This apple slaw recipe is here to raise your coleslaw game! Thinly shredded cabbage, carrots, apples, parsley and slivered almonds tossed with a slightly sweet and tangy creamy dressing. Crunchy, sweet, nutty and oh so delicious! It is the perfect side dish for your next picnic, BBQ or potluck.

Apples are definitely not just for desserts! I love using them in savory dishes. My Apple, Bacon and Brie Burger and my Apple, Arugula and Brie Panini are only a few ways to use this delicious ingredient in a savory way!

A bowl of apple slaw.

I’ve been obsessed with this apple slaw. It is so darn good! 😋

It goes great with lots of different main dishes, so it’s been making appearances at my recent cookouts and BBQ parties. My guests go crazy for it and everybody always wants the recipe!

Similar to a classic coleslaw, but with the addition of apples and almonds, this apple slaw is not only delicious but also quite beautiful and colorful. Too bad I don’t usually get a chance to admire it for too long, as it is always gone in a flash.

I confess I can’t even resist having some by itself before I even eat it as a side to whatever else I’m serving. That’s how much I love it! ❤️

A photo of all the ingredients to make this apple slaw recipe.

Ingredients

To make this apple slaw recipe, you will need:

  • Apples – I am using a large Rave® apple here. If your apples are smaller, you can use more (2 or 3) so the apple flavor can shine!
  • Cabbage – I like using both green cabbage and red cabbage for a colorful slaw. You can also use Savoy cabbage or Napa cabbage if that’s what you have on hand!
  • Carrots – I prefer shredded carrots in my coleslaw, but small matchsticks work as well.
  • Parsley – A touch of parsley for a nice fresh herb-y flavor!
  • Almonds – Slivered almonds give this apple slaw extra crunch, which I love! You can omit if needed.
  • Mayo – For the creamy dressing.
  • Celery Seeds – Celery seeds have a savory, earthy character that I find make the dressing extra delicious. We are only using a touch, but you can omit if you’re not a fan.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar – Made from fermented apple juice, this vinegar pairs great with the other flavors in this recipe!
  • Honey – For a touch of sweetness and to balance the acidity of the vinegar.
  • Salt and Pepper
Rave apples.

Best Apple for Apple Slaw!

When using apples in salad, you want to choose a variety that holds its shape and doesn’t brown too quickly. It should also be crunchy, so stay away from mealy apples!

My current favorite is the Rave® apple! A cross between the Honeycrisp and the MonArk, this variety is juicy and has a refreshing snappy zing that goes really well in this apple slaw.

Rave® apple season is short, only August and September, but it’s available three weeks before other apples, and well before Honeycrisp returns to stores. So run – don’t walk – to your grocery store so you can get as many of these apples as you can before they disappear!

A bowl of apple slaw, salad servers, a kitchen towel, a small bowl of slivered almonds and a basket full of apples.

How to Make Apple Slaw

This apple coleslaw is super easy to make and is great to feed a crowd! You can double, triple, quadruple the recipe to fit the size of your gathering.

As I mentioned earlier, I used one large Rave apple and find that that gave me a nice apple flavor that is not overpowering. If your apples are small – or if you want a stronger apple flavor – feel free to add more!

Recommended tools and equipment: sharp Chef’s knife, mandoline or food processor, whisk, salad tossers, large bowl, small bowl.

Here’s how I make this apple slaw recipe. As always, you will find the printable (and more complete) version of the recipe at the end of this post!

Step 1: Prepare the veggies and apple.

  • Core and shred the cabbage as finely as you can. You can use a sharp Chef’s knife or – even better – a mandoline or food processor.
  • Shred or cut the carrots into fine matchsticks.
  • Cut the apple into fine matchsticks. I don’t bother peeling cause I like the extra color it gives my apple slaw, but you can if you prefer!
  • Add the cabbages, carrots and apple to a large bowl and toss to combine.

Step 2: Make the dressing.

  • Whisk all the dressing ingredients in a bowl. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.

Step 3: Combine!

  • Pour the dressing over the shredded cabbages, carrots and apples and toss gently to combine.
  • Gently stir in the chopped parsley and slivered almonds, tossing so they are evenly incorporated.
  • Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving, for best flavor!

