This Easy Broccoli Salad is made with real bacon bits and cheese. This classic and old fashioned dish is served cold and is definitely a crowd pleaser for the summer months. Feel free to toss in cauliflower!
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I often enjoy this broccoli salad year round! I don’t have to wait until the summer months because it’s just that good. I also love to add a little more protein to make it a full meal, usually cooked shrimp! So good.
Do You Use Raw Broccoli? Do You Have to Cook Broccoli?
Yes, raw broccoli is used in broccoli salad. The combination of mayo and apple cider vinegar in this recipe will soften the broccoli and add tons of flavor. Chilling the ingredients also assists in the ending texture. You can cook it if you want.
How to Make Broccoli Salad with Bacon and Cheese
Detailed measurements and full instructions can be found in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
- Slice broccoli florets into thin slices.
- Combine mayo, sweetener, apple cider, vinegar, salt, and pepper to taste and then combine it with the remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl. Stir to mix well.
- Cover and chill the salad.
Additional Toppings/Substitution Ideas
- Grape Tomatoes
- Cubed Ham
How to Substitute Mayo
Homemade Ranch Salad Dressing, plain Greek yogurt, or sour cream can be used as a substitute for mayo in this recipe.
How to Use Frozen Broccoli
Boil a large pot of water on the stove. Add the broccoli for about 20 seconds. Place the broccoli in ice water to prevent it from continuing to cook. You can read more about How to Cook Frozen Broccoli here.
How to Store the Salad
Store broccoli salad in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. I do not recommend freezing this dish, as it will not maintain its crunch after defrosting.
Can The Salad Be Made Ahead of Time?
Yes, if you plan to serve the dish within 3-4 days of making it.
Can You Freeze It
Dishes made with mayo or dairy don’t typically freeze well.
Pair With These Main Dish Recipes
Air Fryer Ribs
Traeger Smoked Ribs (3-2-1 Method)
Traeger Smoked Salmon
Grilled Baby Back Ribs
Homemade BBQ Seasoning
Slow Cooker BBQ Meatballs
How to Grill the Best Burgers
Grilled Cedar Plank Shrimp
Mushroom Swiss Burgers
Traeger Smoked Whole Chicken
Air Fryer Frozen Burgers
Twisted Bacon Recipe
More Salad Recipes
Bow Tie Pasta Salad with Italian Dressing
Spaghetti Salad Recipe
Classic Southern Potato Salad
Creamy Cucumber Salad
Southwest Salad Recipe
Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad
Grilled Asparagus in Foil
Easy Broccoli Salad with Bacon and Cheese
- 6 cups chopped, raw broccoli florets
- 1 cup mayo
- 1/4 cup sunflower seed kernels or slivered almonds
- 1 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons sweetener or sugar
- 4 slices cooked and crumbled bacon
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup chopped red onion
- salt and pepper to taste
- Slice the broccoli florets into thin slices.
- Combine the mayo, sweetener, apple cider, vinegar, salt, and pepper to taste and then combine it with the remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl. Stir to mix well.
- Cover and chill the salad for at least one hour.
- If you prefer a less sweet broccoli salad, start with 1 tablespoon of sweetener. Taste repeatedly and add more as needed. 2 tablespoons of sweetener along with the apple cider vinegar will produce a sweet and savory salad.
- 1 cup of mayo will make this a creamy salad. If you prefer less creamy, start with 1/2 – 3/4 cup of mayo. Add additional mayo as necessary.
- You can substitute mayo for plain Greek yogurt or sour cream.
- Broccoli salad will last covered in the fridge for 3-4 days.
- Makes 6-7 cups