Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad pairs two classic dishes and only takes about 20 minutes to prepare.
Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad is the perfect mashup of two very simple dishes. The result is an easy recipe that's low fuss and big on flavor. We also have a few other pasta salad recipes that we absolutely love like our Greek Pasta Salad, Pesto Pasta Salad, and this Bow Tie Crab Pasta Salad.
Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad Recipe:
Caesar salad is one of my absolute favorite meals. It's light, simple, and comes together in minutes. I also adore a great pasta salad.
It only made sense to mix the two together for the ultimate recipe mashup.
I wanted to keep it nice and simple, though, in order to keep the preparation time short so you could get this recipe on the table in minutes.
My family loves this recipe when we're looking for a quick dinner option or something not so heavy on a hot day. The leftovers make a perfect lunch the following day, too!
Ingredients for this Pasta Salad:
- Noodles: I chose bow tie pasta, because it's small and cooks quickly. Plus, it's bite-sized and mixes well with the other ingredients.
- Cooked Chicken: Leftover rotisserie chicken is a great option! Just chop it into pieces and you're good to go. Ours was pre-seasoned, so it added some extra flavor.
- Caesar Dressing: When I have a couple extra minutes, I'll whip up my homemade Caesar dressing. If I'm in a bit of rush, store bought dressing works great. Use whichever you prefer.
- Lettuce: Go for Romaine! Cut it down in bite-sized pieces for a nice texture and plenty of crunch.
- Cheese: Parmesan is the way to go! It's classic on a Caesar salad, so why not? I bought pre-shaved Parmesan cheese to make it super easy, but shredded, off the block cheese would be a great choice. I tend to shy away from the "shaker-style" cheese, because it acts as thickener when mixed with dressing and everything gets gloppy. It's super easy to use a microplane or carrot or potato peeler to get shredded Parmesan cheese in no time.
- Croutons: Homemade croutons are amazing in the pasta salad, but if you don't have them on hand, your favorite store bought variety will work great!
How to Make Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad:
Scroll to the recipe card below for full instructions and ingredient amounts!
- Cook the noodles just until al dente. Drain the water, rinse in cold water, and drain again.
- Transfer the noodles to a large bowl.
- Add the chicken, lettuce, cheese, croutons, and dressing.
- Toss to combine.
Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad Tips and Variations:
- Noodles: We love bow tie noodles for this recipe, but any short noodles will work great. Penne, ziti, rigatoni, fusilli, and radiatori would be good options.
- Chicken: Rotisserie chicken is my choice for a quick and easy dish, but leftover roasted chicken breasts or thighs can also be used. Pretty much any type of leftover or cooked chicken will work. It can be seasoned or unseasoned, just keep in mind that the seasoning will change the overall taste of the pasta salad.
- Add-ins: If you want to add some extra flavor and texture, try adding some thick cut bacon pieces, anchovies, freshly squeezed lemon juice, roasted garlic, or freshly cracked black pepper.
- Cheese: Parmesan cheese off the block is my absolute favorite for this recipe. If you'd like to try something like Gruyere, mozzarella, Grana Padano, Romano, or Parmigiano Reggiano those would be great substitutes.
- Make Half or Double It!: This recipe can easily be adjusted if you need more or less. It makes a decent amount for 2-3 people to have leftovers the next day if they're eating reasonable portion sizes.
Room Temperature: We do not recommend storing this pasta salad at room temperature.
Refrigerator: Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad is best stored in the refrigerator for 3 days in an airtight container.
Freezer: We do not recommend freezing this pasta salad.
Recipe Card with Ingredient Amounts and Instructions
- 8 ounces bowtie pasta
- 2 cups cooked chicken, cut into bite size pieces (rotisserie chicken is a great option!)
- 2 cups romaine lettuce, chopped
- 1 ½ cups Parmesan cheese, shaved or shredded
- 1 cup Caesar dressing
- ½ cup croutons
- Cook the pasta noodles just until al dente. Drain the water, rinse in cold water, and drain again.8 ounces bowtie pasta
- Place the cooked noodles in a large bowl.
- Add the cooked chicken, lettuce, cheese, croutons, and dressing.2 cups cooked chicken2 cups romaine lettuce1 ½ cups Parmesan cheese1 cup Caesar dressing½ cup croutons
- Toss to combine. Place in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.