Asparagus Caesar Salad

Asparagus Caesar Salad | Well and Full | #vegetarian #spring #recipe

This Asparagus Caesar Salad is the perfect elegant dish for spring gatherings and garden parties! Made with a from-scratch caesar dressing, homemade sourdough croutons, and fresh romaine lettuce and radicchio.

I LOVE caesar salad. It is my most favorite salad of all time. There’s something about that tangy, savory, and rich caesar dressing that is just so perfect. However, I’ve never been the hugest fan of romaine. Don’t get me wrong, I do like it… but there are just so many other interesting lettuces out there. My first caesar recipe on the blog was my Raw Vegan Kale Caesar Salad recipe, back when I was still vegan. Even though I’m not anymore, the raw vegan caesar dressing still slaps.

I’ll definitely order a solely romaine-based caesar if it’s on the menu, but when I make it at home I always switch up the base. I’ve used radicchio in addition to romaine here, but arugula is another classic at my house. I’ve even made caesar salad with frisée, sprouts, and a mesclun blend. The sky’s the limit!

Also, the deliciousness of caesar dressing should not be limited to just lettuce. It can go with virtually any vegetable, but it really shines here with roasted asparagus. Asparagus is my favorite spring vegetable, and I almost always roast it or grill it with olive oil, lemon zest, and lemon juice. This combination of flavors complements the ones in caesar dressing. In addition, this recipe contains crispy and bitter radicchio to cut through the creaminess of the dressing, plus homemade sourdough croutons for added crunch. I hope you love it!

Asparagus Caesar Salad FAQs

What can I use instead of radicchio?

Radicchio can be kind of an acquired taste – many people don’t like how bitter it is. For less bitterness but still some zing, try arugula instead of radicchio. If you don’t like arugula either, just sub in kale or more romaine!

Doesn’t caesar dressing have anchovies in it?

Traditionally, yes. But this version is whole-anchovy-free. Instead, I’ve used capers to bring up the savory, bring, umami taste. However, many worcestershire sauces have anchovies in them (though not whole). To keep this recipe vegetarian, use a vegan worcestershire sauce (Annie’s makes a great version).

Is roasting the best way to cook asparagus?

In my opinion, yes! I find that asparagus flavor is really amplified when it’s roasted. It can also be grilled, but the smokiness of grilling can sometimes overpower the fresh and grassy taste of asparagus. And I don’t even count blanching as a way of cooking it – asparagus NEEDS oil and salt! :)

Asparagus Caesar Salad | Well and Full | #vegetarian #spring #recipe

Caesar Dressing Troubleshooting

If it tastes “flat” or flavorless…

Add a bit more salt.

If it tastes too rich…

Add more lemon juice.

If it tastes too sour…

Add a little more mayo.

If it’s too salty…

Add a little more mayo and lemon juice.

Customization Ideas

  • Add some cayenne or hot sauce to the caesar dressing to make it spicy
  • Cut the lettuce into smaller pieces, cut the asparagus into 1″ segments, and add chopped hard-boiled eggs to make a chopped salad
  • Use store-bought rosemary olive oil bread or parmesan ciabatta for the croutons instead of sourdough
  • Add roasted radishes or other seasonal veg to the salad for more variety

Asparagus Caesar Salad | Well and Full | #vegetarian #spring #recipeAsparagus Caesar Salad | Well and Full | #vegetarian #spring #recipe

Asparagus Caesar Salad | Well and Full | #vegetarian #spring #recipe

Asparagus Caesar Salad

This Asparagus Caesar Salad is the perfect elegant dish for spring gatherings and garden parties! Impress your guests with the from-scratch caesar dressing and color presentation.
Course Appetizer, Salad
Cuisine Italian, Mediterranean, New American
Keyword asparagus, capers, garlic, lemon, parmesan, radicchio, romaine, sourdough
Prep Time 30 minutes
Servings 4


Caesar Dressing

  • 1/2 Cup Mayonnaise
  • 2 Cloves Fresh Garlic
  • 1/4 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Juice from 1/2 Lemon
  • Zest from 1/2 Lemon
  • 1 Tsp Worcestershire Sauce see notes
  • 1 Tbsp Capers
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
  • 1/2 Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar


  • 1 Bunch Asparagus ends trimmed off
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbsp Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
  • 1 Tbsp Lemon Zest
  • 1/2 Tsp Salt
  • Black Pepper to taste
  • Red Pepper Flakes to taste, optional

Sourdough Croutons

  • 4 Slices Sourdough Bread
  • Drizzle Olive Oil
  • Pinch Salt
  • Black Pepper to taste, optional

The Rest of the Salad

  • 2 Heads Romaine Lettuce washed and dried
  • 1/2 Head Radicchio see notes


  • To start, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  • Wash and trim the hard ends off the asparagus (keep the "flowering" head side on). On a baking sheet, toss with the olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Mix well.
  • Roast asparagus for 15 minutes. Then, take out the tray and stir the asparagus around. Put asparagus back in the oven for another 10-15 minutes or so, or until slightly browned around the edges and fork-tender.
  • While asparagus is roasting, prepare the caesar dressing. Add all dressing ingredients to a food processor or blender and blend on high until incorporated. Taste, and adjust seasonings to your liking. See blog post for troubleshooting tips.
  • Make the sourdough croutons by tearing or cutting the sourdough bread into 3/4 – 1 inch pieces. Add to a pan and drizzle pieces with olive oil, then sprinkle with pinch of salt and black pepper. Over medium low heat, cook croutons until they've started to brown, mixing often to prevent burning.
  • Prepare your lettuce by washing, drying, and cutting up romaine and radicchio (if using). Cut into rough chunks or bite-sized pieces, whatever you prefer.
  • Assemble the salad – on the bed of lettuce, layer on the asparagus and croutons. Drizzle everything with the caesar dressing.
  • Enjoy!


  • If you’ve never had radicchio, try a piece first before deciding to incorporate into the salad. If it’s too bitter for you, sub with arugula, kale, spring mix, or more romaine.
  • If desired, you can cut up the asparagus before roasting instead. Just be sure to adjust cooking time – cut up pieces will likely need less time to cook. Be sure to check often to prevent burning!
  • Feel free to use pre-made sourdough croutons if desired, or just omit if you’re gluten-free or low-carb.
  • You will likely have leftover croutons and/or dressing from this recipe – use them for your next salad!
  • To keep this recipe vegetarian, use vegan or vegetarian Worcestershire sauce.

Asparagus Caesar Salad | Well and Full | #vegetarian #spring #recipeAsparagus Caesar Salad | Well and Full | #vegetarian #spring #recipe


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Hi friends! I’m Sarah, and welcome to Well and Full. Here, you’ll find seasonal, plant-forward recipes and lifestyle inspiration rooted in New England charm.