Grilled Chicken Caesar Tortellini Salad

Using ingredients like Armanino Four Cheese Tortellini and Creamy Garlic Sauce frees home cooks to play with flavor and texture, as we do here with this hearty pasta salad. Just grill the chicken and whip up the dressing for a substantial meal in no time.


  •  2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  •  4 teaspoons Armanino Creamy Garlic Sauce
  •  1 tablespoon olive oil
  •  kosher salt and black pepper
Caesar Dressing
  •  ½ cup plain Greek yogurt
  •  ⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  •  3 tablespoons olive oil
  •  1 teaspoons fresh lemon zest
  •  2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  •  1-2 anchovy filets or 1 teaspoon anchovy paste
  •  2 tablespoons Armanino Creamy Garlic Sauce
  •  1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  •  ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  •  kosher salt to taste
  •  16 oz Armanino Four Cheese Tortellini
  •  6 cups chopped romaine lettuce, roughly chopped
  •  2 cups large Caesar-style croutons
  •  ½ cup shaved parmesan cheese


  1. Slice each of the chicken breasts horizontally into two, thin cutlets – press down firmly with one flat hand on the chicken and starting at the thicker end of the chicken breast, holding a sharp knife level, carefully slice the chicken in half horizontally into two even pieces. Try to do this as evenly as possible. Alternatively, place each chicken breasts between two pieces of plastic wrap and pound to a thin even thickness with the flat side of a meat mallet.
  2. Place the chicken in a resealable plastic bag, add the garlic sauce, olive oil and a good pinch each pf salt and pepper. Squish the bag to mix and fully coat the chicken. Place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours to marinate.
  3. In a blender, add all the dressing ingredients and a pinch of salt. Blend until smooth. Transfer to a jar with a lid and refrigerate until needed. Can be made up to two days ahead.
  4. Cook the tortellini in boiling water for 4 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water. Lay the tortellini on a paper towel lined sheet pan to plate to dry completely.
  5. Preheat a grill to high; at least 5 minutes for a gas grill. For a charcoal grill, heat the charcoal to very hot with an ash coating, then push the coals to one side of the grill. When the grill is ready – you should be able to hold your hand one inch above the grill grates for only a second – lightly rub the clean grill grate with an oil soaked paper towel using a pair of tongs.
  6. Remove the chicken from the marinade (discard excess marinade).
  7. Grill the chicken, covered, for about 5 minutes total depending on thickness, getting nice grill marks on each side, until cooked through.
  8. Remove the chicken from the grill, let cool completely then slice on the bias against the grain into strips. Set aside while you assemble the salad. Chicken can be grilled and refrigerated several hours before serving.
  9. To a large salad bowl, add the cooked tortellini, chopped lettuce, and enough dressing to coat. Toss until thoroughly combined. Add the croutons, sliced chicken and half of the shaved parmesan, toss to combine, adding more dressing if needed. Garnish with the remaining parmesan. Serve immediately.

Chef’s Tips

  • Anchovies are a traditional ingredient that makes Caesar dressing authentic. Contrary to popular belief, in the dressing they do not taste “fishy”, rather add a slightly salty and hard to define umami flavor. A few filets or a bit of anchovy paste will do the trick. Don’t skip it.
  • You can easily substitute grilled salmon for shrimp for the chicken, even leftover steak or crispy tofu. The options are endless.
4 servings
Prep Time
1 hour
Cook Time
10 minutes

More Recipes