Skip to main content

Kale Caesar Salad with Garlic Rosemary Pecan Croutons

Kale Caesar Salad with Garlic Rosemary Pecan Croutons

The rich flavors of garlic and rosemary are infused into toasted pecans to substitute for croutons in this zesty vegan kale Caesar salad. No mayo or dairy needed, as the base of the Caesar salad dressing is actually a cashew mixture. 

  • Duration
  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • 4Servings


  • 1 large bunch of kale, washed

Caesar Dressing:

  • 1 cup raw, unsalted cashews, soaked overnight or boiled for 15 minutes
  • 1-3 cloves of garlic (you can add more or less to taste)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 2-3 tablespoons capers
  • 2 tablespoons caper brine
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Pepper to taste

Spiced Pecans:

  • 1 cup shelled pecan halves
  • 2 tablespoons non-hydrogenated vegan margarine (or olive oil)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon dried rosemary, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • Salt to taste


1) Make Caesar Dressing: Add all ingredients to a food processor, and process until smooth, scraping down the sides when necessary. Adjust seasonings to taste, and add more water if you find the dressing is too thick. 

2) Prepare Spiced Pecans: Melt the margarine in a saucepan or microwave, then add the spices. Toss the pecans in the margarine mixture, and then toast about 5-10 minutes at 350°F, stirring occasionally (I actually prefer a toaster oven for this). The pecans are done when they smell faintly toasty, and have just begun to brown. Be careful not to burn them. Nobody likes burnt nuts. Cool. 

3) Assemble the salad: Strip the kale from the thick, stem and either chop or rip into bite sized pieces. Add the dressing, and using your hands, massage the dressing into the kale until the leaves are coated evenly, and have begun to wilt ever so slightly. Toss in the pecans and serve.