Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad

  • Active Time 30m
  • Total Time 50m
  • Rating ****

Makes 8 servings

All the vibrant flavors of a Caesar dressing go wonderfully with pasta, making this the ideal way to enjoy the classic salad without the wilted lettuce that would result from making it ahead. Replacing the dressing's traditional egg enrichment with creamy low-fat yogurt results in a dish that will keep far better for outdoor enjoyment. Quickly grilled chicken transforms it into a main dish. You could either make the chicken ahead, as described below, tossing it with the rest of the salad; or make the salad without that addition, grilling the chicken in your backyard or at the picnic site, slicing it, and draping the slices over each serving. Steak makes an excellent alternative to the chicken. If you like, serve the salad on a bed of romaine lettuce leaves - a nod towards the original Caesar.


  • For the Chicken:
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 3/4 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts or lean, well-trimmed steak
  • For the Pasta:
  • 1/2 pound dried bowtie pasta (farfalle)
  • For the Dressing:
  • 3 canned anchovy fillets
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup plain low-fat yogurt
  • Salt and pepper

  • 6 ounces small cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes
  • 1 scallion, thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped Italian parsley
  • 6 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cups packaged Caesar-style croutons
  • Romaine lettuce leaves



Combine 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 1 tablespoon oil in large bowl. Add the chicken, turn to coat. Let stand 20 minutes.


Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pot filled with lightly salted boiling water until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain and immediately rinse with cold water until cool; drain well. Toss the pasta with 1 tablespoon oil to coat. Set aside.


Using a fork, mash the anchovies and garlic in a large bowl until a smooth paste forms. Whisk in the remaining 2 tablespoons lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce and mustard. Whisk in the yogurt. Gradually whisk in the remaining 1/2 cup oil. Season the dressing to taste with salt and pepper.


Preheat the broiler. Sprinkle the chicken breasts generously with salt and black pepper. Place the chicken on broiler pan and broil until cooked through, turning the chicken once, about 12 minutes. Cool. Cut the chicken crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices.


Combine the chicken, pasta, tomatoes, scallions and parsley in a large bowl. Add the dressing and Parmesan cheese. Toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate.


Place the romaine lettuce leaves on individual plates. Mound the salad on top of the leaves. Scatter the croutons over each and serve.


If packing for a picnic, transfer the salad to an airtight, unbreakable container and keep cool in an insulated carrier with blue ice nearby. Pack the croutons and romaine leaves in separate containers.

Recipe created exclusively for by Norman Kolpas.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Publisher. All rights reserved.

RecID 4098

nutrition information per serving

381 calories; 21g total fat; 30mg cholesterol; 302mg sodium; 30g carbohydrates; 2g fiber; 18g protein

These nutrition facts are calculated according to the ingredients listed in this recipe. Any substitutions will change these facts. Although we strive for accuracy, please note that food manufacturers occasionally change their food formulas, which could affect the calculations as shown.

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