This ultra-creamy, healthy coleslaw is super easy to stir together. It’s the perfect skinny coleslaw recipe for your summer cookouts, barbecues and picnics. Just chop, stir and serve! Only 70 calories per serving!

a closeup of the coleslaw with some celery hearts on the table surface

I originally shared this Healthy Coleslaw on May 13th, 2016. I have updated the text, added a video and some new photos today. 

Why We Love This Healthy Coleslaw Recipe

This healthy coleslaw recipe really is super easy peasy to make, and it is completely classic tasting. I love a twist on coleslaw, but sometimes ya just want good old-fashioned creamy coleslaw with your burger!

  • I healthified this “skinny” coleslaw by cutting way back on the mayonnaise. I used plain Greek yogurt instead.
  • And then I turned up the volume on the other flavors to compensate for the reduced fat and calories.
  • One trick I used is that I shredded a bit of sweet onion right into the dressing.
  • The result is tons of delicious flavor, but it’s only 70 calories per cup! 
  • I also made sure to use as many colorful vegetables as I could to really make it pop! We eat with our eyes first, right?

Key Ingredients For This Recipe

Ingredients for coleslaw with labels

Shredded and Chopped Veggies For The Slaw


You can use red or green cabbage or a combination of both. Chop the fresh cabbage finely by hand or use the slicer attachment in your food processor or mandoline.

To cut back on prep time, you can definitely use a pre-shredded bag of coleslaw mix. You will want to use 9 cups total. If you have a whole head of cabbage, just slice it as thinly as possible. Here’s how to slice cabbage.


To give the coleslaw bright color and added nutrition, I added freshly grated carrots. Feel free to use bagged shredded carrots instead.

Celery Hearts

I like using celery hearts, the pale light green parts of the head of celery with the leaves still attached. I use them in summer side dishes like Vegan Potato Salad, and my German Potato Salad.

They are a little sweet and a little bitter which pairs well with the creamy dressing and cabbage. Chop them finely and they add a bright chartreuse color to the slaw.


I also like to add in parsely for freshness and for bright green color. It really makes this coleslaw look so much more cheerful and healthy, not pale and soggy.

Coleslaw Dressing Ingredients

Greek Yogurt

I used two parts non-fat Greek Yogurt to one part mayonnaise to drastically cut the calories for the dressing in this recipe. As I said a couple of weeks ago when I shared my Healthy Broccoli Salad, using a half cup of Greek Yogurt instead of Mayo, saves 700 calories per batch! Isn’t that incredible?! Look for plain non-fat for the lowest calorie option, or full fat for a creamier dressing.


To give the dressing a classic taste of a traditional coleslaw recipe, we used a little mayonnaise. Just enough for the right flavor, but not too much to make it high in fat and calories.

Sweet Onion

I like to use a box grater to grate the onion. It blends into the dressing beautifully. If you are in a rush you can use a little (1/2 teaspoon) onion powder instead. I have also made this with chopped green onion instead of adding the onion to the dressing so if you have them on hand, you can try that swap too.

Celery Seeds

This adds a classic coleslaw taste to the recipe. It can be omitted. Do not use celery salt in place of it or the dressing will be too salty.

Other Dressing Ingredients

  • Dijon Mustard
  • White Vinegar
  • Sugar
  • Salt and Pepper

How To Make Healthy Coleslaw

Make the Greek Yogurt Dressing

whisking the greek yogurt coleslaw dressing in a stainless bowl

Step 1: Grate The Onion and Whisk With Greek Yogurt and Mayonnaise.

  • I like to make the dressing right in the bowl that I’ll be tossing the salad. That saves me from washing an extra dish. 
  • First you’ll first need to grate a little onion with a box grater. This is a technique I use in my mustard salad dressing too. It really is nice because you don’t get a big sharp taste of onion all at once, but more of a subtle overall allium flavor. Once it’s grated, just scrape the onion into a bowl. The grated onion is a little watery, but that’s normal. 
  • Add in Greek Yogurt and the mayo- just to get that classic mayonnaise taste and whisk it all together.

Step 2: Add the remaining dressing ingredients.

