This recipe for Homemade Coleslaw comes together in minutes with just a few ingredients and is the perfect side dish or accompaniment to barbecue sandwiches.
Coleslaw, like Pasta Salad and Potato Salad, makes a perfect summer side dish. But this creamy coleslaw is also delicious served on Hamburgers, BBQ Pork Sandwiches, or BBQ Chicken Burgers, as the creaminess and crisp texture cut through and balance out the rich meat.
Coleslaw is a classic summer side dish made with cabbage and a creamy, tangy dressing.
This is a classic recipe for coleslaw. It is basic, simple, yet perfect. It comes together in just minutes and is SO much better tasting than any store-bought coleslaw.
And while coleslaw makes a great side dish, it is also the perfect condiment to burgers, hot dogs, or pulled pork sandwiches. The crunchy cabbage, paired with a tangy, creamy sauce is perfect to cut through heavier summer dishes.
Trust me, once you make coleslaw at home, you will never go back to purchasing premade coleslaw again.
- Cabbage Mix: I prefer to shred my own cabbage and carrots instead of buying a pre-packaged bag of coleslaw mix. It is much more economical AND honestly, I prefer the taste. I find most bags of shredded cabbage to have a bitter, acidic taste. For this recipe, green cabbage is traditional. Red cabbage can be substituted but will give a pink tinge to your dressing. I also add in shredded carrots. They are optional but add a punch of color and a tiny bit of natural sweetness.
- Mayonnaise or Plain Greek Yogurt: Whether you use mayonnaise, as is traditional in coleslaw, or Greek yogurt for a lighter version of coleslaw, this recipe will not disappoint.
- Vinegar: Vinegar adds a bit of tang to the coleslaw and cuts through the richness of the mayonnaise and helps to break down the coleslaw. Use either apple cider or white distilled vinegar.
- Sweetness: Coleslaw needs a bit of sweetness to balance out the flavors. Use honey or granulated sugar.
- Salt: For flavor and to help soften the cabbage.
How To Make Coleslaw
- Cut the cabbage into quarters and peel the carrot.
- Fit a food processor with the grater blade and finely grate the cabbage and carrots.
If you don't have a food processor, feel free to use a 14-ounce bag of pre-shredded coleslaw for this coleslaw recipe. Or you can thinly slice up the cabbage and grate the cabbage on a box grater.
- Prepare the coleslaw dressing, by whisking together the mayonnaise or yogurt with the vinegar, sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl.
- Add the cabbage mixture to the mixing bowl and toss until the cabbage and carrots are coated in the dressing.
- Cover and refrigerate the coleslaw for at least 30 minutes before serving. This will give the cabbage time to soften and absorb the flavor of the coleslaw dressing.
Make-Ahead and Serving Suggestions
For the best flavor, prepare this creamy coleslaw at least 1 hour before serving, and no more than 48 hours after preparing. After 2 days have passed, the coleslaw will become watery, as the cabbage breaks down and releases its natural liquid.
Coleslaw can be served on the side of any meal like Ribs or Barbecue Chicken, but it is also great served in more creative ways.
- Use to top a Pulled Pork Sandwich to cut through the rich meat.
- Top Chicken Burgers with homemade coleslaw to add crunch and creaminess.
- Top baked sweet potatoes with barbecue meat and coleslaw.
- Top Sloppy Joes with coleslaw for texture and taste.
More Summer Side Dishes
Skip the premade coleslaw, and easily make your own. The taste of homemade coleslaw can not be beaten!
- ½ head green cabbage shredded
- 1 carrot shredded
- ½ cup Plain Greek Yogurt or mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon honey or granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar or white vinegar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Using a food processor, shred the cabbage and carrot using the grater blade. Alternatively, you could use a box grater.
- In a large bowl, mix together mayonnaise/yogurt with vinegar, honey, and salt.
- Add the shredded cabbage and carrots to coleslaw dressing and toss until well combined.
- Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.
- Instead of using fresh cabbage and carrots, you can also use a 14-ounce bag of coleslaw mix.
- Add in ¼ teaspoon of ground pepper is desired.
- Nutritional facts have been calculated using plain nonfat Greek yogurt.
- Coleslaw is best served within 48 hours after preparing.
This post was originally published in 2018 nut has been updated in 2020 with new tips.
Can't wait to make this recipe> Can I use purple cabbage with the green? I Love seeing bright colors in my food.
Yes! Just keep in mind that the purple will bleed into the mayonnaise and cause it to be a pinkish hue.
Regarding your nutritional info, what portion does it pertain to? Does the info refer to the dressing only? Does it refer to coleslaw plus dressing? What is the portion size? Nutrition info must include portion size , etc or it is useless.
Hi Barbara! The nutritional information is based on 8 servings of the entire recipe--including cabbage and dressing.
This is the tastiest coleslaw I’ve ever had!! Even my picky grandson loved it!
I hate the smell & taste of mayo, so I rarely even eat coleslaw. I didn’t know I could use Greek Yogurt or honey instead. What a difference! AND, I didn’t even have to add more honey (which says a lot about me).
YAY!!! I love hearing how much your family enjoyed Lara! It is a staple here and I hope it becomes a staple at your house.
All I have is NAPA cabbage.Can I use that instead?Thanks!
Hi there! I love using Napa cabbage as a slaw, but it won't work well for this recipe. I would cut the dressing in half for the same amount of cabbage, as napa cabbage is really delicate.
Hi Can you use regular plain yogurt?
Hi Leah! Yes, you can, but being that regular yogurt is not as thick as Greek yogurt, you may want to decrease the amount to 1/3 cup.
Who knew Cole slaw could be so easy to prepare? This is delicious! I've made with the mayo and another time with yogurt and both were very tasty. Thanks so much!
I am so glad you are enjoying this super easy recipe Kim! Thanks for leaving a review.
What a great recipe for homemade coleslaw one taste and we were hooked thanks!
I love hearing you enjoyed it.
I love it when coleslaw is shredded this thin, but the dressing is what really makes it delicious and unique!
I love homemade coleslaw! It tastes so much better than store-bought and the fact you can use this as a topping for other summer BBQ items is fantastic. Can't wait to give it a try.
Delicious!!! So easy to make and the perfect balance of sweet and acid!!
I am so glad you enjoyed Liz!
This recipe has been in my family for years. I prefer to hand grate the cabbage and carrots. It just tastes better. Much better than chopped. Thank you.