Step up your energy levels with a batch of this healthy (and delicious) Vegan Broccoli Salad. Your body will thank you for it! If healthy, vegan recipes are your thing, be sure to check out my recipe for Spicy Sesame Zoodles (aka, zucchini noodles). Or you can try my Vegan Banana Green Smoothie for a refreshing start to your day!
Why You’ll Love Vegan Broccoli Salad
Feeling like you’re lacking energy lately? It could be because of the of busy job, long commutes, carting kids around from soccer practice to violin lessons, or not getting enough sleep.
But there could be other things at play as well. I have a theory about energy. You want to hear it? OK. I’ll tell you. My theory is this: to have energy you first have to spend it.
That’s really deep, eh? Yeah, I like zen thoughts like that. Of course, Yoda would probably say something like this, “If energy you desire, first you must energy spend.” By the way, I can totally do a Yoda voice. It’s been confirmed by a 7-year old Star Wars enthusiast…named Luke! He said my Yoda impersonation was dead-on! It’s a good skill to have. Trust me.
Anyway, I’ve had this theory tucked away for awhile, but recently I found something that confirms it. I’m reading the book, Ultra Metabolism by Dr. Mark Hyman and he states that one of the keys to having a higher metabolism is to have high-functioning mitochondria. He provides a lengthy description of what those are and what they do, but it all boils down to this: mitochondria are the power plants of your cells, and having them well-oiled can help you develop a higher metabolism.
If you’re like me, the question you ask after reading a statement like that is, “How do I develop higher-functioning mitochondria?” Dr. Hyman says one way of doing that is to exercise. In other words, spend the energy you have and your body will develop more, creating higher-functioning mitochondria. There you have it – theory confirmed!
But also eating high-quality foods makes a difference too. This vegan broccoli salad is loaded with plant-based powerhouse foods like broccoli, green onions, pumpkin seeds and more. Broccoli is a crucifiers vegetable which means you’re getting lots of nutritional benefits from this dish!
Also, most of the broccoli salad recipes I’ve seen call for raw salad. I’m not a fan. I make my vegan broccoli salad with lightly steamed broccoli. Not a lot of steaming, just a little bit, to make the vibrant green color of the broccoli stand out and to soften the bite just a little.
Every time I bring this vegan broccoli salad along, it’s a hit!
In fact, I took this salad to my sister’s “End of Summer Closing Down the Pool Party” and everyone loved it! How can you go wrong when your main ingredient is gorgeously (and lightly) steamed broccoli? Talk about a nutritional powerhouse! And how crazy is it that closing down a pool for the summer turns into a family gathering? That’s my family – we’re kind of kooky, but always looking for a reason to get together and have a good time.
But you don’t have to wait for a family party to make this vegan broccoli salad. It’s good for a Tuesday night home dinner as well. I can say that from experience because I’ve done it..at least a few times.
We hope you enjoy this Vegan Broccoli Salad as much as we do! If you decide to make it, please share the photo with us using #namelymarly on Instagram or Twitter. We LOVE seeing your creations!
- 5-6 cups fresh broccoli florets
- ¼ cup green onion chopped
- 1 cup frozen peas thawed
- ½ cup pumpkin seeds
- ½ cup raisins
- ¾ cup Vegan Mayo
- 2 tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
- ¼ cup Agave Nectar
- 1 tablespoon Chia Seeds (or ground flax seeds)
- Almond Bacon Slivers
Use your favorite steaming method (microwave or stove-top) to lightly steam the broccoli. I steamed mine for maybe 2 - 3 minutes. Once you've achieved the desired tenderness, remove the broccoli from heat, pour it in a strainer and run with cold water to stop the cooking process. (Be careful when handling hot broccoli!) I like to put the chopped onion on top of the still warm broccoli. I think it helps to tenderize the onion a bit for the salad.
In a small bowl combine the vegan mayo, vinegar, agave nectar, and chia seeds. If the dressing appears a little runny, don't worry. The chia seeds will cause the dressing to thicken quite nicely (besides adding some healthy Omega-3s to the nutrient mix).
Assembling the Vegan Broccoli Salad:
Place broccoli, sunflowers, chopped onion, sunflower seeds, raisins, and peas in a large serving bowl. Add the dressing to the salad and toss all the ingredients together to thoroughly spread the dressing throughout.
Refrigerate the salad until ready to serve.
When you're ready to serve, prepare the Bacon Almond Slivers (or vegan bacon product...see note below) according the recipe instructions.
Immediately before serving add the bacon almond slivers (or crumbled vegan bacon product) over the salad and serve.
Regarding the broccoli: Some recipes will call for the broccoli to be raw which is a little too crunchy for me, but you also don't want the broccoli to be soft. Steaming it is a nice middle ground.
Instead of the bacon almond slivers, you can use vegan bacon now found commercially in most stores. Simply cook a few slices according to the package instructions.
We used pumpkin seeds, but you can also use sunflower seeds
We hope you enjoy this delicious, healthy, and easy vegan broccoli salad!