Broccoli Bacon Brussels Salad Recipe

We might all look lovingly at bacon, but broccoli and Brussels sprouts undoubtedly get a bad rap. It was likely our childhood memories of the soggy boiled vegetables that scarred us enough to swear off ever enjoying cruciferous greens again, but the truth is that these hardy greens are incredibly versatile when cooked the right way — or, in this case, not cooked at all.

Both broccoli and Brussels sprouts are deliciously crunchy when used in raw salads, especially when paired with a really good dressing. In midwestern versions, broccoli florets are coated in mayonnaise or yogurt, like a pseudo-ranch chopped salad. This recipe written by Michelle McGlinn makes a triple threat out of the greens, pairing Brussels and broccoli with salty chopped bacon in a light and flavorful Dijon vinaigrette. It's healthy and easy to store for prepped out lunches during the week. Plus, it's delicious with avocado, so it's an easy win in our book.

Gather the ingredients for broccoli bacon Brussels salad

Half of the ingredients are easy to remember, being that they're right in the name. You can buy the broccoli in crowns and chop them yourself or buy them pre-chopped as florets needing only a few good rough cuts; we just don't recommend using frozen because the flavor will be off. Fresh is the way to go here, for every ingredient in the list.

Use whatever bacon is your favorite (thick-cut will stand out here), fresh Brussels sprouts, a couple cloves of garlic, apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard, extra-virgin olive oil, pine nuts, and goat cheese. The nuts can be swapped for less expensive varieties like almonds or walnuts, and the cheese can be swapped for Parmesan or feta if it's preferred. Finally, grab some salt and pepper to bring out the flavor in the dressing.

Crisp up the bacon

Even if you normally prefer your bacon on the softer side, you're going to want to cook the bacon extra-crispy for this recipe. After being tossed into the salad and coated in dressing, softer bacon bits will fade into the background and become soggy over time. Cook the chopped bacon on the stovetop over medium-high heat until very crispy so that the salty flavor and dense texture stand out and any leftovers taste the same the next day. This might feel like you're overcooking the bacon, but trust us, it's better this way in the end.

Chop the veggies

Not that there's a wrong way to do it, but chopping the broccoli and Brussels sprouts a certain way will guarantee a crunchy, springy salad. To cut the broccoli, slice off the thick stalk, then slice as close to the floret as possible, naturally causing the florets to separate into smaller pieces. The florets should look like small, ½ -inch broccoli heads.

To slice the Brussels sprouts, first cut them in half vertically, then lay each half flat on the cutting board. Slice the Brussels lengthwise, shredding or julienning each half into thin strips. This is a little tedious (or fun, if you like chopping) but shouldn't take longer than a couple minutes. Remember, there's no cooking involved, so you're almost done.

Whisk together the vinaigrette

The dressing comes together quickly and all you need is a bowl and a whisk. Combine the garlic, vinegar, and mustard in a bowl until well combined. Slowly drizzle the olive oil into the mixture, whisking constantly and vigorously while you pour (If you're having trouble, try recruiting a helpful spouse, roommate, or child to be your sous chef). As you whisk, you'll notice the dressing start to cloud into an opaque and creamy texture. This means the emulsion is working and your vinaigrette is properly combined.

Toss it all together and serve

Add the chopped vegetables, crispy bacon bits, nuts, and cheese to a large bowl. Toss it all together well, adding vinaigrette as you toss. Add the vinaigrette a splash at a time, tasting as you toss. Once the salad is dressed to your liking, it's ready to serve. You might not use all of the dressing, depending on how much vinaigrette you like on your salad.

While this salad is great on its own, you can throw in grilled chicken, drained chickpeas, or sliced avocado to make it a more filling main course. Serve this as-is as a side salad at picnics, cookouts, or summer dinners alongside braised beef short ribs, grilled burgers, or dressed up lasagna, and save the easy leftovers to eat for lunches throughout the week.

Broccoli Bacon Brussels Salad Recipe
5 from 34 ratings
This broccoli bacon Brussels salad features - you guessed it - fresh broccoli, crispy bacon bits, and sliced Brussels sprouts.
Prep Time
Cook Time
broccoli bacon brussels salad on a plate
Total time: 25 minutes
  • 6 strips bacon, chopped
  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts
  • 1 ½ pounds broccoli crowns
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 1 cup crumbled goat cheese
  1. Brown the chopped bacon in a skillet over medium heat, stirring often. Cook until very crispy, then remove with a slotted spoon onto a paper towel to drain grease.
  2. Slice each Brussels sprout in half vertically, then lay each half flat on the cutting board and cut into thin vertical strips. To slice the broccoli, first remove the thick stems, then cut the florets off. Additionally slice any florets so that they're uniform in size.
  3. To make the dressing, first combine the vinegar, garlic, and Dijon mustard in a small bowl. Whisking constantly, slowly pour the olive oil into the mixture until mixture becomes opaque. Sprinkle in salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Combine the bacon, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, pine nuts, and goat cheese in a large bowl. Pour dressing over contents and toss well to combine.
Calories per Serving 450
Total Fat 37.8 g
Saturated Fat 10.9 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 32.9 mg
Total Carbohydrates 15.8 g
Dietary Fiber 6.3 g
Total Sugars 3.9 g
Sodium 658.6 mg
Protein 15.9 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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