Easy Vegan Coleslaw

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Big bowl of our delicious and creamy Vegan Cole Slaw

Friends, this is what summer dreams are made of! Vegan coleslaw that’s easy to make, super creamy, crunchy, and portable – making it perfect for BBQs, friend dinners, picnics, and more! Let’s do this.

Cutting board filled with ingredients for making our healthy homemade vegan coleslaw recipe

Origins of Coleslaw

The word coleslaw is believed to have originated from the Dutch dish koolsla meaning “cabbage salad”. It became popular in New York in the 17th and 18th centuries when Dutch settlers arrived in the region.

Coleslaw may have also been inspired by a dish made in ancient Rome that was made with shredded cabbage (or other cruciferous vegetables), melted butter, vinegar, and oil.

Our inspired plant-based version is made without mayonnaise, but still has the creamy dressing and crunchy texture of a classic slaw!

How to Make Vegan Coleslaw

The base for this 10-ingredient recipe starts with soaked cashews (for a nut-free alternative, see the notes!).

Cashews are blended with maple syrup, vinegar, celery salt, mustard, and onion for a classic coleslaw dressing that’s mayo (and oil) free.

Mixing bowl filled with vegetables for homemade vegan coleslaw

Once the sauce is ready, all that’s left to do is shred your vegetables and toss! We went with carrots and a mix of red and green cabbage. But you could also sub other veggies you have on hand, like bell pepper, green onion, or even kale.

Using serving spoons to toss together vegetables and dressing for vegan coleslaw

We hope you LOVE this modern spin on a classic! It’s:

Loaded with vegetables
& Super delicious

This would make the perfect side to BBQ-friendly dishes like our BBQ Black Bean Burgers, BBQ Baked Beans, Vegan ‘Pulled Pork’ Sandwich, and Grilled Veggie Skewers!

If you’re into this salad, also be sure to check out our Super Cleansing Slaw, Brussels Sprout Slaw with Coconut Bacon, and Simple Fall Slaw!

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram! Cheers, friends.

Big bowl of our fresh and delicious homemade vegan coleslaw

Easy Vegan Coleslaw

A vegan take on classic coleslaw salad made with 10 simple ingredients! Easy, crunchy, fresh, tangy, and the perfect side for BBQs, sandwiches, and more!
Author Minimalist Baker
Big bowl of our delicious Vegan Cole Slaw
4.95 from 50 votes
Prep Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 12 (1/2-cup servings)
Course Salad, Side
Cuisine Dutch-Inspired, Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? 4-5 Days



  • 1 cup raw cashews* (soaked in very hot water 1 hour, or in cool water 6 hours or overnight)
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup (plus more to taste // sub sweetener of choice, e.g. stevia or organic cane sugar)
  • 2 tsp spicy brown mustard (or yellow mustard)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp white vinegar
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp chopped yellow or red onion
  • 1/2 tsp celery salt (or seeds // if using seeds, add more salt to taste)
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste


  • 2 cups shredded carrot
  • 4 cups packed shredded red or green cabbage


  • Soak cashews. Then drain thoroughly and add to a high-speed blender along with water, maple syrup, mustard, white vinegar, apple cider vinegar, onion, and celery salt (or seeds).
  • Blend on high until creamy and smooth, scraping down sides as needed. If too thick, add more water to thin. If too thin, you can compensate by adding more (raw) cashews (they don’t need to be soaked). 
  • Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding salt and pepper to taste,  more celery salt or seeds for more pronounced celery flavor, onion for bite, maple syrup for sweetness, mustard for tanginess, or vinegar for acidity.
  • Add carrot and cabbage to a mixing bowl and top with dressing. Toss to combine. Enjoy immediately or store covered in the refrigerator to chill – about 4 hours. 
  • Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator up to 4-5 days. Not freezer friendly. Perfect for pairing with things like Vegan Pulled Pork Sandwiches, Vegan Baked BBQ Beans, and Chickpea Sunflower Sandwich!



