Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium) is a major cause of gastroenteritis in cattle and humans. Dendritic cells (DC) and macrophages (Mø) are major players in early immunity to Salmonella, and their response could influence the course of infection. Therefore, the global transcriptional response of bovine monocyte-derived DC and Mø to stimulation with live and inactivated S. Typhimurium was compared. Both cell types mount a major response 2 h post infection, with a core common response conserved across cell-type and stimuli. However, three of the most affected pathways; inflammatory response, regulation of transcription and regulation of programmed cell death, exhibited cell-type and stimuli-specific differences. The expression of a subset of genes associated with these pathways was investigated further. The inflammatory response was greater in Mø than DC, in the number of genes and the enhanced expression of common genes, e.g., interleukin (IL) 1B and IL6, while the opposite pattern was observed with interferon gamma. Furthermore, a large proportion of the investigated genes exhibited stimuli-specific differential expression, e.g., Mediterranean fever. Two-thirds of the investigated transcription factors were significantly differentially expressed in response to live and inactivated Salmonella. Therefore the transcriptional responses of bovine DC and Mø during early S. Typhimurium infection are similar but distinct, potentially due to the overall function of these cell-types. The differences in response of the host cell will influence down-stream events, thus impacting on the subsequent immune response generated during the course of the infection.