This astoundingly easy dairy-free Whole30 Caesar Dressing tastes just like the original: creamy, tangy, garlicky, and bursting with umami! Make some, and I guarantee you’ll want to spoon it on everything!

A spoon dipping into a jar of dairy-free Caesar Dressing.

Are you on a Whole30, but missing a crisp and delicious Caesar salad? Whip up this super simple yet umami-packed dairy-free Caesar dressing and you can toss yourself a tasty salad EVERY night!

Someone adding dairy free caesar dressing to a shallow bowl filled with romaine lettuce leaves

My younger son, Ollie, is not a big fan of vegetables, but he loves a good Caesar salad. And I mean LOVES. Henry once took him to an Italian restaurant in between basketball tournament games, thinking Ollie would want to load up on carbs in the form of gluten-free pasta—something Ollie normally loves. But instead, Ollie ordered a Caesar salad with chicken. Why? “BECAUSE IT’S THE BEST SALAD” was his response. “Also, I don’t want to stuff myself with pasta before my next game.”

When I was testing out this recipe, I knew Ollie was going to be my toughest critic, so I held my breath when he tasted my dressing on a homemade paleo Caesar salad for the first time. To my surprise, he exclaimed that it tastes like the real deal—and then asked for more! Yahoo!

Plus, the beauty of this dairy free Caesar dressing recipe is that you simply measure out some store-bought Whole30-compatible ingredients, dump them in a jar or bowl, whisk it up, and ta-da: amazing dairy-free Caesar dressing in minutes!

No parmesan cheese, no problem!

Caesar dressing is so popular and delicious because it is an example of umami synergy in action—when you combine a few umami-containing ingredients in a dish, the amount of deliciousness increases exponentially! The combination of egg yolks (in the mayonnaise), parmesan cheese, Worcestershire sauce, and anchovies makes Caesar salad dressing over-the-top delicious; if you leave one out, the resulting dressing is lacking in flavor.

When I was tinkering with a dairy-free and Whole30 Caesar dressing, I made sure to substitute high umami ingredients for the non-Whole30 compliant ones in the original. Try this delicious dressing and I bet it’ll be hard to taste the difference!

Can you make a vegan Caesar salad dressing?

Yes, but it will be slightly less nomtastic without the anchovies, eggs, and fish sauce. If veganism is your thing, I recommend buying a vegan store-bought mayonnaise with Whole30-compatible ingredients, increasing the amount of nutritional yeast to 3½ tablespoons, and bumping the amount of coconut aminos to 1½ tablespoons. (The notes section of the printable recipe card below will have exact ingredients amounts listed.)

Ingredients for this Dairy Free Caesar Dressing

The raw ingredients for dairy free caesar dressing.

  • Whole30-compatible mayonnaise: By using a store-bought avocado oil mayonnaise, you won’t need to worry about the sauce breaking or forming a proper emulsion! The Whole30-compatible brands I use are Primal Kitchen Foods and Chosen Foods. There’s even a vegan Whole30 mayonnaise from Primal Kitchen if you’re avoiding eggs. If you want to make your own mayonnaise, here’s my homemade mayo recipe.
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Nutritional yeast: I love using these yellow flakes to impart a cheesy flavor to the dressing in place of the parmesan cheese. My favorite brand is Bragg.  It will add a yellowish hue to the sauce, though.
  • Dijon mustard: Check the labels to make sure the ingredients are Whole30-compatible (e.g., no wine or sugar!).
  • Lemon juice
  • White wine vinegar: I like the combination of fresh lemon juice and vinegar to add the proper tartness to the dressing. You can use red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar in place of white wine vinegar.
  • Coconut aminos: I use this in place of Worcestershire sauce—it adds savoriness and sweetness to the dressing.
  • Red Boat fish sauce or flat anchovy fillets in olive oil or anchovy paste: I know some of you are skeeved out by anchovies, but they add a punch of umami and saltiness that’s irreplaceable. (Besides, you know that anchovies are an essential ingredient in classic Caesar dressing, right?) That said, you can easily use fish sauce or anchovy paste if you don’t have any anchovy fillets in your pantry.
  • Garlic: Even if you love garlic, one small raw garlic is plenty in this dressing.
  • Black pepper

How to make this dairy free Caesar dressing

Measure out all the ingredients and place them in a quart-size mason jar, blender cup, or high-sided bowl.

