Culinary Institute of America Recipe
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Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad

Preparation time: 30 minutes

According to culinary lore, the original Caesar salad was created by Caesar Cardini in 1924 at his restaurant in Tijuana, Mexico. Today, Caesar salads may be served as a plated first course or main course garnished with sliced grilled chicken.

CIA's Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad recipe



Makes 8 Servings

  • 8 boneless and skinless chicken pieces, (about 2 1/2 pounds)
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional for garnish, if desired
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or as needed
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, or as needed
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon anchovy paste
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard,
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 1/4 pounds romaine lettuce, washed, drained, and cut into bite-size pieces
  • 4 cups Homemade Croutons (recipe follows)
  • Lemon slices for garnish (optional)

Homemade Croutons

Makes 8 Servings

  • 4 cups cubed bread, crust removed if desired
  • 1/2 cup olive oil, or as needed
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Dried rosemary, to taste


  1. Spray the grill or broiler rack with nonstick spray. Preheat the broiler to medium-high and position the rack about 4 or 5 inches from the heat. Or, preheat a gas grill to medium-high heat. If using a charcoal grill, let the coals burn until they are glowing red with a covering of white ash.
  2. In a shallow bowl, combine the chicken, half of the Parmesan cheese, pepper, salt, and basil. Turn the chicken breasts in the cheese mixture, making sure to coat completely.
  3. Grill or broil the chicken to an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, turning occasionally to cook evenly, 10 to 12 minutes. Watch the chicken carefully because the cheese burns easily. Allow the chicken to cool slightly.
  4. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk the oil, lemon juice, anchovy paste, mustard, and garlic to blend. Season with salt and pepper as needed. Add the lettuce, remaining cheese and croutons; and toss to coat. Divide the salad among 8 individual plates.
  5. Cut each chicken breast diagonally into strips; arrange one sliced breast atop each salad. Garnish with additional Parmesan cheese and lemon slices, if desired.

Homemade Croutons

  1. Preparation time: 15 minutes
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Toss the bread with enough olive oil to coat. Add salt, pepper, and dried rosemary to taste. Spread the croutons in an even layer on a baking sheet. Bake until golden brown, stirring occasionally so the croutons bake evenly, about 15 minutes. Allow to cool. Croutons will keep well in an airtight container for several days.

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