Kale “Caesar” Salad {with Buttermilk-Parmesan Dressing}

by Chrissy

Kale Caesar Salad_LYK1

I used to love a good Caesar salad. Until one day I realized how shockingly fattening it really was. I think the Roman Empire also fell that day.

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I finally found a way to incorporate the tasty Caesar dressing flavors and salad toppings back into my life. Everything looks just a little bit brighter, now.

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This salad has quickly become one of my favorites. I’ve eaten this salad for days now and it hasn’t grown old on me yet (knock on wood).

If you’re weirded out by buttermilk, it’s cool, just introduce yourself and go from there.

Buttermilk aids in digestion, adds flavor to dishes, and is a great substitute to other fattening dairy products.

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Also, I tossed some non-fat cottage cheese in there instead of Greek yogurt or sour cream — surprise! It’s my new favorite dairy substitute, just as long as it’s blended up (it’s a texture thing). This stuff is packed with protein and stays light on the calories.

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The sturdy kale and spinach leaves fill up the belly and pack the body with such great nutrients. Skip the iceberg or romaine and go for this dynamic duo.

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The whole-wheat croutons are key, so don’t skip them. A true Caesar wouldn’t be crouton-less and these ones are better for you, so hop to it!


Kale “Caesar” Salad {with Buttermilk-Parmesan Dressing}

Print Recipe!

Serves 4


For the dressing:

2/3 cup low-fat buttermilk

3 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

3 Tbsps non-fat cottage cheese

1 1/2 Tbsps lemon juice

2 cloves garlic, chopped

Pinch salt and pepper, to taste


For the salad:

1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

2 slices whole wheat bread, cut into ½ inch squares

4 cups kale, stems discarded, chopped into bite-sized pieces

2 cups spinach, coarsely chopped

1 large chicken breast, cooked and cubed

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

¼ cup shaved Parmesan cheese

Lemon wedges, for garnish



Add all of the dressing ingredients into a large measuring cup and blend together with the immersion blender. Alternatively, you can whisk the dressing well, just be sure to grate the garlic (instead of chop) into the mixture; set aside.

Cut slices of bread and add to a medium sauté pan, along with 1 Tbsp olive oil; toss to coat. Let toast on both sides until crispy and dark golden brown. Remove from pan to prevent burning and let cool.

In a large salad bowl, add kale, spinach, tomatoes, diced chicken, Parmesan cheese shavings, homemade croutons and toss well with buttermilk dressing. It is best to start with less dressing and then incorporate more if it needs it, or have guests add their own. Enjoy! It’s good for you!


From the Little Yellow Kitchen,


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6 Comments to “Kale “Caesar” Salad {with Buttermilk-Parmesan Dressing}”

  1. This looks wonderful and so healthy!

  2. Mmmm, I could dive right into that salad :) Love the contrast of the creamy dressing and the bitter kale.

  3. You are awesome Chrissy!! That looks amazing!

  4. Chrissy

    Thanks, Cari! I bet you would LOVE it! :)

  5. Chrissy

    Oh yea, such a great combo of flavors. Thanks!

  6. Chrissy

    I feel like a million bucks after eating this salad. And my belly is happy and full. I’d say it’s a win-win. :)