Coleslaw is a pretty quintessentially Southern side dish. You can’t have a pulled pork sandwich without coleslaw on it and you’ll definitely never see a church luncheon or picnic without coleslaw! This version of the classic has sweet cranberries and crunchy almonds to kick the flavor up a notch. You could also substitute in Napa jalapenos for the cranberries to give it a punch if you want! Today I’m sharing my trick to keeping coleslaw crispy. It’s super crucial so that you can let the flavors blend & intensify overnight while maintaining nice crispy cabbage, adding the perfect crunch to your bbq (other than the chips of course!). I’ve also shared a few options in the recipe for lightening it up, if you want.

Crispy Coleslaw with Cranberries |

So these photos were taken by me! Usually Ben (my hubby) is the official Sweet Tea Sweetie photographer and photo editor. I have been slowly learning the editing software and have taken over a lot of the photo editing, but this is the first post where the food photography & editing was done by me! I’d love to hear what you think! Ben will still be an integral part of the blog & the photography while I do the recipe development but I’ve really enjoyed getting to work on the other side of things!

Crispy Coleslaw with Cranberries |

Just look at those yummy toasted almonds on top! They give the coleslaw even more of a crunch!

Crispy Coleslaw with Cranberries |

Coleslaw is one of those great dishes that you can make ahead of time & bring to a bbq. Here’s the one thing about coleslaw though. It can get super soggy & mushy after awhile. I know a lot of people who don’t love coleslaw because they’ve only lackluster ones. One trick that I’ve learned to counter the soggy mushy mess is to give the cabbage a quick brine to keep it crunchy. Simply take an extra 5 minutes before mixing together the coleslaw to allow the cabbage to sit with salt and sugar, then rinse well. You will be impressed with the magical way that your cabbage is still crunchy the next day! Yes it take a few more minutes, but I promise the result is worth it!

Crispy Coleslaw with Cranberries |

Crispy Coleslaw with Cranberries


  • For pre-rinse of cabbage:
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Coleslaw:
  • 1 cup mayo (It's okay to substitute 1/2 cup of low fat Greek yogurt to lighten this up)
  • 1/4 cup sugar (can substitute honey to make it healthier)
  • 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of pepper
  • 5 cups shredded cabbage
  • 1 cup shredded red cabbage (for color)
  • 1 cup thin carrot slices
  • 3/4 cup chopped & lightly toasted almond pieces
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries (or jalapenos)


  1. Mix together cabbages & carrots.
  2. Sprinkle generously with pre-rinse salt and sugar. Let it sit for 5 minutes, then rinse well. Be sure to get all of that extra salt off!
  3. Mix together the dressing: mayo, sugar, apple cider vinegar, salt & pepper.
  4. Dry excess water off of cabbage mixture.
  5. Toss cabbage in dressing.
  6. Top with almonds & cranberries at the last minute.

Are you a coleslaw fan?

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