Olivia’s Tips

  • Use fresh ingredients! They need to have a chance to stay crunchy even after sitting in the dressing for a few hours, so make sure they are at their best.
  • If you are making the apple slaw several hours before serving, I recommend salting the cabbage before tossing with the other ingredients. Just toss the shredded cabbage and salt and let it rest for at least 30 minutes. Then give it a quick rinse and proceed with the recipe. That will keep them extra crunchy for several hours!
  • Taste the slaw again right before serving. As the flavors meld in the fridge, you might need to adjust the seasoning.
Creamy apple slaw on a turkey burger.

What to Serve with Apple Slaw

Cole Slaw is a classic summer side dish, and this apple slaw is no different! It is a must at any cookout or BBQ.

It pairs great with turkey, pork and chicken. I especially love it on turkey burgers as I love the combination of turkey and apples!

Variations

I personally love this apple slaw recipe as it is! That being said, it is highly customizable and you can substitute or omit ingredients as needed to make it perfect for you.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Add dried fruit, such as cranberries or raisins. It adds a touch of sweetness and pairs great with the apples and almonds.
  • Substitute the almonds for walnuts, pistachios or even pumpkin or sunflower seeds.
  • Add a touch of Dijon mustard to the dressing, if you’d like an extra zing!
  • Substitute the cabbage (or one of the cabbages) for kale. Kale and apple go great together!
  • Not a fan of mayo? Use Greek yogurt instead.
Apple slaw in a white bowl.
Close up of apple coleslaw.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I make apple slaw ahead of time?

I don’t recommend making the apple slaw more than a few hours (up to overnight) ahead of time, as the longer it sits in the fridge, the less crunchy it will be. That being said, you can shred the cabbage and carrots up to 2 days in advance. You can also make the dressing a few days ahead and keep in the fridge until ready to toss with the coleslaw.

Can I freeze it?

I do not recommend freezing this apple slaw. The mayo dressing does not freeze well.

How long will leftovers keep?

Leftover apple slaw will not be as crunchy as when freshly made, but it will keep well in the fridge – stored in an airtight container – for up to 5 days.

How long can coleslaw sit out?

This apple slaw – and any coleslaw containing mayonnaise – should not sit at room temperature for more than 2 hours.

More Salad Recipes

Did you make this recipe? I love hearing from you! Please comment and leave a 5-star rating below. You can also take a photo and tag me on Instagram with #oliviascuisine.

Apple Slaw

This apple slaw recipe is here to raise your coleslaw game! Thinly shredded cabbage, carrots, apples, parsley and slivered almonds tossed with a slightly sweet and tangy creamy dressing. Crunchy, sweet, nutty and oh so delicious! It is the perfect side dish for your next picnic, BBQ or potluck.
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Ingredients  

For the apple slaw:

  • ¼ head green cabbage, outer leaves removed
  • ¼ head red cabbage, outer leaves removed
  • 2 cups shredded (or cut into matchsticks) carrots
  • 1 large Rave® apple, cored and julienned (cut into fine matchsticks)
  • cup chopped fresh parsley
  • ½ cup slivered almonds

For the apple slaw dressing:

  • ¾ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Instructions 

  • Using a sharp Chef's knife, remove the tough core from the cabbages. Then slice each quarter into thin shreds. You can also do that using a mandoline or a food processor.
  • Transfer the shredded cabbages to a large bowl and add the shredded carrots and apple. Toss to combine. Reserve.
  • Make the dressing by whisking all the dressing ingredients in a bowl. Taste and adjust the ingredients as needed.
  • Pour the dressing over the apple slaw, tossing gently to combine so everything is thoroughly coated. Then, add the parsley and almonds, tossing again to combine.
  • Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving, for best results!

Notes

Make-Ahead:
If making the apple slaw more than 1 hour ahead, reserve some of the dressing to toss with the apple slaw right before serving, so it is extra creamy!
I don’t recommend making the slaw more than a few hours ahead (up to overnight), as it will lose its crunchiness the longer it sits in the fridge. That being said, you can shred the cabbages and carrots up to 2 days ahead and make the dressing 4-5 days ahead. Keep the dressing and veggies separate and mix together on the day you’re serving the slaw!
Leftovers:
Leftovers won’t be as crunchy, but will keep well in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Freezing:
I do not recommend freezing apple slaw. Texture and flavor will suffer considerably.

Nutrition

Calories: 232kcal, Carbohydrates: 14g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 19g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 10g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 9mg, Sodium: 170mg, Potassium: 316mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 5906IU, Vitamin C: 32mg, Calcium: 63mg, Iron: 1mg