Whip up a delicious non dairy caesar dressing in under 5 minutes with this plant-based recipe. The same savory & zesty flavor of traditional Caesar.
Made with cashews for a velvety texture, miso paste for a salty umami taste, and nutritional yeast for a cheesy flavor.
You don't need raw egg, cheese or xanthan gum to make a delicious caesar salad dressing. This recipe proves it!
The creamy dressing is not only dairy free, but also gluten free, vegan & refined sugar free.
It livens up salads and sandwiches, and doubles as a veggie dip!
Ingredient Notes & Substitutes
- Cashews: unsalted raw cashews work best. No need to soak them ahead of time. Walnuts are a fantastic substitute.
- Miso: Gives an amazing umami flavor! My favorite recently has been chickpea miso which can be found at most Whole Foods stores but any type of miso will work! You can also substitute for Worcestershire sauce, tamari, anchovy paste or soy sauce.
- Olive Oil: any neutral flavored oils will work - extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil and grapeseed oil are my favorites.
- Lime Juice: all great salad dressings have an acidic element. Lemon juice or apple cider vinegary are good substitutes.
- Dijon Mustard: adds great flavor.
- Water: water is used to thin out the dressing to your liking.
- Nutritional Yeast: not to be confused with other types of yeast, nutritional yeast is yellow in color and adds a cheesy flavor when paired with salt and garlic. Parmesan (regular or dairy free versions) is a great substitute.
- Seasonings: top it off with garlic powder (or clove), sea salt & pepper.
- Want it sweeter? I don't personally, but you can add maple syrup if you do. It's a fun twist.
- Organic: you can make this a USDA organic dressing by using all USDA organic ingredients.
How to make it
This dairy free caesar dressing recipe is super simple! Place all the ingredients in a high speed blender, immersion blender or small food processor and blend until smooth.
Using a blender cup (single-serve blender) gives me the creamiest consistency because there is less surface area for the dressing to stick to compared to a larger blenders.
Viola! Enjoy your homemade non dairy caesar dressing!
What to put in caesar salad?
My go-to caesar salad has baby kale with grilled chicken or cauliflower, topped with pomegranate seeds, caesar dressing, and a drizzle of balsamic glaze. And sometimes, I even wrap it all up in a tortilla!
Here are some ideas:
- Add your favorite greens: kale (be sure to massage), romaine, mixed greens
- Protein: grilled chicken, salmon, grilled cauliflower
- Pomegranate seeds!
- Seeds: pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, hemp seeds.
- Croutons: toss some gluten free bread in some oil, salt & pepper and broil until crispy.
- Non dairy parmesan cheese: I'm obsessed with Barrett's Garden Farmesan tastes just like the real thing. My friend Deb also has a great homemade dairy free parmesan recipe I love.
- Balsamic glaze: adds a fun visual element and amazing flavor.
- Wrap it up in a (gluten free) tortilla: I love Maria & Ricardo's quinoa flour tortillas - microwave for 20 seconds with a wet paper towel on top to make the tortilla soft and easier to roll.
Caesar salad dressing can be stored to 5 days in the fridge in an airtight container.
Since this caesar salad dressing is vegan (no raw eggs, no anchovies) it is safe to freeze. It's best to freeze in ice cube trays before placing the caesar cubes in a freezer bag or air tight container for up to 6 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight when ready to use.
Yes! Blend it ahead of time and it will last up to 5 days in the fridge. Before use stir or shake it up.
Yes, usually caesar salad dressing is gluten free and this homemade version is also gluten free.
If the caesar salad dressing is made with raw eggs - it is not safe to eat during pregnancy. But this non dairy plant based version is made without eggs so it is typically safe to eat during pregnancy.
Other dairy free recipes you'll love!
I hope you love this non dairy caesar dressing! If you make it I'd love if you could leave a comment and rating so I know how it turned out!
Non-Dairy Caesar Dressing
- ½ cup cashews or walnuts raw & unsalted
- ½ cup water
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon lime juice should get enough from 1 lime
- 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder or garlic clove (skin removed)
- 1 tablespoon miso paste
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Add all ingredients into a blender. A small blender cup works best for this small quantity. If you are sensitive to salt start by adding less and taste along the way as you add more to your preferred salt level.
- Blend for 1 minute or until creamy.
- If you prefer your dressing more runny add 1 tablespoon of water at a time and blend for a few seconds until your desired consistency is reached. Enjoy!
- This recipe makes ~1 cup of dressing
- Storage: Store in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 6 months.
- Miso substitutions: any type of miso will work great. Substitutions: Worcestershire sauce, tamari, anchovy paste or soy sauce.
- Olive oil substitutions: any neutral flavored oils - olive oil, avocado oil and grapeseed oil are my favorites.
- Lime juice substitution: lemon juice.
- Nutritional yeast substitutions: dairy free parmesan or real parmesan if you consume dairy.
- Salt: any type of salt will work great, I use sea salt. You can use this salt conversion calculator depending on what type of salt you are using.