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Buttermilk Coleslaw Recipe

A cool, creamy, and crunchy coleslaw is a must have recipe for the summer cookout season. It’s the perfect side to have with burgers, hot dogs, BBQ, or fried chicken and I love it on a pulled pork sandwich.

Buttermilk Coleslaw


But much like potato salad, I find many coleslaw recipes to be a little lacking. Some produce soggy coleslaw that’s swimming in a watery liquid. Some are too sweet, some too dry. It can be difficult to get just the right combination of sweetness and tang. Creaminess and crunch.

Buttermilk Coleslaw

This Buttermilk Coleslaw recipe from Cook’s Country is a recipe I find myself using again and again. As its base, it has the coleslaw trifecta: mayonnaise, sour cream, and buttermilk. This combo produces plenty of creaminess, plus a little tang from the buttermilk and sour cream.

Two tablespoons of sugar add the perfect amount of sweetness.

Buttermilk Coleslaw

It’s tempting to use preshredded cabbage to make coleslaw, but for this recipe be sure to shred your own cabbage. It really produces a superior tasting coleslaw. To make quick business of shredding the cabbage, you can use your food processor. Just be sure not to overdo it. Or you can thinly slice it with a knife. It really doesn’t take much time and there’s less clean-up.

The cabbage is salted and left to sit in a colander for 1 hour. This removes some of the moisture content from the cabbage and helps prevent the leftover coleslaw from getting runny. It also helps the cabbage retain some crunch.

All in all, this is an excellent basic coleslaw recipe that will help round out just about any summer menu. It’s the perfect mix of crunchy, creamy, sweet, and tangy.

Buttermilk Coleslaw

Try one of these other Coleslaw Recipes

Buttermilk Coleslaw

Buttermilk Coleslaw Recipe

A creamy and delicious coleslaw with just the right amount of sweetness.
PREP: 2 hours
TOTAL: 2 hours


  • 1 medium head green cabbage, cored and shredded
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and grated
  • 2/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 8 scallions, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper


  • Toss cabbage with 1 teaspoon salt in colander set over bowl. Let sit for about 1 hour. (Cabbage will look wilted.)
  • Rinse cabbage well under cold water. Drain and place on paper towel. Once dry place in a large bowl. Add carrots and green onions.
  • In a small bowl, mix remaining ingredients and add to cabbage. Mix well and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.


Recipe Source: Cook's Country Magazine


Calories: 194kcal
Author: Christin Mahrlig
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Southern

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Looking for more cookout recipes? You don’t want to miss this BBQ Ranch Pasta Salad. Watch the video below to see how to make it.

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24 thoughts on “Buttermilk Coleslaw Recipe”

  1. I made this earlier for lunch today, and it’s a very good recipe. I did halve the sugar, and next time (there will be a next time) I’ll do about 1/4 what’s called for. A dash of apple cider vinegar brightened things up after tasting, too.

  2. Brian Chadwick

    I tried this recipe. It was ok. I’ve had/made better, but I like to try new recipes. Drying the cabbage on paper towels was a bit much. After I was into the mess I saw it was from Cook’s Country magazine. I love the show but I am not a fan of their recipes. They are too tedious for me to enjoy making them. I won’t make this recipe again. I’ll find something less silly…not drying the cabbage on paper towels.

  3. I plan to try this, but for my husband to eat it, I have to add sweet pickle relish. I also add dill weed (dried) and some celery seed.

  4. kentuckylady717

    Can’t wait to try your buttermilk cole slaw recipe…made it all my life but never used buttermilk !! but usually anything made with butter milk is good….so looking forward to trying it…..and your BBQ Macaroni Salad too….made it all my life but never put corn or beans in it….I do not like black beans so I will use another kind of bean, maybe pinto, etc.

    Rating these two recipes before I even make them, and I pretty much know they will be excellent…..so I gave them a 5 star ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thanks for posting these…..

  5. Mayo, sour cream and buttermilk sound like a winning combination! I adore coleslaws, so this sounds like a must-try! ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Amy @ Elephant Eats

    I totally agree that it’s hard to find a coleslaw recipe with that perfect balance of flavors! Will have to give this one a try. There’s nothing like a cold, crisp coleslaw in the summer ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Cindy @ Pick Fresh Foods

    Christin, this looks delicious! I love coleslaw, but I am so picky about it. It can’t be too oily, too vinegary, or too sweet. I love that you used of buttermilk. I definitely need to try this! Pinning ๐Ÿ˜€

  8. I love Cook’s Country recipes and I love your recipes too…so I have no doubt that this will be my go-to coleslaw recipe once I try it!

  9. Love this slaw, I really love buttermilk dressing, I think I will have to make my ribs again to have with this slaw!

  10. I totally agree – I love coleslaw but recipes can be so hit or miss! This looks delicious! Hope you’re having a great weekend!

  11. How to Philosophize with Cake

    Mmmm that looks good! I usually like vinegar coleslaws but the tang of buttermilk sounds like it would add an awesome flavor to coleslaw! ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. ela@GrayApron

    Ah, that’s funny, I’ve been shredding cabbage today too, with a knife. Your coleslaw looks quite good…with green onions and all…

    ela h.

  13. Kristi @ Inspiration Kitchen

    Coleslaw is one of my very favorite sides for summer! I love the tangy-ness and the crunch! And you’re right – there is an art to making the perfect coleslaw.

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