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Broccoli Salad is a vibrant recipe that can be enjoyed as a side dish, appetizer, and you can bring it with you to your next potluck! Fresh broccoli is tossed with delicious ingredients like shredded cheddar cheese, crumbled bacon, red onion, and more.

A wooden spoon has lifted a portion of broccoli salad from the bowl.
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Salads should be anything but bland or boring. I mean, if I’m going to eat vegetables in the form of a side salad, it better still hit the spot! That’s why I’m so obsessed with this easy to make Broccoli Salad – it’s loaded with ingredients like cheddar cheese and bacon, so it actually satisfies my cravings.

The dressing that gets tossed with all of my favorite ingredients is also downright delicious. Red wine vinegar, freshly squeezed lemon juice, mayonnaise and more are mixed together to create a simple, yet bold blend of flavors that compliment the broccoli perfectly.

Broccoli is one of my favorite veggies, so I like to make sure I get enough of it by making recipes like this one! When broccoli is dressed up and plated with bacon and cheese, I make sure to finish every last bite. It’s so good I can’t help myself!

Cheese, bacon, and broccoli are tossed together and plated on a round white plate.

What You’ll Need:

  • Broccoli – I personally like to chop the heads of broccoli myself, but you can buy the bagged stuff if you prefer.
  • Cheddar Cheese – It may be quicker to buy a baggie of shredded cheese, but shredding a block of cheddar yourself will yield better results in both flavor and consistency.
  • Bacon – You can either just buy bacon bits or go the extra mile and fry it up yourself.
  • Red Onion – Red onions have the most potent onion-y flavor, which is what you’re looking for in this recipe.
  • Red Wine Vinegar – Avoid using any other type of vinegar!
  • Sugar – Plain white granulated sugar is all you need, nothing fancy!
  • Salt and Pepper – Don’t be too generous with the salt, and make sure your black pepper is freshly ground for the best flavor.
  • Mayonnaise – You can use full or low fat, whichever best fits your diet.
  • Lemon Juice – As always, use freshly squeezed lemon juice only – not the bottled alternative.
Broccoli, cheese, bacon, and chopped red onions are all tossed together.

How to Make Broccoli Salad

For more detailed instructions, scroll to the bottom of this post.

Make the dressing. Combine all of the ingredients for the dressing in a large bowl, then whip it all together until combined for about one minute.

Toss the salad. In the same bowl, combine the remaining salad ingredients. Stir until everything is fully coated, then enjoy!

A white bowl is filled with freshly made broccoli salad.

Common Questions

Can I make broccoli salad vegan? Yes! Just make sure you use a vegan mayonnaise, dairy-free cheddar cheese, and a plant-based bacon alternative.

Can I use frozen broccoli? No, it tends to be too mushy for broccoli salad. You want the crunch from the broccoli so it gets that good texture.

How long will broccoli salad stay fresh? In an airtight container in the fridge, this salad will stay fresh for about 24 hours once it’s been tossed. If you store the salad ingredients in a separate container from the dressing, both containers will stay fresh for about 2-3 days.

A fork has pierced a piece of broccoli above a bowl of broccoli salad.

Enjoy more of my favorite salad recipes this summer!

Vegan Caesar Salad

Mexican Street Corn Salad

Summer Panzanella

Quick Basic Chopped Salad

5 from 1 vote

Broccoli Salad

Broccoli Salad is a vibrant recipe that can be enjoyed as a side dish, appetizer, and you can bring it with you to your next potluck!
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8


  • 2 heads chopped broccoli
  • 1 ½ cup (170 g) shredded cheddar cheese
  • 8 slices crumbled bacon
  • ½ cup (80 g) chopped red onion
  • ¼ cup (59 ml) red wine vinegar
  • cup (25 g) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • cup (149 g) mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
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  • For the dressing, combine red wine vinegar, sugar, ground pepper, salt, mayonnaise, and lemon juice in a large oversized mixing bowl. Whip together for 1 minute.
  • In the same bowl, add broccoli, cheese, bacon, and onion. Stir until all are coated fully. Using a spatula, pour into a serving bowl.


The dressing is very light and sweet which compliments SO well with the crunchy texture of the broccoli and bacon. The bacon helps offset the sweetness so it almost has a combination of salty and sweet taste to it.
Red wine vinegar is what gives off the pink color to the dressing which I thought is super pretty. I don’t really recommend using white wine vinegar or any other type of vinegar (if say you don’t have red wine vinegar stock in the pantry) because the red wine vinegar has more of a bold flavor to it than white wine vinegar. BUT if you do happen to have red wine on hand, you can absolutely mix the red wine and white vinegar together. Make sure you mix the two liquids in equal parts. So for ¼ cup of red wine vinegar, you would need to do 4 tbsp of red wine + 4 tbsp of white vinegar.


Serving: 1serving, Calories: 287kcal, Carbohydrates: 15g, Protein: 10g, Fat: 22g, Saturated Fat: 7g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 30mg, Sodium: 629mg, Potassium: 525mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 6g

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.

The default measuring system for this website is US Customary. Unit conversions are provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. While we strive to provide accurate unit conversions, please be aware that there may be some discrepancies.

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  1. The broccoli salad sounds yummy but advancing further into the recipe, are you blanching the broccoli before use? Could sour cream along with Greek Yogurt for the dressing?
    An awesome side dish to entice the taste buds. Thanks for caring.

    1. hi Naomi! i don’t blanch the broccoli, it’s a raw salad. if you feel more comfortable with blanching, definitely do so to your desired doneness. i like it raw because it’s so crunchy! The flavor may change a little if you use sour cream and greek yogurt (i imagine really tangy and with a bite, especially since there’s also red wine vinegar in this)…so you may have to adjust the dressing too. truthfully, i would stick to what the recipe says for the dressing :)