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Low sodium coleslaw

Updated: Oct 3, 2021

This crunchy, tangy, low sodium coleslaw comes together quickly and doesn't require any actual cooking. Try it as a side dish or as a light entree salad.

Servings: About 5 cups (serves about 4 people as a side dish) Sodium: 14 mg per cup Time: 45 minutes

Dressing ingredients:

1/4 cup sour cream

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 tsp whole celery seeds

1 tsp salt-free mustard (or 1/4 tsp dry mustard)

1 and 1/2 tsp sugar

1 clove garlic, minced

pinch of dried ground ginger

ground black pepper to taste

Slaw ingredients:

The dressing recipe above makes enough for about 1/2 a pound of vegetables. I do a traditional cabbage slaw so I use mostly cabbage, then add sweet or red onions, apples, and a fresh herb (usually cilantro or parsley). The amount you use of each is pretty flexible but here's what I do:

2-3 cups shredded cabbage, green or purple

1/2 cup red onions, sliced thin

1/2 cup apples, cut into matchsticks

3 tablespoons chopped cilantro

For the dressing:

Combine all ingredients in a jar and mix well. Make the dressing up to a day in advance, or at least a few hours so it has time to chill in the refrigerator. If you don't have lemon or lime juice, double the apple cider vinegar. I'm really partial to apple cider vinegar for this dressing, but red wine vinegar would work also. You can substitute greek yogurt for the sour cream but I prefer the texture and flavor of sour cream here. The celery seed really defines the flavor in this dressing. Without it, it's more of a low sodium creamy vinaigrette. So try to get celery seed if you don't have it.

For the slaw:

I really need all the vegetables in my slaw to be thinly sliced and fresh. I don't like big chunks of cabbage and I normally don't like the stuff that comes pre-sliced in a bag. Look for cabbage that is firm and dense, not soft or spongy feeling. I also like to give the slaw a few hours to soften up a bit. So I will usually combine all the dressing with the cabbage and onions about 4-5 hours before serving, and let that sit in the fridge. Right before serving, I'll add the apples and herbs because I want those to stay crispy and fresh.


-I always think cabbage when I think of coleslaw but you can really use any crunchy vegetables you like. Try this dressing on shaved fennel, sliced green apples, romaine lettuce, radishes, fresh dill . . . the possibilities are endless and all low sodium! Top with unsalted sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds for even more crunch.

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