When you’re craving takeout, make this copycat KFC coleslaw recipe! Who knew this all-time favorite side dish could be so simple?
Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) is an American fast-food chain that specializes in — guess what! — crispy fried chicken.
Along with their “Original Recipe” chicken buckets, they serve a number of sides including creamy coleslaw, which is only second to mashed potatoes in popularity.
The name “coleslaw” comes from two Dutch words. “Kool” means “cabbage” and “sla” means “salad.”
So coleslaw is literally “cabbage salad”.
Luckily, homemade coleslaw is really easy to make. And this KFC coleslaw copycat recipe gives you the sweet, tangy, creamy taste of your favorite restaurant side.
Plus, you can find all of the ingredients at most grocery stores. So, making a big batch at home will save you time and money.
While this salad is a great side dish for fried chicken or grilled meat, you can also use it as a topping for sandwiches. For instance, it’s yummy on a pulled-pork sandwich and in other delicious recipes.
Tips and Tricks for Making the Best Copycat KFC Coleslaw
While you can make this KFC cole slaw recipe entirely by hand, using a mandolin or food processor will really speed up the process.
Either of these kitchen tools will shred the cabbage more uniformly than you can with a knife. And, your hand won’t get as tired, especially if you use a food processor.
Or, for a quick kitchen hack, use bagged coleslaw mix from the grocery store. You can even experiment with different mixes, including ones with kale and other veggies.
The best cabbage for this recipe is standard green cabbage because it won’t change the color of the sauce.
If you use a red cabbage or purple cabbage, the color can leach into the dressing and turn it pink.
This color change won’t affect the taste of the KFC slaw, but some people may find it off-putting. However, it would be perfect for Valentine’s Day!
Salt the Cabbage
When you salt cabbage, the salt pulls moisture out of the vegetable. This means your KFC coleslaw dressing won’t get diluted, and the cabbage will stay crispy for longer.
So, salt your shredded cabbage before you add any other ingredients. Let it sit for 30 minutes, then rinse and squeeze the shreds before you add cabbage to the dressing.
Let it Marinate
KFC coleslaw is one of those salads that tastes better the next day. If you let it sit in the fridge for a day or two before eating, the flavors will have a chance to meld, and the resulting salad will be even better.
How to Make this KFC Coleslaw Copycat Recipe
- Prep Time20 min
- Cook Time2 hours
- Total Time2H20 min
- Mix Dressing
In the mixing bowl, add all of the salad dressing ingredients. Whisk them together into a creamy sauce.
- Add Veggies
Next, stir in the chopped cabbage and carrot, and mix everything thoroughly.
Then, cover the bowl and put it in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours; if you can, leave it overnight or for 24 hours.
Resting makes this great recipe taste even better because the flavors will meld.
Finally, serve this KFC coleslaw recipe chilled with a fried chicken dinner.
What to Serve With KFC Coleslaw
If you love KFC coleslaw, give yourself the whole fast-food experience! Homemade Kentucky fried chicken isn’t hard to make, especially if you bake it instead of deep-frying.
In general, coleslaw is delicious with chicken dishes. But for fried chicken, especially, the cool, creamy dressing and crunchy cabbage are the perfect companions.
Similar to chicken, grilled meats go really well with KFC coleslaw. The smoky richness of the meat complements the tangy, crunchy coleslaw.
Add tons of flavor to your sandwich by adding a layer of homemade coleslaw! It’s a classic addition to pulled pork, but it works just as well on roast turkey, pastrami, or other meat-based sandwiches.
And if you don’t want your bread to go soggy, just enjoy a bowl of coleslaw on the side.
Hot Dogs and Sausages
For your next summer BBQ, make KFC coleslaw. It’s the perfect side to join baked beans and Ina Garten potato salad.
The creamy, tangy flavors of this coleslaw are refreshing in the summer heat. And this salad pairs perfectly with hot dogs, sausages, or burgers on the grill.
Simple Variation of KFC Coleslaw
To reduce the fat and calories in this cole slaw recipe, use Miracle Whip. While I like the traditional flavors of butter milk and mayonnaise in this KFC copycat recipe, Miracle Whip will work in a pinch.
To substitute, just add the same amount of Miracle Whip as you would mayo and buttermilk. Since Miracle Whip has similar ingredients to these two, it will still make your salad dressing creamy.
However, Miracle Whip also has added high fructose corn syrup, so you will need to adjust the sugar in this awesome recipe.
KFC Coleslaw Storage Instructions
Always store leftovers in an airtight container. They’ll stay absolutely delicious for about 3-5 days in the fridge.
If you want to keep them for longer, put the coleslaw in a freezer bag and squeeze all the air out of it. That way, it will last for about 3 months in the freezer.
However, when you thaw it out, do so in the fridge overnight. If you leave it at room temperature, you can affect the texture of the cabbage.
In general, coleslaw is healthy. Cabbage is low in calories, and it has lots of fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
As well, other ingredients in this salad have beneficial vitamins. Carrots contain vitamin A, which is good for your eyes, and lemon juice contains vitamin C, which is good for your immune system.
However, the mayonnaise in this recipe contains saturated fat. This can increase cholesterol, which can put you at risk of heart disease.
Mayonnaise, as well, is a highly-caloric food: in only 1 teaspoon, it has 45 calories and 5 grams of fat. Therefore, you should eat it in moderation. – Kirsten Mae Magbanua, RND