Classic pea salad with bacon is a simple side dish that is the perfect side dish for many meals. Made with sweet, tender crisp peas, bacon, cheese, onion, and a sweet and salty dressing that is irresistible.
This salad pairs wonderful with variety of main dishes like air fryer rotisserie chicken, pork tenderloin, and steak.
You’ll Love this Cold Pea Salad
Easy – This is a super simple recipe with just a few ingredients.
Delicious – Sweet, salty, crunchy, and creamy, this salad has it all. It’s perfect to serve as a BBQ side dish, bring to a potluck, holiday meal, or just to have for a meal at home.
Green Pea Salad Recipe Ingredients
- Frozen peas – Could also use fresh or canned but I prefer frozen peas because they are tender crisp.
- Shredded cheese – We like to use Colby/Jack or Cheddar cheese.
- Red onion – The red onion adds delicious flavor and color. You can substitute with a diced green onions.
- Bacon crumbles – Use cooked and crumbled crispy bacon or prepackaged bacon bits.
- Mayonnaise – Used for the dressing. You can also use Miracle Whip.
- Sour cream – You can use full or low fat sour cream.
- Seasoned salt – Adds flavor. You can substitute with regular salt.
- Ground black pepper – Use for seasoning.
- Sugar – This adds a hint of sweetness to the dressing.
How To Make Pea Salad
Scroll down for full printable recipe and ingredient list.
- Dressing: Begin by making the dressing for the pea salad. Mix together mayonnaise, sugar, sour cream, seasoning salt, and ground black pepper in a small bowl.
- Salad: Place the frozen peas, bacon crumbles, cheese, and onion in a large bowl. Stir to toss the ingredients.
- Pour dressing over the salad and toss to coat.
- Refrigerate: Cover the bowl and place in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
Variations for Green Pea Salad
Protein: You can substitute bacon with diced ham and add in chopped hard-boiled eggs.
Vegetables: Feel free to also add in other vegetables like diced bell pepper, corn, or diced tomatoes.
Dressing: This is also great using ranch dressing. Use bottled or homemade ranch.
Green Pea Salad Recipe tips
- If you will be eating immediately, place the frozen peas in a colander and run cold water over them to help defrost the peas a little before mixing in the salad.
- You can use cubed cheese instead of shredded cheese.
How To Store Pea Salad with Bacon
Store: Store leftover pea salad covered in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. You can make this salad ahead of time before serving.
Freeze: This salad is not best frozen. The mayonnaise does not hold up well after thawing.
Recipe for Pea Salad FAQ
Yes, you can safely eat frozen peas. I like using frozen peas because they have a nice, crisp texture. Frozen vegetables have been partially cooked, then flash frozen.
You could use canned peas, however, they are typically very soft and kind of mushy in texture. They don’t hold up as well in the salad. If you do decide to use canned peas, make sure to rinse them under cold water before mixing in the salad.
Yes, you can make this simple pea salad recipe a day or two ahead of serving. I would recommend adding the bacon the day of serving.
You can run the frozen peas under cold water for 1-2 minutes to slightly thaw. They don’t need to completely thaw for the salad.
Hard-boiled eggs are optional for pea salad.
More easy vegetable side dishes
- Southern fried corn – This corn is so good! A delicious side dish.
- Roasted broccoli – Air fryer roasted broccoli is so easy to make.
- Corn salad – A cool, satisfying salad for the summer.
- Potato salad –
Let me know if you tried this green pea salad in the comments.
Green Pea Salad
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- seasoned salt
- ground black pepper
- 1 16 oz bag of frozen peas
- 1/4 cup diced red onion
- 6 pieces bacon cooked and chopped
- 1 cup shredded cheese
- In a small bowl, mix together mayonnaise, sour cream, sugar, seasoned salt and ground black pepper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, stir together frozen peas, shredded cheese, bacon crumbles and red onion. Stir in mayonnaise mixture until everything is covered.
- Cover and store in refrigerator until ready to serve.
- If you will be eating immediately, place the frozen peas in a colander and run cold water over them to help defrost before mixing the salad.
Made this with few changes used 1 teaspoon seasoned salt, 1/4 garlic powder, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Also added 2 sliced celery, 1 can water chestnuts and 2 chopped hard boiled eggs. It was out of this world. Will make many more times.
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I made this salad for the first time today. I need to have something healthy to snack on. It is delicious. I did use Ranch dressing this time and it is awesome this way. Thank you so much.
Making this for the 4th time, today. I made no changes to the recipe. It’s absolutely delicious just as written. Why fix something that’s not broken, right? Thank you for sharing it! We all love it!
Made a great side for our Easter dinner.
I made this for a small get together and everyone loved it. My husband doesn’t like many vegetables but he loved this. I made a couple of changes though. I used Miracle Whip for the tang and added 1/2 packet dry ranch seasoning.
This was easy to make and so good.
I have made this recipe for 40 years! If kids don’t like cooked peas they will eat this tasty salad. A winner!
Thanks Cherie! Yes, even my kids like it 🙂