In a large bowl or measuring cup, whisk together all of the dressing ingredients. Set aside.
PREPARE THE CHICKEN:
Pat chicken dry and season with salt and pepper on all sides, to taste. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Place chicken in the skillet and allow the chicken to cook on one side, undisturbed, for at least 6-7 minutes. Flip, and cook the chicken for about 6-8 more minutes, or until it is nicely browned on both sides and cooked through.
The chicken is done when it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, or when juices run clear.
Remove chicken from the skillet and place on a cutting board to rest. Once cool enough to handle, slice the chicken.
TOAST THE CROUTONS:
While the chicken cooks, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place the cubed garlic bread on a baking sheet. Bake until golden and crisp; about 4-5 minutes.
ASSEMBLE THE SALADS:
Wash the lettuce leaves, pat them dry, and cut them crosswise into 1 ½ inch slices. Place in a large mixing bowl.
Toss the lettuce with enough dressing to moisten well (I typically use about half of the dressing here, and then serve the rest of the dressing on the table). Add shaved Parmesan and toss. Divide the lettuce among plates, top with sliced chicken and croutons. Serve extra dressing on the side.
Serve the Chicken Caesar Salad Hot or Cold: You can prep the ingredients in advance and serve the chicken cold on top of your salad. Alternatively, pair warm chicken and warm croutons with the crisp, cool lettuce for a nice contrast.
Prepare the Chicken Caesar Salad dressing up to 3-4 days in advance. Store the dressing in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use.
The croutons are best when toasted just before serving so that they don't get soft and chewy.
Leftover Chicken Caesar Salad will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 day; however, it's not ideal. The lettuce and the croutons will get soggy as they sit in the dressing.
I've shown pan-seared chicken here, but you can also top your Caesar Salad with grilled chicken. Here's an easy marinated grilled chicken recipe that we love on this dish. For a shortcut, use a store-bought rotisserie chicken or leftover cooked chicken from a previous meal.
You can adjust the amount of anchovies in your dressing, depending on your taste preferences. My mom's recipe calls for an entire 2-ounce tin; however, I typically use just half of that (about 1 ounce total) for a more subtle taste. If you can find a tin of minced anchovies, that's a nice shortcut. Otherwise, use regular anchovy fillets and mince them yourself.
To easily shave Parmesan from a wedge, use a vegetable peeler!
For a side dish, omit the chicken and serve the simple meat-free Caesar Salad as a side dish with almost any meal.
Instead of using frozen garlic bread for the croutons, you can use store-bought croutons. Alternatively, use a different loaf of bread that you dice into cubes and toss with melted butter or olive oil. Season the bread cubes with salt, pepper and garlic powder (if desired), and then toast until golden brown.
For a healthier Caesar dressing, use light mayonnaise and substitute plain Greek-style yogurt for the sour cream.
Substitute boneless, skinless chicken thighs for the chicken breast, if desired.