Tortellini Caesar Salad

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Quick Summary

Tortellini Caesar Salad- One part Caesar salad, one part pasta salad…this Caesar Tortellini Salad is completely delicious! Homemade dressing and cheesy tortellini make this pasta salad out of this world and perfect for any potluck or party!

Tortellini Caesar Salad  in wood bowl with Parmesan cheese and homemade croutons.

Josh LOVES Caesar salad. It’s one of his favorite sides to make at home or order in a restaurant. You can’t go wrong with a classic Caesar salad, BUT I decided to kick the salad up a notch and I think this Tortellini Caesar Salad is even BETTER!

The addition of cheesy tortellini makes this a hearty pasta salad that’s perfect for serving as a main dish or side dish. Whenever I bring this pasta salad to a party or potluck, I get lots of requests for the recipe. It is a guaranteed crowd pleaser and a summer staple!

Tortellini Caesar Salad Ingredients  in bowls on wood board.

Salad Ingredients

  • Romaine lettuce – This is the traditional lettuce for a Caesar salad and it holds up nicely.
  • Shaved Parmesan – Go for the good stuff! You’ll taste a difference.
  • Cheese tortellini – You can use fresh or frozen here!
  • Homemade Croutons – I really encourage you to make homemade croutons for this salad. They are SO much better than store bought!
  • Caesar Dressing– I promise it’s easy to make!
Caesar Salad Dressing in bowl with spoon.

Caesar Salad Dressing

Making your own Caesar dressing is actually SO easy. You will need:

  • Mayonnaise– Full fat mayo will give you the creamiest dressing. If you want to use low-fat or fat-free, you can.
  • Lemon juice– always use fresh lemon juice, not bottled.
  • Garlic
  • Dijon mustard
  • Worcestershire
  • Anchovies– you can use 1 teaspoon anchovy paste or 2 anchovies, minced. Don’t be scared, they add great flavor to the dressing:)
  • Parmesan cheese– use freshly grated Parmesan cheese, the good stuff!

A lot of people are a little apprehensive about cooking with anchovies, but don’t be afraid. Anchovies add a subtle savory and salty taste and it’s a traditional ingredient in classic Caesar salad dressings!

You can find anchovies in the pasta/sauce aisle, typically in a can. Anchovy paste is another awesome option. It’s by the tomato paste and you just use a little less since it’s concentrated! Both work well in the salad dressing.

If you want the salad to be vegetarian, you can leave the anchovies out and use capers instead! They will give the salad dressing great flavor. It’s an easy and tasty swap! Use 1 ½ teaspoons, the same as the anchovy paste.

Find the full dressing recipe HERE.

Tortellini Caesar Salad on plates with fork.

How to Make

It’s just a couple of steps!

  • Make the dressing first!
  • Get some salty water boiling and cook the tortellini according to the directions on the package. Drain and give it a good rinse with cold water.
  • Start assembling the salad in a large bowl! Add the cooked tortellini, chopped Romaine lettuce, homemade croutons, and shaved parmesan. 
  • Drizzle the dressing over everything and toss it until it’s totally mixed in and everything is coated. Try a bite and season it with salt and pepper to taste. Yum!
  • If you want, feel free to add grilled chicken or shredded rotisserie chicken to this salad.

How to Store

This tortellini salad is best the day it is made, but you can prep a lot of the salad in advance so it is ready to go!

  • You can make the dressing ahead of time. It will keep in the fridge for up to 4 days.
  • The homemade croutons will stay fresh in an airtight container for up to one week.
  • You can wash the Romaine lettuce, dry it thoroughly, and wrap it in a dry paper towel. Place it in a plastic bag or storage container and refrigerate for up to one week.

Prepping the ingredients in advance will make the salad super simple to assemble. Don’t toss the salad together until you are ready to serve so the croutons will stay nice and crunchy. Nobody likes a soggy crouton:)

Caesar Salad with Tortellini  on plate with fork.

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Tortellini Caesar Salad

One part Caesar salad, one part pasta salad…this Caesar Tortellini Salad is completely delicious! Homemade dressing and cheesy tortellini make this pasta salad out of this world and perfect for any potluck or party!
4.27 from 46 votes


For the salad:

  • Caesar Dressing
  • 9 oz cheese tortellini
  • 5 cups chopped Romaine lettuce
  • 3 cups homemade croutons
  • 1/2 cup shaved parmesan cheese
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


  • First, make the Caesar Dressing. It can be made in advance. Keep in the fridge for up to 1 week.
  • Cook the tortellini according to the package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water. Place in a large bowl. Add the chopped Romaine lettuce, croutons, and shaved Parmesan cheese. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss until the salad is well coated. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste. Serve and enjoy!


Calories: 248kcal, Carbohydrates: 24g, Protein: 12g, Fat: 12g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 20mg, Sodium: 399mg, Potassium: 110mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 2640IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 202mg, Iron: 2mg
Keywords salad, tortellini

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I'm Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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  1. I’m getting a message saying “This website doesn’t allow automatic printing.” I’ve seen this before. Solution??

    1. Weird. I haven’t seen that! I just printed the recipe. What browser are you using?

  2. 5 stars
    I made this Caesar salad last week. I was hesitant that my husband would not be a fan, but rolled the dice!
    It was a hit and it is now going to go into our entrée salad rotation.
    I also used the capers instead of anchovies, perfect!

  3. 1 star
    This was a terrible recipe. Way too much lemon juice. It was terribly sour. Very disappointed. Ended up in the garbage.

    1. 5 stars
      Oh, my goodness, it is “2 Tbsp” lemon juice. Not a “terrible” recipe – I made this and it was perfect, no adjustments at all. Perhaps try using less lemon juice or to your taste.

  4. 5 stars
    So so good!!! I can’t believe I never thought of this before. This is a new favorite for our family!

  5. I made this a few nights ago, and it was delicious. I added rotisserie chicken as well since this was the main meal for dinner, and my family definitely approved. I used the capers in the dressing recipe as a substitute for anchovies, and the homemade croutons makes me never want to eat anything else ever again!

  6. We were directed here from Yummy Toddler Food. I liked the recipe and so did my husband, however our 2.5 year old was not interested.

  7. The knives that are used for fish fillets are very diverse, and today it has become common for housewives to have such a device at home. If you still do not have such a knife at home, then you can look at the saltwater fishing knife and possibly purchase it.

  8. 1 star
    We really didn’t care for this. The dressing didn’t taste at all like traditional Caesar and overall the salad was very bland. The addition of tortellini was odd.

  9. Love this salad! Super easy to put together and totally satisfying. The tortellini really helps step up a staple caeser salad. And the homemade dressing is so goo – much better than store bought brands!

  10. 5 stars
    Love this salad! Super easy to put together and totally satisfying. The tortellini really helps step up a staple caeser salad. And the homemade dressing is so goo – much better than store bought brands!

  11. 5 stars
    I never thought Pasta and Romaine would be so good together! Delicious Caesar dressing too, I added another half clove of garlic and it was soooooooo good, the yogurt gave it a nice tangy element. Thank you for giving us a new recipe for our dinner rotation!!

  12. 5 stars
    I’ve made the salad in this recipe once, and it was delicious. But I’ve made the Caesar dressing and homemade croutons multiple times to use in Caesar salads. I no longer buy the dressing or croutons in the store. I just use your recipe!