I’ve made various versions of this quite a few times – it’s my go-to recipe for any sort of pot-luck or picnic. I originally got the recipe from Allrecipes.com, but I’ve modified it quite a bit.
- at least 6 slices of bacon or turkey bacon, cooked, cooled, and chopped or crumbled
- 20 ounces fresh cheese-filled tortellini (I usually get two packages of cheese tortellini from Trader Joe’s)
- 1 cup mayonnaise (you can use regular or light, whatever your preferences are. I’ve done both and both come out good)
- 1 cup white sugar
- 4 tsps apple cider vinegar
- 2 bags fresh broccoli
- 1 cup raisins
- 1 cup sunflower seeds (I usually use salted but you could use unsalted as well)
- Freshly cracked black pepper
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 1 bell pepper, chopped (If I’m making this around Christmas time, I’ll add in red bell pepper to make it look more festive)
- 1 tsp chipotle chili powder (gives the recipe a little kick)
- Cook the tortellini per the package instructions, rinse with cold water, and let cool.
- Mix together mayo, sugar, vinegar, black pepper, and any other spices you’re adding for the dressing.
- Chop broccoli to desired size. I typically chop up the larger florets in the bag and then leave the smaller ones intact. if you’d rather have a finely chopped salad, you can do that too.
- Combine the Broccoli, Tortellini, bacon, raisins, sunflower seeds, and other optional ingredients in a large bowl. Pour dressing over salad and then toss.
- Chill for at least an hour before serving. Re-toss before serving.
This recipe will serve 10-12 people, more if you’re at a large pot luck where everyone takes small servings. It fills up a large bowl easily. The dressing amount is medium so add more or make less depending on your taste preferences. This recipe should be kept cold since it does have mayo in it.