Healthy Recipes

A healthy summer coleslaw to take to every summer barbecue

They say you don't make friends with salad, but this coleslaw will have people lining up to find out where you got the recipe!

Coleslaw Recipe

Photo, Tara Miller.

While winter is a time for slow cooking and heavier ingredients, the warmer weather, and longer days, of spring and summer set the stage for easy, fresh and light meals.

Summer dining encourages socialization and outdoor markets become our shopping method of choice. We have an abundance of fresh, local produce available to us, bursting with a flavour that just can’t be replicated the other months of the year.

In order to showcase this, my summer menus always include a salad. I love putting a healthy spin on old classics, so I chose to adapt the crowd-pleasing salad dish at every summer pot luck: coleslaw.

I added fennel and kale to the traditional cabbage base for added nutrients and a more complex flavour. I also ditched the mayo for a lighter, digestive-friendly version with just a touch of sweetness. This recipe makes a very large batch, so it’s the perfect side dish for a large group. It will keep (undressed) in the fridge for days, making it a quick base for healthy meals during the week too. Try adding some chicken, fish or chickpeas to make it complete.

Healthy summer coleslaw
1⁄2 head of purple cabbage
1 head of kale, stems removed and washed
3 carrots, washed
2 fennel bulbs (save leafy tops for garnish)
1 small red onion, peeled and cut in half

1/3 cup olive oil
1⁄4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tsp pure maple syrup
Spoonful of grainy mustard
1 tbsp caraway seeds
Pinch of sea salt

1. Using a mandolin (or a sharp knife) very thinly slice cabbage, fennel and red onion. Place in a large bowl.

2. Using a sharp knife, very thinly slice the kale leaves and place in the bowl.

3. Grate the carrots and add to the bowl.

4. In another small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients.

5. Toss slaw with dressing at least 30 minute prior to serving.

6. Garnish with some chopped fennel tops or any other fresh herbs you have on hand.

Click here for more healthy recipes from Tara Miller.

Tara Miller is a Toronto-based holistic nutritionist. Her educational background is from The Institute of Holistic Nutrition combined with a degree in psychology from the University of Guelph. This combination allows Tara to address the challenges individuals face when it comes to everyday healthy living. Tara is also the owner of the Health Hut Boutique in Muskoka where she offers effective and toxic-free beauty, household and specialty food items. You can follow her blog for holistic recipes and tips at