Grilled Artichoke Vegan Caesar Salad (Gluten-Free)

Hearty, healthy and refreshing Grilled Artichoke Vegan Caesar Salad with kale, croutons, crispy chickpeas, grilled artichokes with a healthy high-protein Caesar dressing.

This is the dreamiest salad and I have been having this on repeat. To be very truthful, Caesar salad was never my go-to order even before being vegan as I found the dressing too heavy and creamy without much goodness in the salad bar a few lettuce leaves. This vegan-ised, healthier and wholesome salad is here to change all that. it has everything others love from a classic salad, the creamy sauce, the parmesan cheese and the crispy croutons but packed with protein, fibre, wholegrains and other goodness.

A bowl of Grilled Artichoke Vegan Caesar Salad with two forks
Grilled Artichoke Vegan Caesar Salad

Why will I love this salad?

This salad is so delicious:

  • Fresh, wholesome and packed with vegetables
  • Crispy, crunchy and creamy
  • With the best protein-packed dressing
  • High in protein and fibre
  • Naturally vegan, egg-free and dairy-free
  • Easily gluten-free and nut-free
  • Great to make ahead of time
  • Packed with flavour and crunch
  • Easy and quick to make
  • Great for starters, entrees or mail meals

If you already love the sound of this salad then skip ahead to the recipe card below. Or, first let’s discuss the recipe in more detail.

What ingredients do I need?

The ingredients are fresh and wholesome and you can find my favourites in the “shop the recipe” section below.

For the dressing:

  • Silken or soft tofu: this is the magic ingredient that makes this dressing creamy, smooth and high protein. It also means the dressing is nut-free, so quick and easy to make and much cheaper, too.
  • Vegan cream cheese: this adds the cheesy tang we all love as all as adding creaminess. I use the new Cocos spread which is also great for gut health and made with simple, natural ingredients.
  • Garlic: for flavour.
  • Lemon juice and apple cider vinegar: for tang. You may use white vinegar, if needed, too.
  • Dijon mustard: for a punch of flavour but without being overpowering.
  • Nutritional yeast: this adds an umami-depth of flavour and works so well. I highly recommend it, but you can make the sauce without it.
  • Salt and pepper: for seasoning.

For the crispy croutons and chickpeas:

  • Chickpeas: I use the queen chickpeas from Bold Bean Co as they are bigger and plumper but any chickpeas are great. You can also swap these for other beans like cannellini or butterbeans or try this with cubed tofu.
  • Sourdough bread: or your favourite bread, sliced up. Make sure this is gluten-frww, where needed.
  • Tajin seasoning: this is a chilli-lime seasoning and is so delicious. If not, try this with smoked paprika or just salt and pepper chickpeas.
  • Extra-virgin olive oil: for air frying or roasting.

For the salad:

  • Kale and lettuce: I like to add more goodness to this salad but using iron-rich kale as well as lettuce. You could also use spinach, too, and I like the lettuce for freshness and crunch.
  • Grilled artichokes: these are the antipasti style of artichokes that come in oil in jars and are so good for this salad. Use the oil found in the jar and surrounding the artichokes to fry them off until crispy and golden.
  • Capers: for the real Caesar falvour.
  • Fresh basil: for flavour.
  • Pine nuts: for adding on top. You can skip these if you are nut-free and opt for sunflower or pumpkin seeds, instead. I like to toast them in a dry frying pan for a few minutes to turn golden as it adds more flavour.
  • Vegan parmesan cheese: a classic Caesar as shards of parmesan on top and this salad does, too! Grate or slice your cheese over the top to add that wow factor.

Is this gluten-free and nut-free?

This is easily gluten-free as long as your bread is GF and make this nut-free by leaving out the pine nuts on top and checking all your ingredients (like the cream cheese and bread).

How do I make this?

This salad comes together easily in a few stages:

  • Make the dressing: blend together all the ingredients until smooth.
  • For the croutons and chickpeas: toss with the seasoning and bake or air fry till crispy and golden (about 20 minutes).
  • For the artichokes: fry off in a pan for 5 minutes or until crispy and golden.
  • For the salad: massage and kale and chop up all the other components.
  • Toss the salad ingredients together: and pour over the dressing.
  • Toss well and serve with extra chickpeas, croutons and artichokes on top: and add the pine nuts, parmesan and extra dressing.

How long will this last?

This is great to make ahead and the sauce alone and the salad will keep for 2-3 days in the fridge in a sealed container.

A bowl of Grilled Artichoke Vegan Caesar Salad with a fork
Grilled Artichoke Vegan Caesar Salad

What other recipes can I try?

If you are looking for new salads and bowls to try, how about my:

A bowl of Grilled Artichoke Vegan Caesar Salad with two forks

Grilled Artichoke Vegan Caesar Salad (Gluten-Free)

Yield: 2
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Hearty, healthy and refreshing Grilled Artichoke Vegan Caesar Salad with kale, croutons, crispy chickpeas, grilled artichokes with a healthy high-protein Caesar dressing.


For the Caesar Dressing:

  • 150g silken tofu
  • 50g vegan cream cheese spread
  • 1 garlic bulb, peeled
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice (1/2 lemon, juiced)
  • ½ tsp Dijon mustard
  • ½ tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • Salt and pepper

For the Salad:

  • 200g chickpeas (drained weight)
  • ½ tsp tajin chilli-lime seasoning (or smoked paprika)
  • 2 slices bread
  • 1 ½ tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 10-12 grilled artichokes (in the jar)
  • 60g kale, de-stemmed
  • 60g lettuce, sliced
  • 1 tbsp capers, chopped
  • 1-2 tbsp fresh basil, torn, plus extra to serve
  • 160g tomatoes, sliced
  • 2 tbsp pine nuts, toasted
  • Vegan parmesan-style cheese, sliced


  1. For the Caesar dressing: add all of the ingredients to a small blender and process until smooth and creamy. You can now store the dressing in a sealed container for 2-3 days in the fridge. You may only need half for this salad.
  2. For the crispy chickpeas and croutons: pat the chickpeas dry and slice the bread into cubes. Toss them with the tajin and 1 tbsp olive oil, season with salt and pepper and add to separate trays. Air fry at 160Fan for 20 minutes (for chickpeas) or 10-15 minutes (for croutons), tossing halfway through or bake at 160Fan/180ºC for 25 minutes (chickpeas) or 10 minutes (croutons), until golden and crispy.
  3. For the artichokes: heat a non-stick pan and add the artichokes to the pan (they will have oil from being in the jar). Allow to fry for 2-3 minutes on one side, till golden and crispy and then turn over to turn golden on the second side.
  4. For the salad: roughly chop the kale and add to a bowl with the ½ tbsp olive oil and a pinch of salt. Lightly massage for a few moments to break down the leaves. Add in the chopped lettuce, capers, basil, the tomatoes and half of the chickpeas and croutons. Pour over half of the dressing and toss well.
  5. To serve: divide between two bowls, top with the extra chickpeas and croutons, the artichokes and pine nuts. Add on the parmesan cheese and a drizzle of dressing and crack of pepper.
  6. Store leftovers in the fridge for 2-3 days in a sealed container in the fridge.

Shop the recipe

Stay in touch

I look forward to hearing what you think of this Grilled Artichoke Vegan Caesar Salad so please let me know in the comments below and leave a star review above. If you do make this, I’d love to see so please tag me, I’m @nourishing.amy on Instagram and use the hashtag #nourishingamy. I’m also on TwitterFacebook and Pinterest  – please say hello!

With Caesar love x

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