Broccoli salad is one of those summer picnic classics that’s easy to tote everywhere at this time of year. It blends a handful of mismatched ingredients into something surprisingly tasty: broccoli and grapes, vinegar and sugar, cauliflower and bacon…sufficient doses of sweet, salty, healthy…and not-so healthy.

Healthier Broccoli Salad

I like to make a version that’s slightly less artery-clogging. Although I love the original version in all its mayonnaise-drenched, greasy bacon glory, the lighter version keeps all the nutritional value of the original but subtracts a few of the less-good-for-you ingredients.

Healthier Broccoli Salad

Instead of loading on the dressing, I cut back on the liquids a bit, and I also swap out the regular bacon for turkey bacon. The result is a crunchier, colorful salad that you can feel better about eating.

Healthier Broccoli Salad

I’ll be honest: turkey bacon isn’t generally known for its incredible flavor, and it hasn’t always been my thing, because I don’t think it quite measures up to the pork variety. I’ve got to admit, though, turkey bacon has come a long way since it was first introduced to the market, and the stuff you find in grocery stores today is a far cry from some of the less-appealing products that first appeared on the shelves several years ago. These days, I like turkey bacon enough to eat it on its own, but it tastes even better in this salad!

If you’re looking for recommended brands, Butterball’s turkey bacon is probably my favorite, and Jennie-O’s isn’t bad, either! If you are making this salad as an entree, feel free to double up on the protein.

Healthier Broccoli Salad

Some people add sunflower seeds, raisins, or red onions to their salad for extra texture and flavor, so throw those in, too, if you’d like! There are lots of different options for this figure-friendly salad. What else do you think is a perfect broccoli salad add-in?

Give this healthier version a try next time you’re craving a summertime salad. It’s a filling choice for your lunch at work or the annual family potluck…minus the guilt!

Healthier Broccoli Salad

Healthier Broccoli Salad

Yield: 10 servings

Healthier Broccoli Salad


  • 1 bunch broccoli, chopped into bite-sized florets
  • 1 head cauliflower, chopped into bite-sized florets
  • 1/2 pound turkey bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 cup seedless grapes
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp. sugar


  1. First, mix dressing. In a bowl, whisk mayonnaise with vinegar and sugar until well-blended.
  2. In a large bowl, toss broccoli with cauliflower, bacon and grapes. Drizzle dressing on top or mix in thoroughly.

Broccoli Salad Nutrition

Healthier Broccoli Salad

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Comments (2)

Emma @ Bake Then Eat
June 18, 2014

I love a good base salad that you can add different things to change up the taste and texture with. I love salads with a rich creamy dressing but after spending some time in Italy I have grown to appreciate the lovely oils and vinegars as well, as does my arteries :D

June 18, 2014

Italy?! I’m jealous! I’m confident that I would love its salad dressings just as much as you do, not to mention all the other amazing food there! :)

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