Classic Easy Broccoli Salad Recipe
Broccoli salad is a classic side dish that’s perfect for summer cookouts. This salad is so easy to throw together that you will make it all summer. It’s not just for cookouts and potlucks.
Why You’ll Love this Recipe
I don’t know about you but, every week I purchase fresh broccoli so it’s always available in my house.
- So easy to make, and it’s a perfect side dish for any protein.
- It’s best made ahead, so it’s great for BBQs, parties, or any gathering.
- Only three ingredients in the dressing.
- It makes a great summer salad, and no cooking involved!
Some of our other favorite salads to make are Southwest Grilled Chicken Salad, Tomato Mozzarella Salad, Herb Potato Salad (no mayo), Greek Pasta Salad, and Keto Shrimp Salad.
See the broccoli salad recipe card below for a full list of ingredients and instructions.
- Raw broccoli florets – That’s right, raw! No need to blanch the broccoli. You will need two large heads of broccoli cut into bite size pieces.
- Bacon – Crispy-cooked crumbled bacon. I don’t recommend the bacon bits in a jar. They have an odd flavor to us.
- Red onion – You can use yellow onion if you prefer.
- Pepitas (pumpkin seeds) – For a nutty crunch.
- Sharp cheddar cheese – Shredded. Please shred your own cheese for the best flavor!
- Dressing – Mayonaisse, red wine vinegar, and granulated sugar. You may substitute Greek yogurt for the mayo if desired. The yogurt will give the salad a different flavor, though.
How to Make This Easy Broccoli Salad Recipe
Combine broccoli florets, red onion, cheese, bacon, and pumpkin seeds in a large bowl.
To make the broccoli salad dressing, in a small bowl, whisk the mayonnaise, red wine vinegar (or apple cider vinegar), and sugar together until thoroughly combined.
Pour the creamy dressing over the salad ingredients and mix until evenly coated.
Honestly, everyone absolutely loves this easy broccoli salad. It’s crunchy, fresh, and satisfying! It’s not just a side dish; I eat it as a meal too!
If you don’t buy fresh broccoli on a regular basis, be sure to put it on your list this week.
A good cold broccoli salad during those hot summer days is sure to hit the spot without weighing you down.
Tips and Variations
- I used pumpkin seeds, but I’ve also used sunflower seeds and/or sliced almonds. Your choice. Make this broccoli salad to your taste.
- Add raisins or dried cranberries. We prefer the salad without them.
- I have also made this low-carb/keto by using monk fruit sweetener instead of granulated sugar. I have also just omitted the sugar completely and added salt and black pepper.
- If you have vegetables that need to be used up, throw some of those in as well, such as cauliflower, peppers, or celery.
- Be sure to give this salad time to meld the flavors. It is always best after a few hours.
Store this salad in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
More Salad Recipes
Broccoli Salad Recipe
- 1 pound Fresh broccoli cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1/2 cup Red onion diced
- 1 cup Sharp cheddar cheese
- 1 cup Cooked bacon chopped
- 1/2 cup Pepitas pumpkin seeds
- 1 cup Mayonnaise not salad dressing
- 1/3 cup Granulated sugar
- 3 Tbsp Red wine vinegar
- Combine broccoli, onion, cheese, bacon and pepitas in a large bowl.
- In a separate bowl thoroughly combine mayonnaise, vinegar, and sugar.
- Pour dressing over salad and mix until evenly coated.
- Cover and refrigerate at least an hour before serving.
Oh my mom and I make a salad just like this one and it is delicious! It is always one of the first to go at every summer gathering, We’ve never put pumpkin seeds in it though and what a novel idea, definitely going to have to try that! The other difference is that a few years ago I starting adding halved grapes for a burst of sweetness. Great recipe!
Thank you! My family won’t allow me to add sweet to a savory salad…sad I know. 😉
Thank you…can’t wait to try this…it looks delicious!!!
I’m always trying to make a healthy version of this salad but I gotta say looking at these photos makes me want to say “The heck with the healthy version. I want this one!” It looks awesome!! Next time it’s the real thing for me. ? Thanks for sharing!!
Thank you, MJ! Please let me know if you are able to make it just a wee bit healthier! I could use that in my life. 😉
You make it healthy doesn’t need to adjust any flavor. Great broccoli salad bursting with lot of flavor. I love this salad, thanks for sharing with Hearth and soul blog hop, pinning and tweeting.
Thank you, Swathi!
I love broccoli salad! Yours is full of great stuff, mine is boring compared! We do like raisins in ours, but I’ve never added sunflower seeds or almonds, that looks so good. I love the crunch of the salad and the mix of flavors. I will be trying your variation soon, it’s so great for a summer side dish or snack!