Back in 2019, a simple opinion on coleslaw quickly escalated into an all-out Twitter war. Whether it’s the presence of mayonnaise in typical recipes or just a texture thing, turns out, a lot of people dislike this wildly popular dish. If you’re reading this, we can’t help but wonder what you think of it. Do you love it? Do you hate it? Regardless of if you love it or hate it, our “Kale Apple Slaw” recipe will leave you craving it.
A no mayo coleslaw, ours combines the classic wholesomeness and delightful crunch of the typical cabbage and carrots with the earthy, rich flavor of kale and the natural sweetness of apples delivering refreshingly crisp flavor and a lot of nutrition. The recipe itself is 100% vegan, gluten-free and requires absolutely no cooking. With just a little chopping here and some mixing there, it’s in your bowl in 10 minutes or less.
THE BALANCING ACT
In creating recipes our founder, Nina, strives to help people reimagine foods as opposed to simply cancelling them, especially veggies and other nutritionally beneficial foods. Made with cabbage and carrots, traditional coleslaw already has a lot of potential in the nutrition department. But it’s also often spruced up with table sugar and dressed in mayonnaise which, most would argue, diminishes the overall nutritional value of slaw.
We’d simply say it’s a missed opportunity.
Here at That Salad Lady, we believe every bowl is an opportunity to build more layers of whole food nutrition for whole life wellness. So, we swapped out the ‘cream and sugar’ for a light vinaigrette dressing naturally sweetened with organic apple cider and added kale and apple to the mix for even more nutrition, fresh flavor and yummy crunch. With these few tweaks we essentially transformed the traditional recipe into a seriously delicious nutritional powerhouse.
Whether you’re a coleslaw lover or hater, a mayo skeptic or just looking for a fun and creative way to upgrade your salad bowl, you’ll love the flavorful, nutritional spin we’ve put on the the classic blend.
Let’s talk more about what’s in our Kale Apple Slaw recipe and why.
The Cruciferous Duo
In keeping with tradition, our no mayo coleslaw is chock-full of cabbage, but, as already mentioned, we also cram in plenty of kale. As cruciferous veggies (or “crucifers”) both are rich in cancer-fighting phytonutrients which are released when they’re chewed. We purposely chose red cabbage over green due to its higher content of antioxidants. And by using kale as well, you’ll reap the many health benefits of vitamin K (visit our Nutrition Glossary to learn more).
A Perfectly Sweet Pair
Like traditional recipes our no mayo coleslaw recipe includes shredded (julienned) carrots. Besides the earthy sweetness they bring to the bowl, carrots themselves are especially high in beta-carotene. Beta-carotene is a powerful carotenoid phytonutrient that supports normal vision, immune function and even healthy skin.
The flavor of carrots is perfectly complemented by the exceptionally juicy sweetness of apple. We use Opal apple for the recipe, as it delivers fresh apple flavor with hints of pineapple and banana. Opal apples are unique in that their creamy somewhat butter-colored flesh doesn’t really turn brown. This makes them perfect for slaws, salads and other raw dishes. If you can’t find Opal apples, Golden Delicious, Honeycrisp and Fuji apples also work.
All apples are naturally rich in flavonoids but their main claim to fame is tied to the presence of pectin. Pectin is a type of fiber that naturally supports intestinal balance, reduces blood sugar levels and promotes heart health.
The No-Mayo Dressing
That Salad Lady’s no mayo, apple cider vinaigrette dressing is what actually inspired this Kale Apple Slaw recipe. A combination organic apple cider, pure maple syrup, wholegrain mustard, extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO) and apple cider vinegar lightly seasoned with salt and pepper it boasts classic coleslaw flavor with a light and fresh sweetness that’s downright craveable.
With its subtle creaminess you won’t even miss the mayo. Best of all, the EVOO housed in the blend helps the body better absorb the phytonutrients and antioxidants in the raw produce (study up in our Nutrition Glossary to learn more about the benefits of EVOO.
GET YOUR CHOP ON
As no cooking is required for That Salad Lady’s no mayo coleslaw recipe, the bulk of the work is in the chopping. As always, using a high-quality chef’s knife will make the process a whole lot easier.
