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Healthy Homemade Vegetarian Caesar Dressing

Eating healthy is awesome… until I find myself craving all things rich and creamy—like dressings, mayo, aioli, or creamed soups.

This is why Greek yogurt has become my BFF in the kitchen, and this is why this Healthy Homemade Vegetarian Caesar Dressing is my savior. Not only does it act as a brilliant sub-in for the traditional caesar dressing, but it makes for a great chip dip and pizza crust dipper.

Say hello to indulging guilt free.

Bitches love indulging guilt free.

Since I’m pescetarian, I do get enjoy the standard caesar dressing in all of it’s salty anchovy-filled glory, but I wanted to make this dressing vegetarian friendly. That means no anchovies, and no parmesan since parmesan contains rennet.

Luckily, both of these ingredients were extremely easy to substitute.

 Healthy Homemade Vegetarian Caesar Dressing | Killing Thyme

When it came to replacing anchovies, I knew I had to find something super salty—not just sort of salty. When I stumbled across the jar of capers in my fridge, I had my a-ha moment.

And let me tell you, they worked perfectly.

As for the parmesan, I used what anyone uses in order to bring non-dairy cheesiness to a recipe: nutritional yeast.

Healthy Homemade Vegetarian Caesar Dressing | Killing Thyme

I specified a *small* clove of garlic in the ingredients. If you only have big cloves, try half to start and if you’d like more garlic-y goodness, add the rest. I say this because I used an entire LARGE clove one time and honesty, I could have tainted all of Transylvania with a simple sigh in Dracula’s general direction. I love love love garlic, so I was fine with it, but for your own sake… be careful

This dressing takes a whopping ten minutes to make and it keeps in the fridge for up to a week.

All I have to say is… Bye, Renée!

If you make this dish, snap a photo and tag me on the Insta @killing__thyme! I love seeing your creations.

Want to share your own pescetarian recipes, photos, and experiences? Join our Facebook group!

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5 from 4 votes

Healthy Homemade Vegetarian Caesar Dressing

This Healthy Homemade Vegetarian Caesar Dressing replaces the usual anchovies and parmesan with vegetarian-friendly ingredients for a smooth and creamy guilt-free dressing or dip.
Course Dressing, Sauce
Prep Time 5 minutes
Author Dana Sandonato

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup plain Greek Yogurt
  • 2 TBSP freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 TBSP nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 tsp capers
  • 1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 TBSP Dijon mustard
  • 1 small clove of garlic
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • Cracked black pepper, to taste

Materials.

  • A blender

Instructions

  • Place all of the ingredients into the blender and blend until smooth. Taste and season further if you prefer.
    If you'd like a runnier dressing, add a but of water and blend. Check it, and keep adding water, bit by bit, until you blend to the consistency you prefer.

 

Homemade Vegetarian Caesar Dressing | Killing Thyme — This homespun recipe uses capers instead of anchovies so that vegetarians can indulge.

33 Comments

  • […] your jam, go ahead and use regular mozzarella and regular Ranch dressing—or my homemade vegetarian Caesar dressing—for that cooling […]

    Reply
  • Marie
    February 27, 2018 at 3:49 am

    5 stars
    I love using Greek yogurt as a healthy alternative to using mayo or sour cream. Great idea in subbing out anchovies for capers to keep that tasty saltiness in the dressing too.

    Reply
  • Brian Jones
    February 27, 2018 at 1:50 am

    5 stars
    That sounds lovely, I use capers so much at this time of year they offer such a great fresh zing that is often missing in ingredients throughout winter.

    Reply
  • Natalie
    February 27, 2018 at 1:19 am

    5 stars
    This dressing looks and sounds delicious and so easy to make! Such a great thing to have in the fridge :)

    Reply
  • Julie
    February 26, 2018 at 10:50 pm

    Such a creative idea with the capers. That sounds really tasty.

    Reply
  • Claire | Sprinkles and Sprouts
    February 26, 2018 at 9:30 pm

    5 stars
    I LOVE caesar dressing!!!
    But I never thought about the fact it isn’t vegetarian!!!! (DOH!)
    Glad to have this recipe to call on when I have vegetarian friends for lunch :D

    Reply
  • TrueVeggie
    July 22, 2017 at 10:00 pm

    This recipe is NOT vegetarian. It contains rennet as part of parmesan cheese. Rennet is from baby cows stomachs after they’ve been murdered. You should retitle this recipe.

    Reply
    • Killing Thyme
      July 23, 2017 at 11:17 am

      Interesting! Thanks for the info. I’ve never heard of this, so I’m glad you brought it up. I’m going to rework this recipe so that it is, indeed, vegetarian.

      Reply
    • ejones
      September 30, 2017 at 7:25 pm

      Actually you can get vegetarian parmesan cheese (made without rennet) in virtually any supermarket for an almost identical price, so this recipe could very very easily be made vegetarian. Don’t be so over-dramatic.

      Reply
      • Killing Thyme
        September 30, 2017 at 10:22 pm

        You make an excellent point! I want to try this with nutritional yeast as well – just haven’t gotten around to it. But there are so many plant-based cheese options these days!

