Broccoli – Cauliflower Salad – A Meal in a Bowl

This is the most portable and wonderful salad and is my go-to meal for make ahead lunches for my husband and me. Finding healthy loWonderful packable lunchw-carb lunches (see Why I Eat Low-Carb) that we can easily carry to work, don’t need reheating, and will stick with us for the rest of the day isn’t always easy. But this one is perfect. Full of good protein and power-packed vegetables, this salad has become our favorite and can be assembled in just a few minutes. I make a large batch that will keep us going for 4 or 5 days, but the recipe below can easily be cut in half. Also, check out the variations below.

Broccoli-Cauliflower Salad

1 lb frozen chopped broccoli (thawed)
1 lb frozen chopped cauliflower (thawed)
1 lb diced cooked chicken or ham
or 2 large cans of chicken or tuna
1 heaping cup shredded cheddar (I like sharp)
1/2 – 2/3 cup of homemade mayonnaise (see note)
salt and pepper to taste

Mix the first four ingredients in a large bowl. Then stir in the mayo and any seasonings. Refrigerate. Yes, it’s that easy! Servings – about 8.

Note: If you have not made your own mayo with olive oil or a combination of olive and coconut oil, please do your body a favor and hunt down mayonnaise that is either made with 100% olive oil or canola oil (a last resort). Please avoid soybean oil dressings (which most commercial dressings are made with) and most other seed oils, they are too high in omega-6 fatty acids and contribute to inflammation in your body.

Make ahead tip: take the broccoli and cauliflower out of the freezer the day before and let them thaw in the refrigerator or, if you don’t have that day, put the bags in a large bowl of room-temperature water. They will thaw in about an hour.


  • Make it just with broccoli
  • Add some other vegetables – I’ve added chopped zucchini, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, shredded carrots. Just make sure you keep the broccoli – it’s a super vegetable.
  • I’ve added a mix of tuna and crabmeat
  • Try a different kind of cheese
  • Add sunflower seeds or walnuts for added crunch
  • Add some crumbled bacon to the chicken

What are your ideas?  Add them in the comment, please!



  1. I didn’t know that about soybean oil– thank you!

    • Yes, while omega-6 fatty acids are not inherently bad for you (in fact some is necessary) they must be in a proper balance with omega-3 fatty acids – something most of us do not get enough of. When the ratio is out of whack inflammation increases in our bodies leaving us prey to all sorts of infection and disease.

  2. Sue

    Thanks for the good info about the soybean oil. Do you think this would work with fresh broccoli and cauliflower? I know it would take a little longer to put together, but I like the idea of fresh vegetables. Are the frozen ones soggy?

    • I think it would work great with fresh vegetables, Sue. I usually use the frozen for two reasons, none of which relate to the taste: during the winter months buying the frozen is so much cheaper than fresh and using the already chopped vegetables is so much more convenient and quick. In the summer I will probably start making it with fresh vegetables more often. And yes the texture is probably very different, but that is why I don’t have you cook them, only thaw them.

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