*For a nut-free option, you can sub 1 cup store-bought or our vegan mayonnaise per 1 cup cashews. Adjust other flavors to taste (you may need less vinegar and sweetener).
*Adapted from Barefeet in the Kitchen

Nutrition (1 of 12 servings)

Serving: 1 serving Calories: 83 Carbohydrates: 8 g Protein: 2 g Fat: 4 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 131 mg Potassium: 218 mg Fiber: 1 g Sugar: 3 g Vitamin A: 3895 IU Vitamin C: 18.3 mg Calcium: 26 mg Iron: 1 mg

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My Rating:

  1. Haley says

    While making another recipe a video came on where you made a stew/maybe your baked beans and topped it with this cole slaw and grilled corn. I’ve searched the site but I’m not positive what it was. Do you know what recipe that was?

  2. Karen says

    I just made this and didn’t have high hopes, honestly, my family hasn’t liked anything I’ve tried. I do admit that I played with the seasoning. I don’t use salt, so I used two different salt substitutes, and readjusted the mustard and ACV amounts after tasting, but OH MY. This is exactly what we needed. Thanks so much for sharing your talents with us!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! We’re so glad this one was a hit, Karen. Thank you for your kind words and lovely review! xo

  3. Leah Dsouza says

    This dressing is EVERYTHING!! I love it. Thank you for sharing this recipe. I’ve made the coleslaw and it turned out amazing. I’m also using the dressing as an addition to salads, smashed chickpeas and anything that calls for mayo.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Whoop! We’re so glad you’re enjoying it and getting creative with ways to use it. Thank you for sharing, Leah! xo

  4. Dalatias says

    What is a “spicy brown mustard”? Something other than Dijon? Can I add something to Dijon to make it suitable for this recipe?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Dalatias, they’re similar, but spicy brown is a little spicier. Dijon should work well though!

  5. Kina says

    I am super excited! I tried several other recipes before this one and didn’t care for them. Just finished making it and I love it! I didn’t add any extra salt because the celery salt gave it just enough for me. After tasting it I’m going to add a tad bit more maple syrup because I prefer mine a little sweeter. Thank you so much for the delicious recipe!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! Thanks so much for the great review, Kina. We’re so glad you enjoy this coleslaw!

  6. claire says

    I made this for 50 for large group, to pair with pulled pork sandwiches (not vegan, not my recipe) and this was more delicious than any cole slaw dressing I have ever tried. I did not use cashews for fear of nut allergies. I used grapeseed vegan mayo, but I added less of each of the added ingredients. 1 teaspoon Maple Syrup, 1 teasp brown mustard, 1/2 Tbsp white vinegar,1 tsp apple cider vinegar and to one cup vegan mayo .
    The chopped onions gave a great flavor, did not add any salt and a couple shakes black pepper. I can’t wait for spring and summer to make this again.
    I love that I just increased the serving size and was able to make the dressing in the cuisinart.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Love it! Thanks for the great review, Nicole. So glad you enjoyed the dressing!

  7. Kim Lock says

    The dressing for this slaw is my new vegan mayo! I added the juice of one lemon at the very end to add some tartness. Even my picky, vegan-wary husband loves this slaw. He added some raisins for the sweetness he likes. Thanks for this delicious recipe and all the work you do to bring us vegan recipes. Minimalist Baker is my go-to for vegan fare.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! Thanks so much for the lovely review and for sharing your modifications, Kim. So glad you both enjoyed!

  8. Aviv says

    Made it yesterday and me, my BF and his friends all enjoyed it with vegan burgers! Didn’t have celery salt or seeds so I added chopped celery stalks instead (3 tsp) and it worked out just fine ^-^. Thanks!

  9. Cheryl A Erlandson says

    I am not vegan and have never before tried a vegan coleslaw dressing. This recipe was excellent! I actually like it a lot better than other coleslaw dressings I have made using mayonnaise! Try it; I bet like me you will be surprised how good it tastes!

  10. Angela says

    I made this recipe tonight and found it to be quite enjoyable. Unfortunately, I didn’t have celery seeds on hand, so I used a blend of chia, flax, and hemp seeds. I highly recommend this recipe!

