Cabbage and Kale Slaw with Caraway Ranch Dressing

Quick and EasyCabbageColeslawKale

Cabbage and kale coleslaw, with thinly sliced red onions, tossed with a tangy buttermilk caraway ranch dressing.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Have you heard? Kale is “trendy” these days. In fact, it may be on the tail end of its hip popularity, I’m guessing the kewl kids have moved onto something else, like radicchio, ramps, or radish tops.

“Hot” or not, kale is okay by me; we love our greens here. Kale and cabbage together are a classic combination, most notably found in Irish colcannon mashed potatoes.

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Cabbage and kale are related—both are brassicas, and both are sturdy plants that store well and can live through winters. It’s only natural to find them enjoying each other’s company in a shredded slaw salad like this one.

Pulling this slaw together is a tangy buttermilk dressing, a sort of ranch dressing, with notes of caraway. It’s perfect to serve alongside fish or seafood, and with the caraway would be great with pork and potatoes as well.

Cabbage and Kale Slaw with Caraway Ranch Dressing Recipe

  • Prep time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4 to 6


Dressing Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon minced shallots
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard (whole grain or smooth)
  • 2 Tbsp champagne vinegar (or white wine vinegar)
  • 6 tablespoons buttermilk
  • 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch of white pepper (can sub black pepper)


Salad Ingredients:

  • 4 cups thinly sliced green cabbage (about 1/2 a large head)
  • 1 cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 1 cup, packed, thinly sliced curly or lacinato kale (center tough stems removed before slicing the leaves)


1 Heat and grind caraway seeds: Heat a small sauté pan on high heat. Add the caraway seeds to the pan. Stir the seeds in the pan and heat them until they are warm and fragrant, then remove from pan. Do not brown them. Grind them with a mortar and pestle or mince them up finely with a sharp knife.

2 Make dressing: Add the shallots, mustard, and vinegar into a bowl, whisk to combine. Whisk in the buttermilk. Slowly dribble in the olive oil, whisking to create an emulsion. (You can also put everything into a jar, close the jar and shake vigorously to create an emulsion.) Whisk in the caraway seeds, salt, and pepper.

3 Assemble salad: Place the thinly sliced cabbage, red onion, and kale into a large serving bowl. Sprinkle with dressing and toss to combine 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

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Cabbage and Kale Slaw

Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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8 Comments / Reviews

No ImageCabbage and Kale Slaw with Caraway Ranch Dressing

Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Sadie

    Will this salad keep for a day or two after the dressing has been added?

    Show Replies (1)
  2. Sandy S

    Just checking back in to say this is a great recipe! Well worth taking the time with the caraway seed and making my coconut-buttermilk. Will be rolling it up in GF tortillas later this week with pieces of baked fish.
    My first interest in kale, was in the 70’s, when I saw a neighbor trudge out into her garden to sweep away the snow and bring in some dark green ‘stuff’. When I asked her what it was, she said it was the only thing left, that was still fresh and green to add to her soup. The next year I made my first cold frame of straw bales for growing ‘winter vegies’. Ah, the ‘salad days’ of youth, how sweet they are, in memory.


  3. Katie

    I think you may be a bit late, Elise! Kale is nearly out of vogue.

    Show Replies (1)
  4. Sandy S

    As always I come to this site and get inspired to stay on track and try something new. Genius! Have always liked coleslaw but have moved away from mayo and dairy, mostly to improve energy, which does seem to be working. So, I will try making ‘coconut buttermilk’ for this recipe. Just discovered it is like making a substitute for either buttermilk or sour milk with regular milk. Use slightly less than 1 cup coconut milk + 1 tablespoon either vinegar or lemon juice. Let stand for 5 minutes. Good for 1 week in fridge. So easy. Can’t wait to try it in the dressing for this fresh take on coleslaw with both shallots and heated and ground caraway. What is not to love here!?!

    BTW – Elise thank you for the Portland Restaurant Event ads at this site. WOW what a gold mine of new places to try when I am next in Portland!

  5. Natalie | Paper & Birch

    I love this! I like coleslaw but find most of it too mayo-eee :) This is right up my alley! Another hit Elise!

Cabbage and Kale SlawCabbage and Kale Slaw with Caraway Ranch Dressing