This Purple Cabbage and Carrot Slaw is my new favorite side! It’s creamy, crunchy, a little sweet and slightly spicy, and absolutely delicious. Make it as a healthy dish for your next backyard bbq or cookout!
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Summer cookouts are back, baby! And I’m celebrating by cooking all the good stuff, like this purple cabbage and carrot slaw.
It’s crunchy, sweet, lightly spicy and tangy, so it hits all the high points, and it’s just perfect on a hot summer day. Best of all, there’s almost no work required to make it- Just prep the veggies, mix, and enjoy!
Now if you know me, you probably already know I’m a fan of bright side dishes. I make some good ones, too, like my broccoli slaw, pickled cabbage, or corn salsa, and more!
But today, since I’m grilling a pork tenderloin, I’ll be making this cabbage slaw to serve with it. The creamy, tangy dressing goes beautifully with a rich bbq sauce, and the crunchy veggies perfectly compliment the tender meat.
Get your grocery lists ready! Here’s what you need to make this recipe.
- Produce: Purple cabbage, carrots, red onion, garlic, jalapeño, cilantro
- Pantry: Mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, mustard, salt & pepper
Note: Pre-shredded cabbage and matchstick carrots are going to be the biggest timesavers for this recipe. If you’d like to whip this up with almost no prep work (or cleanup!), then look for those items.
Step by Step
There’s NO cooking involved in this recipe, so all you need is your ingredients, a mandoline, and box grater (or a sharp knife, if you don’t have those tools handy).
To prep the vegetables, you’ll want to thinly slice the cabbage, grate the carrots, and then mince the garlic, onion, jalapeño, and cilantro.
Next, add everything together in a bowl. Plenty of people whisk together the mayo, mustard, and vinegar first, and that works great, but I find that just dirties another dish. Instead, I just mix all the ingredients together well, until fully coated and combined.
This is a good moment to give your slaw a taste. Does it need more salt and pepper? If so, add more seasoning. Do you like your slaw a little creamier? If so, add another tablespoon or two of mayonnaise. Do you like more heat? Add more jalapeño!
The very best thing you can do to become a better cook is to learn your own tastes! So taste, adjust, and repeat as needed.
Cole slaw can be eaten immediately, but it’s best when it has a chance to sit a while before you eat it. The flavors meld together and get better over time!
Cover and set it in the refrigerator for at least two hours, up to a day in advance. Just give it a quick toss before you serve and enjoy!
There are a few minor nutritional differences between purple and green cabbage, but the two varieties are overwhelmingly similar in flavor and texture and can often be used interchangeably in cooking. Purple cabbage will definitely alter the color of the foods it touches, so keep that in mind!
Cole slaw goes great with sandwiches, wraps, and any classic backyard bbq food. I like to serve it with pulled pork, ribs, wings, drumsticks, and more!
Properly stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, cole slaw will last 3-5 days, unless the expiration of the mayonnaise comes before that. If using homemade mayonnaise, it would only last up to 4 days, per USDA.
It is not recommended to freeze coleslaw. Mayonnaise will separate once frozen and the quality of the coleslaw will be significantly diminished.
Now all that’s left to do is to grab a drink, pull up a chair, and dig in!
If you like this recipe, I’d love to hear about it. Leave a comment below or tag me on Instagram @cookathomemom!
Purple Cabbage and Carrot Slaw
- 1/2 medium purple cabbage
- 3 medium carrots
- 1/2 – 1 jalapeño
- 1/4 red onion thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 Tablespoon minced fresh cilantro
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 3/4 cup mayo or more, to taste
- 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- Use a mandolin or sharp knife to thinly slice the cabbage. Use a box grater to shred the carrots. Mince the red onion, garlic, jalapeño, and cilantro.
- Add all ingredients to a large bowl. Toss to combine and mix the slaw well. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Keep the cole slaw covered and refrigerated until you're ready to eat! For best results, let it sit for at least 2 hours.