Creamy Broccoli Salad With Bacon, Cheddar, and Toasted Pecans
This creamy broccoli salad is perfect if you’re looking for a new keto salad or side-dish for your meal plan.
Not only is broccoli inexpensive to buy during the growing season but you can prepare it in so many ways.
Broccoli on the keto diet is a key staple vegetable as it is low in carbs with 2 net carbs in a 1/2 cup and can be eaten raw or cooked.
Where is broccoli mainly grown?
Did you know that China and India produce 76% of the world’s broccoli? – Source
I didn’t and if you didn’t, you do now.
Broccoli is native to Italy, spreading throughout the rest of Europe at the marriage of Catherine de Medici and Henry II of France.
Broccoli is also part of the cabbage family and in Italy is called broccolo meaning the flowering crest of the cabbage.
Italian rapini is also called broccoli and a staple in many Italian families but is different in taste and texture.
How To Clean and Store Broccoli
When storing broccoli we do the prep work as soon as we bring it home from the grocery store as it doesn’t last long.
You’ll want to eat broccoli with-in 2 to 3 days after bringing it home so prep it as soon as possible.
How To Properly Clean The Broccoli
Firstly, a quick wash under cold water and a vinegar spray are the first two steps followed by cutting it into florets.
If I don’t chop the broccoli up I wash it and wrap it in a paper towel then refrigerate as I do with romaine lettuce.
Lastly, always make sure before you refrigerate the broccoli if you don’t use it right away is that it is dry.
Any moisture will cause the broccoli to degrade faster which leaves you less time to enjoy it.
Often I will put the cleaned broccoli in a Ziploc produce bag but if you don’t have one just keep it in the paper towel.
However, don’t soak the florets in water or put them in a container or plastic bag (unless you leave the top open).
All Broccoli Parts Are Edible
When cleaning raw broccoli all of it is edible so don’t throw the stems in the garbage.
I like to gently peel the stems and eat them raw as they are so tender.
Try it next time, you’ll see what you’ve been missing out on.
Eating raw broccoli will not only serve as a textured part of your meal or snack but kill any crunch cravings.
Most importantly instead of reaching for a bag of chips opt for fresh-cut raw vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, radish, celery, etc.
Types Of Broccoli In Ontario
There are many different types of broccoli but what we typically find in an Ontario grocery store is green broccoli.
Broccoli is in season from June until October in Ontario where you will find the best prices and highest quality products.
According to Foodland Ontario, “Over 70 percent of the broccoli grown in Ontario is Paragon; Cruiser and Premium Crop are also popular varieties.”
Broccoli is a good source of Vitamin C and folacin, and a source of fibre, Vitamin A, and potassium.
Raw Broccoli Salad Ideas
The great thing about broccoli salad is that once you have the base recipe you can add whatever you’d like.
Below are some other ways that we’ve tried this recipe since we created it and tested it before sharing it on the blog.
Just be cautious as not all of the added extras are keto but I’ve marked them so you know.
Variations Of Broccoli Salad
- Broccoli Ranch Salad (instead of using mayonnaise use ranch dressing)
- Broccoli Salad with Raisins (add raisins into your salad) Not Keto
- Broccoli Salad with Avocado chunks (gently fold avocado chunks marinated in lemon juice first to stop any browning)
- Feta Broccoli Salad (crumble Greek feta into the salad then mix)
- Tomato and Broccoli Salad (I like to use cherry tomatoes as they look pretty)
- Broccoli Salad with Apples (apple chunks add extra crunch and either a sweet or tart flavour depending on what apple you use) Not Keto
- Broccoli Potato Salad (Add boiled baby potatoes to the recipe and extra mayo)
- Keto Broccoli Radish Potato Salad – What we did here is combined our keto radish potato salad with this broccoli salad) Amazing!
How To Make Broccoli Salad
Although I used homemade bacon mayonnaise for this recipe you can use store-bought in its place.
Personally, I’m a fan of Hellman’s mayonnaise and nothing else unless it’s an avocado mayo
- 6 cups of broccoli florets
- 1½ cups full-fat mayonnaise
- 4 radish cut and sliced
- 1 cup of chopped celery
- 500 grams of cooked bacon crumbled
- ¼ cup toasted whole pecans
- 4-6 cherry tomatoes
- 6 black olives whole pitted
- ⅓ cup red onion sliced thin
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 spring onion chopped
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- ¼ teaspoon salt (add to taste)
- 1 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
- 1 cup shredded old cheddar
- ⅓ cup freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
- Clean 3 crowns of broccoli enough to equal 5-6 cups and remove the stems and leaves.
- Add the mayonnaise, salt, pepper, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, and mix. (If you don't have apple cider vinegar or lemon juice just double up on the one you do have.
- Include the celery, radish, bacon, red onion, spring onion, black olives then mix to combine
- On top add whole or chopped toasted pecans or walnuts
Serve the broccoli salad right away with your favourite protein such as hard-boiled eggs, fish, grilled steak, chicken, or pork.
In conclusion, broccoli is a delicious and nutritious vegetable that can be served in multiple ways for optimal nutrition.
Sprinkle with some Manitoba hemp hearts for extra superfood nutrition.
Every serving of these versatile hemp seeds will add 10 grams protein, 12 grams Omegas 3 & 6, and a rich nutty taste to any meal! Sprinkle Hemp Hearts on salad, cereal, or yoghurt, or blend them into smoothies. Manitoba Hemp Hearts (we use this brand).
Nutrition: 3 net carbs per 1 cup of keto broccoli salad
Discussion: How would you switch up my broccoli salad to make it your favourite?
Leave me your comments below as I’d love some new ways to try this.