Geoffrey Zakarian makes his Caesar Pasta Salad, as seen on Food Network's The Kitchen, Season 31
Recipe courtesy of Geoffrey Zakarian

Caesar Pasta Salad

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 55 min
  • Active: 40 min
  • Yield: 8 servings
This is a mashup of two summertime favorites: caesar salad and pasta salad. I’m not a big fan of pasta salad, for the most part, because the dressings don’t deliver big enough flavor. What’s good about this salad is that the dressing brings deep umami through the anchovy and soy sauce that's blended with the vinegar and olive oil. I also decided to wake up the whole dish with some charred romaine. It makes the dish memorable for your guests.



Caesar Dressing:



  1. For the croutons: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. In a medium bowl, gently toss the bread cubes with the oil, salt and pepper. Spread the cubes in an even layer on a baking sheet. Bake until golden, turning once about halfway through, 12 to 15 minutes total. Toss with the Parmesan while still hot and set aside to let cool.
  3. For the caesar dressing: In a blender, combine the garlic, capers, anchovies, mustard, Parmesan, vinegar and Worcestershire and blend until smooth. Add the olive oil and blend to emulsify the dressing. Season with salt as needed.
  4. For the salad: Heat a grill over medium-high heat. Drizzle the romaine heart halves with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill until lightly charred and softened, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Chop into bite-sized pieces.
  5. In a medium bowl, toss the pasta with 1 tablespoon oil and salt and pepper to taste. Add the romaine and dressing to taste and toss to coat.
  6. In a large bowl, toss the Bibb lettuce with the lemon juice, remaining tablespoon oil, salt and pepper to taste and the basil. Add the croutons and gently combine. Add the pasta and romaine salad and Parmesan to the Bibb salad and gently toss together. Garnish with more cheese and serve.