This cilantro lime coleslaw recipe is the perfect crunchy topping for tacos, sandwiches, or a healthy side dish. Made with red/purple and green cabbage, green onions, fresh cilantro and then topped with a fresh lime juice and olive oil vinaigrette. It’s crunchy, tangy, and easy to make!
This Recipe Starts With Easy-to-Find Grocery Store Ingredients
- 1 1/2 cups shredded green cabbage
- 1 1/2 cups shredded red/purple cabbage
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (how to store cilantro for freshness)
- 1/2 cup sliced green onions (how to store green onions for freshness)
- (optional)1-2 diced fresh jalapeno peppers (for spice)
Coleslaw Dressing Ingredients
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lime, juiced (optional: add lime zest by grating 1/2 the rind for so much flavor)
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 garlic clove, minced (or 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder)
- (optional) 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/8 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- Vinegar Instead of Lime Juice: While lime is a main part of this recipe and gives the slaw a fresh flavor, easily substitute the lime juice for vinegar. Red wine vinegar, white wine vinegar, and apple cider vinegar are the best.
- Use One Type of Cabbage: Instead of using a mix of green and red/purple cabbage, use all green cabbage, or all red/purple cabbage. This doesn’t change the flavor, just the visual appearance.
- Bag of Coleslaw Mix: Chopping a head of cabbage is the most time-consuming part of this easy coleslaw recipe. Instead, purchase bagged coleslaw mix. If the bag of coleslaw comes with a dressing, discard it. All you need is the crunchy cabbage slaw, which usually includes green and purple/red cabbage and carrots. Add your own cilantro and green onions.
- Creamy Cilantro-Lime Coleslaw Dressing: This slaw is made with a vinaigrette dressing, but you can easily substitute this option to make a creamy cilantro lime coleslaw. Combine the following in a small bowl: 1/4 cup mayo, 1/4 cup sour cream, 1 lime (juiced and the rind zested), 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, 1/4 teaspoon cumin. Toss with the coleslaw ingredients and refrigerate until ready to enjoy.
Step By Step Instructions (With Recipe Video & Photos)
Step By Step Instructions
- Step 1 Combine the Coleslaw Ingredients: In a large bowl, combine the shredded cabbage, shredded carrots, chopped cilantro, and sliced green onions.
- Step 2 Combine the Dressing Ingredients: In a small bowl or jar, whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, honey, minced garlic, red pepper flakes, and salt. Pour as much dressing over the coleslaw as desired. The dressing is also delicious over a green salad if you have have leftovers.
- Step 3 Combine the Coleslaw and Dressing: Toss the coleslaw and dressing together. Serve immeadiately or store in the fridge for up to 1-2 days.
How to Store
- For the best texture, refrigerate in an airtight container and use the slaw within 1-2 days.
- As the slaw sits in the fridge (coated in the dressing), the crunchy texture of the cabbage will break down, resulting in a soggy coleslaw. There is no way around this.
- Do NOT freeze.
“I love this recipe! If I’m in a rush, I use one bag of broccoli slaw, one bag of green cabbage and chop up some purple cabbage. Ends up about 2x the amount listed in the recipe. I make the dressing the same with x2 more garlic, hot pepper flakes and honey. Same amount of oil. I could sit on the couch and eat it right out of the bowl. So delicious!“
- Combine the dry coleslaw ingredients (cabbage, carrots, onions, cilantro) and store in an airtight container in the fridge.
- Whisk the homemade dressing ingredients in a separate airtight container and store in the fridge.
- Store the coleslaw and tangy dressing separately, in the fridge, until ready to combine and enjoy.
What to Serve With This Healthy Recipe
- Perfect Side Dish: Serve on the side of your favorite protein: pork chops, grilled chicken, steak, salmon, stuffed buffalo chicken peppers, or stuffed ground beef peppers.
- Taco Slaw: Top a flour tortilla (or homemade corn tortillas) with ground beef, shrimp, fish, or chicken. Then add slaw on top. Or top on a cheesy quesadilla.
- Sandwich Slaw: Top a bun with shredded meat or grilled chicken, then add slaw on top.
Easy Cilantro-Lime Coleslaw (for Tacos or Side Salad)
- 1 large bowl to combine the coleslaw
- 1 small bowl or jar to make the dressing
- 1 1/2 cups shredded green cabbage I use a mandolin to shred the cabbage, or you can use just one type
- 1 1/2 cups shredded purple cabbage
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/2 cup sliced green onions
- 1-2 diced jalapeno peppers (OPTIONAL for spice)
- In a large bowl, combine the coleslaw ingredients: shredded cabbage, shredded carrots, chopped cilantro, and sliced green onions.
- In a small bowl or jar, whisk together the dressing ingredients: olive oil, lime juice, honey, minced garlic, red pepper flakes, and salt. Pour as much dressing over the coleslaw as desired. The dressing is also delicious over a salad if you have have leftovers.
- Toss the coleslaw and dressing together. Serve the coleslaw over tacos, quesadillas, sandwiches, or as a side salad.
- The coleslaw may be prepped in advance and refrigerated, or used immediately after preparation. Store in the fridge for up to 1-2 days, in an airtight container.
Looking for a southern coleslaw recipe with a creamy dressing? Try my creamy slaw with greek yogurt. It’s a traditional coleslaw made with crunchy cabbage; another great topping for your favorite tacos or a sandwich.
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