Sooz's Mexican Coleslaw Inspired by Merlot's Marinated Coleslaw

Total Time
6hrs 15mins
Prep 15 mins
Cook 6 hrs

We loved Merlot's Marinated Coleslaw so much that when it came time to make a side dish for a Mexican themed party, I decided to use it as a basis and make it fit the theme. I'm not sure you can go wrong with ANYTHING you do to Merlot's coleslaw recipe, but this particular one turned out REALLY good! Merlot so kindly allowed me to post her basic recipe with my changes. As a side dish, this recipe made 6 good sized servings. Or you could add some shredded chicken with the cilantro and have a great main dish salad for 4 people. I started this dish on a Thursday to serve it on Saturday as Merlot says her recipe gets better as it sits.

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 (1 lb) package coleslaw mix
  • 12 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 (4 ounce) can jalapenos, chopped (this makes the slaw medium to spicy so cut back if you want milder)
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 12 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 12 cup cider vinegar
  • 13 cup canola oil
  • 14 cup cilantro, chopped and tightly packed


  1. Mix the coleslaw mix with the onion and the desired amount of jalapeños in a large bowl.
  2. Bring to boil, cider vinegar, oil, sugar, salt & garlic powder, stirring.
  3. Pour over the coleslaw, onion and jalapeño mix and stir (It will look like there is not enough dressing for the amount of cabbage, but as the cabbage breaks down, you will have plenty).
  4. Cover tightly.
  5. Let sit on the counter for 2 hours (shaking occasionally during the 2 hours while it marinates), then refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
  6. About 2 hours before serving drain extra liquid from the slaw.
  7. Stir in cilantro.
  8. Return slaw to refrigerator until ready to serve.
Most Helpful

5 5

Loved this recipe. I found it at the last minute and didn't have time to let it marinate as long as it should have, but it was wonderful just the same! A nice change from the usual mayo based recipes!

3 5

This was good. I made a few changes but only with the dressing...the salad itself was very good. When I was making the dressing, it tasted off...not enough flavor. So I made my own dressing of red wine vinegar, dijon mustard, pinch of sugar, vegetable oil, salt & pepper. Thanks for sharing!