  11. Vickie C. says

    I really liked this recipe alot, and so did my bf. In fact I’ll be making it for the 2nd time tomorrow for his birthday this weekend. It’s even better after being in the fridge a couple of days!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Nicole, another reader mentioned using pecans with success, but we haven’t tried it that way. Let us know if you try it! Otherwise, maybe a version with vegan mayo would be more up your alley?

  12. Brian Leist says

    This is now my favorite slaw recipe. And, do you know what? I ran out of cashews… so I substituted with pecans! It is so delicious!!! BUt… I am a pecan addict for sure.

    I am committed to plant-based living and I am always on the lookout for a go-to recipe.

    many blessings, Brian

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! We’re so glad you enjoy it, Brian! Thanks so much for the lovely review!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Ian, thanks for the feedback. We’d suggest adding more vinegar if you prefer a tangier dressing. Hope that helps!

  13. Steve Backman says

    Love this dish. I have made a several times. In a time crunch to get it done, I substituted cashew butter for raw cashews. It came out just fine, though a bit too creamy, to remember for next time. Just before serving, to cut it a bit, I added a couple Tablespoons of lime juice and all was well.

  14. Sabrina Juggernauth says

    Wow so yummy! I was lazy and used a hand blender, so it was not as smooth as it should be, but the flavors were spot on. And the best part is, since there is no egg-based mayo, it doesn’t have the heaviness of traditional coleslaw. Hubby didn’t even realize it was different from traditional coleslaw. Thanks for sharing!

  15. Yuko says

    This….is….amazing. I am licking the sauce right now. It tastes just like the KFC coleslaw sauce, minus the coat-your-tongue dairy aftertaste. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  16. Jackie says

    I can’t get the consistency to be smooth with the cashews. There’s always a “clumpiness” to it even with my high-speed food processor. Any suggestions?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Jackie, a high-speed blender is best here, as opposed to a food processor. Otherwise, if you’re not soaking the cashews, make sure to do that!

  17. Nina says

    Greetings from the UK re the mustard I have access to Colman’s English hot dry Powder and made up mustard ( hot mustard) or Dijon or French’s mustard which do you recommend for this coleslaw? Many thanks.

  18. Maria says

    Lovely recipe! Thanks for this awesome coleslaw alternative. I have just made it without the celery salt, and turned out delicious.

  19. Linda says

    Just made this for lunch and it was so delicious. Loved the onion in the dressing. Definitely going to make this one very often. Thanks for the recipe!

  20. Shannon says

    This is so delicious! I didn’t have carrots so I just used purple and green cabbage plus sliced onions because I love onions. Didn’t have ACV but didn’t matter, the dressing is AMAZING. This is going to become a staple for me. Thank you for another amazing recipe.

    Highly recommend everyone try this one out!

  21. Diane B. says

    Love, love, love this dish. Went vegan earlier this year and am happy to find your recipes. Since Covid pandemic hit the U.S., I am shopping less often so cabbage is now on my list every other trip as it keeps so well. I am thoroughly enjoying this coleslaw. About to make it for the third time.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you enjoy it, Diane! Cabbage is brilliant for that! Thanks so much for sharing!

      • Liz says

        Just made this and LOVE it!! My husband does not care for mustard but adores spicy, so I subbed Sriracha for the mustard. So good!

  22. Es says

    Hello, do you have any suggestions of a substitution if I’d like to omit the mustard?
    Thank you- I can’t wait to make this! :)

      • Es says

        Lol yes I suppose that would be a good sub- I am just not a fan of the flavor of mustard. So I am wondering what a different flavor substitute would be…
        thank you for responding.
        I love every single one of your recipes I have ever tried btw!

        • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

          Ah, I see! Perhaps more celery seeds or fresh dill? Let us know if you do some experimenting!

  23. Emily says

    I made this using navy beans instead of cashews, and it turned out PERFECT. This is one of the best dressings I’ve ever made.

