Broccoli Salad

Broccoli Salad

If you’re looking for a quick and delicious way to enjoy broccoli, this simple broccoli salad might just become your new favorite. Inspired by my recent trip to Seoul and reminiscent of banchan, the dizzying array of small side dishes that accompany a Korean BBQ meal, this salad is both versatile and packed with flavor. With just a few ingredients you can create a dish that’s equally satisfying whether served warm, cold, or at room temperature.

I talked recently about how while I might not meal prep in the traditional sense I do enjoy having prepped ingredients in my fridge ready to go, and this tasty Broccoli Salad is perfect to incorporate in all kinds of dishes. Make a double batch and enjoy it warm, and use the leftovers to add to a Tofu Bowl or Vegetarian Bibimbap. Or you could make a batch to serve with my Barbecued Short Ribs. However you enjoy this Broccoli Salad you will appreciate how easy it is to prepare and how wholesome and nourishing it is, so let’s get into it.

ingredients broccoli salad

I really don’t like to waste food, so this recipe uses all of the broccoli. Don’t worry, the stalks get peeled so once they are blanched they are perfectly tender. Make sure to keep the stalks and the florets separate though as they have different cooking times.

florets broccoli salad

Then cut the florets into bite sized pieces:

bite size broccoli

peel broccoli salad

Cut the stalks into similarly sized bites. Remember to keep them separate from the florets:

Often when people say they “don’t like broccoli” what they really mean is they haven’t had it properly prepared. I don’t like overcooked, mushy broccoli either. Briefly blanching the broccoli is the way to go. Blanching broccoli gives it a vibrant and appealing color, leaves it a crisp-tender texture that is miles away from mush, and even lets it retain more nutrients. As a bonus, the broccoli is cooked in just 3 minutes; making this perfect for these warmer days when we don’t want to heat up our kitchens any more than necessary.

boiling water for broccoli salad

blanching stalks and florets

Then it’s time to drain the broccoli. I like to run it under water to cool it down a little so it’s isn’t piping hot when I toss together the seasoning. *Pro tip: use the pot as your mixing bowl and save yourself an additional bowl to wash.

colander broccoli

Now it’s time to season the broccoli. I keep the seasoning light so the flavor of the broccoli really shines through; this also makes it ideal if you’re going to add it to another dish. A little toasted sesame oil, some minced garlic, and a sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds, and optionally either a pinch of dashi powder or msg. Yes, that msg.

For too long, it had the worst reputation in the states, but it is a naturally occurring substance found in foods like tomatoes, cheese, and mushrooms. Msg adds a savory and rich flavor that makes simple food more satisfying. Just a small amount makes seemingly plain veggies taste so much more interesting. If you’re trying to incorporate more vegetables into your diet or have a hard time enjoying vegetables, a dash of MSG might be a way to do it. But again, optional of course 😉

msg and sesame oil

Gently mix (I usually use my hands now that the broccoli isn’t scorchingly hot) and pile it onto a serving dish. You now have a delicious and healthy Broccoli Salad that is wonderful served alongside Shio Koji Salmon or my Tamagoyaki Frittata.

I can’t wait to hear if you devour it warm, or chill it to use later in the week-let me know in the comments. And if your Broccoli Salad looks as gorgeous as mine, show it off by tagging us @funkyasiankitchen!



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recipe card broccoli salad

Broccoli Salad

  • Author: Funky Asian Kitchen
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: serves 4


  • 1 bunch broccoli 
  • 1 Tablespoon salt (for blanching)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Couple dashes ground black or white pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon dashi powder or msg (optional)


  1. Cut as close to the head as possible to cut off the florets.
  2. Cut the florets into bite sized pieces.
  3. Peel the stalks and then cut the stalks into similar sized pieces.
  4. Set the broccoli aside, keeping the stems and florets separate.
  5. Bring 8 cups of water to a boil over high heat.
  6. Add the salt and the broccoli stems.
  7. Boil for 2 minutes.
  8. Add the broccoli florets and cook for another minute.
  9. Drain the broccoli into a colander and give it a quick rinse so it’s not piping hot. 
  10. Let the water drain off and then put the broccoli into a mixing bowl (You can also re-use the pot instead and save yourself some washing).
  11. Add the garlic, sesame seeds, ground pepper, sesame oil, and dashi powder. Gently mix with your hands to combine. Taste and add a little more salt if needed.
  12. Pile the broccoli salad onto a serving dish and serve immediately or chill to use later. This dish is good warm, room temperature, or cold.


*This simple dish is a perfect veggie side, snack, or add-in/topping for other dishes. Store any leftovers in the fridge. It tastes equally good eaten cold or reheated gently in the microwave for a couple minutes.

Keywords: broccoli, salads, meal prep, korean banchan, sesame, msg

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