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Five favorite quick-and-easy slaw recipes, for picnics, potlucks or barbecues

Broccoli slaw salad with honey-mustard yogurt dressing, from The Perfect Pantry.

When it comes to slaw, are you cabbage, or are you broccoli? In the house where I grew up, slaw meant cole slaw, made with cabbage and a token shredded carrot, drowning in mayonnaise and served alongside potato salad (also drowning in mayonnaise). In my own kitchen, I prefer broccoli slaw: the slivered stems of broccoli, with carrots and a bit of purple cabbage or radicchio, and a tangy or spicy dressing. To me, picnics, potlucks or barbecues feel incomplete without some sort of slaw on the table. Here are five of my favorites.

Broccoli slaw salad with cranberries, almonds, and yogurt dressing, from The Perfect Pantry.

Two broccoli slaw variations I've been making frequently this summer combine dried fruit, nuts and a Greek yogurt-based dressing. Broccoli slaw with raisins, peanuts and honey mustard yogurt dressing (top photo), or with cranberries and almonds, pair perfectly with grilled chicken, fish or burgers.

Blue cheese cole slaw, from The Perfect Pantry.

If you're firmly in the cabbage slaw camp, head to the supermarket and buy a bag of the freshest pre-shredded cole slaw mix. To make it even fresher, rinse in cold water and spin dry in a salad spinner.

Quick and easy Asian pickled cole slaw, from The Perfect Pantry.

Depending on what else is on your menu, you can send that cole slaw mix in any direction. Want something indulgent with beef or turkey burgers? Try adding blue cheese. Pairing with grilled salmon? Go with a tangy pickled Asian slaw.

Quick and easy cole slaw, from The Perfect Pantry.

And, for traditionalists, there's always a quick-and-easy cole slaw, dressed with a few common pantry ingredients and ready to eat right away.

Whether you prefer cabbage or broccoli slaw, you'll find more recipes to spice up your picnics, potlucks and barbecues by using the search box in the top right column on this page. Type in the key word "slaw" to get more recipe ideas for this popular side dish.

And if, like my mom, you believe cole slaw must always be accompanied by potato salad, check out our potato salad recipes, too.

Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on purchases made through the Amazon.com links in this post. Thank you for supporting this site when you start your shopping here.


Oh, my goodness, Lydia, I love cole slaw in all its manifestations. I often buy packaged mixes and add raisins along with chopped walnuts and chopped apple and a dash of cinnamon.

Peanuts, carrots and honey mustard dressing are perfect additions for fall.

I wasn't hungry but now I am...

Mimi, I love the idea of adding cinnamon, apple and walnuts. If you don't mind, I'm going to give that a try.

I love all your slaws! In fact I love all things cabbage, lol!

Kalyn, don't tell anyone, but I really prefer slaws to potato salads. I love the crunch.

I've always been a cabbage guy, but I really should give broccoli slaw a shot. The idea of adding blue cheese to a slaw makes me crazy happy!

TW, blue cheese, like bacon, makes everything better.

What a great line up -- and I agree -- I like a good slaw much more than a potato salad. Broccoli and cabbage are tasty. I'm not picky there.

I love all kinds of slaws and the more crunchy veg in one the better I love it. I am crazy about that honey-mustard one and have to try it and now that Blue Cheese one is calling me, too.

Kellypea, I love the fact that I can eat lots more cole slaw for the same amount of calories!

Jamie, the blue cheese cole slaw is rich, and delicious with a grilled steak. The honey-mustard version is a slaw I can eat by the bowlful almost any time.

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