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Bacon/ Lunch/ Summer Lovin'

The Best Broccoli Salad

July 30, 2018 (Last Updated: August 18, 2022) by Chris Collins

Get ready to fall in love with this Creamy Broccoli Salad with Bacon! Featuring Cranberries, Flaked Almonds & Feta, this really is simply the BEST Broccoli Salad Recipe!

I know right, broccoli salad!? It’s a bit of an odd concept, isn’t it? Raw broccoli isn’t something you often find yourself craving, I know I’d never thought of eating it before. But let me tell you, a raw broccoli salad is potentially now of my all-time favourite salads, and I’m confident it’s about to be yours too. Follow me…

broccoli salad served in white bowl with two silver forks resting on it

Creamy Broccoli Salad

I was first introduced to broccoli salad at a restaurant a few years back and only really ordered it through curiosity. I just remember being blown away at how gorgeous raw broccoli tastes in a salad. That nice crunchy texture, wrapped in a creamy dressing. So much yum.

So, first things first, let’s talk dressing.

Creamy Broccoli Salad Dressing

  • Sour Cream & Mayo – This creates the base of the dressing. Both full fat, of course!
  • Sugar – Broccoli, especially raw, can be a little bitter. The sugar helps balance everything out.
  • Lemon Juice – Cuts through the rich, creamy dressing.
  • Salt & Pepper – Season well and to taste.

I like to keep it real simple with the dressing. No fancy ingredients, just the essentials. Some broccoli salad recipes use a vinaigrette, but I find a simple creamy dressing goes far more suitably!

Can I make the dressing ahead of time?

Sure can! If I’m doing the dressing in advance it’s usually good for 3-4days (longer at your discretion) tightly covered in the fridge.

Process shots: gather ingredients (photo 1), add to mixing bowl (photo 2), stir to combine (photo 3).

3 step by step photos showing how to make broccoli salad dressing

Bacon Broccoli Salad

I mean realistically there was always going to be bacon in the salad wasn’t there? 🤣 Here’s what you’ll need for the best broccoli salad combo:

Best Broccoli Salad Ingredients

  • Bacon – Cooked until crisp then chopped.
  • Dried Cranberries – These are such a glorious addition to broccoli salad, so don’t skip them!
  • Feta – Some recipes use cheddar, but I much prefer the creamy, tangy flavours of feta.
  • Flaked Almonds – These add a nice crunch.
  • Red Onion – Adds a punch of flavour and pop of colour.

There are so many awesome broccoli salad recipes out there, but for me, those 5 ingredients give the most delicious combo. A broccoli salad with bacon is already a winner, but add some sweet cranberries, an extra crunch from the almonds, some feta for a little added creaminess and a gentle tang from the red onion and you’re on to something special!

Process shots: dice broccoli into small florets (photo 1), add fillings (photo 2), pour in dressing (photo 3), toss to combine (photo 4).

4 step by step photos showing how to make broccoli salad

Broccoli Salad FAQ

Can I make this ahead of time?

Absolutely! I’ve tightly covered this in the fridge and eaten up to 3 days after (longer at your discretion). Just be aware if you’ve already made the dressing ahead of time that the shelf life might be slightly reduced. Also, the broccoli/almonds will ever so slightly soften, but the difference is small.

Do I have to cook broccoli for a broccoli salad?

Nope! The broccoli is completely raw, absolutely no need to cook the broccoli for a salad. It’s an odd concept munching on raw broccoli but I promise you it totally works in this context.

What can I sub the flaked almonds for?

If you don’t like almonds you can sub cashews/pecans. If you can’t eat nuts then use sunflower seeds.

squeezing lemon juice over broccoli salad in white bowl

Serving Broccoli Salad

When to serve broccoli salad?

This is great for pot lock, bringing to BBQs or even as a side for a lunch or evening meal. I usually let it rest for an hour after making, just to let the flavours develop.

Alrighty, let’s tuck into the full recipe for this broccoli salad shall we?!

holding fork with broccoli salad on it close up to camera, bowl broccoli salad blurred in background

How to make Broccoli Salad (Full Recipe & Video)

Crunch Broccoli Salad with Bacon served in a bowl with two forks

Creamy Broccoli Salad with Bacon

Get ready to fall in love with this Creamy Broccoli Salad with Bacon! Featuring Cranberries, Flaked Almonds & Feta, this is the BEST Broccoli Salad Recipe.
5 from 5 votes
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Servings (click & slide): 4
Course: Appetizer / Starter
Cuisine: Salad
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Calories per serving: 556kcal
Cost per serving: £2 / $2.50

Equipment:

  • Large Mixing Bowl & Spatula
  • Small Mixing Bowl
  • Frying Pan & tongs (for bacon)
  • Sharp Knife & Chopping Board

Ingredients (check list):

