Homemade Coleslaw Dressing

5 from 2 votes

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Making Coleslaw Dressing at home is easier than you think! Use ingredients you probably already have to make the coleslaw of your dreams! The vinegar and sugar in the dressing mellow out the onion, while still getting a light oniony flavor that is just divine served on its own, or with some grilled steak kabobs or on a little pulled pork.

dressing poured over coleslaw mixture

Why You’ll Love This Coleslaw Dressing

Coleslaw is one of those summer salads either you love or hate. Store-bought, pre-made coleslaw is awful, but homemade coleslaw is delicious, and that is because of this homemade coleslaw dressing! I think people like to buy coleslaw dressing from the store because they simply just don’t know how to make it at home.

If this describes you, don’t worry! I assure you this homemade version is easier than you think and one million times more delicious! And the best part is you probably already have the required ingredients in your pantry already.

Click over to my classic coleslaw recipe to get my full coleslaw recipe (cabbage, onions, carrots, etc..), though if you’ve just bought a bag of coleslaw mix, that might not be necessary. BUT I will say, this dressing paired with the pre-shredded cabbage and shredded carrots plus a little diced onion is magical! This is my go-to creamy coleslaw dressing, soon to be your go-to coleslaw dressing because of how divine it really is.

whisking coleslaw dressing together

Ingredients That Can be used in Homemade Coleslaw Dressings

I’m sharing with you my favorite easy coleslaw dressing recipe, but there are numerous variations of cole slaw dressing you can try. Some of the most popular salad dressing variations include:

  • Dijon mustard
  • apple cider vinegar or red wine vinegar
  • lemon juice
  • celery seeds
  • sour cream
  • plain greek yogurt
  • honey or maple syrup
  • black pepper

As you can see, you have lots of room for experimentation and trying out different combinations to find your absolute favorite one. This way, you can create the best coleslaw dressing, make it sweeter or saltier, creamy, or light and low-calorie.

How to Make Coleslaw Dressing

For full recipe details, including ingredients and measurements, see the printable recipe card down below. Here is step by step what you to expect when making this coleslaw dressing:

coleslaw dressing ingredients

Combine Ingredients in a Bowl

In a small bowl, measure out some real mayonnaise. Not to be confused with Miracle Whip. Real Mayonnaise, please. To that, add white vinegar. Just the plain, white, distilled kind.

Lastly, add in sugar with a little salt and pepper to taste. Feel free to reduce the sugar, though I would recommend making the recipe as is first because you shouldn’t knock it till you try it!

Toss with Coleslaw Veggies

Once your dressing is made, toss it together with your cabbage, carrots and onions and either serve right away or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. I like it best after sitting in the fridge for an hour or two, but to each her own.

When Should I Dress my Coleslaw?

Well, if you intend to serve it on the same day, you can add the dressing as soon as it’s ready. It’s preferred to let the cabbage and the dressing exchange the flavors for a couple of hours in the refrigerator, but if you want your salad to be very crispy, dress the salad at the most, half an hour before serving.

Storage + Make Ahead

If you want to store coleslaw for more than a day, it’s better to wait with the dressing until the day you’re going to serve the salad. Especially if you’re thinking about freezing the cabbage, it’s much better to hold off on adding the dressing to avoid the watery consistency of the dressing in the salad.

Dressed coleslaw will stay fresh in your fridge for 3-5 days if stored in an airtight container. I would eat it sooner rather than later, though, because after a couple of days, the texture of the cabbage and carrots get less crunchy and softer.

coleslaw in a bowl and tablescape

More Summer Salads to Try!

This is your house, and you make the rules! But if you need a good place to start, below there’s my tested coleslaw dressing recipe that will make you fall in love with this summer salad. Grab the printable recipe below or bookmark/pin for later! This is a great recipe you will come to love. Have a great day, friends!

dressing poured over coleslaw mixture
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5 from 2 votes

Coleslaw Dressing Recipe

Store-bought coleslaw mix or shredded cabbage and veggies you prepared yourself, plus this phenomenal and easy homemade coleslaw dressing, make for a delicious light salad that will be gone quicker than you think! With my easy recipe, you can make coleslaw and prepare the homemade dressing in under half an hour!
servings 8 servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes



  • In a small bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper. A few lumps are fine!
    mayo, vinegar and spices in a bowl
  • Pour over top coleslaw mix and toss to coat. Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve. The longer this sits, the better it tastes.
    dressing poured over coleslaw mixture



Calories: 209kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 11mg | Sodium: 178mg | Potassium: 5mg | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 20IU | Calcium: 2mg | Iron: 0.1mg
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: coleslaw dressing

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Recipe Rating

3 Responses
  1. Iryna Wilson

    5 stars
    Love this recipe, especially that you add sugar & onions. That always makes cabbage taste so much better. I like throwing in some green onions too.

  2. Pamela Higgs

    5 stars
    Excellent! My husband loves it so it must be great! For a bit of a bite, I add about 1/4 teaspoon celery seed.

  3. Classic Coleslaw Recipe | Lauren's Latest

    […] Dressing. I use my simple homemade coleslaw dressing to bring this whole recipe together, made with mayonnaise, white vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper. […]