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Mexican Coleslaw Recipe With South of The Border Flavor

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My Mexican Coleslaw is a Tex-Mex spin on a classic coleslaw recipe. Get that creamy South of the Border flavor in every bite, and this Mexican Slaw is going to win over any crowd. Crispy slaw with a tang from the lime juice, and creamy dressing is great for serving as a side at your summer cookouts, or use this Mexican coleslaw for tacos, it makes a great topping. 

mexican slaw in a bowl with peppers behind it

It is no secret when cabbage is around, our family dives head first in! Egg roll in a bowl, classic KFC coleslaw, or maybe a twist with sunflower seeds in a lemon dill coleslaw. We love slaw, there is no other way around it! My latest coleslaw recipe is a copycat Chick Fil A coleslaw recipe

Easy Mexican Coleslaw 

This Mexican Coleslaw uses taco seasoning and a mix of mayo and sour cream as the base. Just thirty minutes in the fridge to marinade the flavors and you can serve up this coleslaw! 

The first night we ate this as a side dish, then the next night I made crispy flour shelled tacos and we used the Mexican coleslaw for the tacos toppings! It added crunch and so much fresh and vibrant flavor to the tacos! Ground beef, fish tacos, chicken tacos, or even turkey, it works with all types of tacos! 

The Best Mexican Slaw

I used a mix of coleslaw mix and then added in more cabbage for color and crunch factor. You are welcome to buy a bag of mixed and call it good, our store only sells one kind of coleslaw mix! 

More Favorite Side Dish Recipes

How To Make Mexican Coleslaw 

Here is a quick video that shows you how easy this Mexican coleslaw recipe is to make. Print the recipe below! 

Add-Ons To Dress Up Your Slaw 

  • Sunflower Seeds or Pepitas 
  • Roasted Sweet Corn (we do this but it was not in season at the time!)
  • Black Beans
  • Green Onions
  • Diced red onions
  • Crunched up Frito Chips
  • Shredded Cheese (Monterey Jack, sharp, or any other flavor you want)

How Long Will Mexican Slaw Last In Fridge 

You can keep leftover Mexican slaw in the fridge for up to 3 days. Each day it will begin to lose a bit of the crispness but still offer great flavor. Just keep it in an airtight container so it stays fresh. 

Ways To Serve Mexican Coleslaw 

  • Serve as a side to a chicken, beef, smoked ham, pulled pork, or any other protein. 
  • Top tacos or make a taco salad 
  • Add in shredded chicken or ground beef for a full salad

mexican slaw for tacos in a bowl with fork by it

Can I Use A Head of Cabbage Instead of Bagged Coleslaw?

Feel free to skip the bagged coleslaw and cut up a head of green cabbage in replace of the bagged coleslaw. I use it for easy prep, but you are welcome to buy a head of lettuce if you want. And then if you go that route, you might want to add in some shaved carrots as well. Shredded cabbage is the main ingredient in slaw mix, so don’t fret if you buy a head of cabbage over bagged. 

I then do a cup or so of red cabbage cause it adds color but even more flavor to the mix. You are welcome to opt out if you want. 

Which Peppers Are Best For Mexican Slaw? 

I used a red bell pepper paired with jalapeno. You are welcome to use green or yellow bell peppers in replace if you want. The jalapeno is tame since you de-seed and remove the membrane. If you want to keep the heat, then leave some seeds! 

I think you will love this Mexican slaw, it is a fun twist to Mexican food as a side dish. 

mexican slaw in a bowl with peppers behind it

Mexican Coleslaw Recipe

Yield: 10 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

Mexican coleslaw gives you that south of border flavor. A tex mex coleslaw you will love eating as a side or topping tacos.


  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 packet of taco seasoning (or make homemade if you prefer)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 (14-ounce) bag coleslaw mix
  • 1 cup shredded red cabbage
  • 1/2 cup diced red pepper or yellow
  • 1 jalapeno diced and de-seeded
  • Cilantro for topping (optional)


  1. Start by mixing your mayo, sour cream, lime juice, and taco seasoning together.
  2. Toss in your diced peppers and jalapeno.
  3. Then add in your chopped cabbage and slaw mix.
  4. Stir well until all is coated, and then toss in fridge for 30 minutes before serving.


To tame down the heat of jalapeno, de-seed the pepper and remove membrane. Then rinse in cold water to get rid of the oils. Then dice fine and add into slaw mix.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 164Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 15mgSodium: 238mgCarbohydrates: 5gFiber: 1gSugar: 3gProtein: 1g

How Far Ahead Can I Make Coleslaw?

You are welcome to make your coleslaw the night before if you would like. It just needs a minimum of thirty minute chill time in the fridge before serving. But, if you are prepping ahead feel free to make ahead by 24 hours or so. 

Serve with some fresh lime wedges so your company can drizzle on more lime juice for added tangy flavor if you want. 

Can You Freeze Coleslaw?

You can’t, this recipe uses mayonnaise, and that makes it unable to be frozen. It will break down and ruin the slaw mix once it thaws after being frozen. 

Can Fresh Shredded Cabbage be Frozen?

If you have leftover cabbage you are welcome to freeze your cabbage. Just cut your cabbage into wedges or quarters and toss in the freezer for up to 4-6 weeks. Now, if you blanch your wedges for around 60-90 seconds you are able to freeze your cabbage for longer. 

When you go to use the leftover cabbage this is great for tossing in soups, stews, and even casseroles. It will not have the same crisp texture, but is still a tasty way to mix into recipes! 

mexican coleslaw

Have you ever made Mexican coleslaw before? 

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Sunday 8th of November 2020

What a great recipe! I bought broccoli slaw mix by mistake but it was fine. I added a can of rinsed black beans and left out the cilantro (not a fan...). I found a recipe for roasting frozen corn and added this in. Wow! Did that ever take it over the top for my guests! We started eating it with tortilla chips before dinner ever started!! I WILL be making this again! Thank you for this great idea.


Sunday 8th of November 2020

That sounds delicious!

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Monday 22nd of April 2019

This was a big hit at our family get together this past weekend!

Wendy O'Neal

Thursday 18th of April 2019

I love this!!!! The colors, the flavors, the ease of the recipe! Perfect.

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