Kale Caesar Salad with Chickpea Croutons

Kale Caesar Salad With Chickpea Croutons recipe served in a large bowl.

✨ Vegan Kale Caesar Salad with Chickpea Croutons and Pickled Onions✨

Since I’ve been home I’ve been overindulging a little and I need a nice fresh salad to help me reset.
I had made a batch of my pickled red onions earlier in the week so I threw together one of my favorite salads.

The salad is delicious and filling because it has crunchy air fried chickpeas, a truly delicious dressing, and hearty kale.

Kale Caesar Salad With Chickpea Croutons recipe served in a large bowl.

Kale Caesar Salad With Chickpea Croutons

This Vegan Kale Caesar Salad with Chickpea Croutons and Pickled Onions is a delicious twist on a classic salad. This salad is also protein-packed, super satisfying, and takes less than 15 minutes to throw together!
4.80 from 5 votes
Total Time: 1 hour
Course: Lunch, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American-Inspired, Italian-Inspired
Keyword: Chickpea Croutons, Vegan Caesar Salad
Calories: 268kcal
Author: Liz & Paul
Servings: 3 meal-sized salads



  • 4 cups kale any variety (I used lacinato / dinosaur kale), washed and torn into bite-size pieces
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • 1 15-oz can chickpeas drained
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup pickled red onions optional


  • 1 15-oz can white beans can sub soaked cashews or tofu, drained and rinsed
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp capers
  • 1 tbsp brine from capers
  • 1 tsp yellow or white miso paste use chickpea miso paste if avoiding soy
  • 1–2 tsp ume plum vinegar
  • 1 tbsp dulse flakes
  • 1/4 cup water for blending


  • If baking, preheat oven to 400 degrees F (205 degrees C). If airfrying, you’ll set your airfryer to the same temperature.
  • Toss your still wet chickpeas in the onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, and salt. If they are dry, run them under a little water to get the spices to stick. Spread them out on a lined baking tray or add them to your airfryer so that they’re in a single layer.
  • If baking, bake chickpeas for 20 minutes, stirring halfway through. If airfrying, set your airfryer for 10 minutes, and shake the basket halfway through.
  • While chickpeas are cooking, make your dressing in a food processor or blender. Blend everything in the dressing ingredients list above EXCEPT the dulse flakes. After the dressing is smooth and creamy, taste it. If you’re happy with it, add the dulse flakes and just pulse a few times to incorporate the dulse but not blend it up entirely.
  • Add washed, torn, and stemmed kale to a large bowl. Pour on 2/3 of the dressing and use clean hands to massage the dressing into the greens for two minutes, really working the leaves. Let the salad sit until ready to serve.
  • When the chickpeas are done, remove them from the oven or airfryer. I like my chickpeas to be a little crunchy on the outside and softer on the inside. If you would like, you can cook them longer and make them crunchier, or cook them for less time if you would like a softer chickpea.
  • To serve, add salad to a bowl and toss in capers and pickled red onions if using. Drizzle on remaining dressing. Add crunchy chickpeas on top. Enjoy!
  • Storing dressed salad not recommended for more than 1-2 days. To meal prep salad, store dressing separately until ready to use. You can massage kale ahead of time with just lemon juice and it will stay fresh in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.


Nutrition Facts
Kale Caesar Salad With Chickpea Croutons
Amount Per Serving
Calories 268
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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