Fresh Cabbage Slaw: The Perfect Accompaniment to Winter Fare

Fruity vinegar is the secret to this super-simple salad

When you're making a Sunday roast, a stew, or something else hearty and lengthy to prepare, the last thing you want is to spend a bunch of time on the accompanying veg. Rather, what you want is something fresh, crunchy and simple. That's where this fresh cabbage slaw comes in.

I love cabbages because they're readily available, inexpensive, and always give you more meals than you expect. Even a small round cabbage will give you about 8 decent servings of this salad!

Cabbage and flat-leafed herbs may not seem the obvious combination. However, taking inspiration from shawarma and other similar Middle Eastern dishes in which both (pickled) cabbage and fresh herbs often feature, I discovered that they actually make perfect partners, especially when tied together with the sweet freshness of fruit vinegar. A pop of summer on your winter plate!

You may not need the whole cabbage for one meal. However, it's more efficient to prep it all at once. If cooking for just a few people, you can save some of the slaw undressed in a sealed container in the fridge.

bowl of fresh cabbage saw on wooden counter


  • Small round cabbage (green or red)
  • Flat-leaf parsley or coriander (whatever you have straggling in your garden or looks good at the supermarket)
  • Sweet, fruity vinegar (such as Artisan Raspberry Vinegar or Artisan Blackberry Vinegar)
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt


Remove any damaged outer leaves from the cabbage. Cut out the core and then slice the cabbage thinly using a mandoline or sharp chef's knife. Rinse and spin dry in a salad spinner.

Put the sliced cabbage into a colander, sprinkle over a small spoonful of salt, and toss together. Allow to sit in the sink so that some of the water extracted by the salt can drain away.

While the cabbage sits, wash the herbs and spin dry, then pluck off two good handfuls' worth of leaves. It doesn't really matter how much you use; I like quite a lot of herbs in my slaw. Chop the leaves finely.

Toss the cabbage and herbs together in a big bowl, then separate out as much of the mixture as you will require for the day's meal. The rest will keep in a sealed container in the fridge for a few days — until you next require a salad.

Liberally dress the cabbage you are about to serve with oil and vinegar. Enjoy!

— Beatrix Swanson

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