With creamy, lightly-sweet dressing, crisp green apples, fresh cilantro, and crunchy cabbage, this coleslaw is the perfect summer side dish!

A top view of green apple slaw in a large decorative bowl with a wooden serving spoon.

This slaw is crisp, fresh, slightly sweet, and tangy, and one of my favorite coleslaw creations yet! It is actually a spin on one of my favorite recipes from Cook Once, Eat All Week – Chipotle Brisket Tacos with Brussels Sprouts Slaw (those tacos are SO good), but we swapped the shredded brussels for cabbage to make it easier to make for a crowd.

Growing up, coleslaw usually meant soggy carrots and cabbage with a watery, too-sweet dressing that showed up at summer BBQs or as the occasional side dish for fried chicken. It was always the neglected side dish, and definitely wasn’t anything craveable. But, in years past, I’ve started experimenting with different coleslaws, like this chunky Mexican coleslaw and this winter veggie coleslaw, and they’ve become one of my favorite side dishes no matter the season!

A top view of green apple slaw in a large decorative bowl with a wooden serving spoon.

Heading into the summer months, we know that slaw is going to be a staple at our dinner tables because we love the endless flavor combinations (and the fact that it doesn’t require heating up the house)! Making a good coleslaw is actually super simple, and you can easily customize the flavors to make it the perfect side for any meal! Here are the components you’ll need to put together a good slaw:

Recipe Ingredients

All of the ingredients for green apple slaw (cilantro, almonds, mayo, honey, lemon, green apple, green cabbage, salt, and pepper) on a marble surface.
  • Veggies: thinly shredded cabbage is usually the base for most coleslaw recipes, but you can customize your own by mixing and matching any combo of shredded green cabbage, shredded red cabbage, shredded carrots, thinly sliced kale, or even shredded brussels sprouts instead!
  • Dressing: the coleslaw dressing you use is an opportunity to bring in different flavors! For this recipe, we used a classic coleslaw dressing with avocado oil mayo, lemon juice, and honey. However, you could also try a more Asian-style dressing, a cilantro lime sauce, honey mustard, ranch, or even a chipotle lime dressing for a Mexican kick!
  • Herbs: all you truly need for a good slaw is your veggies and a great dressing, but herbs, fruit, and nuts can all help take your slaw to the next level! In this green apple coleslaw, we’ve added a generous handful of cilantro, but parsley, green onions, chives, and dill all make fantastic additions too.
  • Fruit: adding fresh or dried fruit to your coleslaw can help add just a touch of sweetness to break things up. Some of our favorites are thinly sliced apples, like we’ve used here, mandarin oranges, especially in Asian-style slaws, and dried cranberries.
  • Nuts: nuts help add just a little bit of extra crunch to your coleslaw. We especially like almonds, sunflower seeds, and cashews here.

How to Serve

This creamy green apple coleslaw is perfect on its own as a side dish, but also makes for a delicious topping for tacos, or an alternative to a bed of lettuce for a bunless burger. However you decide to eat it, we hope you love it!

A top view of green apple slaw in a large decorative bowl.

Creamy Green Apple Coleslaw

4.27 — Votes 15 votes
By Cassy Joy Garcia
Prep: 15 minutes
Total: 15 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
A crisp, tangy, slighty sweet slaw that is perfect for your next get together!


For the dressing:

  • 1/3 cup avocado oil mayonnaise or vegan mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice about 1 small lemon
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Pinch of fine sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

For the slaw:

  • 1 head green cabbage thinly sliced
  • 2 green apples cored and sliced into matchsticks*
  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced slivered almonds


  • In a small bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients for the dressing.
  • Add the cabbage, apples, cilantro, and almonds to a large bowl, then pour over the dressing and toss to combine. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

**If you’d like to make this ahead of time, you can make the dressing in advance and store the apples in a bowl of water mixed with the juice of one lemon to prevent them from browning. Once you’re ready, drain and dry the apples and toss everything together.


Calories: 218kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 0.03g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 108mg | Potassium: 406mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 280IU | Vitamin C: 60mg | Calcium: 91mg | Iron: 1mg

Additional Info

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 218
Keyword: apples, coleslaw

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About the Author

Cassy Joy Garcia, NC

Cassy Joy Garcia, a New York Times best-selling author, of Cook Once Dinner Fix, Cook Once Eat All Week, and Fed and Fit as well as the creative force behind the popular food blog Fed & Fit.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    Absolutely phenomenal with pulled pork! I’m not a huge slivered almond fan so I left those out, but it still turned out fabulous. The green apple is SO good with cilantro and the dressing is so simple. Would definitely try this with other BBQ fare.

    1. Aw yay! We’re so glad you love this slaw, Chelsea!