Vegan Caesar Salad
Salads and light meals

Vegan Caesar Salad

Hands down Caesar Salad has to be one of the easiest ways to eat your greens! Especially when its vegan or plant based, which means no guilt-laden ingredients.

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Confession time. It’s winter here and I am still eating vegan salads just about daily! I’ve opted to keep-it-simple and cut back on adding too many ingredients in my salads. So this mouth-watering Caesar Salad is perfectly fitting with literally two main salad vegetables.

This recipe can be whipped up in no-time-at-all with the help of store bought mayonnaise. There are some great vegan mayo’s in the supermarkets nowadays and quite frankly who has time to make their own? I certainly don’t and guessing you most likely don’t either.

Super salad Ingredients

The other great thing about this salad is, for any non-vegans you could be easily tricked into thinking it includes chicken, but alas no! Check out how good oyster mushrooms look, roughly torn and lightly sautéed in a pan.

Oyster Mushrooms
Gently torn in strips, looks just like shredded chicken!

But for me the hero of this dish is the lettuce – who would have thought! This salad is loaded with gorgeous crispy green leaves dressed in a light Caesar salad, style dressing.

In case you’re wondering, a Gem lettuce is a cross between a Romaine Lettuce and a Butter Lettuce with semi-soft outer leaves and crisp leaves nearer the heart. Quite often you can find two main varieties at the green grocers, the smaller ‘baby’ gems and standard size. So select accordingly.

However any lettuce will work and whilst I’ve tried most lettuce varieties its the Gem lettuce which gets my vote here. Just the right amount of crispness to smooth – a perfect balance for the spices and dressing.

Gem Lettuce
Beautiful baby Gem Lettuce

Now, chipotle you ask? Chipotle is another hack used here to give this Caesar salad that familiar smoky taste of bacon, but not a rasher in sight.

Chipotle is a heady, smoke dried jalapeño pepper which is used frequently in Mexican and South American cooking. I like to use the dried, powdered form which keeps in the store cupboard along with your other spices for months.

Chipotle Powder
Smoky Chipotle Powder

Looking for menu options?

This vegan Caesar salad is a versatile partner to so many dishes. But if you’re looking for a mexi-inspired main meal to serve alongside this lovely light salad then perhaps accompany it with plant based Vegetarian Nacho’s with Cauliflower ‘faux’ mince.

Vegan Caesar Salad

5 from 1 vote
Recipe by Hayley Ellis Course: Salads, Main, SidesDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time






  • 2 x Baby Gem Lettuces

  • 6 x Oyster Mushrooms, shredded in half

  • 1 x day old Bread, a slice or roll

  • 2 tbsp of Vegan Mayonnaise

  • 1-2 tbsp of water

  • 2 tsp of Chipotle Powder

  • 1 tsp of Dijon mustard

  • Squeeze of fresh lemon juice

  • Handful of Sunflower kernels

  • Drizzle of olive oil

  • Salt and Pepper to season


  • Wash and tear lettuce in strips, set aside and allow to drain.
  • Set oven to 160 degrees. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
  • Wash and tear mushrooms lengthways into long strips to resemble shredded chicken fillets. Set aside.
  • Tear or cut bread into one inch dices and place into a small mixing bowl. Drizzle over olive oil and sprinkle in chipotle powder, season with salt and pepper. Gently combine, making sure the bread is generously coated.
  • Turn crouton onto the baking tray and place in the oven.
  • While the croutons are in the oven start on the dressing. Using the same mixing bowl you just used add mayonnaise, lemon juice, mustard and water. Mix until beautifully combined. Set aside.
  • Check the croutons and when golden remove from oven and allow to cool.
  • In a fry pan, lightly sauté the mushrooms in a small amount of olive oil for 3-4 minutes.
  • Remember to season with salt and pepper and remove from heat when cooked.
  • Place the lettuce in a salad bowl and coat liberally with dressing. Sprinkle over sunflower kernels.
  • Toss croutons over the top of the salad and crush some into crumbs, coating the leaves.
  • Finally adorn salad with mushrooms and dust with nutritional yeast.


  • The Oyster Mushrooms will not take a lot of cooking. Simply a few minutes, then remove from the heat as they will continue to cook in their own steam. You still want to retain that plumpness and not overcooked and soft.

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