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June 9, 2016

by Alyssa Rimmer

Kale Caesar Salad with Crispy Chickpea Croutons

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This vegan kale caesar salad recipe is a simple + light dinner that everyone will love. Served with a creamy tahini dressing + topped with crispy chickpeas!

Facebook logoTwitter logoPinterest logoVEGAN KALE CAESAR SALAD -- with crispy roasted chickpeas, crunchy quinoa and heart-healthy pumpkin seeds!

When I first set out to create this recipe, I was planning to just share my favorite kale salad with you. That's usually a base of kale with a creamy tahini dressing that's got some freshly grated garlic, some lime juice and some miso. The toppings are usually pretty simple; just crispy quinoa, avocado and crispy chickpeas.

But as it turns out, I've kind of shared that salad with you already, so today I decided to switch gears and give you this: my favorite kale caesar salad!

This is unlike any kale caesar salad I've ever had before. For one, the dressing is a bit lighter than the vegan ones you see because instead of loading it up with cashews — which granted are amazing, but a little heavy sometimes — we're actually just using a bit of tahini and hemp seeds.

Then there are the “croutons”. Oh, these croutons. I'm calling them croutons because that's the role they're playing in my version of a caesar salad, but really they're far from croutons.

Facebook logoTwitter logoPinterest logoGarlicky Crispy Roasted Chickpeas -- only 5 ingredients and SO DELICIOUS. You just need chickpeas, coconut oil, garlic powder, salt + pepper....that's it!

They're actually just crispy chickpeas that I've roasted with some coconut oil, garlic powder, salt and pepper. And they're just amazing. They complement the tangy dressing so well, they add a much-needed crunch for the salad, and they double as a pretty incredible snack while you're cooking up the rest of your meal!

Oh, and by the way, I've been pretty much obsessed with crispy chickpeas since I first started making them a year ago, and was thinking it might be fun to share a video that shows you a few different flavor options. What do you think about that? Let me know in the comments!

Facebook logoTwitter logoPinterest logoThe BEST kale caesar salad that is coated in a creamy vegan dressing and topped with crispy garlic chickpeas!

This salad is for you if you're looking for something that is:

gluten-free + vegan
creamy but still light
full of tons of textures
tastes like real caesar without any of the junk!

So now it's your turn…

What are your favorite salad toppings? And what is your go-to salad recipe? Let me know in the comments and I'll try to incorporate that into my recipe planning for the summer!

xo Alyssa

Facebook logoTwitter logoPinterest logoKALE CAESAR SALAD -- with a creamy vegan dressing and crispy chickpea croutons!

More Hearty Kale Salads To Try:

Kale Caesar Salad with Crispy Chickpea Croutons

Craving a caesar salad but don't eat dairy? You need to try this vega Kale Caesar Salad with crispy chickpea croutons on top – it tastes amazing!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 4 Servings
Calories 257kcal
Author Alyssa Rimmer
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Facebook logoTwitter logoPinterest logovegan kale caesar salad with crispy chickpeas on top
5 from 6 votes



  • Preheat the oven to 375ºF.
  • Drain and rinse the chickpeas then transfer them to a large bowl. Top with oil, garlic, salt and pepper, and stir to combine. Transfer chickpeas to a baking sheet and roast for 40 - 45 minutes, until golden brown and crispy, shaking the pan a few times to avoid burning.*
  • While the chickpeas are cooking, prepare the dressing. Add all the dressing ingredients into a high powered blender and blend on high until smooth and creamy. Transfer to a container and set aside.
  • For the salad, wash the kale leaves thoroughly, then remove the stems. Tear the leaves into smaller pieces into a large salad bowl. Repeat with entire bunch.
  • When ready to assemble the salad, pour the dressing over the kale and begin to massage it with your hands until the leaves begin to soften. Transfer to serving dishes and top with chickpeas, pumpkin seeds and quinoa crispies.



* If the chickpeas don't fully crisp up, leave them in the warm oven with the door propped open for 30 - 60 minutes.


Calories: 257kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Sodium: 517mg | Potassium: 355mg | Fiber: 6g | Vitamin A: 1480IU | Vitamin C: 24.8mg | Calcium: 83mg | Iron: 3.4mg


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Facebook logoTwitter logoPinterest logoThe BEST kale caesar salad that is coated in a creamy vegan dressing and topped with crispy garlic chickpeas!

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About Alyssa

Hey there, I’m Alyssa Rimmer, a certified Holistic Nutritionist, yoga-lover, dog mom, and founder of Simply Quinoa. It’s nice to meet you! I created SQ as a way to provide solutions for women just like me, who were struggling to find helpful information about how to live a healthy and fulfilled life. My hope is that you will find inspiration here on SQ – in my story, in my recipes, in the hundreds of wellness articles, and in our amazing community. Welcome!

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  1. This recipe was perfect!! I haven’t had a Cesar salad since I’ve been vegan and this hit the spot. I used my air flyers for the chickpeas and it’s only took 15 mins and I followed the dressing exactly and it came out so tasty! This is definitely a recipe I’m using again.

  2. Thanks for this! It was amazing! I made it and tagged you on Instagram. So so good. I didn’t have the capers and it was still good. The dressing was amazing and so we’re the chickpea croutons! I did add a bit of chicken and a sprinkle of hemp hearts. I’m not vegan but my goal is to do 80 to 90% plant. You are helping me get there so thank you!

    • SOOO glad you enjoyed it! And I love hearing that you adapted it to work with your diet. Checking out the pic now…thanks! xo

  3. […] Simply Quinoa shared Vegan Kale Caesar Salad with Crispy Chickpea Croutons […]

  4. That dressing sounds SO amazing! Crispy chickpeas really are addicting – I swear I eat half the pan before I add them to my salads. Oops! Better make a double batch when I make this salad. 😉

  5. I’m so excited by this recipe! I just picked up my CSA share for the week, and this is what I’ll do with my beautiful organic kale. And crispy chickpeas are a bonus. Thanks for all time and effort you put into this blog. I love your recipes.

  6. YAS! ???????? thank you thank you for creating a vegan cesar dressing without cashews. I can’t have them and always disappointed by vegan recipes cause seriously EVERYONE uses cashews. Cannot wait to make this!

  7. Thanks for this brilliant idea! I love chickpeas but my children don’t. To use them as croutons is pretty smart 😉

  8. Just checking – the temperature says 357 F – should it be 375? Can’t wait to try this. Thanks.

  9. Alyssa, I totally love your site and all that you are doing to share awesome recipes. Thanks for giving me new tasty ways to eat healthy. I am so hooked, my first recipe was the quinoa pizza crust – WOW! I didn’t want to heat the kitchen by baking so I used a large fry pan. It came out just fine, but am looking forward to giving baking a try. Being gluten free has become so much more interesting! Thanks again 🙂

    One question about this recipe, oven temp 375 right?


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