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Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad

Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad Recipe


Welcome to our vibrant and flavorful salad recipes section! Today, we’re sharing a delicious and satisfying recipe for Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad. This salad combines fresh broccoli, tender rotini pasta, crunchy bacon, and a creamy dressing, making it perfect for any gathering or meal. Let’s get started!



For the Salad:

  • 4 cups broccoli florets, chopped
  • 12 oz rotini pasta
  • 1/2 cup red onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

For the Dressing:

  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Step 1: Prepare the Pasta and Broccoli

  1. Cook Pasta: Cook the rotini pasta according to the package instructions until al dente. Drain and rinse under cold water to cool.
  2. Blanch Broccoli: While the pasta is cooking, bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the chopped broccoli florets and blanch for 1-2 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process. Set aside.

Step 2: Prepare the Dressing

  1. Mix Dressing Ingredients: In a medium bowl, whisk together the granulated sugar, red wine vinegar, mayonnaise, sour cream, salt, and freshly ground black pepper until smooth and well combined.

Step 3: Assemble the Salad

  1. Combine Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked pasta, blanched broccoli, diced red onion, dried cranberries, sunflower seeds, and crumbled bacon.
  2. Add Dressing: Pour the dressing over the salad ingredients and toss to coat everything evenly.

Step 4: Chill and Serve

  1. Chill Salad: Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour to allow the flavors to meld together.
  2. Serve and Enjoy: Once chilled, give the salad a quick toss before serving. Enjoy your Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad!

Cooking Notes and Tips

  • Bacon: For extra flavor, use thick-cut bacon. Cook it until crispy and drain on paper towels before crumbling.
  • Broccoli: Blanching the broccoli helps retain its bright green color and crunch. Be careful not to overcook it.
  • Pasta: Rinsing the pasta under cold water after cooking helps stop the cooking process and cools it down quickly.


Chicken Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad

Add 1 cup of cooked, shredded chicken to the salad for added protein and flavor.


Cheesy Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad

Add 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese or crumbled feta cheese to the salad for a cheesy twist.


Spicy Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad

Add a pinch of red pepper flakes to the dressing for a spicy kick.


Nutty Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad

Replace the sunflower seeds with chopped almonds or walnuts for added crunch and flavor.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I make this salad ahead of time?

Yes, you can make this salad a day in advance. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

How do I store leftovers?

Store any leftover salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Can I freeze this salad?

This salad is best enjoyed fresh and is not recommended for freezing due to the mayonnaise-based dressing.

What can I serve with this salad?

This salad pairs well with grilled meats, sandwiches, or as a side dish for a BBQ or picnic.

How can I make the salad healthier?

Use light mayonnaise and sour cream, reduce the amount of bacon, and add more vegetables like cherry tomatoes or bell peppers to make the salad healthier.


Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad is a vibrant and flavorful dish that’s perfect for any occasion. With its fresh ingredients, crunchy bacon, and creamy dressing, it’s sure to be a hit. Enjoy making and sharing this delicious salad with your family and friends!