        Reply
  • Homemade Teriyaki Sauce - Killing Thyme
    May 24, 2017 at 9:23 am

    […] is typically much healthier than anything you’ll find on the shelves. Take, for instance, my Healthy Homemade Vegetarian Caesar Dressing. This dressing is creamy and dreamy and has everything you want in a good caesar dressing all […]

    Reply
  • Melissa A Barrett
    January 12, 2017 at 5:49 pm

    This recipe is fantastic! Brilliant idea with the capers :-)

    Reply
    • Killing Thyme
      January 12, 2017 at 6:30 pm

      Thanks Melissa! I appreciate the feedback and I’m glad you like the capers. I figured they’d do the trick :)

      Reply
  • Viktoriya
    October 29, 2016 at 7:07 pm

    I just made this and I love what goes into it and how it tastes! For some reason, mine came out very liquidy though, not like the pictures you have. Not sure what I did wrong. It’s still a dressing I’d definitely make again!

    Reply
    • Killing Thyme
      October 30, 2016 at 5:40 pm

      Hey Viktoriya!
      Thanks so much for the feedback. I’m glad you loved the flavors, but I’m bummed it turned out runny! I’d love to try and help you figure out why. Which Greek yogurt did you use? The brand that I use is Cabot Creek and it’s SUPER thick. I’m wondering if maybe some brands of Greek yogurt are a little more runny and could cause a more liquid-y texture?

      Reply
      • Viktoriya
        November 3, 2016 at 8:49 pm

        Ahh I used Zoi. I thought it was pretty thick and have used it for making other dressings before. I’ll have to look for the brand you used and try that out. Thank you for responding!

        Reply
        • Killing Thyme
          November 3, 2016 at 11:26 pm

          Oh no problem — I definitely want to help you get to the bottom of this. Let me know if/when you try it with Cabot Creek or any other brand. Though I’m sure most Greek yogurts are thick. This is a total head-scratcher!

          Reply
  • Chris Stotz
    October 10, 2016 at 10:18 am

    Hello Dana,

    can you tell me how long this dressing will keep?

    Thank you

    Reply
    • Killing Thyme
      October 10, 2016 at 10:25 am

      Hi Chris!

      Great question. Normally homemade caesar dressing using eggs/mayo and is good for up to a week — but because this recipe uses plain Greek yogurt, as long as it’s sealed up tight, it could keep for much longer. It takes forever for yogurt to turn, even past expiration dates. So, you’re good for at least a week, if not two (maybe longer).

      I hope that helps!

      Reply
  • Sean
    March 21, 2016 at 11:34 pm

    Dana, this is just awesome. I love that you took something tasty but soooooo unhealthy and transformed it with PURE FLAVOUR. Every ingredient here makes this just a power-house of awesomeness. Way to go.

    Reply
    • Killing Thyme
      October 30, 2016 at 5:35 pm

      Thanks friend! Somehow just saw this comment now – woops!

      Reply
  • Aaron
    March 16, 2016 at 11:25 pm

    Making tommorow at work… Thanks Dana!!!:)))

    Reply
    • Killing Thyme
      March 18, 2016 at 5:20 pm

      I hope you loved it!

      Reply
  • Cindy (Vegetarian Mamma)
    March 16, 2016 at 4:54 pm

    SUPER great recipe- much love from this follow vegetarian! I appreciate it and can’t wait to make it!

    Reply
    • Killing Thyme
      March 18, 2016 at 5:20 pm

      I’m so glad this recipe is of use to you, Cindy! I’ve been having so much fun creating vegetarian versions of typically meaty dishes lately for my upcoming e-cookbook. I realize more and more every day that meat is so overrated.

      Reply
  • karyn
    March 16, 2016 at 2:55 pm

    I love the idea of using yogurt instead of Mayo.. I’ve been planning to eat more salads for the summer.. this will fit right in with my plan.. thanks a million;)

    Reply
    • Killing Thyme
      March 18, 2016 at 5:18 pm

      Perfect, Karyn! I have another dressing recipe coming soon that is a healthier adaptation of the Green Goddess dressing that you might like as well. I’m excited to post it, just have to tweak it a tad. It’s basically my new favorite!

      Reply
  • Megan Marlowe
    March 16, 2016 at 2:54 pm

    Oh, I love caesar dressing but I’ve never made my won before. I’ll have to change that with your recipe! Looks great!

    Reply
    • Killing Thyme
      March 18, 2016 at 5:16 pm

      Thanks, Megan! I hope you love it :)

      Reply
  • Derek @ Dad With A Pan
    March 16, 2016 at 1:39 pm

    Yogurt instead of mayo, genius! Going to have to try this one out, thanks!

    Reply
    • Killing Thyme
      March 18, 2016 at 5:15 pm

      I’m glad you like the idea, Derek! I’m finding that plain Greek yogurt makes a great substitution in SO many instances. I used it in a stroganoff dish yesterday and it was fan-freaking-tastic!

      Reply
  • Tracy | Baking Mischief
    March 16, 2016 at 1:14 pm

    Oh my gosh, this totally made my day! I had a bad batch of extra fishy Caesar dressing a while back, and I haven’t been able to stomach any of it since. I love Caesar dressing, so a no anchovies version makes me so happy! Pinning this for my next salad!

    Reply
    • Killing Thyme
      March 18, 2016 at 5:13 pm

      Hey Tracy! Bummer about that bad batch of caesar dressing. The right amount of anchovies make it just right, but too much and ugh. No good. I’m so glad you’ll find use for my adaptation!

      Reply

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