Grilled Romaine

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If you’ve never tried grilled romaine lettuce, you’re in for a treat!

Crisp romaine hearts are grilled just enough to give the edges a little char (don’t cook them!) and drizzled in an easy Dijon vinaigrette.

This easy recipe adds a little fancy flair to your summer menu.

Grilled Romaine with croutons and parmesan
  • Crispy grilled romaine salad can be served as a side or an entrée salad with a tangy mustard vinaigrette! Add in some grilled chicken for a hearty meal.
  • Hearts of romaine stay cool and crisp on the inside while the edges develop a light char with a smoky flavor.
  • Prep dressing and lettuce ahead and chill until ready to use.

Ingredients for Grilled Romaine

Romaine – Look for compact romaine hearts for this recipe. Big full heads of romaine lettuce are more suited to a caesar salad. Cut them in half length-wise, keeping the core intact with the leaves.

Dressing – Tangy lemon, Dijon, and honey pair perfectly with the slightly bitter flavor of romaine. A drizzle of balsamic vinegar or a store-bought bottle of vinaigrette will work if time is short. If you’d prefer a grilled caesar salad, drizzle with Caesar dressing.

Variations – Create a hearty salad by adding grilled chicken breasts and your choice of either bacon bits or blue cheese crumbles, then drizzle with Caesar dressing for extra flavor. Or go low-carb and switch out the croutons for toasted sunflower or pumpkin seeds or nuts.

romaine , olive oil , parmesan , lemon, croutons , salt and pepper with labels to make Grilled Romaine

How to Make Grilled Romaine

  1. Prepare dressing (as per the recipe below).
  2. Preheat the grill and spray cut romaine hearts with a touch of cooking oil and season.
  3. Grill lemon half and seasoned romaine hearts cut side down until lightly charred. Remove both from the grill.
  4. Serve grilled romaine cut side up with dressing, croutons, and parmesan cheese. For best results, serve immediately.

On the Stovetop: Saute prepared lemon and romaine lettuce cut sides down in a large skillet (preferably cast iron) and cook on high until the cut sides are lightly caramelized.

When grilling romaine, don’t want to cook it; just want to add a little smoky char to the edges.

Preheat the grill over high heat and cook just long enough to get a little color on the edges so the lettuce stays crisp and cool.

sliced romaine on a cutting board to make Grilled Romaine
pouring dressing over Grilled Romaine

What to Serve With Grilled Romaine

Why not make an entire grilled dinner while dining al fresco? How about a juicy grilled ribeye steak or salmon, a grilled romaine salad, a side of red potatoes, a side of garlic bread, and some yummy grilled peaches with a dollop of homemade whipped cream!

plated Grilled Romaine

Our Favorite Side Salads

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Grilled Romaine with croutons and parmesan

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Grilled Romaine

Add a new twist to summer with this grilled romaine salad recipe!

Prep Time 20 minutes

Cook Time 10 minutes

Total Time 30 minutes

Author Holly Nilsson

Mason Jars with white background

Mason Jars or small jar with lid, for salad dressing

  • 2 romaine hearts washed and dried
  • olive oil spray
  • ¼ teaspoon each salt and black pepper
  • ¼ cup fresh parmesan cheese
  • 1 lemon
  • ½ cup croutons


  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 ½ tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 clove garlic minced or to taste
  • teaspoon salt or to taste
  • teaspoon pepper
  • Combine all dressing ingredients in a small jar with a lid. Shake until fully combined and refrigerate.

  • Meanwhile, preheat the grill to high heat.

  • Cut each romaine heart in half lengthwise. Lightly spray with olive oil spray and season with salt and pepper.

  • Cut the lemon in half and place it cut side down on the grill. Add the romaine to the grill, cut side down and cook 2 to 3 minutes or just until lightly charred.

  • Remove the lettuce and lemons from the grill.

  • Arrange the lettuce cut side up on a serving plate. Drizzle with dressing, sprinkle with croutons and squeeze the grilled lemon over top. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and serve.

Be sure the grill is pre-heated to high heat. You don’t want to cook the lettuce, you just want to give it a bit of char on the edges. The lettuce should be cold and crisp.

If possible, cut the romaine hearts in half 24 hours in advance and rinse with cold water. Shake them dry and place them in the fridge on a paper towel-lined plate, cut side down. This will make the crispiest lettuce.

Ensure the lettuce is dried well after washing or it will steam and won’t be crisp.

Grilled romaine salad is best consumed fresh.

Calories: 195 | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 4mg | Sodium: 412mg | Potassium: 213mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 4981IU | Vitamin C: 21mg | Calcium: 109mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Salad, Side Dish

Cuisine American

Diet Vegetarian

© Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited. Please view my photo use policy here.

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Grilled Romaine with dijon vinaigrette and a title
close up of Grilled Romaine with dressing on a plate with a title
pouring dressing over Grilled Romaine with a title

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About the author

Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!

See more posts by Holly

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