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A wrap is a way to transform a meal that’s normally relegated to a fork and spoon into a handheld meal. For instance, a California chicken Caesar salad is a perfect meal. It’s full of crunchy greens with a sharp dressing, topping with marinated chicken, Parmesan cheese, bacon, and avocado. But a salad has to be eaten with a fork.
In contrast, a wrap allows all of these good things to be bundled together, creating a more kid-friendly weeknight meal.
The important step for this recipe is the homemade dressing. A good Caesar dressing has a decent amount of acidity that’s balanced with deep umami. This is achieved through the use of anchovies. And while they may be on most peoples’ “eww” list, anchovies are not optional. They provide that essential iconic flavor that’s necessary to make this a true Caesar wrap.
The ingredients in this recipe
- Olive oil is the majority of the dressing. Since the dressing acts as both a marinade for the chicken and a dressing for the wrap, I chose an extra virgin olive oil for the most flavor.
- Garlic is more forward when it comes to a Caesar dressing. This higher amount of garlic ensures the sharp garlic flavor will be strong but not overpowering.
- Lemon juice adds a bright acidic note to the dressing and cuts through the rich olive oil and flavor from the anchovies.
- Anchovies are small, oily fish packed in oil. They’re very flavorful and while opening the jar and taking a big whiff may seem too strong, when they’re incorporated into a dressing, the depth of flavor is perfect.
- Worcestershire sauce will add intensity to the dressing and round out all the flavors. A little bit is all that’s needed.
- Dijon mustard provides some flavor but will also emulsify and bind the dressing. Traditionally, a Caesar dressing uses an egg yolk. But here, the mustard works just as well.
- Chicken breasts are marinated and then seared to give them a deep golden crust. Instead of cooking fully on the stovetop, they’re finished roasting in the oven. This saves a few minutes of prep time and that means everything when it comes to weeknight meals. When possible and for the most nutrition, look for organic, pasture-raised chicken.
- Romaine lettuce is key in a good Caesar salad and is just as needed in this wrap recipe. The romaine is sturdy and always has a great crunch.
- Extra-large flour tortilla shells will allow all of the ingredients to easily be contained. Do not try and overfill the wrap. The sides are much easier to fold with fewer fillings.
You may think that getting all the ingredients prepped and ready is not worth the effort. But this wrap is just one more step than a salad. And that step is simply wrapping it all up in a flour tortilla.
To make this easier, all of the meal prep for the dressing and meat can be done in the morning. That way, when it’s about time to eat, you can throw the chicken in the skillet and you’re on the way to a delicious weeknight meal.
When ready to serve, each person can assemble their own, or the wraps can be premade and stored in the refrigerator!
Watch how to make this wrap recipe
California Chicken Caesar Wraps
For the dressing
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 4 anchovies minced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 ½ tsp Worcestershire sauce
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
For the wraps
- 1 lb chicken breast (about two large breasts)
- 4 slices bacon cooked
- 2 oz Parmesan cheese shards
- 4 large flour tortillas
- romaine lettuce as desired
- red onion as desired
- avocado as desired
- In a small bowl or salad dressing shaker, combine the Dijon mustard, anchovies, garlic cloves, Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, lemon juice, and olive oil. Whisk or shake to combine.1 tbsp Dijon mustard, 4 cloves garlic, 1 ½ tsp Worcestershire sauce, ½ tsp salt, 1 tsp black pepper, 2 tbsp lemon juice, ½ cup extra virgin olive oil, 4 anchovies
- On a small tray, pour 4 tbsp of the prepared dressing over the chicken breasts. Rub the dressing around to evenly coat. Wrap tightly and place in the refrigerator to marinate for at least 30 minutes or up to 8 hours.1 lb chicken breast (about two large breasts)
- Preheat the oven to 375°F.
- Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the marinated chicken to the hot skillet until the first side is golden brown, 6 minutes. Turn the chicken over and place it in the preheated oven. Roast the chicken until the meat registers 160°F at the thickest part. Once roasted, remove the chicken from the oven and set it aside to rest.
- To prepare the wraps, lay out a tortilla shell on a flat surface. Lay on some romaine lettuce and drizzle with some dressing. Add slices of chicken, pieces of bacon, red onion, slices of avocado, and shards of Parmesan. Wrap tightly and serve.4 slices bacon, 2 oz Parmesan cheese, 4 large flour tortillas, romaine lettuce, red onion, avocado