This Vegan Kale Tahini Caesar Salad with avocado and crunchy chickpeas will convince even the pickiest eaters to eat more greens. It's the perfect lunch, side dish, or even dinner if you load it up with extra chickpeas and avocado!
We've been making a variation of this salad after having a similar dish at a New York restaurant 2 years ago. Every time we make it, people ask for the recipe! It's also super simple to make, making it a great lunch or side dish for any occasion.
How to make vegan tahini caesar dressing
There are a few special ingredients that give this addictive vegan Caesar dressing its flavor.
First, though tahini isn't a traditional Caesar dressing ingredient, it's the star here. However, I admit I'm (slightly) addicted to tahini, so I may be biased. It lends a nutty flavor and creaminess that's hard to achieve with just cashews.
My older brother is allergic to tree nuts though, so we also often omit cashews. To do so, simply replace the cashews with more tahini and halve the amount of water.
Note: the cashews need to be soaked for 2 hours before blending. This softens the nuts, making them much easier to blend into a perfectly creamy dressing. If you're short on time, 30 minutes to an hour in hot water will do.
Other star ingredients include nutritional yeast for a cheesy flavor, lemon, Dijon mustard and a touch of caper juice (the liquid from a jar of capers).
Caper juice adds a salty, briny flavor you'd typically get from anchovies. Side note: the rest of our family adds grated parmesan, which is an option if you're not dairy free/vegan.
It all comes together quickly in a high speed blender. The tahini caesar dressing is honestly good enough just as a dip for crisp vegetables or pita! So tangy, salty, briny and delicious.
Crunchy chickpeas replace traditional croutons in this caesar. Of course, you can use croutons if you'd prefer.
We always have store-bought or homemade roasted chickpeas on hand. We add them to salads for texture. Want to try homemade crispy chickpeas? These za'atar roasted chickpeas are our favorite!
Finally, avocado is a no-brainer - extra healthy fat and creaminess that you can't beat!
In the end, this Vegan Kale Tahini Caesar Salad is an easy, go-to healthy recipe. No matter how many times I make it, I find myself craving it day in and day out!
More of our favorite salad recipes
- Vegan Mediterranean Chickpea Salad
- Roasted Beet, Citrus and Lentil Salad with vegan feta and greens
- White Bean and Edamame Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
- Vegan Quinoa Salad with Roasted Vegetables
- Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad with Pomegranate
- Roasted Beet Kale Salad
If you give this vegan kale tahini caesar salad recipe a try, we’d love for you to leave a rating and review below! We also love to see your creations on Instagram – tag us at @crowded_kitchen so we can see what you’ve been cooking.Print
This Vegan Kale Tahini Caesar Salad with avocado and crunchy chickpeas will convince even the pickiest eaters to eat more greens. The perfect lunch, side dish, or even a full dinner if you load it up with extra chickpeas and avocado!
Vegan Tahini Caesar Dressing:
- 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked for 1-2 hours in warm water
- ½ cup tahini
- 3/4 cup water
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 1 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
- 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp fine sea salt
- Pepper to taste
- Optional: 1 tbsp brining liquid from can of capers
1 large bunch lacinato kale, stems removed and torn into small pieces
1 avocado, diced
1/2 cup roasted sea salt chickpeas
- Soak cashews in warm water for 1-2 hours. Drain and rinse.
- Add all ingredients to blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Taste and adjust as needed.
- Wash kale and pat dry. Remove stems and tear into small pieces (or use knife).
- Add to large mixing bowl and toss with dressing. Top with chickpeas and diced avocado.
If you have a nut allergy, you can sub cashews with more tahini and reduce amount of water by half.
- Category: Salads
- Method: No cook
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: vegan caesar salad