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Sweet and Tangy Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad

Sweet and Tangy Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad
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I have a lovely little salad recipe for you today.

It’s tangy and sweet.

It has a wonderful crunch, thanks to the nicely toasted pecans and small broccoli pieces you are going to put in it. 

Bacon is involved. Ah…bacon, and its magical and flavorful powers. Did you know bacon has magical powers?

It does. It gives such a nice, smokey, savory flavor to everything it touches. 

I almost married it once. 

Truly.

This wonderful salad would make a great addition to any backyard BBQ, family get together or ladies luncheon. You could even add a cup or two of rotisserie chicken and call it a main course dinner salad. A lot of possibilities with this one. 

Let’s make it then, sound good?

Sweet and Tangy Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad
Time: 30 minutes
Yield: 10 servings
Recipe adapted from MyRecipes.com

1 pound bacon, uncooked
1/2 (12 ounce) package bowtie pasta
2 C pecans, chopped
3 C broccoli, chopped
3 C red grapes
1/4 C red onion, chopped

DRESSING:
1 C mayonnaise (I use Best Foods Light)
1/2 C apple cider vinegar
1/4 C sugar
1 t salt
2 T bacon grease


1. Cook up your bacon. I like to line a large cookie sheet with tin foil, cut the bacon slices in half and then lay them all over the sheet. Then I bake the bacon in the oven a 425 degrees until crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan onto a clean plate. Dab the bacon with paper towels to remove the grease, then set it aside.
2. Tilt your bacon pan a bit to the side and measure out 2 tablespoons of bacon grease. Place it in a small bowl to use for the dressing.


3. Boil yourself some water and cook half of a package of bowtie pasta noodles. Once the noodles are cooked strain them into your sink and run cold water over them until they cool down.



4. Roughly chop 2 cups of pecans.


Toss them into a large skillet and sprinkle a bit of salt over the top. Toast them over medium high heat until they change color and start to smell nice and fragrant. Should only take 2-3 minutes.


5. Remove the stems from your broccoli and chop it up into small pieces, you need about 3 cups chopped broccoli. Toss it into a large bowl. 


6. Add about 3 cups of red grapes and


a 1/4 cup of chopped red onion. 


7. Crumble up your bacon and add it to the bowl. 


8. Toss in your toasted pecans


and the pasta. 


Give everything a nice stir. 


8. Into a small mixing bowl, place 1 cup mayonnaise, 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar, 1/4 cup sugar, 1 teaspoon salt and 2 tablespoons of bacon grease. Whisk them all together to combine. 
9. Pour the dressing over the top of the salad, stir it with a big wooden spoon making sure all of the salad ingredients get coated in the dressing. 

Serve and Enjoy!

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6 Comments

  1. 1
    Kim
    August 31, 2012 at 5:49 pm

    Jamie,
    I so love your blog. You and your recipes are such an inspiration.
    I’m making this yummy salad for a get-together with friends tomorrow. I’m sure they’ll love it.

  2. 2
    Suzanne
    November 9, 2012 at 6:14 pm

    Hmmm, I tried this method of baking the bacon in a 425 degree oven for 12 minutes, and the bacon never became crispy. Tried leaving it in the oven a few more minutes, still no luck. Suggestions?

  3. 3
    Mel
    November 23, 2012 at 10:38 pm

    @Suzanne

    Whenever we make bacon in the oven in our home, I line a cookie sheet with foil, put a cooling rack over top and then place the bacon on the cooling rack. It gets really crispy that way because it’s not sitting in the grease. Normally I cook it at 425 for 18-20 minutes and it seems to get crunchy but not burnt. Hope that helps!

  4. 4
    Suzanne
    December 16, 2012 at 9:05 pm

    Thanks, Mel. Yes, I think the cooking rack is the key to getting the bacon wonderfully crispy. Appreciate your suggestion.

  5. 5
    Debbie
    May 31, 2014 at 2:11 pm

    If you are not serving until tomorrow, should you dress it immediately then refrigerate it, or wait untol you’re ready to serve it? I can’t wait to try this, as it sounds and looks so yummy!

    • 6
      Jamie
      June 2, 2014 at 6:01 am

      Debbie,
      I would dress it just before you serve it. Best of luck!
      ~Jamie

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