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Broccoli Salad

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.


close up of homemade broccoli salad with creamy sweet dressing, crispy bacon, golden raisins and purple onions

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:

Watch and Learn

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:  15 min
  • Calories: 693


  • 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
  • Calories693
  • Protein14 g
  • Carbohydrates35 g
  • Total Fat57 g
  • Dietary Fiber6 g
  • Cholesterol52 mg
  • sodium891 mg
  • Total Sugars24 g

Broccoli Salad

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

  • Wendy

    Could white onions be substituted for red onions? Is the only difference the color?


    Red usually has a sharper flavor but white will work fine in a pinch, hope you enjoy!

  • meredith

    hi! Could greek yogurt be used in place of mayonnaise?

    Hi Meredith, we would not recommend that in this recipe.

  • staci duarte

    Will the dressing work with Stevia rather than Sugar?

    We haven't tested it but imagine that will work fine! We'd recommend starting with less and tasting it first then adding more if you need it sweeter. It might not need a full 1/3 cup of stevia. Hope you enjoy Staci!

  • Lori Schiller

    Can this be made the day before?

    Yes, that will work fine! Hope you enjoy!

  • Jack Osborne

    The recipe says it serves 8, but how much would each serving be?

    About 1 cup.

  • Patricia

    We love this recipe. The only change I made was using Swerve instead of sugar and omitted the raisins, my husband is diabetic

    Thanks Patricia, so happy to hear you both love it!

  • Lisa Daum

    delicious and easy

    Thanks Lisa!

  • susan

    Super yummy. Everyone asked for the recipe. Your page is very informative.

    Thanks Susan, we are so happy that everybody loved it!

  • Marie

    This is a very flexible recipe. I use white vinegar instead of cider. I make a huge quantity. I dress the broccoli and add the other ingredients at serving time if then. It is delicious and healthy with just the broccoli and dressing alone. I use dried cranberries instead of raisins and sometimes walnuts instead of the sunflower seeds.

    Thanks Marie, so glad you like it and that you have fun switching it up with what is on hand!

  • Robin

    I put cheese and cherry tomatoes also. Yummy.

    Glad you enjoyed it Robin, sounds like delicious additions as well!