Ready, sets, crunches! Crisp and colorful, this cabbage salad recipe is the perfect side dish!

This cabbage salad has a blend of fresh green apples, tangy red and green cabbage, and crunchy toppings, all tossed in a simple sweet and sour dressing.

Perfect for a quick side dish or a healthy addition to your next potluck, everyone will be coming back in seconds.

bowl of Cabbage Salad

Cabbage Salad: A Crispy, Crunchy Side

Recipes for cabbage salad often involve a slightly soggy scoop of shredded slaw mixed with mayo, but not this recipe!

  • A refreshing change from ordinary greens, this salad packs a colorful and crunchy punch.
  • No more wild leftovers; the sturdy cabbage base stays fresh for days.
  • Prepare it in advance to save time.
  • Homemade dressing with just a few simple ingredients, and ready in minutes.
  • This cabbage salad is easily customizable; add your favorite veggies, nuts, or protein for a unique twist.
ingredients to make Cabbage Salad

Ingredients & Variations

This salad has more additions than a traditional slaw recipe. It’s easy to get creative and mix things up with this recipe.

Cabbage: Combine thinly sliced ​​greens and purple cabbage for a delightful mix of crunch, color and nutrients. Alternatively, use Napa, red, or Asian cabbage for variety. Add matchstick carrots, chopped kale, or shredded broccoli stalks for extra flavor and nutrition.

Granny Smith apples: Adds a tart and crisp touch; try other firm apple varieties like Honeycrisp or Pink Lady.

Cabbage Salad Dressing: A tangy-sweet blend of rice vinegar, maple syrup, and Dijon mustard is the perfect blend. Customize by swapping vinegar types or using alternative sweeteners like honey or brown sugar. Honey mustard dressing is a good alternative.

toppings: Elevate your salad with tangy crumbled feta cheese, sweet dried cranberries, and nutty toasted pecans. Experiment with different cheeses, dried fruits, nuts and seeds.

top view of ingredients and Cabbage Salad in a white bowl

How to Make Cabbage Salad

  1. Thinly slice cabbage and apple (per the recipe below).
  2. Shake dressing ingredients thoroughly in a sealed jar.
  3. Toss together in a salad bowl and top with feta, cranberry raisins, and nuts.
salad dressing being poured over Cabbage Salad

Holly’s Tips

  • Discard any wilted leaves before cutting the cabbage. Once cut, wash and thoroughly dry the cabbage to ensure a crisp, crunchy salad. The cabbage and be prepared ahead of time.
  • Prepared coleslaw mix isn’t just for coleslaw; use it in place of cabbage to save preparation time.
  • If you’re not serving the salad immediately, add a squeeze of lemon juice to the apples to prevent them from turning brown.
  • Allow the salad to rest for a few minutes after adding the dressing for flavors to meld together.
  • Toast the raw sunflower seeds, chopped almonds, chopped walnuts, or pecans in a dry skillet for about 1 minute or until slightly browned and add just before serving.


Leftover cabbage salad doesn’t get soggy as tossed salad might. Just keep it covered tightly and refrigerate any left overs for up to 2-3 days and give it a stir before serving again.

Ways to Use Leftover Cabbage Salad

Did you enjoy this Cabbage Salad? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below!

bowl of Cabbage Salad

5 from 17 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Cabbage Salad

This easy cabbage salad recipe is super tasty and nourishing too!

Prep Time 15 minutes

Total Time 15 minutes

Author Holly Nilsson

  • Thinly slice green and purple cabbage, and core and cut a small Granny Smith apple into matchsticks. Place the cabbage and apple in a large bowl.

  • In a jar, combine rice vinegar, maple syrup, Dijon mustard, minced garlic, salt, pepper and vegetable oil. Shake well to combine the dressing.

  • Gradually pour the dressing over the cabbage mixture, tossing to combine (you may not need all of it). If time allows, let the salad rest for 15 minutes or up to 1 hour to blend the flavors.

  • Sprinkle the salad with feta cheese, dried cranberries, and chopped toasted pecans.

Cabbage salad can be prepared ahead of time and mixed shortly before serving.
Leftovers will keep 1-2 days in the fridge.
Cabbage can be replaced with store-bought coleslaw mix or pre-shredded cabbage.

Serves: 0.75cup | Calories: 206 | Carbohydrates: 19g | Proteins: 3g | Fats: 15g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 323mg | Potassium: 210mg | Fibers: 3g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 425IU | Vitamin C: 35mg | Calcium: 82mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Salads, Side Dishes
Cuisine American
bowl of Cabbage Salad with pecans and a title
top view of Cabbage Salad in a bowl with writing
plated Cabbage Salad with a title
close up of Cabbage Salad with writing