Freshly prepared Classic Caesar Salad with Homemade Lemon Vinaigrette on a white plate.

In the vibrant world of salads, the Caesar stands out with its creamy dressing, crunchy croutons, and the sharp flavor of Parmesan cheese. It’s a dish that has stood the test of time and is beloved for its simplicity and depth of flavor. Today, I’m excited to share my take on this classic with a homemade lemon vinaigrette that adds a fresh twist to an old favorite. Whether you’re looking to impress guests at a dinner party or want to elevate your weekday lunch, this Caesar salad recipe is perfect for anyone who loves a combination of convenience and sophistication in the kitchen. It’s a salad that promises to deliver on flavor and leave everyone asking for more.

Freshly prepared Classic Caesar Salad with Homemade Lemon Vinaigrette on a white plate. homemade lemon vinaigrette Classic Caesar Salad with Homemade Lemon Vinaigrette Recipe Freshly prepared Classic Caesar Salad with Homemade Lemon Vinaigrette on a white plate

Classic Caesar Salad with Homemade Lemon Vinaigrette Recipe


  • 2 heads of Romaine lettuce, cleaned and torn into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 cup of croutons, homemade or store-bought
  • 1/2 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons of Dijon mustard
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon of anchovy paste (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 egg yolk (optional for a more decadent dressing)


  1. Begin by preparing the lemon vinaigrette. In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, Dijon mustard, minced garlic, Worcestershire sauce, anchovy paste (if using), and egg yolk (if using) until well combined.
  2. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil while continuously whisking to create an emulsion. Season the dressing with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
  3. Combine the torn Romaine lettuce, croutons, and half of the grated Parmesan cheese in a large salad bowl.
  4. Pour the lemon vinaigrette over the salad and toss until the lettuce is evenly coated.
  5. Sprinkle the remaining Parmesan cheese over the top of the salad for garnish.

How to prepare:

Ensure your Romaine lettuce is thoroughly dried after washing to ensure the best texture and flavor. If making homemade croutons, cut day-old bread into cubes, toss with olive oil, and bake in a preheated oven at 375°F (190°C) until golden and crisp.

Preparation time:

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Servings: 4
  • Cooking Time: 0 minutes (unless making homemade croutons, which takes about 15 minutes)
  • Total Time: 20 minutes (35 minutes with homemade croutons)
  • Kcal: Approximately 220 kcal per serving

Nutrition Facts:

Calories: 220 | Total Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 330mg | Total Carbohydrates: 8g | Dietary Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g | Protein: 7g

Kitchen Equipment Needed:

  • Large salad bowl
  • Small mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Garlic press (optional)
  • Cheese grater
  • Salad servers or tongs

Storing Leftovers:

Caesar salad is best enjoyed fresh. However, if you have leftovers, store the undressed salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Keep the dressing separate and add just before serving to maintain the crispness of the lettuce.

Food or Drink Pairings:

This Classic Caesar Salad with Homemade Lemon Vinaigrette pairs beautifully with a chilled Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc glass. For a heartier meal, serve alongside grilled chicken or salmon.

Recipe Swaps and Variations:

  • For a gluten-free version, use gluten-free croutons or omit them altogether.
  • Vegetarians can skip the anchovy paste and use a vegetarian Worcestershire sauce.
  • To make the salad vegan, omit the Parmesan cheese and egg yolk and use a vegan mayonnaise as the base for the dressing.
  • Top the salad with grilled chicken, shrimp, or chickpeas for added protein.

Remember, the key to a great Caesar salad is the freshness of the ingredients and the balance of flavors in the dressing. Don’t be afraid to adjust the seasoning to suit your taste. Enjoy your culinary creation and the delightful dance of flavors on your palate!


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