Dive into a salad bursting with raw broccoli, crisp cauliflower, sizzling bacon bits, creamy Colby Jack cheese cubes, and a zesty Greek yogurt blend. Truly, broccoli’s never been this tempting!
I still chuckle when I remember the times I’d cleverly hide my broccoli under the mashed potatoes during dinner, thinking my mom wouldn’t notice. Fast forward to now, and it’s a staple in my kitchen. But what transformed my “broccoli blues”? This Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad. A weekend at Aunt Clara’s was all it took. She served this salad at a barbecue, and my taste buds did a happy jig! Cheese, bacon, and that creamy dressing blended so well with the raw veggies that I forgot I was devouring… broccoli. Funny, isn’t it? How a simple recipe can change your perspective about something you’ve dodged all your life.
Why You’ll Love Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad:
Ever thought a broccoli could wear a cape? This salad turns this humble veggie into a super-hero! It’s raw – retaining all its nutrients. Tossed with crispy bacon, it adds that surprise crunch in every bite. The creamy dressing, not your ordinary calorie bomb, but a lighter, Greek yogurt-based symphony, balanced with the light sweetness of honey. Plus, ready in just 15 minutes? It’s not just a salad; it’s a revelation!
Ingredients For Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad:
The beauty of this salad is in the freshness. Opt for firm broccoli and cauliflower florets. When it comes to bacon, I love using thicker slices for that extra crunch. But here’s a tip: always sauté the bacon until it’s crispy, because nobody likes limp bacon, right? Using fat-free Greek yogurt gives the dressing a creamy texture without the guilt. And remember, the red onion adds a punch, so rinse it well to keep it from overpowering the other flavours.
How To Make Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad:
Dressing Drama: Start by getting a medium-sized mixing bowl. Whisk together your fat-free Greek yogurt, light mayonnaise, honey, red wine vinegar, granulated sugar, and salt. Give it a good mix until it’s creamy. The aim is to create a smooth, velvety texture. Once done, cover it up and let it chill. It’s like giving your dressing a little spa moment.
Salad Symphony: Grab your salad bowl. It’s showtime! Toss in your diced broccoli and cauliflower florets. Then sprinkle that crispy, sautéed bacon – remember to save some for the grand finale. Add the cubed Colby Jack cheese and those punchy red onions. If you’re feeling artistic, save some bacon and onion for a final sprinkle, giving your salad that magazine-cover look!
Merge and Mingle: Here’s the finale! Drizzle the chilled dressing over your vibrant veggie ensemble. Toss it all up, ensuring every bit gets a touch of the creamy goodness. For a spectacular finish, sprinkle the saved bacon and onion. Voila! Serve immediately and watch it vanish.
If you’ve got leftovers (which I’d find surprising given how tasty this is!), you can refrigerate it in an airtight container. Ideally, consume within a day for the best taste. Tip: If you’re planning ahead, keep the dressing separate and mix it in just before serving. This keeps the veggies crisp and fresh.
Variations and Substitutions:
Feel like mixing it up a bit?
Swap bacon with grilled chicken for a protein boost.
Not a fan of Colby Jack? Cheddar or Feta will do the trick.
For a nuttier crunch, throw in some sunflower seeds or chopped almonds.
If you want to keep it vegetarian, omit the bacon altogether, and maybe introduce some roasted bell peppers or sun-dried tomatoes.
As for the dressing, if you’re out of Greek yogurt, sour cream works as a delightful substitute.
Hope you have as much fun making this salad as I did sharing its story with you! Remember, every bite is a little broccoli party. Enjoy! 🥦🥳
Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad
- 3/4 cup non-fat plain Greek yogurt
- 1/2 cup light mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup pure honey
- 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt adjustable according to preference
- 4 cups finely diced broccoli florets
- 4 cups finely diced cauliflower florets
- 8 oz bacon approximately 8 slices, precisely diced, sautéed to a crisp finish, and thoroughly drained
- 1 1/4 cups small cubes of Colby Jack cheese approximately 6 oz in weight
- 1/2 cup finely chopped red onion rinsed and drained for optimal taste
- Dressing Preparation: In a medium-sized mixing bowl, meticulously whisk together all the components of the dressing until they amalgamate into a consistent mixture. Upon completion, it is recommended to refrigerate the dressing to preserve its freshness until it is required.
- Salad Assembly: In an appropriately sized salad bowl, integrate the diced broccoli and cauliflower florets. Subsequently, incorporate the sautéed bacon, ensuring even distribution. It is suggested, though optional, to reserve a small portion of the bacon for garnish. Introduce the cubed Colby Jack cheese, followed by the rinsed red onion. For aesthetic purposes, a portion of the red onion can also be reserved for garnish.
- Final Presentation: Once ready to serve, evenly pour the previously prepared dressing over the salad components. Employ a salad tosser to ensure the ingredients are uniformly coated with the dressing. For an enhanced presentation, the reserved bacon and red onion may be sprinkled atop the salad. It is advised to consume the salad shortly after preparation to appreciate its freshness and optimal flavor profile.