June 23, 2020

Broccoli stem slaw with cranberries

Finished bowls of broccoli stem slaw topped with sunflower seeds.

Save your fresh broccoli stems and use them to make an easy and delicious slaw! This slaw has a simple dressing and chewy dried cranberries along with salted roasted sunflower seeds for extra flavor and texture.
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I love finding ways to reduce food waste and create something delicious with things that otherwise may get tossed. Often I save the ends of vegetables and herb stems to use when I make chicken or vegetable broth. Sometimes we use watermelon rinds to make pickles or candy.

Broccoli is one of our kids' favorite vegetables, so we frequently buy crowns or heads of fresh broccoli. Generally when I'm making cheddar broccoli soup or using broccoli in other ways, I do incorporate as much of the stem as possible. 

But, everyone likes the florets best when we are simply steaming it or eating it raw. That means I save all the stems in a bag in the refrigerator until there are enough to make a batch of broccoli stem slaw. 

This slaw is a simple and delicious side dish and it's perfect for pairing with summer grill and cookout foods. It pairs well with chicken, pork, burgers, sandwiches and more.

The bonus is that the whole family loves this dish. The broccoli flavor is still there, just presented in a new way. The addition of dried cranberries and sunflower seeds bring extra flavor and texture, adding some sweetness and salty crunch.

The dressing for this slaw is lightly sweet and tangy. It's made from mayonnaise, honey, and fresh lemon juice along with salt and pepper. It's easy to put together and isn't too heavy.

Give this slaw a try the next time you have fresh broccoli and want to use the stems in a new way. It's a great way to use up the stems and create a delicious side dish that is perfect for summer grilling and cookout season.

Close-up of a small serving bowl of finished broccoli stem slaw.

Yield: 4-6 servings
Broccoli Stem Slaw with Cranberries

Broccoli Stem Slaw with Cranberries

Save your fresh broccoli stems and use them to make an easy and delicious slaw! This slaw has a simple dressing and chewy dried cranberries along with salted roasted sunflower seeds for extra flavor and texture.


  • 3 cups (lightly packed) shredded broccoli stems (about 4 broccoli crown stems)
  • 1 cup shredded carrot (about 1 large carrot)
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons roasted and salted sunflower seeds


  1. Place the shredded broccoli stems and carrot in a large bowl and stir in the cranberries.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, honey, lemon juice, a good pinch of salt, and a few grinds of black pepper. Pour over the vegetables and cranberries and stir well.
  3. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours.
  4. Before serving, stir and top with the sunflower seeds.


I like to grate my broccoli stems and carrot using my food processor's shredding blade. You can also hand cut them into matchsticks.  If you have any tough or discolored parts on the stalks/stems, use a knife to peel them off before shredding.  I have made slaws with have mayo and half plain Greek yogurt with good results. I also sometimes use apple cider vinegar instead of lemon juice. I like lemon juice better with the broccoli, but both will work. Sometimes I add poppy seeds to the dressing.
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I hope you give this broccoli stem slaw a try! Let me know in the comments below.

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Finished bowl of broccoli stem slaw.

This post was originally published in 2020 and has been updated in 2022 to improve reader experience.

Check out these other picnic and cookout side dishes:

Creamy Beet & Apple Salad

Easy Creamy Grape Salad

Cowboy Beans

Warm Mexican Corn Salad


  1. Waste not, want not. This is such a delicious and great slaw!

  2. Looove how colorful it is, and of course, how healthy it is. ✔

  3. I am all about less waste and this looks delicious!

  4. Dear Amy, what a delicious use of those wonderful broccoli stems - your slaw sounds wonderful with a lot of flavor and texture here and I love the addition of dried cranberries and sunflower seeds.
    Take care,

  5. Neat idea to use the stems in this slaw. I love slaw (and broccoli!) so this is definitely something I want to make. Thanks!

  6. This looks lovely. We love broccoli around here and I do the same.

  7. What a great use of broccoli stems. Love this idea and also this slaw. Perfect for the 4th. Happy 4th!

  8. This slaw is a staple at our summer cookouts! the sweet cranberries add a nice touch.

  9. What a great way to use up broccoli stems!


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