Simple Cabbage Salad

Cabbage Salad is a classic, versatile side dish that’s perfect for picnics and parties. The vinegar based dressing is sweet and tangy and bright, so this salad pairs well with a variety of main dishes, from fish to chicken to beef.

An overhead shot of a wooden bowl of cabbage slaw with onions and parsley and two spoons.

Cabbage Salad Recipe

If you’ve never had cabbage salad before, you’re in for a real treat. This classic side dish is a staple at potlucks and it’s a must have for any backyard barbecue. It’s simple to make, with just a few easy to find ingredients.

Cabbage Salad is similar to coleslaw, but it’s got a homemade vinegar based dressing instead of mayo. I love homemade dressings because they just taste so fresh and bright compared to bottled.

I feel like cabbage is an oft forgotten vegetable, but I happen to love it! Raw cabbage can have a slightly bitter taste, while cooked cabbage tastes a little sweeter. It adds an element of crunch to recipe, even even cooked down like in my Crack Slaw (Egg Roll Bowl) or Chow Mein.

Cabbage can even be used instead of lettuce – it’s an excellent topping for fish tacosPulled Chicken sandwiches, and it makes this Ramen Noodle Salad sing!

How to Make Cabbage Salad

The steps are pretty basic and just require some simple chopping and mixing.

  1. Start by slicing up the cabbage into shreds and chopping the other veggies. Combine them in a bowl, sprinkle with sugar and stir to coat and let that sit while you make the cabbage salad dressing.
  2. For the dressing, you’ll need white vinegar (or apple cider vinegar, white wine or champagne vinegar), canola oil, mustard, salt and pepper. Whisk thos ingredients together and toss with the cabbage mixture.
  3. Cover the bowl and store the salad in the fridge for at least 24-48 hours so the cabbage can soften. Stir before serving.

How to shred cabbage for salad

  1. Rinse the whole head of green cabbage and pull the loose outer leaves off. Slice off the bottom stem so the cabbage sits flat on your cutting board.
  2. Slice the cabbage in half from top to bottom, then slice in half again to create 4 quarters. Remove the tough pieces (the core and the stem) from each quarter.
  3. Take one piece of cabbage and turn it on it’s side so one side is flat on the cutting board and start slicing into thin strips. Repeat with the other quarters.
  4. For smaller shreds, gather up the long strips and slice them in half.

An overhead shot of a bowl of cabbage salad

Serving Suggestions

Cabbage Salad is cool and fresh and tangy. It goes great with barbecue favorite like Grilled Chicken, Steak or even Grilled Shrimp Tacos. It’s also an excellent replacement for coleslaw at your picnic. Serve with Fried Chicken, BBQ Pulled Pork Sliders and Macaroni Salad.

If you like to garnish, add some toasted sesame seeds or sliced almonds over the top. For a little added color feel free to use a cabbage slaw mix or just chop up some red cabbage and grate carrots to mix in.

What to do with Leftovers

Cabbage Salad will last 3-4 days in the fridge, after which time it begins to get too soggy. Freezing is not recommended.

a fork lifting up a bite of cabbage salad

More easy cold side dishes:

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A close up of shredded cabbage salad

Cabbage Salad

Cabbage Salad is a versatile side dish with a sweet, tangy vinegar dressing. It's bright flavors pair well with any main dish, from fish to chicken to beef.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Total Time 1 d 20 mins
Course Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings
Calories 207kcal


  • 8 cups shredded green cabbage one medium head
  • 1 cup diced onion about 1 small
  • 1 small green pepper seeded and diced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped flat-leaf parsley


  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt can substitute regular salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper


Cabbage Salad

  • Mix vegetables with ½ cup sugar. Let stand while making dressing.


  • Measure dressing into a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Boil 3 minutes and pour over cabbage while hot.
  • Cover bowl and refrigerate 24 hours before serving.
  • Garnish with sesame seeds and more fresh parsley.


Calories: 207kcalCarbohydrates: 19gProtein: 1gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 313mgPotassium: 180mgFiber: 2gSugar: 16gVitamin A: 208IUVitamin C: 40mgCalcium: 37mgIron: 1mg
Keyword cabbage salad

Kristin Maxwell

Kristin Maxwell is the creator and main recipe developer, writer, and photographer of Yellow Bliss Road. A self-taught cook and self-appointed foodie, she specializes in easy, flavorful and approachable recipes for any home cook.

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