Creamy Vegan Broccoli Salad – Connoisseurus Veg

This vegan broccoli salad is loaded with flavor and crunch! Made with fresh broccoli florets, smoky almonds, sunflower seeds and raisins in a creamy, zippy dressing, it’s a must have for all your summer get-togethers.

White wooden surface set with bowl of Vegan Broccoli Salad, wooden spoon, and napkin.

My family always served broccoli salad as a side dish at cookouts when I was growing up. You know the one right? With mayo and raisins and bacon. But mom’s was made with bacon bits because I was vegetarian and most store-bought bacon bits aren’t actually made from meat.

When I decided to create a vegan broccoli salad recipe, it mom’s old version was the obvious starting point. And while I could probably make it with bacon bits (they’re vegan, right? I’m really not sure), I decided to go with something a bit more wholesome and even tastier: smoked almonds!

This salad has everything I love about classic broccoli salad (broccoli, crunch, smoky and sweet flavor!), and nothing I don’t (eggs, dairy, processed soy bacon flavored whatever bacon bits are made of???). And it’s delish!

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Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Vegan mayonnaise. Look for this near where regular mayo is sold, or in the natural foods section at your store. I used Hellman’s vegan.
  • Sugar. Use organic sugar to keep the recipe vegan.
  • Apple cider vinegar. White vinegar or red wine vinegar can be substituted if needed.
  • Raw broccoli.
  • Red onion.
  • Raisins. Substitute another dried fruit if you’d like. Dried cranberries or cherries would work well!
  • Sunflower seeds. Use roasted and salted seeds.
  • Smoked almonds. Be careful when buying these. I almost grabbed a bag containing butter, and many brands of commercial nuts are processed with gelatin. Blue Diamond Smokehouse Almonds are vegan and available at many supermarkets.
  • Salt & pepper.

Tip: You only need the raw broccoli florets for this recipe. Save the stems for another use, like vegan cream of broccoli soup.

How It’s Made

The following is a detailed photo tutorial on how to make this dish. Scroll all the way down if you’d like to skip right to the recipe!

  • Optional step: soak your red onion. Do this if you’d like to mellow out the raw onion bite. Simply dice it, place it in a container and cover it with water. Let it soak while you prep the other ingredients.
Diced red onion soaking in a glass of water.
  • Mix your broccoli salad dressing ingredients in a large mixing bowl: vegan mayo, sugar, and vinegar. Be sure to stir everything well to dissolve the sugar.
Hand stirring mayo, vinegar, and sugar together in a glass bowl.
  • Add broccoli florets, raisins, smoked almonds, and sunflower seeds. If you soaked your onion, drain it. Add the onion to the salad.
  • Stir everything up!
Hand stirring Vegan Broccoli Salad together in a glass bowl.
  • Give your broccoli salad a taste-test. Season it with salt and pepper, and adjust any other seasonings to suit your taste.
  • Cover and chill the salad for later, or serve it right away. I like mine best when it’s been chilling in the fridge for a few hours.
Bowl of Vegan Broccoli Salad with a wooden spoon in the background.

Leftovers & Storage

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

Frequently Asked Questions

Is this salad gluten-free?

It is as long as your smoked almonds are gluten-free — some brands may not be!

More Cool Vegan Summer Salads

Like this recipe? If so, please stop back and leave me a review and rating below if you try it! Also be sure to follow me on Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram, or subscribe to my newsletter for more recipes like this one!

Bowl of Vegan Broccoli Salad with napkin and spoon on the side.

Creamy Vegan Broccoli Salad

This vegan broccoli salad is loaded with flavor and crunch! Made with fresh broccoli florets, smoky almonds, sunflower seeds and raisins in a creamy, zippy dressing, it’s a must have for all your summer get-togethers.


  • ½
    diced red onion
  • 1
    vegan mayonnaise
  • 3
    organic granulated sugar
  • 2
    apple cider vinegar
  • 6
    fresh broccoli florets (Note 1)
  • ¾
  • ½
    smoked almonds (Note 2),
    roughly chopped
  • ½
    roasted and salted sunflower seeds
  • Salt & pepper,
    to taste


  1. Optional step: place the diced onion into a small cup or bowl and cover it with cold water. Let it soak while you prep the remaining ingredients. This will reduce the bite of the onion.

  2. Stir the mayonnaise, sugar, and vinegar together in a large mixing bowl.

  3. Stir in the broccoli, raisins, almonds, and sunflower seeds, along with the onion, draining it first if you soaked it.

  4. Stir everything together.

  5. Taste-test the salad and season it with salt and pepper. Adjust any other seasonings to your liking.

  6. Serve immediately or chill for later.

Recipe Notes

  1. If you buy about 28 ounces of fresh broccoli (1 ¾ pounds) you should get the required 6 cups of florets for this recipe.
  2. Check the ingredients before you buy your smoked almonds, in order to ensure that they’re vegan.

Nutrition Facts

Creamy Vegan Broccoli Salad

Amount Per Serving (1 cup)

Calories 275
Calories from Fat 222

% Daily Value*

Fat 24.7g38%

Saturated Fat 2.4g12%

Sodium 183mg8%

Potassium 290mg8%

Carbohydrates 11.6g4%

Fiber 2.9g12%

Sugar 6.3g7%

Protein 3.9g8%

Calcium 52mg5%

Iron 1mg6%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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