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Vinegar Coleslaw

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vinegar coleslaw with purple cabbage, carrots, and poppy seeds

There is a debate when it comes to homemade coleslaw: Do you marinate your vegetables in salt before dressing them or not? Salting your vegetables is a great way to draw out excess moisture and make them more pliable while giving them more crunch. Letting them sit with salt while you prep out and make the dressing is a great way to give your veggies a pliable texture that the dressing can cling to and soak in over time. If you like your coleslaw sweeter and fresher tasting, you can add the salt last. There is no real right or wrong way here!

To make this a truly vegan-friendly slaw, there is neither mayonnaise nor honey in the mix. We use maple to bring out the veggies’ natural sweetness and Dijon mustard helps emulsify the oil and vinegar while adding a bit of a kick in the back of your throat. Feel free to halve the amount of mustard if you already know you don’t like spice.

For color contrast, we add some scallions, and for texture, a tablespoon each of sesame and poppy seeds—all are optional. Letting the dressed slaw rest for 30 minutes before eating will give you a more flavor-packed bite.

Once you make it, drop us a comment down below and let us know what changes you’d make for the perfect vinegar slaw!

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Yields: 8 servings
Prep Time: 0 hours 20 mins
Total Time: 0 hours 25 mins
2 c.

shredded purple cabbage (about ¼ medium head)

5 c.

shredded green cabbage (about ⅔ medium head)

2 c.

shredded carrots (about 4 medium)

1 1/2 tsp.

kosher salt

2 tbsp.

extra-virgin olive oil

2 tbsp.

apple cider vinegar

2 tbsp.

Dijon mustard

2 tbsp.

maple syrup

3/4 tsp.

freshly ground black pepper


clove garlic, grated or minced


scallion, thinly sliced

1/2 tsp.

celery seed

1 tbsp.

toasted sesame seeds (optional) 

1 tbsp.

poppy seeds (optional)

  1. In a large bowl, toss cabbage and carrots with salt until evenly coated. Set aside while you prepare the dressing.
  2. Make the dressing: In a medium bowl, whisk together oil, mustard, maple syrup, vinegar, pepper, and garlic until smooth. Stir in scallion and seeds.
  3. Add dressing to bowl and toss to coat.

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