Napa Cabbage Slaws

Last week I was reading through one of my old Cooks Illustrated magazines and came across a recipe for coleslaws using napa cabbage.  It thought that sounded fun, so when I was at the grocery store I picked up some napa cabbage.  Then, I had some left over grated ginger from another dinner earlier this week that I wanted to use, so I picked an asian flavored variation.  The key to these slaws is boiling down the vinegar at the beginning so you don’t end up with a soupy slaw.  The variation I tried reminded me of a salad you would have at a Japanese restaurant.  Derek did not love it.  He said it was sour, but he abhors vinegar.  I quite liked it and so did my cute little Carter boy.  The only problem I had with this salad is that now that I am turned onto napa cabbage I may never be able to go back to traditional plain ol’ green cabbage.   And, I’m really intrigued by these other variations and can’t wait to try those as well.
Napa Cabbage Slaw with Carrots and Sesame


  • 1/3 white wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tsp vegetable oil
  • 1 Tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 small head napa cabbage, sliced thin
  • 2 carrots, peels and grated on the large holes of box grater
  • 4 scallions, sliced thin on bias
  • 1/4 C sesame seeds, toasted


  1. Bring white wine vinegar to simmer in small saucepan over medium heat, cook until reduced to 2 Tbsp, 4-6 minutes.  Transfer white wine vinegar to large bowl and let cool completely, about 10 minutes.  Whisk in sesame oil, vegetable oil, rice vinegar, soy sauce, sugar, ginger, and salt.
  2. When ready to serve, add cabbage and carrots to dressing and toss to coat.  Let stand for 5 minutes.  Add scallions and sesame seeds and toss to combine.  Serve.

*Variation 1- Napa Cabbage Slaw with Apple and Walnuts: Omit sesame oil and increase vegetable oil to 4 tsp.  Omit soy sauce and ginger.  Substitute cider vinegar for rice vinegar. Decrease sugar to 2 tsp and increase salt to 3/4 tsp.  Substitute 2 celery ribs, sliced thin on bias, and 1 grated Fuji apple for carrots.  Substitute 3 Tbsp minced fresh chives for scallions and 1/2 C walnuts, toasted and chopped fine, for sesame seed.

*Variation 2- Napa Cabbage Slaw with Jicama and Pepitas:  Omit sesame oil and increase vegetable oil to 4 tsp.  Omit soy sauce.  Substitute lime juice for rice vinegar, honey for sugar, and 1/2 tsp ground coriander for ginger.  Increase salt to 3/4 tsp.  Substitute 1 seeded and minced jalapeno for ginger.  Substitute 6 oz jicama, peeled and grated, for carrots.  Substitute 1/4 C coarsley chopped fresh cilantro for scallions and 1/2 C roasted and salted pepitas, chopped fine for sesame seeds.

One Comment Add yours

  1. Yum! This looks so fresh and delicious 🙂


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