Brussels Sprouts Caesar Salad with crispy capers is a healthy, gluten-free take on Caesar Salad with lots of crunch and flavor!
I’ve had the recipe for Brussels Sprouts Caesar Salad in my back pocket for months now, inspired by the Fall Shredded Brussels Sprouts Salad you all went nuts for last year, and now is the time to get it into your hot little hands! Ben and I are obsessed with Caesar Salads but I thought I’d give it a healthier spin by using finely shredded raw brussels sprouts for the base, drizzling them with homemade Caesar dressing (OH MAN,) then adding sauteed chicken breasts marinated in the same dressing for maximum flavor with little effort.
The crispy capers sprinkled on top? Ok, ok – those are for me. Since regular croutons aren’t gluten-free, I swapped in pan-fried crispy capers and, news flash: TOTAL UPGRADE. Goodbye stale bread, hello punch of real flavor!
Honestly the scent wafting from this platter after the hot chicken hit the freshly grated parmesan cheese and garlicky dressing tossed with brussels sprouts is something I will not soon forget. Plus, I’ve had more Caesar Salads than I can count that have come out of the kitchen limp and soggy, but the shredded brussels sprouts stay crunchy even a day or two after being tossed in the (spoon drink-worthy) dressing, making this dish perfect for leftover lunches. I can’t wait for you to try this healthy recipe!
How to Make this Recipe:
You can use your favorite bottled Caesar salad dressing or do what I did and make your own. Caesar dressings are notoriously high in fat and can be packed with cheese, which doesn’t work for my family. Instead I made a double batch of Minimalist Baker’s Vegan Caesar Dressing which is made with hummus, garlic, capers, lemon, garlic, salt, pepper, garlic, and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Oh did I mention garlic? ?This dressing is so good I started dipping chips in it. MUST TRY!
Whatever dressing you decide to go with, add 2 Tablespoons to 2 chicken breasts in a Ziplock bag with salt and pepper (reserve more dressing for the salad,) then squish to coat and marinate anywhere from 5 minutes to 8 hours in the refrigerator. Lincoln didn’t eat the brussels sprouts (I didn’t even attempt,) but he LOVED this marinated chicken!
How to Hand Shred Brussels Sprouts:
While the chicken is marinating, trim 12oz brussels sprouts of their stem and any outer leaves that fall away. If raw brussels sprouts are a bit to much for you, try replacing half with chopped romaine lettuce. Like I said, I just love how crunchy they are though.
Hold each sprout at the core end then use a very sharp knife to shred/shave the sprout. I’ve used the slicing disk on my food processor for raw brussels sprouts salads before, but I can get the slices much thinner with a sharp knife.
Add all the shredded brussels sprouts into a bowl, using your fingers to separate the layers. This would be a great Sunday afternoon prep activity if you’ll be eating the salad later in the week. The shredded sprouts will keep for 3-4 days just fine in the fridge.
Time to get cookin’! Start by preheating 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1/4 cup capers that have been drained then patted dry with a paper towel, and then fry until the capers have blossomed and are crispy, 1-2 minutes, shaking the pan often so they don’t burn. Remove the capers to a paper towel-lined plate to drain then set aside.
I first made crispy capers to top my Chicken Piccata Risotto and holy moly, what a TREAT! They’re like tiny kernels of crispy popcorn. Too good!
Last step is to add the marinated chicken to the skillet then saute for 3-4 minutes on each side, or until cooked through. This chicken would also be fantastic grilled, by the way.
Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes then thinly slice. Toss the shredded brussels sprouts with dressing to taste, then combine with the chicken, sprinkle with crispy capers, and freshly shredded parmesan cheese for a real restaurant experience!
Shredded Brussels Sprouts & Chicken Caesar Salad
Shredded Brussels Sprouts & Chicken Caesar Salad with crispy capers is a healthy, gluten-free take on Caesar Salad with lots of crunch and flavor!
- 2 chicken breasts, pounded to an even thickness
- 1/2 - 3/4 cup Caesar Salad Dressing (see notes for what I used)
- salt and pepper
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup capers, drained then patted dry
- 12oz brussels sprouts, trimmed then thinly shredded
- freshly shredded parmesan cheese, optional
- Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper then place in a plastic bag with 2 Tablespoons Caesar Dressing. Squish to evenly coat then refrigerate for up to 8 hours.
- Heat extra virgin olive oil in a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat then carefully add capers (be careful, they might splatter just a bit.) Pan fry until capers have blossomed and are crunchy, 1-2 minutes, gently shaking the pan to ensure they fry evenly. Remove capers to a paper-towel lined plate to drain then set aside.
- Turn heat down slightly then add marinated chicken to the skillet and saute until no longer pink in the center, 3-4 minutes a side. Chop when cool enough to handle.
- Toss shredded brussels sprouts with desired amount of Caesar Dressing then top with cooked chicken, crispy capers, and parmesan cheese, and then serve.
- I made a double batch of 5-Minute Vegan Caesar Dressing for the chicken marinade and salad dressing.
This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.
If you’re watching your salt intake, skip or choose between the crispy capers and parmesan cheese. Otherwise load up and eat up on this flavor-packed, delicious and healthy entree salad recipe!