  24. Amber says

    Probably the beat coleslaw I’ve ever had, delicious. Making it to go with the barbecue bean bowl and now I’m saving it for later use!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review, Amber. We are so glad you enjoy it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  25. Lori says

    Thank you, it was delicious and just the recipe I needed! I just used some of the dressing as a dip for artichokes, and that was fabulous too! I wish I could make my cabbage look as beautiful, I assume you use a mandoline? Can you achieve those thin slivers with a food processor? Thanks again for sharing your wonderful food.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Lori, Thanks so much for the lovely review! Yes, we used a mandolin. We think a food processor slicing disk might work!

  26. Jules W says

    Excellent recipe – thank you for sharing! Only thing I did differently is use lime juice instead of vinegar.

  27. Julie says

    This recipe is absolutely OUTSTANDING! I thought I had had fantastic coleslaw before, but oh sweet baby jesus, this is by far the best coleslaw I’ve ever had. This is a keeper! Thank you so much, Dana!

  28. Pauline Bridges says

    I Made This Recipes it’s Delicious but I change my recipe was a little difference . I put purple Onions, Purple Cabbage ?, Green Cabbage ?, Two Teaspoon of Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar, Two Teaspoon Of Lime Juice, Two Teaspoon of Himalayan Salt, Hellmann’s Vegan Mayo On That Put whatever you want I put Four Teaspoon, Black Pepper and Shred Some Carrots ?. Mix Everything Up And It’s Delicious. , Thanks So Much For Sharing Your Recipe. It’s part of my meal ? Prep for this week.. Vegan Strong?????

  29. Betsy Kanakanui says

    Well tonight my non vegan husband asked for “that vegan coleslaw recipe”. He thought it was so good and wanted to make it for his pork barbeque! Haha!

  30. Kiko says

    So easy and so delicious! my husband who doesn’t like cabbage enjoys eating this, so this will be my regular recipe :) thank you!!!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      That should work in this recipe, although it will affect the flavor. Let us know how it goes!

  31. Rita says


    Does it have to be raw cashews? I happen to have unsalted roasted cashews on hand. Would it make a huge difference?? Thank you.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Rita, we haven’t tried this with roasted, but it might work! Let us know if you give it a try!

      • Wendy says

        In any recipe using cashews, you can soak the roasted ones and get excellent results; I can not eat anything “raw”, so I make every vegan milk, sauce, cheeses and butters with roasted nuts, either I roast them or have them shipped already roasted…also they can’t be roasted in peanut oil. oh always buy organic nuts, seeds, and veggies! I am gluten free vegan .

  32. Kelly says

    I’m having a garden party next month and have been looking at recipes to serve alongside falafel for the many vegetarians and vegans coming. I did a trial run of this today, I followed the recipe exactly and it was absolutely delicious and will definitely be going on the menu…thank you for posting.

  33. Kara says

    Absolutely love this recipe!! I love using cashews as a substitute and thought “yes” I have to try it this way. I added sunflower seeds, broccoli and craisins.
    Pure excellentance!!
    Thanks you much for this recipe ?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review and for sharing your modifications, Kara. We are so glad you enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! xo

  34. Jenna B says

    I made this recipe for my son’s cub scout troop along with your baked beans ( I made those before and fell in love instantly) I’ve been trying to feed these boys and girls better food than the processed camping food they had been eating. For a group of 30 very picky eaters, they ate every last bite!! That is the highest compliment from these kids :)

  35. David says

    I could *not* find celery seeds in the supermarket, and the celery salt available is not only 27% celery seed but a whole host of other additives (not Whole30 friendly), so I used fresh dill (dill seed was recommended as a substitute, but that’s even less likely than celery seed! And I didn’t have any fresh celery leaves, but I did dill).

    Also, I omitted the sweetener (Whole30 again), and added more ACV after initial taste.

    Turned out great! Love, love, LOVE that I now have a dairy and oil free alternative to mayo! I imagine I’ll tweak a bit more next time (maybe more mustard?) but this version so far is delicious!

