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A fresh and delicious red cabbage slaw seasoned with a tangy lime mayo dressing, sesame oil, and cilantro. Crunchy yet creamy, bursting with flavors, this versatile side dish is meant to be made on repeat during cabbage season.

two black bowls of red cabbage slaw with a fork and lime on the side

Why you should try this recipe

  • Red cabbage – is crunchier, has an earthier taste, and is less sweet than regular cabbage, making it the ideal candidate for a slaw.
  • Brighter than your normal slaw – light on mayo with some toasted nuttiness and tang thanks to lime and cilantro. The sauce complements red cabbage
  • Versatile side dish – can accompany zucchini fritters or a heaping plate of Mutabbal. I also love adding it to burgers for an extra layer of flavor. Piled on top of steaming rice, it is heaven!
half a red cabbage, lime, mayo, cilantro, sesame seeds, sesame oil , red onion, salt and pepper on a wooden surface

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The ingredients you’ll need

(Note: the full ingredients list, including measurements, is provided in the recipe card at the end of the post.)

  • Red cabbage – brings color, crunch, and a delicious earthiness to the slaw.
  • Red onion – its peppery, spicy flavor elevates the slaw and cuts through the earthiness of the red cabbage.
  • Sesame seeds – for nuttiness, crunch, and texture contrast.
  • Cilantro – adds freshness with its lemony, peppery touch.
  • Mayonnaise (or vegan mayo) – is what creates the creaminess and classic slaw taste. This recipe is on the lighter side of things mayo-wise, as I find mayo-heavy slaws too rich.
  • Lime juice – freshly squeezed, is always best. Lime juice adds a lot of freshness and acts as a flavor enhancer in this recipe. Plus, it acts as a natural preservative and increases the fridge life of the slaw, making it possible to make it ahead of time.
  • Toasted sesame oil – creates a depth of flavor with its toastiness and nuttiness.
  • Salt and pepper – to season.

close-up of shredded red cabbage

How to properly shred cabbage?

  1. Remove the first outer layer of the cabbage.
  2. Cut the cabbage in half through the stem.
  3. Cut off the root.
  4. Cut it into quarters.
  5. Remove the tough white root part (too thick and giving an unpleasant texture to the slaw).
  6. Using a mandolin or a sharp kitchen knife, shred the cabbage crosswise from the stem (on the shorter side) into ⅛ inch (3 mm) thick pieces.

shredded cabbage on a wooden board

How to make Red Cabbage Slaw?

(Note: please see the recipe card below for the complete written instructions and measurements.)


Prepare the veggies.

  • Shred the cabbage and thinly mince the red onion. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
  • Add sesame seeds and chopped cilantro. Set aside.

Make the sauce.

  • In a bowl, add mayonnaise, lime juice, toasted sesame oil, salt, and pepper.
  • Whisk vigorously until well combined.

Assemble the slaw.

  • Pour the sauce over the cabbage preparation and mix everything thoroughly (you can even use your hands and massage the cabbage gently to help coat every single piece).

  • Sprinkle with optional sesame seeds and cilantro. Enjoy with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc!
red cabbage slaw in a grey bowl with a spoon

Nim Keys – Useful Tips

  1. A mandolin is the best tool to ensure that the cabbage is evenly shredded. I recommend using it if you have one.
  2. Shred the cabbage thinly. Big pieces of cabbage will make the slaw less refined. Adjust your mandolin’s opening to ⅛ inch (3mm).
  3. Make ahead – you can either serve it immediately or store it in the fridge until it is ready to serve.

two black bowls of red cabbage slaw with limes and a kitchen cloth on the side

Wine Pairing🍷


SAUVIGNON BLANC

Pronounced “Saw-vin-yon blæŋ”

Sauvignon Blanc’s crispy acidity will match the tanginess of lime juice while cutting through the earthiness of red cabbage.

WINE APPELLATION SUGGESTIONS

  • Sauvignon Blanc from the Casablanca Valley (Chile)
  • Pouilly Fumé from the Loire Valley (France)
  • Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough (New Zealand)

close-up of red cabbage slaw in a grey bowl

FAQ

Can I make this recipe ahead of time?

Yes! You can prepare this slaw a couple of hours before serving. Note that it will be a bit less crunchy than when freshly made, though I find that red cabbage keeps its crunch longer than regular cabbage.

How long does this red cabbage slaw keep?

You can keep it, stored in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

I don’t like cilantro, what can I substitute it with?

Dill, parsley, or chervil would work great.

Other Vegetarian Side-Dish Recipes


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Red Cabbage Slaw

A fresh and delicious red cabbage slaw seasoned with a tangy lime mayo dressing, sesame oil, and cilantro. Crunchy yet creamy, bursting with flavors, this versatile side dish is meant to be made on repeat during cabbage season.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Diet Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings 4

INGREDIENTS
 

  • 6 cups (450 g) shredded red cabbage (about 1 pound)
  • ½ cup (75 g) red onion, thinly minced (about 1 small onion)
  • 2 tablespoons (20 g) toasted sesame seeds
  • ½ cup (20 g) cilantro, roughly chopped
  • ¼ cup (50 g) mayonnaise (or vegan mayo)
  • 3 tablespoons (45 ml) lime juice, freshly squeezed
  • 3 tablespoons (45 ml) toasted sesame oil
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Shred the cabbage (see step-by-step instructions above in this post) and thinly mince the red onion. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
  • Add the sesame seeds and chopped cilantro. Set aside.
  • In a separate bowl, add mayonnaise, lime juice, toasted sesame oil, salt, and pepper. Whisk vigorously until well combined.
  • Pour the sauce over the cabbage preparation and mix everything thoroughly (you can even use your hands and massage the cabbage gently to help coat every single piece).
  • To serve, sprinkle with optional extra sesame seeds and cilantro. Enjoy with a glass of chilled Sauvignon Blanc!

NIM KEYS – USEFUL TIPS

  1. A mandolin is the best tool to ensure that the cabbage is evenly shredded. I recommend using it if you have one.
  2. Shred the cabbage thinly. Big pieces of cabbage will make the slaw less refined. Adjust your mandolin’s opening to ⅛ inch (3mm).
  3. Make ahead – you can either serve it immediately or store it in the fridge until it is ready to serve.

NUTRITION

Calories: 264kcalCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 3gFat: 23gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 12gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0.03gCholesterol: 6mgSodium: 273mgPotassium: 400mgFiber: 4gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 1641IUVitamin C: 81mgCalcium: 108mgIron: 2mg
Keyword red cabbage salad, red cabbage slaw
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