Red Cabbage Slaw Recipe

5 from 6 votes
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Red cabbage slaw is full of color, crunch and coated with a creamy dressing. This slaw makes a delicious side dish or a wonderful topping for things like tacos, sandwiches, and more.

We love cabbage in meals like these purple cabbage recipes, but it’s also great roasted like this air fryer roasted cabbage.

coleslaw piled on a plate

You will love this cabbage slaw

When it comes to coleslaw there are several ways to dress the slaw. There are many different vinegar based and mayonnaise based versions.

This recipe uses mayonnaise for the dressing. I really love the creaminess it adds to this dish and makes it perfect for a pulled pork sandwich or hot dog topping.

When it comes to coleslaw there are several ways to dress the slaw. There are many different vinegar based and mayonnaise based versions like this recipe.


  • Red cabbage – This cabbage actually looks purple and has a bit of a peppery flavor. Fee free to add green cabbage. You can also do a mixture of half red and half green cabbage.
  • Carrots – Adds another layer of color and crunch.
  • Fresh parsley – If you don’t have parsley, you can leave it out but it adds a nice freshness to the slaw.
  • Green onions – Make sure to dice these up small.
  • Sunflower seeds – These are optional but add another layer of crunch. Feel free to use plain or roasted seeds.
  • Dressing – Mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, celery seed, salt, and pepper.

How to make Red Cabbage Slaw

Scroll to the bottom for full, printable recipe, ingredients and video.

  1. Chop: Chop the cabbage, green onions, parsley, and carrots. Add the vegetables and sunflower seeds to a large bowl.
  2. Dressing: To make the dressing, mix together mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, celery seed, salt, and pepper.
  3. Toss: Pour the dressing over the slaw and toss until everything is coated.

red cabbage, carrots, parsley, onions, on counter, chopped in a bowl and with dressing

How to cut cabbage for coleslaw

Don’t let the thought of shredding cabbage stop you from making slaw. Here are some easy steps for getting perfect shreds.

  • Start by removing the outer leaves.
  • Cut the head of the cabbage in half and then into quarters. Remove the core from the bottom center of the wedge.
  • To shred, cut with a sharp knife into thin strips or use a food processor with an attachment.

How to store

One thing to keep in mind is that red cabbage will tend to bleed color into the dressing. So the longer the slaw sits, the more purple the dressing becomes.

The cabbage and vegetables will also start to get soft after it sits in the dressing overnight.

Make ahead: If you need to make this ahead of time, chop vegetables and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Make the dressing and store in a separate container in the refrigerator. Once ready to serve, toss the dressing with the vegetables.

Store: Store the leftovers in an airtight container for up to 2 days in the refrigerator.

Recipe Tips

  • You can use pre-shredded bagged cabbage if you are in a hurry.
  • Use pre-cut carrots for convenience. I like using a bag of matchstick carrots. You can also use a spiralizer to help cut carrots.
  • Using tongs makes it easy to toss the slaw with the dressing.
  • This is a great low-carb recipe.

Red Cabbage Slaw Recipe Variations

This coleslaw is so easy to customize. Here are a few other variations you can try to change it up:

  • Add in some green cabbage and use a creamy coleslaw dressing or even ranch.
  • Try adding in fresh cilantro and diced jalapeno for a Mexican twist.
  • Mix in some of your favorite nuts and dried fruit like cranberries or raisins.
Cabbage, parsley, carrots, sunflower seeds in a bowl


How to serve

This slaw makes a great side dish for many things. It adds the perfect amount of crunch to things like tacos, sandwiches, and wraps. You can also serve it with chicken, pork, and meatloaf.

Red Cabbage Coleslaw FAQs

Should red cabbage be cooked?

Red cabbage can be eaten raw. It does not have to be cooked.

Should I rinse red cabbage?

Yes, it’s good to rinse of a head of red cabbage before chopping.

What is the difference between purple and green cabbage?

Purple cabbage can have a little spicier and sweeter taste and the leaves can be thicker than green cabbage.

More salad recipes

If you made this recipe, let me know in the comments and don’t forget to check out this list of napa cabbage recipes.

cabbage slaw on a plate
5 from 6 votes

Red Cabbage Slaw Recipe

By Heather
Colorful and crunchy red cabbage slaw. Great as a side dish or a topping for fish, pork, chicken and more.
Prep: 10 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Servings: 6


  • 1 head red cabbage, cut into shreds
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • green onions
  • parsley
  • sunflower seeds


  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper


  • Add shredded cabbage, carrots, onions, parsley and sunflower seeds to a large bowl.
  • To make the dressing, stir together mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, celery seeds, salt and pepper in a small bowl.
  • Pour dressing over slaw and toss to coat.
  • Serve immediately or store in refrigerator.


YouTube video


Calories: 244kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 12mg | Sodium: 328mg | Potassium: 408mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 5143IU | Vitamin C: 81mg | Calcium: 75mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    Adding parsley!!! Genius!! I’m not super good at following recipes, I tend to just take all the ingredients as suggestions and use my best “measuring” judgement. The celery seeds and the parsley absolutely MAKE this dish. 10/10 will make again! 💖

    1. Might be the inner part of the cabbage. I have noticed that some cabbages I get are “sweeter” than others. You could also substitute with green cabbage.