This homemade Caesar dressing recipe is creamy, garlicky, and made in minutes at home. The simple salad dressing is bursting with flavor and perfect for salads, wraps, and more.

There’s something about the creamy, garlicky tang of Caesar dressing that is pure salad perfection. It’s as classic as a rich vanilla bean ice cream, or the salty crunch of a French fry hot from the fryer. Craving a rich, creamy Caesar but tired of the store-bought options? Try this homemade Caesar dressing recipe! It makes authentic-tasting salad dressing in minutes, bursting with fresh garlic, Parmesan cheese, and lemon juice. Drizzle it over romaine lettuce for a classic Caesar salad, or use it to elevate sandwiches, wraps, and more.

Caesar dressing ingredients

What’s in in Caesar dressing? This classic dressing may sound like it’s been around for centuries, but it was invented in the 1920’s. The story goes that Italian immigrant Caesar Cardini owned a restaurant in Tijuana, Mexico, and created Caesar salad on July 4, 1924. The original recipe had and egg and olive oil, which is essentially homemade mayonnaise, along with citrus, Worcestershire sauce, and Parmesan cheese.

Once you’ve tasted the homemade version of this salad dressing, you’ll never go back! Here are the ingredients in homemade Caesar dressing:

  1. Mayonnaise: That signature savory creaminess comes from mayonnaise. Use a high-quality mayonnaise if you can: you can taste the difference.
  2. Grated Parmesan cheese: Parmesan brings in a savory saltiness. Make sure to use grated (not shredded), which melds into the creamy texture.
  3. Lemon juice: Fresh lemon juice brings in that signature tang. Don’t use bottled juice, since it doesn’t have the same fresh flavor as using a real lemon.
  4. Anchovy paste or Worcestershire sauce: Anchovies are traditional, but apparently the original Caesar salad used Worcestershire sauce. Both add a savory umami to the dressing.
  5. Fresh garlic: Fresh garlic is important; avoid using jarred or otherwise preserved garlic.
  6. Dijon mustard: Dijon rounds out the tangy, savory flavor.

So it has anchovies?

A classic Caesar dressing recipe typically anchovies or anchovy paste. This salty fish adds intensely salty, savory flavor (called umami) to dressings and sauces. Caesar dressing was invented by Italian immigrant Caesar Cardini in the 1920’s, who originally used Worcestershire sauce and not anchovies. However, anchovies became incorporated into the recipe by restaurateurs along the way, and they remain a common ingredient in the salad dressing today.

You can use either anchovy paste or anchovy fillets. You can find anchovy paste in your local grocery in a tube; then just store it in your refrigerator.

  • Do you have to use anchovies in Caesar salad? Not in this recipe! This recipe is so delicious that you can substitute Worcestershire sauce for the anchovies without losing any of the savory flavor. It just adds a little something extra. Or, make a vegetarian Caesar dressing by using a vegan Worcestershire sauce or this Worcestershire sauce substitute.
  • How many anchovies are in anchovy paste? If all you can find is whole anchovy fillets, blend 2 anchovy fillets to make 1 teaspoon anchovy paste. Keep in mind that anchovy paste has added vinegar and spices and is milder in flavor.

How to make this Caesar dressing recipe

This Caesar dressing recipe is very easy to make: you don’t even need a blender! Here are a few things to keep in mind when making this recipe:

  • No blender needed! Just whisk together the ingredients in a bowl.
  • Use a fine grater or microplane: To keep it extra creamy, use a fine grater or microplane on both the garlic and the Parmesan cheese. This helps the garlic and Parmesan melt right into the creamy texture of the dressing instead of making it chunky.
  • Don’t have one? Simply buy grated Parmesan cheese and finely mince the garlic with a knife.

How to serve Caesar dressing

You can serve this Caesar dressing recipe in all sorts of ways, the most classic being the ubiquitous Caesar salad! But there are lots of other ways to use Caesar dressing. Here are a few of our favorite ways to use it:

  • Make a Classic Caesar Salad, starring crunchy romaine lettuce, Parmesan and crisp croutons.
  • Try a Kale Caesar Salad with kale and topped with a sprinkling of breadcrumbs.
  • Go for a Salmon Caesar Salad by topping the salad with baked salmon or poached salmon.
  • Mix up Chicken Caesar Salad by adding blackened chicken to the mix.
  • Make Grilled Caesar Salad by using this dressing with grilled romaine.

Vegan variation

Want a plant-based or vegan variation? Whip up this Vegan Caesar Dressing! Unbelievably, it’s almost as good as the original. Here you’ll use a blender to mix chickpeas with Dijon mustard, garlic, olive oil and more. It might sound odd, but trust us. This Vegan Caesar Salad is just as dreamy.

This Caesar dressing recipe is…

Pescatarian and gluten-free. For vegetarian, omit the anchovy paste. For vegan, go to Vegan Caesar Dressing.


Caesar Dressing Recipe

This homemade Caesar dressing recipe is creamy, garlicky, and made in minutes at home. The simple salad dressing is bursting with flavor and perfect for salads, wraps, and more.
Servings 1 Yield: About cup 1x
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes


  • 1 medium garlic clove minced or grated
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice 1/2 lemon
  • ¾ cup high quality mayonnaise
  • ½ tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon anchovy paste or Worcestershire sauce, optional
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper


  • Whisk together all the ingredients in a bowl. Store refrigerated in a covered jar (keeps at least 1 week).
Author: Kit Food
Course: Cooking Basics, Recipes

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