Aunt Ella's Cabbage Salad

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Total Time
1hr 15mins
15 mins
1 hr

According to family tradition my great-aunt Ella invented this. It may have started as a farm-style, vinegar slaw. However, my mother remembers that when bottled lemon juice became available they substituted lemon juice for vinegar in a number of recipes. My mother dislikes mayonnaise so this was the only slaw I knew growing up and I waited to post it until I could talk to her and get the accurate, unaltered recipe.

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  1. Grate cabbage.
  2. Combine cabbage, green pepper, celery, garlic powder, celery seed, salt, and pepper. Let rest 5 minutes to begin to meld flavors and draw the juice out of the cabbage.
  3. Toss with oil and lemon juice.
  4. Refrigerate for at least an hour.
  5. Taste, and adjust flavors. It should be noticeably lemony but the garlic should be an undertone.
  6. Some cabbages are juicier than others so if the salad seems dry add more oil then check to see if more lemon is needed.
  7. Note -- Choose a young, green cabbage with a nice, dense head.
  8. Note -- Cabbage can be finely sliced instead of grating it. But I do not recommend pre-sliced, bagged cabbage/slaw mix because it is too dry.
  9. Note -- If necessary, it can be made 3-4 hours ahead of the meal.