A flavorful vegan Caesar salad with tempeh and sweet potatoes. This salad is the perfect combination of fresh and comforting. The warm sweet potatoes and salty tempeh make this the perfect winter salad, along with the flavorful dressing and a sprinkle of vegan parmesan.
This recipe has everything that I love from a salad. It’s extremely flavorful, it’s filling, it’s hearty and it’s comforting. Yes, a salad can be all of these things.
This vegan Caesar salad is actually inspired by my original Caesar salad, which I created about a year ago. It’s been my favorite salad since then and I knew I wanted to create an upgraded version. One with different toppings.
Think crisp leafy greens with a garlicky Caesar dressing, topped with roasted sweet potatoes and salty, smoky tempeh. To make it even better, I love to top it with a generous sprinkle of vegan parmesan or nutritional yeast.
It’s the BEST salad ever. In my opinion of course.
How to Make a Vegan Caesar Salad?
This vegan Caesar salad is made in under 30 minutes of preparation. Trust me, it’s easier than it seems! Most of the recipe is done in the time it takes to roast the sweet potatoes. Here’s how it’s done:
- Toss the tempeh with the marinade ingredients and let it marinate while you prepare the rest of the recipe (or overnight if you’d like).
- Slice the sweet potatoes, toss them in oil, sprinkle with salt and roast them for 20 minutes.
- After 20 minutes, remove the sweet potatoes from the oven, flip and add the tempeh to the same sheet. Return to the oven and cook until golden, about 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, whisk together the tahini dressing, which is made of tahini, lemon juice, mustard, vegan Worcestershire sauce and garlic.
- Assemble the salad: Toss the greens with the dressing and top with the sweet potatoes, tempeh and vegan parmesan (or nutritional yeast). Done!
A Few Notes on the Recipe:
I used this recipe for vegan parmesan. It’s my favorite addition to the salad and adds flavor and salt. However, nutritional yeast is a good alternative.
I added a touch of maple syrup to the tempeh, but you can easily omit it. You could also add a touch of balsamic vinegar to the marinade for sweetness.
This salad is also great with roasted potatoes instead of sweet potatoes. Use your favorite. You could also add some roasted broccoli or Brussel’s sprouts with the potatoes for additional warm comfort.
Finally, you can use your favorite leafy greens, but if you use kale, make sure to massage it before use. This helps tenderize the kale and makes it easier to eat and digest.
Vegan Caesar Salad with Tempeh and Sweet Potatoes
- 1 8oz block tempeh, cut into small cubes
- 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
- 1/2 tablespoon maple syrup (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large sweet potato, cut into 1/2" thick slices
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Sprinkle of salt
- 6-8 cups leafy greens (Romaine, mixed greens, spinach or kale)
- Vegan parmesan or nutritional yeast (see notes)
Vegan Caesar Dressing
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 1 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 small garlic clove, finely grated
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/8 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
- 1 1/2 tablespoon water, more as needed
- Cut the tempeh into small bite-sized cubes and place in a small bowl. Add the remaining tempeh ingredients and toss to coat. Let marinate in the fridge while you prepare the rest of the recipe or marinate overnight.
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- Place the sliced sweet potatoes on a large baking sheet and toss with 1 tablespoon of oil to coat. Sprinkle with salt. Roast for 20 minutes.
- After 20 minutes, remove the sweet potatoes from the oven and flip. Toss the marinated tempeh onto the same sheet and return to the oven for an additional 15 minutes. The sweet potatoes should be golden and slightly crispy on the outside.
- While the sweet potatoes and tempeh are cooking, prepare the dressing: In a small jar or bowl, whisk together all the dressing ingredients. Add more water as needed to thin. The sauce will thicken as it sits. Set aside.
- Assemble the salad: Add the leafy greens to a large bowl and toss with the dressing. Top with the cooked sweet potatoes and tempeh. Sprinkle with vegan parmesan or nutritional yeast. Serve immediately.