Our recipe calls for first shredding the cabbage and then finely chopping the kale. From there, you’ll simply julienne the apple and carrots. Julienning essentially means cutting them into thin strips using either a grater or a knife (see recipe video). To eliminate an extra step, you can also use the matchstick carrots sold prepackaged at your local grocery store. Whatever works.
Once you’ve chopped up all the ingredients, just transfer them to a large salad bowl and let the mixture chill in the fridge while you prepare the dressing.
To make That Salad Lady’s apple cider vinaigrette dressing, simply combine the ingredients (see recipe card) in a bowl and whisk them together until everything’s well-mixed. You can also add the ingredients to a jar with a twist off lid and just shake it up until everything’s well-blended.
BUILD YOUR SALAD BOWL
When you’re ready to build your bowl, drizzle the dressing on your slaw ingredients and stir everything together for a nice, even distribution of colors. That’s it! You can sprinkle on a little fresh parsley too if you have it. We recommend letting the Kale Apple Slaw chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before eating or serving it. This gives the flavors time to come together. No need to worry about the ingredients getting soggy. In this case, marinating is a good thing.
All put together, the actual blend is large enough for six generous-sized servings. You can use it to round out a meal as a side dish or complete a sandwich as a topping. Our founder, Nina, typically eats hers with added protein (see “finishing touches” below) over the course of a couple of days, as she generally eats one large meal a day. In an airtight sealed container, leftovers will keep in the fridge for 3-5 days.
Add Your Finishing Touches
To boost the protein content and overall filling effect of your slaw, toss in proteins like cooked shrimp, salmon or tuna, quinoa, beans, chickpeas, cubed extra-firm tofu or even nuts and seeds. Visit our Nutrition Glossary for more ideas, as it’s all about making YOU confident in building YOUR bowl.
SHOW US YOUR BOWL
That Salad Lady wants to see your bowl! If you like it, which we are sure you will, drop a comment below and tag pics on Instagram with @thatsaladlady, #thatsaladlady and #buildyourbowl. If you love it, pin it on Pinterest and share it on Facebook and Twitter using #thatsaladlady.
Kale Apple Slaw (No Mayo Coleslaw)Course: Appetizers, MainCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy
A 100% vegan, gluten-free, no mayo coleslaw, our Kale Apple Slaw delivers sweet and tangy flavors, delightful crunch and plenty of nutrition.
- Base Salad Blend
6 cups curly kale, shredded or finely chopped
1/4 head red cabbage, shredded or finely chopped
3 small carrots (about 1 cup), julienned**
1 medium Opal apple, cored, sliced and chopped into bite-sized cubes***
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh parsley leaves (optional), coarsely chopped
- Apple Cider Vinaigrette Dressing
1/4 cup organic apple cider
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon maple syrup***
1 tablespoon wholegrain mustard
Salt and pepper, to taste
- Mix the Base Blend
- Once all the produce is thoroughly rinsed, shred the cabbage, finely chop the kale and then julienne the carrots and apple.
- Transfer ingredients to a large salad bowl, cover it with a lid or plastic wrap and let everything chill in the fridge while you prepare the dressing.
- Prepare the Dressing
- Combine all the dressing ingredients in a bowl (minus the salt and pepper) and whisk them together until everything’s well-mixed.
- You can also add the ingredients to a jar with a twist off lid and shake it up until everything’s well-blended.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Build the Salad
- Drizzle prepared dressing on the chilled slaw ingredients and stir everything together for a nice, even distribution of colors.
- Sprinkle on parsley if using it.
- Cover the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and allow the slaw to chill for at least 30 minutes before eating or serving it.
- *We suggest shredding (julienning) the carrots. You can do this with either a grater or a sharp knife. You can also use the matchstick carrots sold prepackaged at your local grocery store.
- **Opal apple delivers fresh apple flavor with hints of pineapple and banana. If you can’t find Opal apples, Golden Delicious, Honeycrisp and Fuji apples also work. We suggest julienning the apples with either a grater or a knife.
- ***Pure honey works too but isn’t vegan.
- To boost the protein content and overall filling effect of your slaw, toss in proteins like cooked shrimp, salmon or tuna, quinoa, beans, chickpeas, cubed extra-firm tofu or even nuts and seeds.
- In an airtight sealed container, leftovers will keep in the fridge for 3-5 days.
This information is provided as a courtesy and is only an estimate. Please review our full disclaimer to get a clear understanding of the nutrition and health information and resources presented and written on our website.