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Crunchy Coleslaw Recipe

The staple of every summer table is a cold and crunchy coleslaw. Full of crunchy texture and delicious vegetables and tossed in a light dressing, it is the perfect partner to any dish!

bowl of slaw

The Best Crunchy Coleslaw Recipe

A hot summer day is the perfect opportunity for homemade coleslaw to accompany what ever is coming off the grill.

This coleslaw recipe incorporates some unique additions to add extra crunch to the slaw besides the freshly shredded cabbage.

Our family will put cabbage slaw on sandwiches and hot dogs, and we love to have it as a side for anything fried, especially fish.

The fresh and creamy crisp coleslaw complements the heavier flavors so perfectly you will want to have it with everything, and why shouldn’t you?!

labeled picture of slaw ingredients

Ingredients Needed

Cabbage – I like to use a combination of green and purple cabbage for color variations. Feel free to use all of one color or use a bag of pre shredded coleslaw mix if desired.

Green Onions I like to use just the green parts but feel free to use the whole onion. Or even use chives.

Nuts – This recipe uses walnuts and pepitas (pumpkin seeds) and I like to have them toasted for even more flavor. You can leave these out or swap them for your favorite nuts like almonds or pecans.

Coleslaw Dressing Ingredients

Mayo – I like to use Duke’s brand mayo for my recipes like this because of the delicious flavor and it’s super creamy. Feel free to use your favorite brand. You can even use a vegan version.

Vinegar – I use distilled white vinegar but if you want move flavor, try apple cider vinegar.

I like to keep this dressing simple and let the veggies shine but feel free to add some spices. Celery seed is great in coleslaw!

Looking for more leftover worthy dishes? Follow LTB on Pinterest and pin to a board!

How to make coleslaw from scratch

First: Cut the cabbage into thin slices and shred the carrots. Add the cabbage and carrots to a large bowl. Slice the green onions (just the green parts) and add them in.

Second: Chop the walnuts into smaller pieces. Add the walnuts and pumpkin seeds to the other ingredients.

mixed purple slaw

Third: Mix the dressing together. Add to coleslaw mix. Toss to coat evenly. Season with salt and pepper if desired. Enjoy!

For the full recipe and detailed baking instructions, please see the recipe card at the end of this post.

overhead picture of bowl of coleslaw

How do you keep coleslaw crunchy?

Wait until right before you serve it to add the dressing, and then keep it cold after you have mixed the dressing. You don’t want everything to get soggy.

When you add the dressing don’t add too much, you want it to have just enough dressing to mix everything, but don’t over coat it.

Why does coleslaw get watery?

Cabbage releases water, as it is mostly made of water. You can pat the shredded cabbage with paper towels to remove excess water.

bowl of slaw

How many days ahead can I it?

You can make coleslaw up to three days ahead, but I wouldn’t add the dressing until you are ready to eat it to keep everything as fresh as possible.

The longer the dressing is mixed in with the cabbage the less crunchy it will get.

How to store leftovers

Put any leftover coleslaw in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Tips for No Leftovers

  • Feel free to switch up your nuts to use your favorite.
  • This salad can be make in advance, add dressing just before serving.
  • Let chill an hour before serving. I like to keep the nuts separate and add just before serving to keep them crunchy.
  • This also works well with a southern coleslaw dressing or an italian dressing.

If you love this recipe as much as I do, please write a five-star review in the comment section below (or on Pinterest with the “tried it” button – you can now add pictures into reviews, too!), and be sure to help me share on facebook!

slaw with text "crunchy coleslaw"

Homemade coleslaw is so versatile, I want to hear how you use it and what you like to eat it with in the comments.

bowl of coleslaw

Crunchy Coleslaw

Yield: 4-6 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

The staple of every summer table is a cold and crunchy coleslaw, and this recipe will walk you through exactly how to make your own perfectly.


  • ¼ head white/green cabbage (sliced thin)
  • ¼ head red cabbage (sliced thin)
  • 4 small carrots (shredded)
  • ¾ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup sliced green onions
  • ½ cup chopped toasted walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons toasted pumpkin seeds
  • Salt and ground pepper to taste


    1. Slice or chop cabbage into thin slices and shred carrots. Place them in a large bowl.
    2. Slice the green onions and add to the bowl.
    3. Chop the toasted walnuts in small pieces. Add to the bowl with the rest of the coleslaw ingredients.
    4. Make the dressing by mixing the vinegar and mayonnaise. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
    5. Pour over the coleslaw ingredients and toss to coat. Serve immediately.
    6. Enjoy!


*If you love this recipe as much as I do, please leave me a comment and rate it 5 stars. Thank you!

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 286Total Fat: 27gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 22gCholesterol: 12mgSodium: 304mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 4gSugar: 4gProtein: 3g

This nutrition information was generated via a third party, Nutritionix, and can not be held liable for any discrepancies in the information provided.

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