Broccoli Salad is a quick salad full of fresh crisp broccoli, dried cranberries, sunflower seeds, and bacon bits. It’s all tossed in a really easy creamy homemade dressing.
Since it’s best made ahead of time (and everyone raves about this recipe), it’s a great potluck dish and a favorite addition to a holiday table.
What Makes This The Best Broccoli Salad
Simple. Delicious. Easy. The best broccoli salad recipe doesn’t need a lot of fancy ingredients.
- It’s so incredibly easy to make!
- The 3 ingredient dressing is super simple and extra creamy with a little tang. We love that it doesn’t have tons of sugar!
- Since it’s best made ahead of time, it’s perfect for potlucks and bbq’s or even lunches throughout the week.
- It is always a hit, we almost never have leftovers but if you do have leftovers, they last for about 5 days!
If you have extra veggies you need to use up, you can easily add them to this dish. Zucchini, cauliflower, celery, or peppers can make great additions!
Ingredients in Broccoli Salad
Fresh broccoli florets are the star of this dish. The broccoli doesn’t need to be cooked first. Just wash and drain well (a salad spinner can help ensure it’s dry).
Crispy bacon adds a salty smoky flavor. I use real bacon bits in this recipe to keep is simple but you can cut and crumble your own if you’d like.
Add ins include:
- onions (red or green work well)
- dried cranberries (add raisins if you’d like)
- sunflower seeds. Swap out the seeds for any kind of chopped nuts like almonds or pecans.
How to Make Broccoli Salad
This is probably one of the easiest salads you will throw together, which is why it has become a favorite (plus it’s so yummy)!
- Wash the broccoli and dry it very well. Cut the florets (and the stem) into bite-sized pieces, this can be done up to 4 days ahead of time. If you’d like you can also add some broccoli slaw to the salad.
- Whisk the dressing ingredients in a small bowl and set aside per the recipe below.
- Place the ingredients into a large mixing bowl, and toss with dressing. Remember to allow time for the recipe to chill in the fridge. This gives the broccoli a chance to soak in some of the dressing making it even better!
Broccoli Salad Dressing
We love this creamy broccoli salad dressing and it’s super simple to make in just 3 minutes.
- Mayonnaise can be swapped for dressing (like Miracle Whip).
- A sugar substitute of your choice will work well in this recipe.
- If you’re looking for a premade dressing, try coleslaw dressing or creamy poppyseed dressing.
- To make this broccoli salad recipe healthier, substitute half of the mayonnaise for plain Greek yogurt and skip the bacon bits.
Tips for the Best Creamy Broccoli Salad
- Wash your broccoli ahead of time if possible, this helps to ensure it drains well.
- This gives the broccoli a chance to soak in some of the dressing, resulting in an even more flavorful salad!
- Allow time for the recipe to chill in the fridge. This gives the broccoli a chance to soak in some of the dressing, resulting in an even more flavorful salad!
Make Ahead & Leftovers
Broccoli Salad can be made in advance and kept in the fridge (at least an hour but up to 24 hours) until you’re ready to serve. If you’d like to make further ahead, keep the dressing separate and toss a few hours before serving.
Leftovers will last about 4-5 days in the fridge.
More Easy Salads We Love
Did you enjoy this Broccoli Salad? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below!
The Best Broccoli Salad
- 8 cups broccoli cut into bite-sized pieces
- ⅓ cup red onion diced
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup sunflower seeds
- ½ cup bacon bits
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- salt & pepper to taste
- Whisk together dressing ingredients in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine broccoli, onion, cranberries, sunflower seeds, and bacon bits. Pour the prepared dressing over and mix well.
- Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.
Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.
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