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Polish Coleslaw Recipe

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Polish coleslaw in a wooden bowl with a fork.

Surowka z kapusty or Polish coleslaw is a delicious salad made from cabbage and other veggies. Dressed with mayo and flavored with salt and pepper, Polish coleslaw is best served cold!

Cabbage is one of our favorite vegetables. Eaten all year round, whether in season or out, you’ll find cabbage used in almost every Polish dish, from salads to main dishes. Even our national dish, Bigos Stew is made with cabbage. 

Why is cabbage so popular in Poland? Because it’s a vegetable that can be eaten in a number of ways and that is easily available and affordable. Cabbages are easy to grow and easy to store.

The fresh cabbage used in a coleslaw makes it a crunchier and tastier salad option. 

Who Invented Coleslaw?

Cabbage as part of a salad has been around since ancient Roman times. It has been a big part of many European cultures across the world.

The term ‘coleslaw’ is an anglicized version of the Dutch word ‘koolsa’ which means cabbage salad. And ‘colis’ means cabbage in Latin. The English took the ‘kool’ from the Dutch and the ‘cole’ from Latin and named it coleslaw.

In Poland, coleslaw is either referred to as coleslaw or koleslaw. But because cabbage is the main ingredient, it’s also sometimes referred to as surowka z kapusty.

As a summer salad, the surowka z kapusty is the perfect accompaniment to meaty dishes. It’s also tasty enough to eat on its own!

What Is Coleslaw Called In Other Countries?

There are many salads similar to coleslaw in different countries. They are called:

  • Coleslaw in English
  • Coleslaw or Koleslaw in Polish
  • Coleslaw or kalsallad in Swedish
  • Koolsla in Dutch
  • Krautsalat in German
  • Insalata capricciosa in Italy
  • Cabbage provençal in Russia and Ukraine

How To Make The Polish Coleslaw – Surowka Z Kapusty

Chop the cabbage finely, grate the carrots, and dice the onions. If adding leeks, dice them as well.

Mix the mayo with salt and then mix all the diced veggies with them. Serve cold!

Chopped cabbage in a bowl next to other veggies.
Chop the cabbage finely
Chopped carrots.
Chopped carrots
Mixed chopped veggies.
Chopped veggies mixed with mayo
Polish coleslaw in a red bowl.
Polish cabbage coleslaw is delicious!

Tips For Making The Best Polish Coleslaw Recipe

  • Increase or decrease the amount of pepper and salt to suit your taste.
  • If you don’t want to chop the cabbage and veggies, you can do it using a large Y-peeler or a cabbage shredder.
  • To make it less fattening, replace half of the mayo with sour cream or yogurt
  • Add a few drops of lemon juice in the mayonnaise to make it tangy. 
  • Store the coleslaw in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving. It tastes better cold!
  • You can add some olive oil as a dressing. 
  • Optionally, top with chopped parsley before serving!
Polish coleslaw in a bowl.
Tip: Serve Polish coleslaw with pork knuckles!

FAQs About Preparing The Polish Coleslaw Recipe

What To Serve With Polish Coleslaw?

Polish coleslaw is the perfect side salad for fish or meaty dishes such as:

Is It Possible To Make This Salad Vegan?

Yes, you can make this salad vegan by replacing the mayo with vegan mayonnaise

How To Store The Polish Coleslaw?

Store the Polish coleslaw in the refrigerator for 4 to 5 days. Serve cold!

What Are The Other Polish Cabbage Salads? 

The other Polish cabbage salads are:

What Are The Other Polish Cabbage Dishes? 

There are so many Polish cabbage dishes, you’ll have difficulty choosing which to make. 

Polish Coleslaw Recipe

Yield: 8

Polish Coleslaw Recipe

Polish coleslaw in a wooden bowl with a fork.

The Polish coleslaw is a delicious salad made from cabbage, carrots and leeks. Dressed with mayo and flavored with salt and pepper, Polish coleslaw is best served cold!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes


  • 1 small cabbage
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • ¼ tsp of black pepper
  • 3-4 tbsps of mayonnaise
  • [optionally] 1 leek (the white part)
  • [optionally] a bunch of fresh parsley


  1. Wash and finely chop the cabbage.
  2. Peel and grate the carrots.
  3. Peel and finely dice an onion. If you are adding leek, dice it as well.
  4. If you are adding parsley, wash and dice it as well.
  5. Mix mayonnaise with salt and pepper.
  6. Mix everything together. Serve cold.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 158Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 9mgSodium: 432mgCarbohydrates: 4gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 1g

These data are indicative and calculated by Nutritionix

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