If there is one classic salad that goes with every barbecue party you might have, it must be the humble coleslaw recipe right? And making this classic coleslaw recipe is super easy and super delicious. How to do it? I’ll tell you!

coleslaw recipe

Creamy coleslaw recipe

Now the fun part about coleslaw is that you can make it in advance. You can even make it a day in advance and it will only get better. You hardly need any ingredients at all and it will be done in no time at all. You do preferably have a food processor to make the task of cutting the cabbage easier, but you can also buy it cut. I do that a lot of the times. I did tell you it’s an easy coleslaw recipe right? So make it as easy for yourself as possible. Apparently you can buy a bag of coleslaw mix as well. Not where I come from but might be worth checking out.

What you need to make the coleslaw

First of all you need to have a few basic ingredients for making the salad. I like to use both white cabbage (sometimes also called green cabbage but you need the very light variety) and red cabbage. It makes the color much more appealing. Plus I use carrots too. Now all of those three items can be bought ready cut. But if you’re using the whole cabbage be aware that the amount is massive if you use the whole thing. Half a cabbage is more than enough. Or you will have a whole lot of coleslaw and will be eating coleslaw for the next week or so.

​Apart from that you need mayonnaise and apple cider vinegar. Those are the main items. O and a very large bowl where you can mix it all together.

I do like to add a few extra items to make it more delicious; one is raisins (or dried cranberries) and two is pecan nuts (or walnuts) I love adding those. Than for the coleslaw dressing I add some anis seeds to it. Love the addition of that but that’s totally optional of course.

If you don’t have a food processor and you don’t want to buy the vegetables ready cut you can use a sharp knife and get the job done. it just takes a bit longer.

coleslaw recipe

You can also grate the cabbages on a box grater but I don’t like them too fine. I do use the box grater for the carrots. 

Where does coleslaw come from?

Now for a funny bit of history. I always figured coleslaw was an American invention. Because – let’s face it – it goes so well with hot dogs, pork sandwiches or a really great burger. So naturally I figured it was American. But as it turns out it’s not. It’s actually a Dutch “invention” which kind of makes sense if you think about it. I mean the word ‘cole’ is a literal translation almost of the Dutch word for cabbage which is kool. Sounds pretty similar right? As long as you don’t say cool that is. But we Dutch pronounce the word kool as cole.  I just thought that was a funny bit of information about this cole slaw recipe. 

Making the coleslaw salad

Now the making of the salad, as you guessed, is as easy as tossing all the veggies together and mixing. I use my hands for this as that is the easiest way to mingle it all together. Now the star of this slaw is of course the creamy dressing, which is a mayo-based dressing. I like to use mayonnaise and apple cider vinegar but you can switch things up by adding some sour cream and even some olive oil in there. A little bit of honey or maple syrup is also quite delicious. Depending on the taste I also use a bit of fresh lemon juice on occasion. You want that perfect balance between sweet, creamy and tangy.

coleslaw recipe

Once you’ve made the dressing to perfection you pour it all into the cabbage mixture and mix it again. And that’s basically the salad done. Time to fire up that backyard barbecue or the next family bbq.

How long can you keep the coleslaw?

Well the good news about this coleslaw recipe is that it is even better the next day. Just keep it in an airtight container and your perfect side dish will be ready to go. You can keep it 2-3 days at least.

What can you use the coleslaw with?

There is no limit to the use of coleslaw. It is delicious on a hot dog. On a burger. On a sandwich. Or on it’s own. I sometimes use it for lunch or as part of dinner. It has the perfect texture to go with so many things. The crunchy cabbage is the perfect companion to softer things. Stuff them inside fish tacos or on a veggie burger (or a non veggie burger)

What do I serve the coleslaw with?

Apart from the above mentioned you can vary the coleslaw recipe by adding some nuts, green onions and some dijon mustard. 

coleslaw recipe

Making the most delicious coleslaw salad

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Keep in mind that one white cabbage makes a ton of salad! The total prep time depends on wether you still need to cut all the cabbage or not.
Decorative clock showing preparation time
Prep time 10 minutes
Total time 10 minutes

6 people


  • 1/2 white cabbage
  • 200 g red cabbage chopped
  • 2 large carrots
  • 75 g pecan nuts
  • 50 g handful of raisins
  • 1 spring onion sliced


  • 3 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp apple vinegar
  • 1 tbsp anis seed optional
  • pepper
  • salt

How to make the coleslaw recipe

  • Cut the cabbage finely or grate in a food processor. Grate the carrots as well. Add the vegetables together in a large bowl and add the raisins.
  • Make a large qty of dressing with the given ingredients and taste in between. The exact qty is depending on your taste, but if you start first with the amount of mayo you think you need you can build on that and add vinegar bit by bit till it is to your liking.
  • This salad is best if you make it a day before you’re gonna eat and leave to sit in the fridge overnight


If you’re doing a whole30 make sure your raisins are sugar free!

Nutrition Information per portion

Calories: 222kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 100mg | Potassium: 560mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 4564IU | Vitamin C: 77mg | Calcium: 103mg | Iron: 2mg


The nutritional values above are calculated per portion. The details are based on standard nutritional tables and do not constitute a professional nutritional advice.

Did you make this recipe?Mention @insimoneskitchen_ or tag #insimoneskitchen!

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Simone van den Berg

Food blogger from the Netherlands. Loves good food. Likes to create healthy and easy recipes for daily use, but also loves the occasional sweet dish. Lives in the Netherlands with her two cats; Humphrey and Buffy. Profession: Food photographer, food blogger, recipe developer and nutritionist