Pesto Broccoli Salad


I have a love-hate relationship with all grocery stores.  No store carries everything I desire.  Certain stores sell certain ingredients others don’t, or certain items are cheaper one place than the other.  Basically this means I go to multiple stores for what I buy.  I’m particular when it comes to the quality of the meat and seafood I cook, mainly shopping at Whole Foods for these.  We also have a Trader Joe’s in town, where I can get much cheaper organic produce than Whole Foods sells.  I have come to appreciate a few pantry items from Trader Joe’s.. raw nuts, canned olives, organic Tunisian olive oil, organic broth, and a few snacks for the kids.  I cook just about everything from scratch so I don’t get into the prepared foods sections (frozen and fresh) of stores, particularly Trader Joe’s.  I see the convenience factor but there is plenty of added crap that I try to avoid consuming.  And then we have Natural Grocer’s where I prefer to buy dairy, vitamins, and house goods.  Oh and lastly King Sooper’s which is a few blocks from home, for last minute items in need.  I try to keep food costs down which is why I shop at so many stores.  I realize I’m ranting here but this is what’s going through my mind as I prepared and now write about this meal.  Am I the only crazy one who shops at so many stores?  In the end I’ve come to embrace the experience of grocery shopping at multiple stores with two little kids, but in all honesty I wish it were an easier/quicker experience.  Many may say why not just suck it up and shop at one store?  Because I care about the foods I consume and try to get the best antibiotic, hormone, gmo, pesticide, and potentially sugar free ingredients I can find.  We all have our priorities.  Thanks for hearing me out.

In the previous post I made a batch of meyer lemon pesto.  I was all over the place with what I planned to cook for this week.  Or rather what I did not plan.  I bought ingredients with no thoughts about what I intended to make.  Sometimes I hit overdrive and just need to let organization go to the wayside and wing it for a few days.  This week is one of these.  So I opened up the fridge and saw pesto, broccoli, peas, bacon, and mozzarella.  I figured I could make something work with this and by all means I did : ).

Pesto Broccoli Salad

Eat your green food!


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 12 oz broccoli florets
  • 1/2 cup fresh peas (substitute frozen)
  • 1/2 cup meyer lemon pesto
  • 3.8 oz can sliced black olives
  • 6 slices thick bacon
  • 4 oz fresh mozzarella
  • s&p


  1. In a large skillet cook the bacon slices over low heat rendering out the fat. Once browned set aside on a plate. (Save the bacon grease for future cooking!)
  2. Add the olive oil to a large saute pan and warm over medium-low heat. Add the onion and cook a few minutes.
  3. Stir in the broccoli florets and peas. Cover, turn heat to low, and continue to steam/cook until broccoli is tender crisp - about 10 minutes. Remove from heat, remove cover, and let cool.
  4. In a large bowl place the cooled broccoli mixture, black olives, and pesto. Stir well to combine and season with s&p.
  5. Crumble the bacon and chop the mozzarella. Stir to combine.
  6. Serve room temperature or chilled.


To make this a meal I topped the broccoli salad with pesto chicken, tomato, and a few splashes of balsamic vinegar.

Chicken Pesto: Lightly coat chicken thighs with pesto. Place on a foil lined baking sheet (one with sides) in a single layer. Bake 15-20 minutes at 400 until cooked through. Slice and add to broccoli salad. Top with tomato and balsamic vinegar.



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