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Tortellini Caesar Salad
This creamy tortellini Caesar salad is one of my all-time favorite salad recipes for several reasons, the first being that I love tortellini.
The second is that I love Parmesan cheese and the third is that I love Caesar salads.
This recipe manages to combine all my favorite things together in one refreshingly tasty and creamy salad that's super easy to toss together as a meal in itself or as a delicious side salad.
You can substitute the mayonnaise in this salad with the same amounts of plain Greek yogurt, sour cream or vegetarian options like tofu-based mayonnaise. Almond or soy milk can be substituted for the milk.
However, you should be aware that some options, like sour cream or almond milk will lend a slightly different flavor to the overall recipe.
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- 9 oz cheese tortellini, cooked
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise or greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup milk or dairy substitute
- 1/4 cup and 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, divided
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 8 cups romaine
- 1 cup croutons or cherry tomatoes
- Cook tortellini according to package instructions. If you are expecting salad leftovers or are not immediately serving your salad, under cook your tortellini slightly, because it will absorb the dressing and become slightly soggy over time. It should take about 7 to 9 minutes total.
- Drain and rinse thoroughly with cold water and set aside. If tortellini is still hot, run under cold water or place in refrigerator. Tortellini should be cold when added to the salad.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise (or an equal amount of substitute) with milk, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, lemon juice and garlic. Mix together well.
- Shred the romaine leaves if they aren't already shredded and mix with cooked tortellini. Add remaining Parmesan cheese and mix.
- If serving immediately, add Caesar dressing, mix well and top with croutons and remaining Parmesan cheese. Top with tomatoes if desired. If you aren't serving the salad immediately, you can set the dressing to the side (just be sure to mix it will before adding it) or you can add it directly to the salad. While it tastes great fresh, it should be eaten within the next twenty four hours or it will go the way of all salads and become soggy.
- Enjoy with a side of crusty bread and a glass of milk for a light meal or as a side salad.
Healthy Recipe Substitutes
While this is one of my favorite recipes, sometimes it clashes with my desire to eat healthy or with dietary restrictions of company that I'm serving the salad to.
Knowing healthier options for a lighter salad is important: Check out this website for nutrition comparisons and healthier alternatives with lower fat and calorie levels.