A sequence of photos that show the ingredients being added to a mason jar to make Whole30 caesar dressing.

Blend until smooth with an immersion blender! (Alternatively, you can roll up your sleeves and whisk everything together. But who wants to do that?)

An immersion blender is blending dairy free caesar dressing in a large mason jar.

Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

An Asian woman with glasses is tasting a freshly blended batch of dairy free caesar dressing.

How to store Whole30 Caesar salad dressing?

This amazing Caesar dressing can be stored in a sealed container in the fridge for up to a week. If it solidifies in the refrigerator, shake well  and let it warm slightly at room temperature before using.

How to use this Caesar dressing

If you want to make a Whole30 Caesar salad, toss some romaine lettuce leaves with a little salt and spoonfuls of this creamy Caesar dressing. Then, top the salad with some crispy shallots to mimic the croutons! You can also add your favorite cooked protein, like chicken, shrimp, salmon, or steak, to make this an entree salad.

Steps to make a Whole30 and dairy free Caesar salad.

Once you’re finished with your Whole30, you can make a gluten-free and paleo Caesar salad using this dressing and adding some homemade croutons made with either the Paleo Sandwich Bread on page 46 of Nom Nom Paleo: Let’s Go! or store-bought paleo bread.

A paleo dairy free Caesar salad with gluten-free croutons on a platter.

This Caesar dressing also makes a fantastic dip for crudités, like carrots, cucumbers, celery, and radishes. I drizzle it on roasted vegetables like Brussels sprouts and Whole Roasted Cauliflower to add a pop of flavor!

More Whole30 Salad Dressings and Sauces


Looking for more recipe ideas? Head on over to my Recipe Index. You’ll also find exclusive recipes on my iPhone and iPad app, and in my cookbooks, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2013), Ready or Not! (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2017), and Nom Nom Paleo: Let’s Go! (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2022).


 PRINTER-FRIENDLY RECIPE CARD

Best Dairy-Free Caesar Dressing (Whole30, Keto)

4.79 from 28 votes
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time5 minutes
Servings 8
This astoundingly easy dairy-free Whole30 Caesar Dressing tastes just like the original: creamy, tangy, garlicky, and bursting with umami! Make some, and I guarantee you’ll want to spoon it on everything!

Ingredients  

  • ½ cup paleo mayonnaise I buy Primal Kitchen and Chosen Foods avocado oil mayonnaise to keep it easy and Whole30
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar also work
  • 1 tablespoon coconut aminos
  • 1 teaspoon Red Boat fish sauce or 2 flat anchovy fillets in olive oil or 1 teaspoon anchovy paste
  • 1 small garlic clove minced
  • ¼ teaspoon Freshly ground black pepper

Instructions 

  • Measure out all the ingredients and place them in a quart-size mason jar, blender cup, or high-sided bowl.
  • Blend until smooth with an immersion blender. (Alternatively, you can roll up your sleeves and whisk everything together. But who wants to do that?)

Video

Notes

  • Serving size is 2 tablespoons.
  • Caesar dressing can be stored in the fridge in a sealed container for up to 1 week.
For Vegan Caesar Dressing blend together:
  • ½ cup vegan mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3½ tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1½ tablespoon coconut aminos
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • Kosher salt to taste

Nutrition

Calories: 170kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 17g | Fiber: 1g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Like this? Leave a comment below!

About Michelle Tam

Hello! My name is Michelle Tam, and I love to eat. I think about food all the time. It borders on obsession. I’ve always loved the sights and smells of the kitchen. My mother was (and is) an excellent cook, and as a kid, I was her little shadow as she prepared supper each night. From her, I gained a deep, abiding love for magically transforming pantry items into mouth-watering family meals.

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14 Comments

  1. Love this dressing, easy to make. I only used 5 teaspoons nutritional yeast, but tastes so delicious Well done.