Warm Scallop Caesar Salad – Kalyn’s Kitchen

Warm Scallop Caesar Salad – Kalyn’s Kitchen


posted by Kalyn Denny on June 21, 2021

Everyone who loves scallops will enjoy this Warm Scallop Caesar Salad and it’s a perfect low-carb main dish salad when you want a treat! 

PIN  the Caesar salad with scallops to try it later!

finished Warm Scallop Caesar Salad shown in two serving bowls

Recently I discovered my Costco was carrying frozen sea scallops again! So I bought some scallops and immediately updated the photos for Sauteed Scallops with Garlic! This Warm Scallop Caesar Salad is another recipe with scallops I used to make regularly using those frozen sea scallops until they disappeared from Costco. And although the old pictures of this salad were not horrible, there were no process shots showing how to make the salad, so I’m glad to be updating the post with those photos and a bit more information. And if you like Caesar Salad and scallops, trust me when I say you MUST MAKE this recipe! It’s the kind of easy but healthy main dish salad that’s perfect for a warm weather dinner!

Who else absolutely loves scallops? They’re one of my favorite things to order in a nice restaurant, and once you master the trick of cooking them (cook quickly and for a very short time) they’re a fast, tasty treat to make at home. In Utah fresh scallops are prohibitively expensive, so I’m thrilled to find the frozen ones again, and they’re easy to cook after they’re thawed in the refrigerator for a day. And although frozen scallops are still a bit pricey, one bag of frozen scallops will make quite a few salads like this!

I didn’t change the recipe much when I updated the photos, but I had a block of Parmesan cheese in the fridge and I couldn’t resist adding some shaved Parmesan. That’s optional, and if you’re one of those people who think cheese doesn’t go with seafood, please try to ignore it in the photos!

What ingredients do you need for this recipe?

What are Sea Scallops?

There are three kinds of scallops. The large ones I use for this salad are sea scallops, which are best cooked slightly underdone. Medium sized scallops are called bay scallops, and they’re tasty, especially when they are caught wild, but not widely available. Calico scallops are the tiny ones you might see being breaded and deep fried in a fish and chips place; personally I don’t think they have as much flavor as the other two types.

What kind of Caesar Dressing did I use?

For years I made this salad with Cardini’s Caesar dressing, which is a dressing I used to love. But a few years ago Cardini’s changed the recipe so it was more vinegary and less creamy, and it’s not my favorite any more. For this salad I used Yo Mama’s Caesar Dressing (affiliate link) which I think tastes great (and it’s very similar to the flavor and texture I used to love in Cardinis. But there are a lot of purchased Caesar Dressings that are low in carbs, so if you have a favorite just use it in this easy salad.

Warm Scallop Caesar Salad process shots collage

How to make this recipe:

  1. Crisp chopped romaine in a salad spinner (affiliate link), then spin dry. 
  2. Drain scallops in a colander placed in the sink.
  3. Then dry scallops between two layers of paper towels.
  4. Shave Parmesan (if using) and chop slightly.
  5. Whisk together lemon juice and Caesar Dressing. 
  6. Divide lettuce into  salad bowls, and sprinkle with the Parmesan (if using).
  7. Choose a heavy pan where scallops can be cooked in a single layer.
  8. Heat olive oil over medium-high heat about 30 seconds, then add scallops and cook quickly, probably not more than 2-3 minutes per side, depending on how large they are. 
  9. Scallops are better slightly underdone, so don’t overcook! 
  10. When scallops are browned on both sides, place four scallops on top of lettuce in each bowl.
  11. Turn pan to high and add water, then scrape pan to get any browned bits, keeping heat high to let some water evaporate.
  12. Cook about 1 minute, then turn off heat.
  13. Stir in salad dressing mixture and let it get slightly warm in the hot pan, then pour over salad and serve.
  14. Top with fresh ground black pepper if desired.

Warm Scallop Caesar Salad in two serving bowls

More Tasty Recipes with Seafood:

Salmon and Asparagus Salad
Stir-Fried Shrimp with Sugar Snap Peas
Salmon with Tomato-Olive Relish
Grilled Mahi Mahi with Korean Dipping Sauce
Air Fryer Fish Sticks

Ingredients

  • 8 large sea scallops
  • 4 cups washed romaine lettuce (or a bit more)
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 2 T water 
  • 1/4 cup low-carb Caesar Salad Dressing
  • 2 tsp. fresh-squeezed lemon juice (see notes)
  • 2 T shaved Parmesan (optional)
  • fresh-ground black pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Tear or chop romaine lettuce and crisp it in a salad spinner (affiliate link) with ice cold water, then spin dry. 
  2. Drain thawed scallops into a colander placed in the sink.
  3. When scallops have drained, put them between two layers of paper towels and pat dry.
  4. Shave the Parmesan with a vegetable peeler (if using) and chop slightly. (You can also use coarsely-grated Parmesan if you don’t have a block.)
  5. Whisk together lemon juice and Caesar Dressing. I used my fresh-frozen lemon juice.
  6. Divide lettuce into two large salad bowls, and sprinkle with the shaved Parmesan.
  7. To cook scallops, use a heavy pan which heats evenly and be sure to choose a pan where scallops can be cooked in a single layer.
  8. Heat olive oil over medium-high heat about 30 seconds, then add scallops and cook quickly, probably not more than 2-3 minutes per side, depending on how large they are.
  9. Don’t have the heat too high or the scallops will release moisture and won’t brown properly. Scallops are better slightly underdone than overdone, so don’t overcook! 
  10. When scallops are browned on both sides, place four scallops on top of lettuce in each salad bowl.
  11. Turn pan to high and put the water in, then scrape the bottom of the pan to get any browned bits, keeping heat high to let some of the water evaporate.
  12. Cook about 1 minute, then turn off heat.
  13. Stir in salad dressing with the added lemon juice and let it get slightly warm in the hot pan, then pour over salad and serve.
  14. Top with fresh ground black pepper if desired.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

2

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving:

Calories: 303Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 4.3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 17.8gCholesterol: 38mgSodium: 823mgCarbohydrates: 8.8gFiber: 2.4gSugar: 2.1gProtein: 14g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

Warm Scallop Caesar Salad thumbnail image of two salads in serving bowls

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Warm Scallop Caesar Salad is a good dish for any low-carb diet, including Keto and any phase of the original South Beach Diet. (This might be slightly high in fat for South Beach; skip the Parmesan and use less dressing if you prefer.)

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Seafood Recipes or Salad Recipes to find more ideas like this one! Use the Diet Type Index to find recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You can also Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Historical Notes for this Recipe:
This Caesar Salad with warm scallops was first posted in 2007. I wanted to update the photos for years because I loved the salad so much, but my Costco stopped carrying the large sea scallops. In 2021 I found frozen scallops again at Costco and updated the photos!

Warm Scallop Caesar Salad Pinterest image

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