  36. Jen says

    This is the first vegan coleslaw recipe I have made and it was great. I don’t need to look any further – it’s a keeper! Thanks!

  37. Heather says

    This is the best coleslaw and dressing recipe ever! Crunchy, tangy and healthy. Quick and easy. I have made the dressing with cashews and with sunflower seeds. Subbed the white vinegar with lemon and lime juice – mixed together and separately. I just love it and so does everyone I have shared it with. This is now my go to dressing recipe.

    You are the best Dana!

    • Maggie says

      Best coleslaw recipe ever! So good. Mine turned out almost bubbly like – even after adding more butter – not sure if that is common? Regardless of the look, it tasted delicious!

  38. Susy says

    Wondering what type of grater (mandoline?) you use to create such light and thin shreds of cabbage? When I’ve tasted slaw made this way by others, makes such a difference in the taste & texture.


  39. Luisa Beckman says

    I can’t wait to make this! I have everything but the celery seed/celery salt at home…can I use something else? Maybe just chopped celery? Is this something that can be left out?

  40. Megan says

    Just made this to use up some cabbage and it was so easy and so good! I was trying to put it away but pretty much just kept shoveling it into my face. (Luckily I doubled the recipe.) This recipe, like so many of your others, will definitely be a keeper.

  41. Susan says

    OMG Dana! you have outdone yourself on this one! I substituted dill weed for celery salt to lower the sodium content but it was still just so amazing. I’m going to use it on tacos tonight but then tomorrow I am going to try it with your beans and gluten-free corn bread. Yum Yum Yum Yum Yum!

  42. Cassie Autumn Tran says

    Oh, how yummy! I am normally NOT a coleslaw person, but I can imagine how deliciously creamy and flavorful the dressing is! It’s been a while since I have had a coleslaw-like salad. It’s likely that working with cashews would be challenging for me, but I’m willing to give it a shot!

  43. Elizabeth says

    Thank you for another fabulous recipe Dana! I love coleslaw, and I think this is my new favourite! I used 1/2 cup of a vegan garlic mayo instead of the cashews, because I didn’t have enough, and added sliced pickles and some fresh mint I had to use up – yum!

  44. Elizabeth says

    Oh my gosh Dana! Thank you so much for such a fabulous recipe. I think it is my new favourite coleslaw recipe. I used a vegan garlic mayo in place of the cashews as I didn’t have enough and it worked so well.

  45. Amy says

    Made it. Brought it to a party. Made more the next day just for me. (Sharing is for suckers.)

    Easy, and went over well at the gathering I took it too. On a veggie brat? Um, yes, please. Ended up adding more salt and apple cider vinegar to boost the acidity.
    I keep waiting for you to post a recipe that disappoints, but based on your track record so far, it seems I’ll be waiting a while longer.

  46. Alexandria Phillips says

    This is amazing!! I needed to take a few short cuts so I used bagged shredded cabbage and 1/2 tsp of onion powder (instead of the minced onion). It turned out great. I like my coleslaw to be a bit wetter. I might try for that next time. But honestly, I am over the moon with how it turned out today. I did have trouble making the dressing in my blendtec. There just was not enough to blend well. i ended up moving it to my small food processor and that worked like a charm.

  47. Diane says

    Can’t wait to make this. I was wondering if you used a dry mustard? I kept rewinding the video to try and see. If not Is there a brand of spicy brown mustard you would recommend? Thank you again for consistently sharing such delicious and inspiring recipes. I so appreciate you !!!?

  48. Gabrielle says

    Made this recipe today. Best coleslaw ever! The dressing is really nice. I’ll use it to substitute mayonnaise in other dishes. Using more cider vinegar instead of white vinegar works too. Will try the vegan pulled pork next.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Good catch! It was mislabeled. It is in fact vinegar. Sorry for the confusion! Amending that ASAP.

  49. David says

    This looks fantastic. Ok that does it. Sunday dinner is entirely vegan for the family and all your recipes, because they really are superb.
    How about the vegan pulled pork, this coke slaw and the vegan baked beans.
    I’m already looking forward to Sunday !