We love a traditional broccoli salad for any potluck or bbq, it’s easy to make ahead and everyone loves it.

In this broccoli apple salad version, we’ve changed it up with the addition of crunchy, colorful veggies, fruit, and nuts. It’s all tossed in a 4 ingredient light and tangy dressing!

plated Broccoli Apple Salad

Broccoli Apple Salad

  • Easy and inexpensive ingredients and very little prep! Two steps? Yes, please!
  • Sweet, savory, tangy, crisp, and fruity, this salad is full of flavor.
  • Broccoli apple salad can be used as a side, in a veggie wrap or tucked into a pita pocket for an energizing mid-day lunch.

ingredients to make Broccoli Apple Salad

What’s in Broccoli Apple Salad?

BROCCOLI: Broccoli is the star here! Choose florets that are dry, bright green, and odorless. To save time, purchase pre-shredded carrots or shred them on a cheese grater.

FRUIT:

    • Grapes: Purple grapes give this salad a shot of color and some sweetness but green grapes work just as well. Slice the grapes in half before adding to the salad.
    • Apples: Green apples will make the salad a little more tart and the red and yellow apples are softer and sweeter.

EXTRAS: Crisp bacon bits or chopped bacon are great. (I often make bacon in the air fryer while I prep the other ingredients)!

DRESSING: The dressing is super easy and tangy delicious (and great on coleslaw too).

PRO TIP: For extra crunchy sunflower seeds, sauté them briefly in a dry pan until they are barely fragrant. This makes them extra crunchy and intensifies their flavor.

ingredients in the bowl to make a Broccoli Apple Salad

Variations to Try

This is the fun part! Use half broccoli and half cauliflower, add small cubes of cheddar cheese, switch out the raisins for dried cranberries, replace the carrots with a bag of coleslaw, add some small pieces of torn kale.

To make this into a bigger salad (especially for a crowd), double the dressing and add pasta to turn it into a broccoli pasta salad.

How to Make Broccoli Apple Salad

Toss these ingredients together for this creamy salad:

  1. Prep ingredients. Toss in a large bowl.
  2. Whisk dressing ingredients together, toss with the salad.
  3. Top with more bacon bits, cover, & refrigerate (As per recipe below).

pouring dressing over Broccoli Apple Salad

What to Serve With Broccoli Apple Salad

Served as a hearty side salad, broccoli Apple salad pairs perfectly with so many entrèes! Try Easy Grilled Chicken Breast, Grilled Pork Chops, or Balsamic Marinated Flank Steak. Don’t forget to add some Fluffy Dinner Rolls or homemade Focaccia bread!

Make-Ahead Miracle!

This recipe gets better as all the ingredients have a chance to blend. Make it, chill it, and serve it!

Best of all, it keeps for a few days too!

Our Fave Flavorful Salads

Did you make this Broccoli Apple Salad? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

top view of Broccoli Salad in a bowl
5 from 14 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Broccoli Apple Salad

Crunchy & colorful broccoli salad is tossed in a deliciously creamy dressing & loaded with fresh veggies!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Chill Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings 10 servings

Ingredients  

SALAD

  • 1 head broccoli
  • ½ cup purple grapes sliced in half
  • 1 large apple any variety, diced
  • cup carrots shredded or julienned
  • ¼ cup red onion diced
  • ¼ cup bacon bits divided
  • ¼ cup golden raisins
  • 3 tablespoons sunflower seeds

DRESSING

  • ¾ cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup plain yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar

Instructions 

  • Set aside 1 tablespoon bacon bits for garnish.
  • Toss all salad ingredients & remaining bacon in a large bowl.
  • Combine all dressing ingredients in a small bowl, add to salad ingredients and toss to combine.
  • Garnish with reserved bacon bits and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.

Notes

This salad is best made ahead of time so the flavors can blend.
Bacon bits can be replaced with crumbled crispy air fryer or oven bacon. 
Greek yogurt or sour cream can be used in place of plain yogurt.
5 from 14 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 207 | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 11mg | Sodium: 182mg | Potassium: 306mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 1120IU | Vitamin C: 56mg | Calcium: 46mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American

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About the author

Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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Comments

  1. All your links for “Rainbow Broccoli Salad” take me to “Apple Broccoli Salad.” (including within your search field). Now I see this “old” recipe below for “apple broccoli,” which has no apples and looks more like what a “rainbow broccoli” might.
    Is it just the links that are wrong?

    1. Below are the original ingredients and instructions:
      INGREDIENTS:
      1 head broccoli
      1 red pepper , diced
      1 yellow pepper , diced
      3/4 cup cheddar cheese , diced
      3/4 cup shredded or julienned carrot
      1 cup chopped purple cabbage
      1/4 cup sliced red onion
      1/4 cup bacon bits
      DRESSING
      3/4 cup mayonnaise
      1/4 cup yogurt
      2 tablespoons white vinegar
      1/4 cup sugar
      DIRECTIONS:
      Set aside 1 tablespoon bacon bits for garnish.
      Toss all vegetables, cheese and bacon in a large bowl.
      Combine all dressing ingredients in a small bowl, add to vegetables and toss to combine.
      Garnish with reserved bacon bits and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.
      NOTES:
      Optional: Add 1/4 cup sunflower seeds or chopped nuts.

  2. Shocked and sad that you changed this recipe- we loved it the way it was. I wish I would’ve printed it. Any chance you can please give me the original ingredients?

    1. Below are the original ingredients and instructions:
      INGREDIENTS:
      1 head broccoli
      1 red pepper , diced
      1 yellow pepper , diced
      3/4 cup cheddar cheese , diced
      3/4 cup shredded or julienned carrot
      1 cup chopped purple cabbage
      1/4 cup sliced red onion
      1/4 cup bacon bits
      DRESSING
      3/4 cup mayonnaise
      1/4 cup yogurt
      2 tablespoons white vinegar
      1/4 cup sugar
      DIRECTIONS:
      Set aside 1 tablespoon bacon bits for garnish.
      Toss all vegetables, cheese and bacon in a large bowl.
      Combine all dressing ingredients in a small bowl, add to vegetables and toss to combine.
      Garnish with reserved bacon bits and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.
      NOTES:
      Optional: Add 1/4 cup sunflower seeds or chopped nuts.

  3. The ingredients don’t seem to match with the photos. The ingredients mention grapes and seeds, but the photos look like squash or cheese cubes and red peppers. Is there an error?

  4. Is there a substitute that can be used for the mayo…I can’t stomach it. Perhaps just a straight yogurt dressing?

    1. I have only tried this recipe as written. I think you could try it with just yogurt. Let us know if you do try it Debbie!

  5. I already commented but this turned out not only pretty but even the kids loved all the veggies and cheese.  It will be made again soon!  5 stars

  6. Today is 2017 turkey day – made this early – homemade sauce – added craisins.  After it sets up I am confident it will be delicious.  Next time tho I will have individual bowls for ingredients and put together at same time with dressing.  I put it all together last night but didn’t do dressing till this morning.  5 stars

  7. Thanks for sharing this delicious broccoli salad! I made this tonight & used 3 slices bacon crumbled, instead of the bacon bits.

  8. This looks delicious… and it’s healthy! Broccoli is usually a love it or hate it veggie… personally I think it tastes really good in a salad!
    Aleeha xXx

  9. This is such a beautiful salad! You eat with your eyes first, right? :) It’s so delicious and good for you, too! I think an addition of chopped mango would be awesome, too.

  10. Broccoli salad is one of my favorite things ever!! I adore broccoli and then that tangy-sweet dressing…so good! Love the rainbow version!