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Classic Pea Salad is a cool, delicious side dish perfect to serve any time of year. Made with frozen, sweet peas, bacon, cheese, onion, and a bright creamy dressing, this salad is ideal for cookouts, potlucks, and holiday buffets. Don’t let this simple dish fool you, it’s loaded with yummy flavors that you’ll fall in love with after just one bite!
It’s no secret that I have “a thing” for classic recipes. Lately, I’ve been on somewhat of a binge, posting Jezebel Sauce, Green Goddess Dressing and Ambrosia Salad, just to name a few. These traditional dishes have gained new fans but there was one recipe in particular that just kept rolling around in my head and I knew that I had to share it. Enter in, Classic Pea Salad. It’s one of those dishes that’s adorned many a table during a summer gathering, always shows up at a covered dish supper and is a must on any holiday buffet.
There are those folks who are in the “I hate peas” camp but somehow, I feel like I could win them over with this salad. It’s made with frozen green peas, not the stuff out of a can. The peas are fresh with a firm texture. Nothing mushy or soggy here! With the addition of smokey bacon, sharp cheddar cheese, and onion, you know you’re on to something good. When all of these simple ingredients are tossed in a zesty, sweet, creamy dressing made with mayonnaise and sour cream, the magic starts to happen.
Ingredients Needed To Make Classic Pea Salad
- frozen green peas
- cheddar cheese
- red onion
- sour cream
- salt and pepper
How To Make Classic Pea Salad
This recipe is so simple to make and comes together in about 10 minutes. First, make sure you buy good green peas and thaw them. If you forget to plan ahead by thawing them in the fridge overnight, just put them in a strainer and rinse with cold water to thaw. Let them drain for about 15 minutes then pat dry with a paper towel. This is my trick when I decide to make this salad on the spur of the moment. Second, cook 4-5 pieces of bacon, cool and chop. You can use bacon bits as well.
The last bit of prep is cubing the cheese and chopping the onion. To pull everything together, grab a medium-size bowl and make the dressing. There’s no need to mess up another dish so stir up the dressing in the bottom of the bowl, add the peas, bacon, cheese, and onion. Toss every together and chill in the fridge for 2 to 3 hours, letting the flavors mingle.
When you’re ready to serve your Classic Pea Salad, give it a little toss, taste for seasoning and serve. This yummy dish is great when you need to feed a crowd since it’s easy on your budget. It can also be made a day ahead of when you want to serve it which always is a plus for me.
More Easy Salad Recipes You’ll Love…
- Super Simple Caprese Salad
- Pear and Spinach Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Broccoli Apple Salad
- Waldorf Salad
- Tomato Cucumber Salad
- 1 32 oz bag green peas, thawed
- ½ cup red onion chopped
- ¾ cup sharp cheddar cheese – cubed
- ¾ cup bacon – crumbled (about 5 slices, cooked)
- ¼ cup mayonnaise – NOT salad dressing
- ¼ cup sour cream
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 1 tablspoon sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- To a medium size bowl, add mayonnaise, sour cream, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper. Whisk together. Add peas, bacon, cheese and onion. Gently toss together. Cover and chill in refrigerator 3 to 5 hours.
- Remove from fridge, toss, adjust seasoning if necessary and serve.
- **Salad can be made 24 hours ahead of time.
This looks yummy. When I do make it I will try adding a .5 tsp. of Cumin and 2 tsp. of mustard. Also a 1tbsp of lemon juice. I find adding these ingredients to my dressings brightens them up. (Taste and if too sour just add a touch more sugar)
Have always only used can peas………….le seur are the best 🙂 and being from the South, only EVER used mayo….& I think an addition now with a squeeze of lemon would do it some justice. bacon, yes. little onion, yes, little cheese, yes thinking some cherry tomatoes would be great………….. I GOT THE COVID COOKING BLUES AND DREAMING UP THINGS ! 😀
keep up the good work, LOVE YA DONYA! 😉
-LIN FROM MISSISSIPPI IN CALIFORNIA NOW
I love this salad but I have always added boiled eggs chopped…
Hey there Edna!
I’m so glad you’ve been enjoying this recipe, that sounds like a delicious addition to the salad! Thank you so much for you support!
Have a great rest of your day!
Great recipe! I also added some jarred pimento- family loved it!
Thank you so much for this phenomenal rating, I am so happy to hear y’all enjoyed these recipes! If you ever have any questions feel free to ask, I appreciate your support!
I am so excited to make this as soon as I can get to town to buy a few ingredients. Never seem to find any salad nowadays that doesn’t have cucumbers or celery. My husband will eat neither and I am not too crazy about celery.
Thanks so much for posting. By the way I am 75 years old, so you can teach an old dog new tricks when it comes to cooking.
Hey Granny Jean!
I hope you like the recipe. I must say, we love it. I am tickled that you reached out and I hope you’ll keep me posted.
Have a wonderful day,