicken. Continue to whisk until you have a thick and creamy emulsion.* Stir in lemon juice and cheese. Thin out with a few drops of water, as needed. Add salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Use fewer anchovies for a less strong flavor. You can also substitute with 2 or 3 teaspoons of anchovy paste. If you want to leave out the anchovies, try adding in a few dashes of Worcestershire sauce.
For a lighter flavor, use half extra virgin olive oil and half lighter oil, such as canola, vegetable or grapeseed oil.
Parmesan cheese grated with a microplane is much less dense compared to store bought grated cheese, or cheese blended with a Vitamix. In any case, add as much cheese as you like!
If you’re emulsion breaks, try adding a few drops of water to the dressing, and continue to rapidly whisk until it comes back together.
The Caesar dressing will keep in the fridge for 2-3 days.
- Category: Dressing
- Method: Whisk
- Cuisine: Italian
- Serving Size: About 2 tbsp
- Calories: 190
- Sugar: 0g
- Sodium: 190mg
- Fat: 20g
- Saturated Fat: 3g
- Unsaturated Fat: 17g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 1g
- Fiber: 0g
- Protein: 3g
- Cholesterol: 36mg
Keywords: caesar dressing, caesar salad dressing, caesar salad