Mexican Red Cabbage Slaw

Red Cabbage Slaw, Mexican

Mexican Red Cabbage Slaw - make it cool to serve with something spicy or make it spicy to serve with something plain!

I love red cabbage to freshen up a lot of dishes; it’s great in tacos, tostadas for instance. But Red Cabbage  Slaw takes this idea to a whole new level. A little spicy, a little sweet and just a hint of fire make this a perfect side for anything Mexican!

Mexican Red Cabbage Slaw
Mexican Red Cabbage Slaw

Because I never use a whole head of cabbage in this slaw, I like to look for recipes that also have red cabbage as an ingredient. Two that come to mind are the Vietnamese “salad” Pork Larb, and my most marvelous Mexican shredded chicken, Tinga de Pollo.

A little red cabbage goes a long way, and while it keeps well (even after it’s been cut) you’ll need ideas to use up the rest, lest it languish while taking up room in the fridge. An advantage of pre-planning for the extra cabbage is it can be shredded all at once..

This recipe isn’t very particular – you can vary amounts and ingredients as you wish. When serving something spicy I make this mild and cooling. If serving something that needs a little zing, I make this more flavorful and a little hot. While I sometimes use red onion in this, I only add to any portion that will be eaten; left over it becomes overly strong in the dish.

Mexican Red Cabbage Slaw

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

  • 1/4 to 1/2 head red cabbage, finely shredded
  • A few radishes, thinly sliced
  • 1 or 2 carrots, finely shredded
  • 1 jalapeno, minced or red pepper, to taste, optional
  • 1 orange, freshly squeezed
  • 1 lime, freshly squeezed
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin (more to taste, if desired)
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Mix cabbage, radishes and carrot in a bowl. In a small bowl or jar add the rest of ingredients. Whisk or shake. Combine with cabbage mixture, toss.

Best refrigerated 30 minutes before serving. Taste and season with salt and pepper as desired.


  • This dressing may support a bit more oil, if desired.
  • The dressing may be done in the blender, giving a thicker emulsion. Add in all the dressing ingredients except oil, blend, and with blender running, slowly add the oil.


14 thoughts on “Red Cabbage Slaw, Mexican”

    1. Sometimes, when I make things, I wonder “What would Meta think!” I wonder if red cabbage was available way back when.

      hemcfeely authors two blogs, one about vintage cookbooks and the other a blog featuring recipes from Meta Given’s cookbooks! Meta was a prolific researcher, writer, home-economist, nutritionist and cookbook author. I have several of Meta’s recipes on my blog, but hemcfeely takes things one step further.

      She picks a menu and a day and features every recipe on that day’s menu from breakfast to dinner. Check her out!

        1. I’m glad you liked it! I think the apple was inspired! I’m going to try it next time I make this, and it was so nice of you to check back with some feedback! It made my day!

  1. Hey there! First of all, love the “new look”. What a nice and clean looking theme. Funny you should post cole slaw. I got up early today and found myself in the kitchen making cole slaw! Coleslaw for breakfast? Weird I know. But I found a 1/2 head of cabbage in the refrigerator and it sparked my craving for cole slaw. Love your recipe with lime, cumin and jalapeño. I’ll have to make this one. It would be wonderful with fish tacos.

    1. Thanks much – I’m still thinking about a header of some sort because it may be just a little too plain. You’ll probably see some experimenting in the next few weeks.

      Sometimes I think if we let our bodies tell us what we want (what looks good) and we’re not too far gone in the cycle of box mixes and fast food, we just KNOW what we need. Seems like you needed cole-slaw!

      I eat vegetables for breakfast all the time…especially what’s left over from the night before, my green smoothies, and…this one is strange…gazpacho! I usually make big batches through the summer and it’s one of my favorite breakfast things! Weird, I know!

      1. Not weird at all! I would totally eat gazpacho for breakfast. I laid in bed this morning (still dark outside) and couldn’t quit thinking about what I wanted for lunch. (weird) I got up and before I started the kettle for coffee I was wrapping beets in tin foil and preheating the oven. Eventually we ended up having dinner for breakfast! Stovetop chicken with tomatoes, lemon, dill and feta, cole slaw and roasted beets. Ok, now you can call me weird! Ha!

        1. lol! you’ve taken it to a new level for sure! I would gladly eat that meal for breakfast, lunch or dinner!

          Hmmm…is there something you need to share? Cravings for pickles and ice-cream, perhaps??

    1. Wow, thanks, Mum! And this slaw was particularly photogenic all on its own! I hafta admit, I take some pretty bad photos, but I do like to *think^ I’m getting better. I hope so, anyway!

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