Dressing

  • 1/2 cup / 125g Sour Cream
  • 1/2 cup / 125g Full Fat Mayo
  • 2 tsp Sugar
  • 1/2 Lemon, juice only
  • 1/2 tsp Salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp Black Pepper, or to taste

Broccoli Salad

  • 1lb / 450g whole Broccoli(s) chopped into small bite-sized florets (florets should weigh between 9-10.5oz/250-300g)
  • 4-5 slices of Streaky Bacon, cooked, cooled & chopped
  • tightly packed 1/3 cup / 60g Dried Cranberries
  • 1/4 cup / 25g Flaked Almonds (see notes)
  • 1/4 cup / 40g Feta, crumbled
  • 2 tbsp very finely diced Red Onion

Instructions:

  • In a small mixing bowl combine mayo, sour cream, lemon juice, sugar, salt and pepper.
  • In a larger bowl, add broccoli florets with dried cranberries, bacon, flaked almonds, feta and red onion. Pour in all the dressing and give it a good toss until everything is evenly combined.
  • Rest in the fridge for a couple of hours (important to marry the flavours and tenderize the broccoli) then serve up and enjoy! If the dressing is a little firm, just bring it close to room temp to loosen it up.

Quick 1 min demo!

Notes:

a) Filling amounts - Feel free to use more/less of each ingredient, it really is all down to preference. However, here I offer the measurements I personally feel offer the best balance of flavour.
b) Almonds Sub - Almonds can be subbed with any other nut (cashews and pecans work great). If you can't have nuts for whatever reason sunflower seeds can be used!
c) Make Ahead - This keeps well for 3-4 days tightly stored in the fridge. The broccoli will ever so slightly soften due to the dressing, but the difference is small.
d) Calories

Your Private Notes:

Nutrition:

Nutrition Facts
Creamy Broccoli Salad with Bacon
Amount Per Serving
Calories 556 Calories from Fat 392
% Daily Value*
Fat 43.58g67%
Saturated Fat 10.6g53%
Trans Fat 0.07g
Polyunsaturated Fat 18.232g
Monounsaturated Fat 12.457g
Cholesterol 51mg17%
Sodium 683mg28%
Potassium 871mg25%
Carbohydrates 32.01g11%
Fiber 7.1g28%
Sugar 15.07g17%
Protein 14.73g29%
Vitamin A 3150IU63%
Vitamin C 203mg246%
Calcium 240mg24%
Iron 2.2mg12%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition is based on the absence of salt unless stated as a measurement in the ingredients. Cost is worked out based on ingredients bought from UK supermarkets, then divided by the number of servings. In both instances these values are just for guidance. Please check out my FAQ Page for more info.
Tried this recipe?Show me how you got on by tagging @dontgobaconmyheart_ on IG and #dontgobaconmyheart
Looking for more?You'll find plenty more delicious comfort food like this in my Debut Cookbook 'Comfy'

If you’re looking for similar recipes to whip up then definitely check these out:

Mega Summer Salads

Funky Broccoli Recipes


If you loved this Broccoli Salad Recipe then be sure to pin it for later! Already made it or got a burning question? Give me a shout in the comments below and pick up your free ecookbook along the way!

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Recipe Rating




10 Comments

  • Reply
    Sandi
    July 30, 2018 at 11:40 pm

    5 stars
    Bacon is life! Add in broccoli and Lemon flavor and I will happily eat it.

    • Reply
      Chris
      July 31, 2018 at 11:36 am

      Such a nice combo right!?

  • Reply
    Jessica Formicola
    July 30, 2018 at 8:53 pm

    5 stars
    This salad would be perfect for any summer BBQ!

    • Reply
      Chris
      July 30, 2018 at 9:06 pm

      So good for a BBQ!!

  • Reply
    Jill
    July 30, 2018 at 8:51 pm

    5 stars
    Broccoli salad is always a welcome addition at any gathering. I like your addition of dried cranberries and feta!

    • Reply
      Chris
      July 30, 2018 at 9:06 pm

      Yup! It’s literally my go-to salad to take anywhere

  • Reply
    Pam Greer
    July 30, 2018 at 8:31 pm

    5 stars
    I’ve had plenty of broccoli salads, but never one that sounded this good!! Love that bacon and then the cranberries and almonds are just genus!

    • Reply
      Chris
      July 30, 2018 at 8:36 pm

      Oh thanks, Pam! The bacon, cranberries and almonds taste so gorgeous in a broccoli salad!!

  • Reply
    Kelsey
    July 30, 2018 at 8:08 pm

    5 stars
    I have never made a broccoli salad! This one looks delicious! I am going to get out of my shell and try this one!

    • Reply
      Chris
      July 30, 2018 at 8:11 pm

      Ah you so gotta, Kelsey! It’s a game changer 🙂

    5 KNOCKOUT

    DINNERS

    YOU'LL NEVER STOP MAKING!

    A FREE EMAIL SERIES, FROM ONE FOODIE TO ANOTHER