Crisp and crunchy, delightfully creamy, if there’s one thing we stan it’s a good salad. Deceptively simple in both style and substance, the Caesar salad can be found on restaurant menus around the world. But what do we know about this delicious dish? And was is really invented by Julius Caesar himself? (Spoiler: Nope!) Today, we’re serving up a bite-sized history of our favorite salad. Hail Caesar!

What is Caesar Salad?

Caesar salad can be served as an appetizer or a side, or add lean protein like grilled chicken for a complete entree. It’s a fresh, nutritious, and filling dish that’s perfect for any season. There are many different variations of this salad, but the classic recipe is always a hit. It is simple to make and yields delicious results every time.

Caesar salad is made with romaine lettuce, croutons, Parmesan cheese, and Caesar dressing. The dressing is a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, and garlic.

Tip: Skip the shaky cheese. Shaved Parmesan makes a big difference with this dish, elevating both presentation and flavor.

There are many different variations of Caesar salad, but some of our favorites include bacon bits, grilled salmon, and our own homemade, buttery seasoned croutons. Feel free to get creative and add your own favorite ingredients because you can’t go wrong!

Does Caesar Salad Dressing Have Anchovies In It?

While anchovy fish or anchovy paste is an ingredient in some Caesar salad dressing recipes, the original recipe did not use this particularly pungent ingredient. You can make this creamy dressing without any fish at all, or use a different type altogether if you prefer. Salmon or trout would be great substitutes to keep the unique flavor profile of fish in Caesar salad dressing without using anchovies.

Who Invented Caesar Salad?

The Caesar salad is often believed to have been created by Julius Caesar himself. But it wasn’t. Caesar salad was invented in the early 1920s by Caesar Cardini, an Italian chef who owned a restaurant in Tijuana, Mexico.

He moved to Tijuana from California to avoid Prohibition, and it was here, on July 4th, 1924, where Caesar is believed to have invented the Caesar Salad. According to his daughter, Rose Cardini, the restaurant was overrun with American customers. Short on ingredients in the kitchen, her father assembled what was left: lettuce stalks, olive oil, raw egg, croutons, parmesan cheese and Worcestershire sauce.

Originally intended as finger food, the original Caesar salad recipe called for whole lettuce leaves, which were to be dipped in the dressing and then eaten with the fingers. It was a hit.
Cardini’s salad became so popular that it was soon being served in restaurants all over the world. Today, it is one of the most popular salads in America.

Try Our Fresh Caesar Salad

For fresh Caesar salad at a Midtown bar and grill, stop by McCray’s Tavern! We offer a mouthwatering selection of field-fresh seasonal salads, as well as our famous flatbreads, sandwiches, and croissants. Our menu has something for everyone, so make plans to join us and enjoy a delicious meal!