How To Make Broccoli Salad

It’s hard to beat homemade broccoli salad. This delicious side dish is filled with fresh crisp broccoli, bacon, red onion, sharp Cheddar cheese, tomatoes, and almonds. This is the perfect dish to bring to a potluck or picnic.

broccoli salad in a large white bowl

Homemade broccoli salad

I love going to potlucks because you normally get to try everyone’s best dish. This broccoli salad is perfect to bring to a summer picnic or even a potluck.

Everyone has their favorite coleslaw or even potato salad, but not everyone has a broccoli salad. Best of all this dish is quick and easy to put together. You don’t even need to cook this recipe.

Ingredients for easy broccoli salad

Here’s what you need:

  • A large broccoli crown or you can buy the regular broccoli and cut off the stalk. You can save the stalk for a salad or even some homemade broccoli cheddar soup.
  • Red onion. A white onion will work in a pinch if that is what you have on hand.
  • Fresh tomatoes. I have used cherry tomatoes, grape tomatoes, or even Roma tomatoes for this recipe.
  • Bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • Shredded Cheddar cheese
  • Raisins
  • Slivered almonds
  • Mayonnaise – if you can use Duke’s or Hellman’s the flavor is really good in these two brands.
  • White vinegar
  • Sugar
  • Salt and pepper
broccoli salad ingredients

How to make broccoli salad

  1. Place broccoli, cooked bacon, onions, almonds, raisins, and cheese in a large mixing bowl. Stir to combine.
broccoli salad ingredients in a mixing bowl
  1. Mix together mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.
  2. Pour dressing over the broccoli mixture.
  3. Add tomatoes and gently stir to combine.
  4. Serve immediately or cover the salad and store in the refrigerator overnight.
broccoli salad in a serving bowl with small bowls and forks beside it

Recipe notes

While perfectly tasty when just made, the flavors will get better the longer you allow this salad to rest before serving.

If you cut want to cut the sugar from this you may want to add some Splenda in its place. I personally do like this with raisins. As I am not a fan of raisins, you can omit those as well.

How long is broccoli salad good for in the fridge?

Broccoli salad will last for 3 to 5 days when stored in a covered dish in the refrigerator. Past 5 days, the salad begins to lose its optimal flavor.

Do you steam broccoli for broccoli salad?

No, you don’t. In this recipe for broccoli salad, you will leave the broccoli raw.

How do you cut broccoli for broccoli salad?

Wash the broccoli carefully. Shake off the excess water. Grab the broccoli by the stalk and place the stalk over a large bowl. In your other hand grab your favorite chef’s knife.  Hold the knife parallel to the top of the floret, and carefully cut horizontally across the stalk. Your cut should be between ¼ and ½ inch.

You will need to rotate the stalk, so you are continually cutting into the floret. When there is no more floret you can use a vegetable peeler to peel off the stalk of the broccoli, and then chop up the remaining stalk into small pieces.

Possible variations for this fresh broccoli salad

I hope you give this fresh broccoli salad a try. I make mine with almonds, but I think cashews would work equally as well. The nuts add a nice crispness to this salad that I know you will enjoy.

I think you could also easily add some sliced cucumber or even some chopped red bell pepper for a nice flavor.

I hope you enjoy this broccoli salad recipe, I think you will find it a great addition to your picnic or potluck recipes.

homemade broccoli salad in a bowl

Love broccoli? Check out these recipes

Best Potluck Salads

Take a look at more of my easy salads and summer recipes.

broccoli salad in a large white bowl

Easy Broccoli Salad

Broccoli salad is an easy and tasty side dish that requires no cooking.
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Homemade Broccoli Salad
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories: 372kcal


  • 2 pounds broccoli
  • 1/2 pound bacon cooked crisp
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onions
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/2 cup raisins optional
  • 8 ounces shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed black pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes or cherry or grape tomatoes


  • Wash broccoli and pat dry.
  • Cut off the broccoli florets, leaving the stems aside. You can save the stems for use with a different recipe.
  • Place broccoli florets in a large bowl.
  • Crumble crispy cooked bacon and add it to bowl.
  • Add chopped red onions, raisins if desired, shredded cheese, and stir.
  • Place mayonnaise, white vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine.
  • Drizzle the dressing over the broccoli mixture.
  • Add tomatoes and gently fold them into the salad.
  • Cover the salad and refrigerate it overnight. You can serve immediately if you desire, but better flavors result the longer you let the salad rest.



Calories: 372kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 40mg | Sodium: 499mg | Potassium: 418mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 690IU | Vitamin C: 69.2mg | Calcium: 196mg | Iron: 1.3mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of's Dining Out in the Home, and's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


    • stephaniemanley

      Thank you for being so kind about giving this recipe a try. I know we all have veggies that we can’t stand. Mine is green bell peppers.

  1. jennikolaus

    Broccoli Salad is the best and my boys will actually eat it! I love your version, it sounds amazing!

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