Deli Style Coleslaw

Coleslaw recipes are out there by the thousands–I know. But everyone’s style is a little bit different so for what it’s worth, here’s mine 🙂

It reminds me of the slaw at Macado’s. Macado’s is a local chain here in Southwest Virginia and if you’re ever in the area, definitely check them out. They all have the same menu (like 50+ type of sandwiches and basic American fare) but the decor (think Cheers) and atmosphere is unique to each location. And they have the best slaw around (yep, even better than most bbq joints). Their slaw has always seemed different than other establishments because it wasn’t a bland, mayo-only type–it had celery seeds in a vinaigrette + mayo combo.

Boom. Celery seeds. Definitely the best addition to coleslaw you could make (just my 2 cents). We add a little extra than I’ve written into the recipe (ya know, trying to make it more crowd pleasing!)— but this slaw I’m sharing is a little lighter in calories than most because it has less mayo. Not light mayo (unless that’s your thing)– but less of it overall.

I can’t think of an easier-to-make recipe on my site at the moment and I can’t think of a better time to share it than the approach of summer 🙂 So here’s my take on Deli Style Coleslaw, friends!

5 Steps to Coleslaw Magic

  • Salt the cabbage blend and let it sit for 30 mins (*if using fresh cabbage!)
  • Make the dressing
  • Toss the cabbage in the dressing
  • Refrigerate to let flavors blend
  • Throw this ____ on everything! (Bbq, burgers, hot dogs, you name it)
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Deli Style Coleslaw

This slightly sweet and tangy deli-inspired coleslaw will be your go-to this summer. It's the perfect blend of mayo (or vegan mayo) + vinaigrette and celery seed with some sugar to balance the tart. Make this easy side dish from scratch and enjoy for up to 3 days. Makes 6-8 side dish sized servings or 10-12 topping sized servings.
Course Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American, Holidays, Southern
Keyword Cole Slaw, Coleslaw, Deli Style Coleslaw
Prep Time 5 minutes
Chilling Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 8 2 ounce servings
Calories 94kcal
Author thedachshundmom


  • 16 ounces pre-shredded cabbage with carrot blend
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 4 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 3/4 tsp onion powder
  • 3/4 tsp celery seed or more to taste
  • 1/4 tsp fine salt or to taste


  • Put cabbage blend/coleslaw mix in a large bowl.
  • In a separate medium bowl, add mayo, sugar, vinegar, mustard, onion powder, celery seed and salt. Whisk to combine.
  • Pour dressing over cabbage blend and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving (recommended at least 2 hours). Toss again before serving.
  • Store coleslaw in an airtight container, refrigerated, for up to 3 days.


  • You can also use a tri-color blend if desired. Red cabbage can bleed over time but won’t affect flavor at all.
  • Celery seed is a must for that deli-style flavor!
We use Hellman’s mayo for our recipes (or their vegan mayo) so your mayo may require slight adjustments to seasonings. Calories are calculated with regular mayo. Light mayo will save some calories!
  • To make this with fresh cabbage and carrot (not from a bag):
    • use a medium head of cabbage and 1/2 to 1 medium carrot, shredded julienne style.
    • In a large colander set over a bowl or sink, sprinkle the cabbage blend with 1 tsp sugar and 1/2 tsp salt. Let sit for 15 minutes. Stir, and let sit for 15 minutes more (to bring out moisture from the cabbage).
    • After 30 minutes, rinse the cabbage under cold running water and drain well (a salad spinner works well here). Transfer drained cabbage to a serving bowl that can be covered. Proceed with dressing as above.


Calories: 94kcal

Hope you’re excited for the long weekend like I am–enjoy your family cookouts, graduation celebrations and/or remembrances for Memorial Day, friends. Cheers to the weekend!


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