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Shrimp, bacon and broccoli slaw with ranch dressing {gluten-free}

Shrimp, bacon and store-bought broccoli slaw, with homemade ranch dressing.

As you know, I'm not a big fan of convenience foods. It's just as easy to make most things from scratch, and you know exactly what you're getting. However, when it comes to broccoli slaw, I make an exception. If you look in the bag, you know exactly what you're getting: shredded broccoli stems and carrots and a little bit of red cabbage. Sometimes you can find the mix with cauliflower added, but cauliflower and I still are not friends, so I don't seek it out. You can use the cauliflower-added mix (sometimes called Rainbow Salad) in this recipe, unless you're inviting me for lunch. Broccoli slaw benefits from a few minutes of tenderizing --here, buttermilk does the trick, and in other recipes, mustard would do the same -- so make the dressing, toss it with the slaw, and let that sit while you finish the rest of the recipe.

Shrimp and bacon bump up the flavor of store-bought broccoli slaw in this easy main course salad.

Shrimp, bacon and broccoli slaw with ranch dressing

From the pantry, you'll need: garlic, buttermilk (or buttermilk powder), lime, parsley, mayonnaise, kosher salt, fresh black pepper, frozen shrimp, bacon.

Serves 4 as a lunch main dish.


For the dressing:
1 small clove garlic
3/4 cup buttermilk (fresh, or made from buttermilk powder)
Juice of 1 lime
1/2 tsp roughly chopped scallion or chives
1 small handful fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 Tbsp sour cream
1/4 cup mayonnaise
Kosher salt and fresh black pepper, to taste

For the slaw:
12-oz bag of store-bought broccoli slaw
6 slices of bacon, cooked
1/2 lb frozen shrimp (I like large 21-25 size), peeled and deveined


Combine all of the dressing ingredients in a blender, and pulse for a few seconds until the scallion and garlic are chopped and everything is combined. Taste. Note that the dressing will be thinner than a commercial ranch dressing.

Empty the broccoli slaw into a colander, and rinse under cold water. Dry in a salad spinner or a towel, and place in a large mixing bowl. Pour on half of the dressing, and toss well to combine. Place the bowl into the refrigerator.

Cook the bacon (on the stovetop or in the oven, whichever you prefer) until it's nicely browned, but not crisp. Blot with paper towels to remove excess oil. Use kitchen scissors or a knife to cut into half-inch pieces, and set aside.

In a straight-sided sauce pan, bring two inches of water to a rapid boil. Add the shrimp, reduce heat to simmer, cover the pan, and cook for 2 minutes. The shrimp should be completely pink and curled. Drain, rinse under cold water, and dry.

Now, bring everything together. Retrieve the bowl of broccoli slaw from the refrigerator, and stir in the bacon and shrimp. Stir well, as much of the dressing will have settled to the bottom. Season with salt, if needed, and a good pinch of fresh black pepper.

The salad should be served cold, but can sit in the refrigerator for several hours before serving. Toss it every now and then to distribute the dressing evenly.

[Printer-friendly recipe.]

More broccoli slaw salad ideas:
Broccoli slaw salad with peanut-mango-Sriracha dressing, from The Perfect Pantry
Broccoli slaw salad with cranberries, almonds, and yogurt dressing, from The Perfect Pantry
Curried apple and pecan broccoli slaw, from The Perfect Pantry
Stir-fried shiitake and broccoli slaw, from Nom Nom Paleo
Asian broccoli slaw salad, from The Lemon Bowl

Shrimp, bacon and broccoli slaw, with homemade ranch dressing, from The Perfect Pantry.

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I love everything about this salad. I wouldn't even mind a little cauliflower in my salad. Unfortunately I can only find broccoli slaw here at Trader Joe's and I seem to forget to buy it when I'm there. Will have to try harder to remember so I can try this salad!

Kalyn, that's so funny, because broccoli slaw is everywhere here. Perhaps East Coast cooks are lazier?! Of course, you can always make your own by shaving broccoli stems and carrots. But that seems like so much work!

Another appetizing dressing to add to my favorites.

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