This classic, easy vegan coleslaw with a tangy mayo tahini dressing is a summer bbq essential. It only takes 15 minutes to make and pairs perfectly with veggie burgers, tacos, and whatever is coming off the grill next!
🥗 Why We Love This Recipe
- Super simple: this recipe comes together so quickly once you're done prepping the vegetables. Buying the cabbage pre-cut (no judgment from us!) or using a food processor to do the heavy lifting makes the recipe even easier.
- A twist on the original: we add in sunflower seeds and use tahini to make our recipe unique, but more importantly: extra delicious. Tahini adds a nutty, rich flavor to the dressing and sunflower seeds add the perfect crunch!
- BBQ superstar: this vegan coleslaw is perfect as a stand alone side dish, or as a topping on veggie burgers, pulled "pork" mushrooms, grilled tofu, and pretty much anything else that might be coming off the grill.
Here are the key ingredients you'll need to make this classic vegan coleslaw:
📋 Ingredient Notes
- Purple & Green Cabbage: we used a mixture of both, but feel free to use one or the other.
- Sunflower Seeds: sunflower seeds are optional, but add a lovely textural component and slightly nutty flavor.
- Vegan mayo: we used Follow Your Heart Vegenaise, but there are so many great vegan mayo brands out there that will all work well for this coleslaw! If you're prepping this for non-vegans, regular mayo will work just fine.
- Tahini: we found that tahini adds a lovely, nutty flavor and extra creaminess, but if preferred, leave it out and sub with more mayo.
- Carrots: we use a food processor to quickly shred our carrots, but you can also easily purchase them pre-shredded to cut down on prep time.
🔪 Step-by-step Instructions
Prep the vegetables. The easiest way to do so is to use a food processor shredder attachment (if you have one). It works for both the 1 ½ cups of carrots and the 6 total cups of cabbage.
If you don't have a food processor or don't feel like lugging yours out, use a grater to grate the carrots, and use a sharp knife to cut the cabbage into thin, bite-sized strips.
Make the dressing. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together ½ cup vegan mayo, 1 ½ tablespoon tahini, ½ tablespoon dijon mustard, 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar, ½ teaspoon agave nectar, ½ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon garlic powder, ¼ teaspoon onion powder, ⅛ teaspoon cayenne, and 1 tablespoon water until smooth and creamy.
Assemble. Add all ingredients to a large mixing bowl (you'll need a big bowl so you have room for tossing!), add the dressing and toss until thoroughly coated.
💭 Expert Tips and FAQs
- Easier prep: you can chop the carrots and cabbage with a food processor to make things easier. This video provides a clear and useful tutorial showing how to do it by using the slicer attachment that comes with your machine.
- What to eat this with: This coleslaw works wonders atop a veggie burger and is also great with tacos as a counterpoint to a spicy sauce. But really, you can serve it with pretty much any summer main dish! It's also the perfect addition to your next summer dinner party.
- Serving: Serve right away, or for best results, refrigerate for an hour before serving. Since vegan mayo doesn't contain any eggs, you don't have to worry too much about leaving this out at room temperature, but it definitely tastes better cold (in my opinion).
- For a fun twist on this recipe, try making the cheesy sunflower seeds in this broccoli salad. They add so much extra flavor!
Coleslaw will keep for 3-5 days in an airtight container. However, the longer it sits, the soggier it will get, so we suggest consuming within 2-3 days for the best results.
We used both purple and green cabbage, but they are interchangeable, so you can just use one or the other if preferred. Purple cabbage is also more nutrient dense.
Coleslaw gets its origins from the Dutch koolsla, meaning "cabbage salad".
🍽 Related Recipes
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This classic, easy vegan coleslaw with a tangy mayo tahini dressing is a summer bbq essential. It only takes 15 minutes to make and pairs perfectly with veggie burgers and whatever else is on the menu at your next bbq.
- 3 cups purple cabbage, sliced thinly
- 3 cups green cabbage, sliced thinly
- 1 ½ cups shredded carrot
- 3 tbsp finely chopped dill
- ¼ cup roasted, salted sunflower seeds
- ½ tsp salt + black pepper to taste
- ½ cup vegan mayo
- 1 ½ tbsp tahini
- ½ tbsp dijon mustard
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- ½ tsp agave nectar
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp onion powder
- ⅛ tsp cayenne
- 1 tbsp water
- Prep the vegetables. The easiest way to do so is to use a food processor shredder attachment (if you have one). It works for both the 1 ½ cups of carrots and the 6 total cups of cabbage. If you don't have a food processor, use a grater to grate the carrots, and use a sharp knife to cut the cabbage into thin, bite-sized strips.
- Make the dressing. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together all ingredients until smooth and creamy.
- Assemble. Add all ingredients to a large mixing bowl, add the dressing and toss until thoroughly coated. You can either serve right away, or refrigerate for an hour to let the flavors intensify.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. Coleslaw will taste best if consumed within 2-3 days.
To make prep easier, try using the slicing attachment on your food processor to prep the cabbage and carrots, or purchase them pre-shredded.
Purple and green cabbage taste more or less the same, so don't worry if you can only find one or the other at the grocery store.
For maximum freshness and minimum sogginess, prep the dressing and the veggies separately and mix them together when ready to serve.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Category: Side Dish
- Method: No Cook
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size: 1 Side
- Calories: 125
- Sugar: 3.9 g
- Sodium: 466.4 mg
- Fat: 8.8 g
- Carbohydrates: 9.7 g
- Fiber: 3.2 g
- Protein: 3.5 g
Keywords: vegan coleslaw