No Mayo Coleslaw

Quick and EasyGluten-FreeCabbageColeslaw

No mayo in this coleslaw! Cool and crunchy, this southwest coleslaw has thinly sliced cabbage with carrots, radishes and cilantro. Great as a summer side dish or piled high on tacos.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

I make a great pie crust. My father, a killer meatloaf. My mother? She’s the queen of salads. When the three of us cook together, mom almost always gets salad duty, because she just does it so darn well. She has perfected the balance of sweet and acidity, salt, and bitter.

No Mayo Coleslaw

This particular coleslaw of my mother’s is one of my favorites and has a southwestern touch. The coleslaw is made with cabbage, carrots, green onions, and cilantro, and seasoned with rice vinegar. No mayo!

It’s light, cool, and crunchy, just what you want a coleslaw to be.

Southwest Coleslaw in bowl

Make-Ahead Tips

The ingredients for this salad can be prepped a day or two ahead of time. Store them in an airtight container in the fridge and toss with the dressing ingredients when ready to serve.

Leftovers will keep for a few days in the fridge, but the coleslaw will become more wilted and watery over time.

What to Serve with this Coleslaw

Serve the coleslaw alongside Mexican or TexMex dishes or chili beans. No mayo coleslaw is also a perfect side to fish or piled high in a taco.

Try These Other Coleslaw Recipes:

Updated June 30, 2019 : We spiffed up this post to make it sparkle! No changes to the original recipe.

No Mayo Coleslaw Recipe

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

A mandoline will make slicing cabbage much much easier than using a knife.

If the seasoned rice vinegar adds too much sweetness for your taste, add a sprinkle of lemon juice. If you are using unsweetened rice vinegar, to get the right balance of acidity and sweet, sprinkle a little sugar over the salad and toss.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups thinly sliced cabbage (about 1/3 to 1/2 cabbage)
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 2 radishes, thinly sliced
  • 1 green onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup (packed) fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon seasoned rice vinegar (or plain rice vinegar with added sugar to taste)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Method

1 Assemble the salad: Place the thinly sliced cabbage, grated carrot, radish slices, sliced green onions, and cilantro in a large serving bowl.

2 Toss with dressing and serve: Right before serving, sprinkle with olive oil, rice vinegar, salt and pepper, and toss to coat.

Serve immediately.

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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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18 Comments / Reviews

No ImageNo Mayo Coleslaw

Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Douglas

    Elise, I have been following you and tweeting out your recipes for a little while now. I am very impressed with your work. All your recipes have been delicious. This one is no different. Mayo can be very fatty and I am not a fan of too much fat on a warm summer’s day. Your recipe without mayo makes this very refreshing. So light and delicate when I paired it with a ribeye. Delicate enough to feel a lot better about pairing with country style potatoes as well. I am a really big fan of your work. Even though I am doing all this for a college class, I plan to keep on following your recipes.

    xxxxxyyyyy

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  2. thuy "T"

    Ok this is may sound weird but my Vietnamese Mother has made this “coleslaw” all my life (minus the radish). We eat it with plain white rice and any kind of salty meat- chicken or pork cooked with fish sauce. the combo is delicious and the rice balances out the flavors!

  3. Kate

    I often use rice vinegar as a base for coleslaw — it’s great with some fresh ginger and toasted sesame seeds to make an Asian style coleslaw that’s especially nice with seafood. I’ve never thought to use it with a southwestern dish before, although my grandmother hates tart things and puts rice vinegar in all her salad dressings.

    Does adding sugar to the plain rice vinegar really make it taste like seasoned? I’ve always added mirin.

  4. Kitty

    I make a similar Mexican coleslaw using cabbage, shredded carrot, shredded jicima, jalapeno, and cilantro. The dressing is lime juice, a little orange juice, olive oil, garlic, and cumin. Absolutely delicious!

  5. melissa

    Made this coleslaw last night and loved it. You’d really be missing out if you didn’t add in the cilantro – it’s what makes this salad stand out! Definitely a new favorite – even won over my picky boyfriend!

    xxxxxyyyyy

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Southwest Coleslaw in bowlNo Mayo Coleslaw