This post may contain affiliate links. For more information, please visit the disclosures and privacy policy page.
Nov 17, 2020

Broccoli Salad with Almonds and Cranberries

 This broccoli salad with almonds and cranberries is a crunchy and delicious addition to a Sunday picnic or family reunion. 

Broccoli Salad with Almonds, Cranberries, and avocado dressing

This broccoli salad is so nutritious. It's not the sugar, mayonnaise, and bacon version of a broccoli salad (although I luuurve that version). Instead, this broccoli salad is tossed with an avocado, lemon, and garlic dressing that lets the flavors of the broccoli, almonds, and cranberries shine through. 

Plus, you use all of the broccoli stems, getting the most out of all of the broccoli you purchase. 

Broccoli Salad with Almonds, Cranberries, and avocado dressing with ingredients

This broccoli salad is so delicious so that you might forget how nutritious it is. 

Ingredients in this broccoli salad:

Broccoli, both the florets and all of the stems. You will quickly boil the stems and steam the florets, and then drop them into ice water to stop the cooking and preserve the bright green color. 

One ripe avocado. This is the basis of your dressing. 

Extra virgin olive oil.

Grated lemon zest and lemon juice. 

Garlic and salt and pepper. 

Dried cranberries. 

Sliced almonds.

A thinly sliced shallot as well as fresh tarragon. 

Broccoli Salad with avocado dressing

One of the things that I love about this recipe is that the dressing is avocado based with olive oil, and lots of lemon. I was worried about the dressing changing color due to the avocado, but all of the lemon juice kept the dressing green and pretty for days, making this a perfect make-ahead recipe. 

You blanch the broccoli in this salad until it is bright green, and then plunge it into an ice water bath to stop the cooking. After that, you spin it dry in a salad spinner so that the dressing doesn't get watery. 

For steaming the broccoli, I used an All-Clad 3-quart steamer insert which goes with their 3 quart sauce pan and lid. The steamer insert is also fabulous for making steamed hard cooked eggs. These are affiliate links. Please see my disclosure page. 

The sliced roasted almonds and the tart dried cranberries are the perfect finish for this salad. 

Broccoli Salad with Almonds and Cranberries

November 21 is National Cranberry Day, so we are posting cranberry recipes all week long! Tomorrow I'll be posting a recipe for a delicious Cranberry Apple Crisp. Thank you to Christie of Kitchen Hoor's Adventures for pulling this event together. 

Tuesday Cranberry Recipes

Broccoli Salad with Almonds and Cranberries in bowls

Broccoli Salad with Almonds and Cranberries

Broccoli Salad with Almonds and Cranberries
Yield: 8 servings
Author: Karen Kerr
This broccoli salad with almonds and cranberries is a crunchy and delicious addition to a Sunday picnic or family reunion.


  • 1 1/2 pounds broccoli, with the florets cut into 1 inch pieces and the stems peeled, cut in half, and cut into 1/4 inch slices
  • 1 avocado, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces. 
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup toasted almond slices
  • 1 shallot, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh tarragon


  1. Fill a large bowl halfway with ice and water. 
  2. Add the chopped broccoli stems to a saucepan, and cover with water. Place the florets into a steamer basket that will fit over the water in the saucepan, cover with a lid, and cook for 2 to 6 minutes, until the florets are bright green and crisp tender. 
  3. Drain the broccoli florets and the broccoli stems and pour them into the ice water. Once they have cooled, drain them and spin them in a salad spinner to remove any excess water. 
  4. In a food processor, process the avocado, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper until smooth. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. 
  5. Add the broccoli and stems, cranberries, almonds, sliced shallots, and tarragon. Add salt and pepper to taste. 



Fat (grams)


Sat. Fat (grams)


Carbs (grams)


Fiber (grams)


Net carbs


Sugar (grams)


Protein (grams)


Sodium (milligrams)


Cholesterol (grams)

salad, broccoli, cranberries
Side dish, salad
Did you make this recipe?
Tag on instagram and hashtag it #karenskitchenstories
Created using The Recipes Generator
This recipe was adapted from Nutritious Delicious by America's Test Kitchen 

Would you like to comment?

  1. Karen...I love the avocado dressing you are using for this classic salad. Thanks for the inspiration.

  2. This is one of my favorite salads but I need to try it with your dressing, yuM!

  3. I love adding cranberries and nuts in my salads. This salad looks very colorful and refreshing. The dressing is interesting too.

  4. This sounds so amazingly healthy, flavorful, and delicious! Going to have to try this soon!

  5. The red and green colors are perfect for the holidays. And love the crunch on top with the almonds.

  6. This looks just like the ATK salad from season 21. For me, the raw garlic and shallot was overpowering and I'd give this just 3 stars. Very disappointed in the recipe.


I would love to hear from you! If you comment anonymously, be sure to leave your name in your comment.