Vegan Caesar Salad
You read right. A vegan caesar salad recipe with gluten-free croutons? It’s true!
As I delved deeper into plant-based eating a few years ago, Oh She Glows was one of the first places I landed that helped me get started in the kitchen. I think most of you reading this today are probably familiar with Angela’s blog, if not a regular visitor to her site.
Angela has long been a blogging hero of mine. She has built an incredibly dedicated following and I know she’s inspired many people to eat a healthier diet, whether they’re vegan or not. She is undoubtedly one of the most popular food bloggers out there. Her lovely and genuine personality shines through with every post, and her recipes are simple, wholesome and always delicious. I have made countless recipes from the Oh She Glows blog and in the past few weeks I started making a dent on the wonderful recipes from the Oh She Glows Cookbook.
The Oh She Glows Cookbook
This is the kind of cookbook you can actually want to sit down and read, I even had it on my bedside table for a few nights, browsing (drooling) over the recipes I wanted to make. Just leafing through the book, I wanted to bust out my blender, preheat the oven, prepare the cutting board and get started.
Where to start?
Upon first look, the Out-The-Door Chia Power Doughnuts caught my eye, as did the Taco Fiesta Potato Crisps, the Soul-Soothing African Peanut Stew and the Salt & Vinegar Roasted Chickpeas. Don’t even get me started on the snacks and desserts. This girl knows how to write a recipe, and name it, and photograph it, and make you want to make it asap.
So far I’ve made the Creamy Avocado-Potato Salad, which my husband has asked for again every night since. I’ve also made the Long Weekend Grilled Salad, the Out-The-Door Chia Doughnuts, the Chocolate Oil-Free Zucchini Muffins and a few of the other salads. All have been excellent.
Photos Courtesy of Angela Liddon (Bottom Right by Dave Biesse)
Reasons to love the Oh She Glows Cookbook
1. Over 100+ vegan recipes from smoothies, to salads, breakfasts, entrees, staples, desserts and more.
1. Beautiful and mouth-watering photographs of almost every single recipe.
2. Info on stocking a natural foods pantry.
3. Info on kitchen tools and equipment.
4. Personal words from Angela with every recipe and chapter.
5. Recipe made with simple, whole food ingredients. No crazy, hard to find items or imitation processed foods.
6. Includes revamped classics that meat-eaters will love.
7. Suits many dietary needs. Each recipe states whether it’s gluten-free,soy-free, grain-free, nut-free, oil-free and/ no-bake or raw.
The Chakra Vegan Caesar Salad Recipe
Along with my review, I’m so excited to share one of the recipes from the book here with you today. I decided to go with the Chakra Caesar Salad with Nutty Herb Croutons.
My husband loves ceasar salad and I often make a vegan caesar salad with tofu in the dressing and homemade croutons made from sprouted-grain bread. With my husband currently eating paleo, that beloved recipe hasn’t recently been a staple at my house.
Trifecta: Paleo, Vegan & Gluten-Free!
As I was browsing Oh She Glows, the vegan caesar salad recipe caught my eye. Wait, no tofu in the dressing? Oh my god, the croutons aren’t made from bread!? It’s a caesar salad miracle! The croutons are absolutely genius! They’re so easy to make and so yummy! Amazingly, the whole salad is soy-free, grain-free, gluten-free and sugar-free. I die. And I get to share it with you today! Thank you, Angela!
For the dressing
- ½ cup whole raw almonds
- 1 whole head garlic, for roasting, plus ½ clove garlic, minced (optional)
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- ¼ to ½ teaspoon fine-grain sea salt, to taste
- ¼ teaspoon dry mustard
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For the salad
- 2 heads romaine lettuce, chopped, or a mix of romaine and destemmed torn kale leaves (about 10 cups)
For the Croutons
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 cup raw almonds
- 2 tablespoons chopped sweet onion
- 2 tablespoons packed fresh parsley, or 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 2 tablespoons packed fresh basil, or 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, or ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, or ½ teaspoon dried rosemary
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ¼ teaspoon fine-grain sea salt, or to taste
- Herbamare, for sprinkling on top
- Make the Dressing: Place the almonds in a bowl and add enough water to cover. Soak the almonds for at least 12 hours, or overnight. Drain and rinse the almonds. Pop off the skins by pressing the base of each almond between your thumb and forefinger. (Removing the skins yields a smoother dressing, but it’s not absolutely essential.)
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
- Cut off the top of the garlic head so all of the raw cloves are exposed. Remove any loose skin. Wrap the head in foil and place it on a baking sheet. Roast the garlic for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the cloves are soft and golden. Let cool for 10 to 15 minutes, until cool enough to handle. Remove the foil and squeeze the garlic cloves out of their skins and into a food processor.
- Add the soaked almonds, oil, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, salt, dry mustard, pepper, and ¼ cup water to the food processor and process until smooth, stopping to scrape down the bowl as needed. Taste and add more salt and pepper as needed. Add the minced raw garlic if you’d like the dressing to have a more intense garlic flavor – otherwise, leave it out.
- To make the croutons,
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a small bowl, combine the flaxseed, oil, and 2 tablespoons water and stir. Set aside for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the mixture has thickened.
- In a food processor, pulse the garlic to mince it. Add the almonds and process until finely chopped. Add the onion, parsley, basil, thyme, rosemary, oregano, salt, and flaxseed mixture and process until a sticky ball of dough forms.
- With your fingers, sprinkle small portions of the crouton dough onto the prepared baking sheet, using roughly ½ teaspoon of dough per crouton. Place the croutons 1 inch apart on the baking sheet and sprinkle with Herbamare.
- Bake for 20 minutes, then gently flip the croutons and bake for 10-15 minutes more, until golden. Watch the croutons closely near the end of the baking time to make sure they don’t burn.
- Let the croutons cool on the pan for 10 minutes. They will firm up while cooling. Cool the croutons completely and store in an airtight glass jar for 2 to 4 weeks.
- Place the lettuce in a large salad bowl and pour your desired amount of dressing on top. Toss until fully coated. Sprinkle the Nutty Herb Croutons over the salad just before serving.
From The Oh She Glows Cookbook: Vegan Recipes to Glow from the Inside Out by Angela Liddon. Copyright © Angela Liddon, 2014. Reprinted by permission of Penguin Canada Books Inc.
Keywords: vegan caesar salad
Disclaimer: I was provided a free copy of The Oh She Glows Cookbook in order to write this review. I was not compensated otherwise, all opinions are my own.