Weeknight Cooking

Chicken Caesar Salad With Anchovy-Caesar Vinaigrette & Garlic-Parmesan Croutons

May  9, 2010
5 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

I am a self-professed Caesar addict. This recipe came about after rigorous testing of and tinkering with a basic Caesar dressing recipe. This lighter Caesar is delicious -- the perfect summer salad. Plus, since the dressing has no raw eggs in it, it is perfect for picnics where refrigeration isn't an option. The dressing recipe makes extra, and you'll be glad of that! —chilmarkgal

Test Kitchen Notes

WHO: Chilmarkgal impresses us not only with her recipes, but also with her Pink Floyd references (her blog is called “Dark Side of the Spoon”).
WHAT: A “basic” chicken Caesar salad that is anything but.
HOW: Blend a whole slew of anchovies with garlic, lemon juice, mustard, Parmesan, Worcestershire, and olive oil. Use the dressing as a marinade for grilled chicken breasts, then make cheesy croutons out of a baguette and shaved Parmesan. Mix the chicken and croutons with romaine, then toss liberally with the dressing and top with more cheese.
WHY WE LOVE IT: A Caesar salad without a great dressing is like macaroni and cheese without cheese: sad and boring. But with this dressing on hand, we’ll never have another sub-par Caesar again. It's simultaneously light and rich, and the addition of sugar, mustard, and Worcestershire makes it complex but not labor-intensive. —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • 6 oil-packed anchovy filets, rinsed
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced and divided
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons granulated sugar, or to taste
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 3 heads romaine
  • 1/2 French baguette
  • 1/2 cup shaved Parmesan
  1. Preheat the oven to 425° F.
  2. Blend anchovies, 2 cloves of the minced garlic, lemon juice, mustard, sugar, 6 tablespoons of the finely grated Parmesan, and the Worcestershire sauce until smooth.
  3. With the blender running, stream in 1/2 cup olive oil until the dressing is thick and fully emulsified.
  4. Brush chicken breasts with a few tablespoons of the dressing and grill or broil until cooked through. Cool and slice or chop.
  5. Wash and dry lettuce, then cut it however you like (I prefer chopping it into 1-inch pieces).
  6. Open baguette by cutting it in half, cut each half into 1-inch croutons, and toss it with 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 clove minced garlic. Bake in the preheated oven until crunchy, about 10 minutes (be careful to make sure the garlic doesn't burn!). Sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons of finely grated Parmesan on top of the croutons, then put back in oven until the cheese is melted.
  7. Assemble the salad by dressing the romaine to taste, mixing in the croutons and the grilled chicken, and topping with shaved Parmesan. Enjoy!

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • The Pontificator
    The Pontificator
  • Bec
  • Jackie De Sordi
    Jackie De Sordi
  • aargersi
  • JanetFL

9 Reviews

jaimeC5674 March 2, 2022
I have to say thank you to the person who shared this recipe to Food52, because it is the most delicious Caesar salad I’ve ever eaten. I have made this so many times, it is a staple in my house now. I always keep a can of anchovies in the pantry just for when I get a craving for this salad. I double the recipe for the dressing because I found that one can of anchovies is 12 filets, and it’s so delicious I love having extra anyway. This is an amazing, fail proof recipe that I will make forever. Thank you so much!
Linda D. May 21, 2020
This is the best Chicken Caesar I have ever had! Absolutely fabulous! Thank you!
The P. September 21, 2016
Chicken breasts? Check. Anchovies? Check, Big hunk of Parm? Check. I'm on it.
Bec June 24, 2015
This looks divine - I think my husband would love this!!

Jackie D. September 22, 2014
just last night i introduced my italian relatives to caesar's salad. they loved it. next time i have them over, i'll make this version
chilmarkgal September 23, 2014
Hope you like it!
aargersi September 9, 2014
Congratulations on the wild card! I am adding this to my Caesar repertoire ..
chilmarkgal September 23, 2014
Thank you!
JanetFL July 11, 2013
Sounds wonderful and perfect for summer!