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Broccoli Cauliflower Salad

Do you love the crisp, fresh, vibrant green taste of broccoli florets and the mild, sweet flavor of cauliflower? I know I do! But eating them plain boiled or steamed over and over can get a bit monotonous.
If you’re looking for an exciting new way to enjoy these nutritious cruciferous veggies, then get ready to fall in love with my creamy broccoli cauliflower salad! This salad packs a serious punch of flavors and textures in each and every bite.
The hearty broccoli florets and delicate cauliflower pieces provide a satisfying, toothsome crunch when you sink your teeth into them. Blanched briefly, they retain that perfect amount of bite. Their bright green and white colors dot the salad, beckoning you to dig in.
While the vegetables themselves are wonderful, the real magic comes from the luscious lemon-Dijon dressing. It coats each floret in a tangy, creamy blanket, allowing the broccoli and cauliflower to glisten. The mayonnaise-based sauce gets a kick of acidity from fresh lemon juice and whole-grain mustard, balanced by a touch of sweetness from honey.
In addition to the dynamic dressing, a medley of mix-ins like plump golden raisins, crunchy roasted sunflower seeds, sharp cheddar cheese, and minced red onion take this salad over the top. They add delightful bursts of sweetness, saltiness, and zing in every forkful.
This broccoli cauliflower salad is a fantastic way to get more vegetables into your diet while keeping mealtime exciting. The combination of flavors and textures is phenomenal. It’s satisfying enough to be a light main dish or a side that will liven up any meal. I can’t wait for you to give it a try!

What makes this salad creamy?
The richness and velvety texture of the dressing comes from mayonnaise. When whisked together with tart lemon juice, sweet honey, and zesty Dijon mustard, the mayonnaise transforms into a luxuriously creamy sauce. It coats each and every broccoli and cauliflower floret, allowing the vegetables to glisten with a lush, creamy blanket of flavor.

What other add-ins give this salad extra flavor?
In addition to the broccoli and cauliflower, I love to add a medley of mix-ins that provide delightful pops of flavor and texture. Plump, chewy golden raisins offer bursts of sweetness. Crunchy, nutty roasted sunflower seeds give great saltiness and crunch. Sharp, aged cheddar cheese adds tang. And minced red onion brings a nice zing. Together, they take the salad to the next level.

How long does this salad keep in the fridge?
Stored in an airtight container, this salad will stay fresh and delicious in the fridge for 2-3 days. The flavors continue to meld and deepen over time as the dressing soaks into the broccoli and cauliflower. It’s one of those salads that just keeps getting better.

Can I prepare the dressing ahead of time?
You absolutely can and should make the creamy lemon-Dijon dressing 1-2 days in advance. Simply whisk it up, store it in a covered container in the fridge, and it will be ready to pour over the veggies when you’re ready to assemble the salad.

What’s the best way to cut the broccoli and cauliflower?
For maximum flavor and texture, I recommend cutting the broccoli and cauliflower into small, bite-sized florets rather than big chunks. This gives you more surface area on the veggies to soak up that delicious dressing in every bite. The smaller pieces also allow the flavors to penetrate deeper.

Can I use regular yellow mustard instead of Dijon?
For the best flavor, Dijon mustard is preferred. It has a distinct zesty, tangy kick that really brings the dressing to life. However, you can use regular yellow mustard in a pinch. I’d recommend adding an extra squeeze of lemon juice to brighten up the flavor.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups broccoli florets, chopped (about 1 medium head)
  • 3 cups cauliflower florets, chopped (about 1⁄2 medium head)
  • 1⁄3 cup mayonnaise
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1⁄4 cup raisins
  • 2 Tbsp sunflower seeds
  • 2 Tbsp shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1⁄4 cup minced red onion
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. First, fill a medium pot about halfway with water and add a pinch of salt. Crank up the heat to high and bring the water to a rapid, rolling boil. Once it’s bubbling away, use tongs to gently add the broccoli and cauliflower florets to the pot. Let them simmer for 3-4 minutes – you don’t want to overcook them. Spear a piece of broccoli with a fork to test for doneness – it should still have a nice crisp, bright green bite.
  2. Carefully drain the boiled veggies into a colander in the sink. Then, run cold water over them for 1-2 minutes to stop the cooking process. This helps lock in that fresh-from-the-garden crunch and vibrant color! Gently shake off any excess water droplets so they’re just damp.
  3. In a small bowl, let’s make the dressing! Whisk together the mayonnaise, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, and honey until smooth and creamy. The dressing should be a pale yellow hue. Add a few pinches of salt and grinds of pepper to taste. Set aside.
  4. Now for the fun part – build the salad! Place the blanched broccoli and cauliflower in a large bowl. Mix in the sweet raisins, crunchy sunflower seeds, sharp cheddar cheese, and zingy red onion. Toss gently with your hands or tongs until combined.
  5. Time to dress it up! Drizzle the creamy lemon-Dijon dressing over the salad. Lift and fold the ingredients from the bottom using tongs to evenly coat everything in the luscious dressing. Taste a broccoli piece – add more salt/pepper if desired!
  6. Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. This allows the flavors to mingle before enjoying. For best results, make the salad 1-2 days ahead.
  7. When ready to serve, use a slotted spoon to scoop the salad into a serving bowl, leaving excess dressing behind. Garnish with extra sunflower seeds and cheese for an eye-catching presentation! Enjoy this vibrant salad chilled or room temperature.

Cooking Tips:

  • Feel free to use bagged broccoli florets to save time prepping.
  • If you want to use fresh broccoli, cut into small florets for maximum surface area.
  • When boiling the broccoli and cauliflower, be careful not to overcook. You still want some crunch left.
  • To make this salad vegan, use vegan mayo or Greek yogurt instead.
  • Customize this to your tastes by adding grapes, bacon bits, pecans instead of sunflower seeds.
  • Make extra dressing to keep on hand to toss with veggies and salads all week long.

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