Cole Slaw – homemade

Cole Slaw – homemade

This cole slaw recipe is something I have been using over the years, and you will have to get inside my head to follow it. It kind of babbles on and on, and gives lots of options for the ingredients, where I have reminded myself of things to substitute, or alternatives based on your taste or ingredients you have in the cabinet on hand. One place where you have to use judgment is with the vinegar and/or lemon juice. If you don’t have fresh lemon juice, just use all vinegar – or a combination of vinegars (depending on their strength and astringent qualities, especially with the cider vinegars). Don’t use lemon juice in the green bottle!


  • Cabbage, 1-head (6 cups or more)
  • Carrots (2 large, shredded) 
    • (or substitute 2 bags of shredded, prepared cole slaw mix)
  • Red onion (finely sliced and soaked in cold water 5 min, then drained)or 2T grated Spanish onion
  • Green onion, chopped
  • 1 ½ C mayonnaise (may substitute ½ C sour cream for ½ C of the mayo)
  • 2 T buttermilk (if you have it on hand) or whole milk. Use more if you like a thinner dressing
  • ¼ C Dijon mustard
  • 1 T cider vinegar  +  2 T lemon juice or use all 3 T white  or cider vinegar
  • 1 T sugar (up to 2 T)or may use up to ¼ C brown sugar, to taste, to offset vinegar
  • ½-1  t celery seed (or 1t celery salt and ½ t kosher salt)
  • Several dashes hot sauce
  • Kosher salt and ground pepper

In a bowl, combine the mayonnaise, mustard, sugar, vinegar, buttermilk, celery seeds, salt, pepper, and cayenne, and whisk well to dissolve the sugar. 

In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients. Toss with the dressing until evenly coated. Adjust seasoning, to taste. Place in the refrigerator, covered, to chill for several hours before serving. 

Yield: 8-10 servings

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