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Broccoli Salad

  • Serves: 8
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 5 min
  • Calories: 617
close up of homemade broccoli salad with creamy sweet dressing, crispy bacon, golden raisins and purple onions

This cold, crunchy broccoli salad—studded with crisp bacon, diced red onion and chewy raisins, then tossed in a creamy homemade dressing—is what all of your summer party dreams are made of.

Pairs Well With Barbecues, Pool Parties and Sparklers.

Broccoli salad is pure retro, cold salad comfort food, just waiting for you to bring it to your next summer party! Sure, it’s coated in a (delicious) mayonnaise-based dressing—what summer salad isn’t?—but it’s made with broccoli instead of macaroni or potatoes, so you can go ahead and pile those paper plates high with this bacon-y, onion-y easy broccoli salad.

ingredients laid out for broccoli salad; broccoli, bacon, mayonnaise, sugar, lemon juice, onions, golden raisins

What Is in Broccoli Salad?

Broccoli salad could also be called broccoli slaw, since it’s very similar to cole slaw in that it features a raw vegetable from the brassica family, tossed in a creamy, mayo-based dressing. Our easy broccoli salad recipe is classic, through and through! You’ll need:

  • Raw broccoli florets. Yep, no need to blanch broccoli for this salad. No-cook summer salads FTW!
  • Bacon. Cooked until crispy, then minced.
  • Raw red onion, also minced.
  • Sunflower seeds, for crunch. Look for the unsalted kind.
  • Raisins. Sounds weird, but their hint of sweetness and toothsome chewiness is a great foil for the super-crunch of the raw broccoli.
sweet creamy salad dressing in a bowl with a whisk
large bowl of raw broccoli, bacon, sunflower seeds, purple onions and golden raisins
creamy dressing being poured onto homemade broccoli salad
homemade broccoli salad with creamy sweet dressing, crispy bacon, golden raisins and purple onion

How To Make Broccoli Salad Dressing:

Traditional broccoli salad dressing is just creamy, mayonnaise-y perfection and we’re not about to stray from that sweet-tangy goodness. We start with store-bought mayo, and add both cider vinegar and fresh lemon juice for lots of tangy brightness. A bit of sugar and salt to balance it all out, and that’s all there is to homemade broccoli salad dressing.

How To Make Broccoli Salad:

This cold broccoli salad is the best thing ever—it knocks other cold summer salads out of the park, because there’s basically no cooking required. Here’s how to whip up the best broccoli salad ever:

  1. Chop chop chop! Chop the broccoli into small, bite-sized florets, mince the onion and cooked bacon.
  2. Mix up your homemade broccoli salad dressing in the bottom of a large bowl.
  3. Toss everything together until the salad is well dressed, and refrigerate for an hour. This last step is really important—if you’re super pressed for time, it is OK to skip it, but the salad really benefits from a little time in the fridge to let its sweet, savory, creamy flavors mingle and harmonize.
close up of homemade broccoli salad with creamy sweet dressing, crispy bacon, golden raisins and purple onion

What Pairs With Broccoli Salad?

From picnics in the park to backyard cookouts and everything in between, this broccoli salad recipe is one that we turn to anytime we’re invited to a summer party. It’s cold, crunchy, creamy and satisfying—plus, it’s a great way to sneak a green vegetable onto that chip-and-burger covered gingham table. Try pairing it with:

close up of homemade broccoli salad in a large bowl with salad tongs and a linen

Tools You’ll Need:

The Best Broccoli Salad Ever?

Did you love it? How’d it turn out?! We want to know! Snap a photo of your broccoli salad and maybe even a video of the beautiful people you feed it to. Tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

Broccoli Salad

  • Serves: 8
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 5 min
  • Calories: 617


  • 2 lbs Broccoli florets (8 cups)
  • 1 lb Bacon, cooked and minced
  • 1/2 cup Red onions, minced
  • 1/2 cup Sunflower seeds
  • 1 cup Raisins (golden or brown)


  • 1 1/2 cups Mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup Sugar
  • 3 tbsp Lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp Apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp Salt


  1. In a small bowl mix together mayonnaise, sugar, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar and salt. Whisk until smooth.
  2. In a large bowl toss together broccoli florets along with bacon, red onions, sunflower seeds, raisins and prepared dressing. Can be served immediately, but is best when chilled for at least an hour.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories 617
  • Protein 25 g
  • Carbohydrates 41 g
  • Total Fat 40 g
  • Dietary Fiber 3 g
  • Cholesterol 74 mg
  • sodium 1804 mg
  • Total Sugars 24 g

Broccoli Salad

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

  • Roberta Belback

    Can you use frozen broccoli?

    Frozen broccoli doesn't work very well in this recipe, unfortunately.

  • Emily

    I see it says to make at least an hour ahead. Is it still ok to make the night before?

    I would prep everything the night before and mix it all together an hour before serving. That way you don't serve soggy broccoli.

  • Mary R Nelson

    I'll be serving Broccoli salad 10ish in the am. Is it ok to mix in the dressing now noon

    It's best to mix in the dressing an hour or two ahead of time and let the salad sit in the fridge. Enjoy!

  • Norma Abrams

    How could I make this recipe with not so much sodium????

    Cut the bacon in 1/2 and buy unsalted sunflower seeds!

  • Ellie Sheldon

    How much is one serving? How many calories in one serving?

    We're in the process of adding nutritional info to all our recipes—hang tight!

  • Heather

    Absolutely delicious! Hands down my favorite broccoli salad recipe I’ve tried!

    Wow! Thanks Heather!

  • Ruth Giles

    I made this up and added baby peas and some cheese. It was really good. After it set awhile I added some more mayo and stirred it up. My mother-in-law loves this salad.

    Thanks Ruth! So happy you liked it! It always feels good to impress an in-law, great job!

  • Kim

    We loved it!! We didn't have a lot of bacon, so we tossed in some cilantro, chopped carrots, and red pepper. I did add celery seed and mustard powder (personal preference). It turned out fantastic
    thank you for this recipe!! We will definitely add it in our year round mix!!

    You're welcome Kim! Love to hear it's going into your rotation!

  • Lori Coffey

    I also had to make a few substations based on what I had on hand! All were YUM! Dried blueberry/cranberries for raisins. Sweet rice vinegar and balsamic for apple cider. A packet of Applewood bacon crumbles heated for crispiness. And brown sugar for white. Plus I par boil my broccoli then cool, for ease of munching!

  • teresa

    i made this for a BBQ last night and it was a hit! highly recommend and am so appreciative of this recipe. It is simply delicious for a summer night and is the perfect balance of savory and sweet.Make it ahead if you can to let the raw broccoli marinate and soften in the dressing.A few subs:- used light mayo- used turkey bacon - swapped onions for celery given the recent onion recall.

    Great! So glad you loved it.