  • Add in vinegar for bright acidity, dijon mustard, celery seed.
  • I also add a touch of sugar to balance everything. I mentioned in my post about Apple Cider Vinegar Salad Dressing that using a touch of sugar is helpful in balancing the strong acidity in dressings. That is the case here. Many coleslaws have far more sugar and I find them too sweet. This is almost imperceptible, but you would miss it if it was gone.  
mixing the coleslaw

Mix the Dressing and The Cabbage Mixture

Step 3 a: Add the coleslaw veggies

Once the dressing is made, add the cabbage, celery hearts and carrots right into the big mixing bowl with the dressing. I also add in some chopped celery hearts. 

Step 3 b: Mix Together

Using a silicone spatula or large spoon, stir the cabbage and veggies into the coleslaw dressing. Make sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl to get all of the dressing off the bottom of the bowl.

two wooden bowls with slaw in them

Variations To Try

To Make This Vegan

You can sub vegan mayonnaise and vegan yogurt to keep this dressing creamy, or make this more of a vinegar coleslaw by dressing it with olive oil and vinegar or using one of our vinaigrettes from our salad dressing recipes. Our Lemon Juice Salad Dressing, Red Wine Vinaigrette or Tarragon Vinaigrette would be great options.

Other Vegetables To Add

We love adding crunchy vegetables that we happen to have on for more color and texture. Try adding strips of red bell peppers. But really any bell pepper would be tasty and pretty. We even like to add strips of thinly sliced lacinato kale too.

Broccoli Slaw

Buy broccoli slaw, sold in bags in the produce department of large grocery stores, instead of the cabbages. You’ll need 9 cups total.

FAQs For This Healthy Coleslaw

Can Coleslaw Be Made Ahead?

This recipe can be made up to 12 hours in advance. In fact, I recommend making it a little ahead of time so that the cabbage softens a little bit. Toss the veggies, shredded cabbage and carrots with the dressing in a big bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Remember to stir before serving. 

How to store

Keep leftovers stored in an airtight container for up to three days. Serve with a slotted spoon if it becomes watery.

Can I use another type of cabbage?

Yes! You can use Savoy cabbage instead of green and red cabbage. I do not recommend Napa Cabbage or Chinese Cabbage for this recipe as they are not sturdy enough and will become limp.

Can I Use My Food Processor To Make This?

We love our food processor! To make this with the food processor, use the flat slicer blade for the cabbages and the grater attachment for the carrots. To make the dressing you can even blend it with the steel blade attachment.

Is coleslaw healthy?

Yes, but the dressing makes all the difference! Depending on the recipe coleslaw can be either a healthy veggie-packed side dish or it can be a high-calorie addition to the plate. Cabbage is high in fiber and very low in calories. It is also rich in Vitamin C. If the dressing is made with mostly mayonnaise sweetened with sugar it can make the slaw high in calories. Instead opt for a creamy dressing made with Greek yogurt instead to make it lighter.

Serving Suggestions

More Coleslaw and Cabbage Recipes

Thanks so much for reading! If you are new here, you may want to sign up for my email newsletter to get a free weekly menu plan and the latest recipes right to your inbox. If you make this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review. I would love to hear what you thought!

Happy Cooking! ~Katie

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a closeup overhead view into a bowl of coleslaw

Healthy Coleslaw Recipe


This ultra creamy, healthy coleslaw is super easy to stir together. It’s the perfect skinny coleslaw recipe for your summer cookouts, barbecues and picnics!


Units Scale
  • 1/4 small sweet onion
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt, fat free if desired
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 8 cups finely shredded green and purple cabbage
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1/4 cup minced celery hearts
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, optional


  1. Grate onion with a box grater. Scrape grated onion into a large bowl. Add greek yogurt and mayonnaise and whisk to combine.
  2. Add vinegar, sugar, mustard, salt, celery seed and pepper and whisk to combine.
  3. Add cabbage, carrots, celery hearts and parsley (if using) and toss to coat.


Can be made 12 hours in advance. Store covered in the refrigerator.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Mixed
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: 1 cup
  • Calories: 71
  • Sugar: 3 g
  • Sodium: 77 mg
  • Fat: 5 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 6 g
  • Fiber: 1 g
  • Protein: 2 g

Keywords: healthy coleslaw, creamy coleslaw, yogurt coleslaw