Broccoli Bacon Salad is the most delicious way to eat broccoli! This broccoli salad is loaded with bacon, cheese, dried cranberries, red onion, and sunflower seeds, all tossed in a sweet creamy dressing. Everyone will be going back for seconds!
What sides are you making to go along with your main barbecue dish? The answer needs to be this Broccoli Bacon Salad! This salad is the perfect addition to your meal and is just about the tastiest way to eat broccoli. You’ll also want some other yummy sides like Slow Cooker Baked Beans, Rainbow Italian Tortellini Pasta Salad, and Frog Eye Fruit Salad.
Broccoli Salad with Bacon
I typically enjoy broccoli steamed or in stir fry but in this broccoli salad you leave raw and it tastes a-freaking-mazing! Like, I could eat a whole head worth of broccoli myself. I mean, when you eat it with bacon, cheese, and a sweet dressing, how could you not?! Plus, this recipe is easy peasy!
How to Make Broccoli Salad:
- Make the dressing by mixing together the mayonnaise, sugar, and vinegar. Place in the fridge.
- Cook your bacon. I find this easiest to do in the oven. Lay bacon on a baking sheet and bake at 425 for 12-14 minutes until crispy. Drain, cool, and chop.
- Place broccoli, bacon, cheese, dried cranberries, onion, sunflower seeds, and dressing together in a large bowl and toss together. Chill until ready to serve.
Can I make this salad in advance?
Yes! However, I recommend waiting to add the seeds and bacon until an hour or two before serving or else they will get pretty soft from the dressing. The salad is still delicious even if they have softened.
What kind of cheese should I use?
Cheddar! The flavor tastes great in combination with everything else in the salad. Depending on how strong you want the taste, you can choose mild, medium, or sharp. I prefer medium cheddar. You may also choose white cheddar which would be really pretty in this salad.
How big should the broccoli florets be?
Be sure to cut the florets small enough to easily eat with a fork. Make them no bigger than 1 1/2 inches.
What kind of mayonnaise should I use?
While I’m all for making things healthier and using Greek yogurt in place of mayonnaise, I don’t recommend it with this salad. If you want to make it a little healthier you can use light mayonnaise, olive oil mayonnaise, or canola oil mayonnaise.
LOOKING FOR MORE SIDE DISHES FOR YOUR COOK OUT? CHECK OUT THESE:
- Trying to eat more greens? Autumn Poppy Seed Spinach Salad with have your kids begging for more spinach salad.
- Serving steak? These Easy Twice Baked Potatoes are the perfect side!
- This is seriously The Best Buttermilk Cornbread. No one will be able to pass up a slice of this!
- BLT Tortellini Salad is even better than the sandwich!
- Black Bean and Corn Salsa is more of an appetizer but always disappears quickly at any party.
- This Greek Panzanella salad is loaded with fresh butter croutons. It’s always a hit!
- For a simple and refreshing salad try Cilantro Lime Cucumber Salad
- Macaroni salad is a must, especially this Sharp Cheddar Macaroni Salad
TOOLS USED TO MAKE THIS BROCCOLI SALAD RECIPE:
- Pyrex Mixing Bowls with Lids- I love my mixing bowls with lids because then I am able to stack things up with the fridge. Plus, glass is nice for when I need to microwave whatever is in it.
- Half-Sheet Pan– I LOVE these pans. I’ve had the same 4 pans since I got married (8 years ago) and they are in great condition. I use them all the time for cakes, cookies, roasting vegetables, baking chicken, bacon…
- Cutting board– I love having various sizes of cutting boards and these are awesome because they won’t slip and slide around on the counter.
Broccoli Bacon Salad
For the Salad:
- 3/4 pound bacon
- 1 lb broccoli florets, (about 2 heads broccoli)
- 1 1/2 cups medium cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- 3/4 cup red onion, diced
- 1/2 cup roasted sunflower seeds (lightly salted)
For the Dressing:
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Mix together all dressing ingredients and place in the fridge.
- Lay bacon on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 12-14 minutes until crispy. Remove from pan and drain on paper towel lined plate. When cool, dice.
- Place broccoli, cooked bacon, cheese, cranberries, red onion, sunflower seeds, and dressing in a large bowl and toss together. Refrigerate until ready to serve.