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Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad

Caesar Pasta Salad

When I get in a pasta salad rut, one of my favorite ways to break out of it is to make pasta salad modeled after one of my favorite green salads. Cobb Pasta Salad and Greek Pasta Salad are two favorites. I’m almost always pleased with the outcome, probably because there are so few ingredients or flavors that I don’t like with pasta. Pasta is like a blank canvas you can use to let your creativity run free.

Caesar Pasta Salad

This Caesar Pasta Salad is modeled after my Caesar Coleslaw and it is a delicious and satisfying pasta salad. During the summer months, I love the nice crispy crunch of the romaine lettuce in a Caesar salad. There’s something so refreshing about it. I add enough romaine to this dish so you know it’s there, but not so much that it overtakes the pasta.

Caesar Pasta Salad

I make a creamy Caesar dressing from mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice, garlic, and a few minced anchovies. You can leave the anchovies out if you really object to them.  I add a big handful of grape tomatoes and they, along with the romaine lettuce and a sprinkling of chopped green onions, make the salad fresh and bright. A few croutons on top give some crunch and add a finishing Caesar salad touch.

Caesar Pasta Salad

Caesar Pasta Salad

Toss in a few diced grilled chicken breasts and you have yourself not just a crowd-pleasing side dish, but a dish that works as a light summer meal.

Caesar Pasta Salad

See how easy this recipe is to make. Watch the short video below.

Caesar Pasta Salad

Caesar Pasta Salad

A creamy and delicious pasta salad with all the flavors of a Caesar Salad.
PREP: 40 mins
TOTAL: 40 mins
SERVINGS: 10

Ingredients

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 clove large garlic pressed
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 anchovies finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 pound penne pasta cooked until al dente and rinsed with cool water
  • 6 leaves large Romaine lettuce thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes
  • 4 green onions. green parts sliced
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 grilled chicken breasts diced
  • 1 1/2 cups croutons

Instructions

  • In a small bowl, stir together the mayonnaise through the Worcestershire sauce.
  • Toss half of the dressing with the pasta and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Mix in remaining ingredients including the remaining dressing and serve.

Notes

I like to mix half of the dressing with the pasta and chill it and then mix in the remaining dressing just before serving, but you can do it all at once.
Be sure to salt your cooking water for the pasta well, at least 1 tablespoon of salt.
Anchovies can be omitted. You might want to double the Worcestershire sauce if you do.

Nutrition

Calories: 375kcal
Author: Christin Mahrlig
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American

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69 thoughts on “Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad”

  1. Hi I love the look of this recipe and would like to know if I make this dressing a few days in advance will it keep? I am taking a group of 30 away for 5 days and thought this would be very easy to toss together for a lunch especially if I was able to mix up the dressing in advance?

  2. Hi Christin,

    I’m making this dish for my girlfriends bridal shower. I’ve never used anchovies and I don’t know how important they are to this recipe. Will omitting the anchovies change the taste at all? I want it to taste just like ceasar dressing. You said in a previous comment to just add more salt if we were to omit the anchovies but you also state to double the Worcester sauce. Help😭😭😭

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      Yes, you can leave the anchovies out. I would make the dressing as is without the anchovies, do a taste test and if you think it needs more salt and flavor, add some more Worcestershire sauce. It should help with both problems,

  3. Martha Martin

    I made this today for 4th of July. It taste wonderful. So strange, this is almost exactly the same as my on creation for my chicken salad, without pasta. I added 6 chopped boiled eggs ,1/2 cup chopped parsley., and an additional 1/4 cup of sour cream. It is creamy and delish.

  4. Karen Fisher

    This was awesome!!! If I wanted to make a little bit more dressing, what would you suggest in the measurements?

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      I would use 1 1/2 cups mayonnaise, 1/2 cup sour cream, 2 medium garlic cloves, 3 tablespoons lemon juice, 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce, and 2-3 chopped anchovies.

  5. Kathy Thomas

    This looked amazing – but, I must say I was disappointed.
    Mine turned out very dry! I followed the recipe so I’m not sure why it was so dry. Anyone else experience this?

  6. Rosemary Satterfield

    I bought a chicken caesar pasta salad at Kroger & it was delicious. You recipe looks the closest to theirs & I will definitely try. Thank you.

  7. Hi,

    I was just wondering if I make the dressing first with all the dressing ingredients you mentioned or do I just mix together the mayo with the sauce and add the rest later? Thanks!!

    Jessica

  8. What is the nutrition info for it fat and about how many calories and how big is a serving? It looks beyond good!

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      I don’t do nutritional information for my recipes Angela. Too time-consuming to make sure I get all the information right. There are a number of websites and apps where you can plug in the ingredients and find out.

  9. This was a really good salad. Most recipes out there call for your fav bottled caesar, so I was glad to see yours is homemade. Nice jobs! This goes in my recipe box (with a note to add fresh basil if i have it)

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      So glad you liked it Sally! Homemade dressings always seem to taste better don’t they?

  10. found this a few weeks ago on Pinterest, made it & love it! It’s one of my hubby’s new favorites & it’s now in the summer rotation. Thanks for a great idea!!

  11. This was amazing! The dressing tasted flavorful and though I did tweak it (1/2 cup more parmesean cheese and an additional chicken breast), that doesn’t change the fact that the recipe as is was awesome! Glad I found this ok Pinterest

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      Go glad you enjoyed it Kim! More cheese and meat sounds like a good idea to me! 🙂

  12. Just a suggestion – saw Bobby Flay make a pasta salad where he aadded half the dressing to HOT drained pasta, then chilled. The dressing really soaks into the pasta and you don’t lose the starch via rinsing with water. The starch helps dressings and sauces stick to the pasta. Make all my rice and pasta salads this way now.

  13. Ann Steinfeldt

    I just made this for a family reunion! OMG, this is so delicious…it is now my new “go to” pasta salad.

  14. This is a beautiful salad. I don’t keep anchovies in my pantry but I do have anchovy paste in my fridge as well as a tube of tomato paste. Very handy when small amounts are needed.

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      Yes, you can leave out the anchovies. You may want to add a little extra salt though since anchovies are very salty.

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