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This red cabbage and carrot slaw is the perfect easy side dish for any occasion! The vibrant colors of the vegetables are beautiful, and the vinaigrette adds a delicious depth of flavor. You can serve this slaw as is or top it with some grilled chicken or fish for a complete meal.
This red cabbage salad recipe was inspired by one that I enjoyed at the posh LA retail store Erewhon. It was one of many salads in the salad bar, and it stuck out to me because of how simple the ingredients were but how flavorful the end product was. My version is not exactly the same, but I think you’ll agree that the sum is more than equal to the parts of this simple red cabbage slaw recipe!
Table of Contents
- Why you’ll love this red cabbage and carrot slaw
- Ingredients to make red cabbage salad
- How to make red cabbage slaw with vinaigrette
- Tips for making the best red cabbage slaw
- Popular substitutions & additions
- What to serve/pair with your red cabbage salad
- How to store red cabbage slaw
- Frequently asked questions
- More slaws and salads:
- Red Cabbage Slaw Recipe
Why you’ll love this red cabbage and carrot slaw
- Crisp & refreshing. The shredded red cabbage and carrots add crunch, while the cilantro and vinaigrette add a hint of zing to the salad.
- Easy & healthy. This red cabbage slaw comes together quickly with just a few ingredients and is full of vitamins and minerals. It’s also vegan and gluten-free!
- Deliciously versatile. Serve this slaw as it is, or top it with your protein of choice, salmon, shrimp, or even tofu. It’s also great on burgers!
- Perfect for potlucks. If you’re in charge of a summer side dish, this red cabbage and carrot slaw is a crowd-pleaser and easy on the wallet.
Ingredients to make red cabbage salad
One of the great things about this slaw recipe is that the ingredients can be adapted to what you have on hand. The salad itself only requires 4 ingredients, and the dressing is made up of pantry staples that I bet you already have!
For the salad:
- Red cabbage: Shredded red cabbage adds a beautiful color and crunchy texture to the salad.
- Carrots: Match stick carrots add sweetness as well as an additional layer of crunch.
- Red onions: Finely sliced red onion adds a nice pop of flavor without being too overpowering.
- Cilantro: Fresh cilantro brings brightness and herbal notes.
FOR THE DRESSING
- Red wine vinegar: Red wine vinegar provides a subtle tartness to the vinaigrette.
- Olive oil: Olive oil adds a smooth texture and nutty flavor to the dressing.
- Maple Syrup: A little bit of maple syrup balances out the acidity of the vinegar.
- Salt & Pepper: To finish, add a pinch of salt and pepper to taste.
How to make red cabbage slaw with vinaigrette
- Combine the red wine vinegar, olive oil, maple syrup, salt, and pepper in a large bowl.
- Whisk until well combined.
- Add the cabbage, carrots, red onions, and cilantro.
- Toss well to coat the dressing into the cabbage. Serve immediately.
Tips for making the best red cabbage slaw
- Cut the cabbage, carrots, and red onions to the same size. You want the veggies to be evenly distributed so that each bite has a balance of flavors.
- Add the dressing just before serving. The vinaigrette can make the vegetables soggy if it is added too far in advance, so aim to add the dressing as close to serving time as possible.
- Keep the cabbage crisp. If you want to meal prep the salad in advance and you’re worried about it getting soggy, I recommend adding 2 teaspoons of salt to the cabbage after you shred it and allowing it to sit for 1-2 hours. Then rinse the cabbage with water to remove the salt. This process helps to draw out the excess moisture from the cabbage while keeping it crispy.
Popular substitutions & additions
- Try different veggies. If you don’t have red cabbage on hand, this slaw is also delicious with green or Napa cabbage. You can also swap out the carrots for grated beets or radishes for a different flavor profile.
- Mix up the dressing. The great thing about vinaigrettes is that you can pretty much add anything to them (if you’ve seen enough episodes of chopped, you know what I mean!). Feel free to experiment with different herbs and spices or even purchase a bottled vinaigrette of your choice.
- Add seeds. If you want to add some extra crunch to this slaw, try adding some pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds.
- Top with cheese. A sprinkling of crumbled feta cheese adds a nice salty bite!
What to serve/pair with your red cabbage salad
- Chickpea “Tuna” Salad
- Cauliflower Pita Sandwiches
- Pinwheel Sandwiches
- Grilled Turkey Burgers
- Chickpea Burger
How to store red cabbage slaw
If you are making this recipe in advance, you’ll want to store the salad and the vinaigrette apart, both in their own air-tight container. You can store leftovers altogether if it’s already mixed.
How long will red cabbage slaw last in the fridge?
This red cabbage slaw can be stored in the fridge for up to 2 days. The dressing will last up to a week if stored in the refrigerator on its own.
Frequently asked questions
Yes, you can certainly use a bag of prepackaged slaw mix instead of shredding the cabbage and carrots yourself. You’ll just want to add some onions.
To make this slaw creamy, you can add a few tablespoons of mayonnaise to the dressing. Alternatively, you can also use Greek yogurt or sour cream as well. You will want to use a blender to make sure everything is well incorporated and does not separate.
The red cabbage provides a slightly peppery flavor as well as an interesting color contrast to the other vegetables in the slaw. The purple hue also stays vibrant and bright even after being dressed, making it a great addition to any salad! Green cabbage can also be used, but I like the color of red cabbage.
The red cabbage and carrot slaw with a vinaigrette is a great side dish for any meal. It’s full of fresh flavors, and the bright colors make it visually appealing. Whether you use homemade or store-bought dressing, this slaw will be sure to please! Plus, it’s an easy way to get more vegetables into your meals. With a few simple tweaks, you can customize the slaw to fit any dietary needs or flavor preferences.
More slaws and salads:
- Healthy Coleslaw
- Grilled Fish Tacos with Coleslaw
- Watermelon Cucumber Salad
- Cowboy Caviar
- Yogurt Macaroni Salad
- Greek Orzo Salad
- Creamy Cucumber Salad
- Mexican Street Corn Salad
- Tomato Avocado Cucumber Salad
- Chopped Green Goddess Salad
If you try this feel good Red Cabbage Slaw recipe or any other recipe on Feel Good Foodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave a comment below! It helps others who are thinking of making the recipe. We would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots, share it on Instagram so we can repost on Stories!
Red Cabbage Slaw
For the dressing
- ⅓ cup red wine vinegar
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly cracked pepper
For the salad
- ½ red cabbage about 6 cups thinly sliced
- 2 carrots peeled and cut into matchsticks (about 1 cup)
- ¼ red onion very thinly sliced
- 1 cup packed cilantro chopped
- Whisk the red wine vinegar, olive oil, maple syrup, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Add the cabbage, carrots, red onions, and cilantro. Toss well to coat the dressing into the cabbage. Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 4 hours.
Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.
Delicious and simple recipe. Followed the recipe exactly and got rave reviews. Thanks
You’re so welcome!