Vinaigrette Caesar Salad Recipe

Vinaigrette Caesar Salad RecipeCaesar salad is a tasty way to get your daily fiber and servings of vegetables, but unfortunately, the dressing can be chock full of calories. I’ve never been a big fan of creamy Caesar dressings anyway. Some of those dressings contain mayonnaise and mayonnaise is just wrong, on so many levels. That’s why I prefer a good vinaigrette Caesar salad.

The best Caesar salad I’ve ever tasted was at a little restaurant in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. The waiter made the salad in front of me. First, he grilled two large pieces of romaine lettuce, then he added vinegar, lemon juice, garlic and shaved Parmesan cheese. It was light, crispy and delicious and like no other Caesar salad I’d ever tasted before. I raved about it for weeks. A year later, I was back in Puerto Vallarta. I looked for the restaurant but couldn’t find it. I began to wonder if that tasty salad had just been a dream! And I was kicking myself that I hadn’t written the name of the restaurant down.

The recipe below isn’t exactly the same recipe as the restaurant in Puerto Vallarta, as I’m too lazy to grill the romaine. I have tried to come as close to the taste as I could though. And trust me, once you’ve made this vinaigrette Caesar salad from scratch, you’ll never want to go back to your store-bought salad dressing.

Vinaigrette Caesar Salad

A low-calorie, delicious Caesar Salad that's easy to prepare and much healthier than its creamy mayonnaise-laden counterpart.

Course Salad
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword Salad
Prep Time 10 minutes
Lettuce in water 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 150 kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 1 head romaine lettuce
  • 1 clove finely chopped garlic
  • 1/3 cup Unico white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup cup lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp Trestella light Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 tbsp President's Choice Lightly Buttered Sourdough Croutons
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/8 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Instructions

  1. Whisk together white wine vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, Worcestershire sauce and Parmesan cheese in a large salad bowl. Set aside.

  2. Chop up romaine lettuce, place in salad spinner, pour cold water inside and let it soak.

  3. Pour out water, spin the lettuce to dry it. 

  4. Add medium amount of lettuce to the salad bowl, that already contains the dressing, then toss. Keep adding lettuce until it's lightly coated.

  5. Add croutons and grind some fresh black pepper then toss again.

  6. Lightly sprinkle shredded Parmesan over the top and serve.

Recipe Notes

If you’re looking for a vegan Worcestershire Sauce option, there are many out there to choose from, including Annie’s Naturals Organic Worcestershire Sauce and the less pricey Compliments brand (sold at stores like Sobeys, IGA and FreshCo).

Also, if you're not a fan of raw garlic, roasted garlic also works well in this salad.

Sensational Spaghetti Squash Recipe

spaghetti squash recipe

Golden And Delicious: Spaghetti squash is an excellent alternative to pasta noodles.

One thing I love about the temperature getting a bit cooler is being able to put the oven on bake without turning my whole house into a blast furnace. The changeover to Fall will also usher in an abundance of squash available at local grocery stores and farmer’s markets. Spaghetti squash is a favourite of mine, with its slightly sweet flavour. It is also high in fiber and low in calories. This squash is non-starchy and has yellow flesh, unlike it’s Butternut and Acorn squash cousins.

An awesome replacement for pasta when you’re counting calories (42 calories per cup, compared with spaghetti noodles at about 210 calories per cup), Spaghetti Squash has a stringy texture and is also packed with B-vitamins, vitamin C, manganese and potassium. Its peak season is October through March, but I buy it and bake it almost all year round.

Sensational Spaghetti Squash Recipe

Low calorie, high fiber vegan recipe. Serve with any traditional pasta sauce.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Resting Time 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 2
Calories 42 kcal
Author Bonnie Byrne

Ingredients

  • 1 Spaghetti Squash
  • 1 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • pepper
  • sea salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. 

  2. To make it easier to slice, cook in in the microwave on high for a minute or two to soften it up a bit.

  3. Place squash on cutting board and slice off the top using a sharp knife. Then slice lengthwise down the middle.

  4. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and dark, stringy flesh.

  5. Brush it with extra virgin olive oil, grind some salt and pepper over the flesh, to taste, then place them cut side down on a pan lined with foil or parchment paper.

  6. Bake for about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest for about 15 minutes to cool off.

  7. Using a fork, scrape the noodles out. Toss with your favourite pasta sauce or eat on its own with a little more olive oil and salt and pepper.

Recipe Notes

Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for two days.

 

It’s Not a Party Without a Bean Salad

Most summers, my sister and her husband have one blow-out bash at their house on a Saturday in July. It’s usually attended by at least 50 people and to feed everyone they barbecue beef, chicken and pork and the rest of the food is provided through a potluck. One of my favourite side dishes to make for any potluck is German Potato Salad (I will post this recipe at a later date) but my brother-in-law’s mom also makes it, and it’s really good. So, at the first summer bash I attended, I left it to his mom to provide her German Potato Salad to the hungry masses. Meanwhile, I needed an alternative, so I brought another favourite of mine, Chickpea Salad.

As guests were mingling at the potluck table and filling their plates, my sister’s friend turned to her and commented: “Who brings a chick pea salad to a party?” She smirked and replied: “My sister.”

It has now become a running joke, with her friends and mine, that their yearly bash is not really a party if there’s no chickpea salad.

Since then, I’ve modified the recipe, using mixed beans instead of just chickpeas – it’s actually tastier and has less calories – but this recipe will work with either. Enjoy.

Marvelous Mixed Bean Salad

High fiber, low calorie, vegan salad.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 145 kcal
Author Bonnie Byrne

Ingredients

  • 540 ml can Unico Bean Medley
  • 1/4 cup Unico White Wine Vinegar
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 carrot finely diced
  • 1 stalk celery finely diced
  • 1/2 medium onion finely diced
  • 1 clove garlic finely diced
  • sea salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Open a can of Unico Bean Medley, pour it into a strainer and rinse beans well with cold tap water. 

  2. Dice all vegetables on a cutting board.

  3. Toss all ingredients in a large bowl, adding the olive oil and white wine vinegar (more or less than 1/4 cup can be used, according to taste) until they are well coated.

  4. While mixing the ingredients, add sea salt and freshly ground pepper, according to taste.

  5. Can be served immediately or refrigerated for later use. Refrigerate any unused portions for up to three days.

Recipe Notes

*If you replace the Mixed Bean Medley with a can of Chick Peas, the calorie count rises by 40 calories per serving.