Lime & Blistered Peanut Coleslaw

This feather-light, mayo-free, coleslaw recipe uses blistered peanuts, cherry tomatoes, and lime vinaigrette and is perfect alongside fajitas, or whatever you have coming off the grill. Keep in mind - great coleslaw is rooted in great knife skills.

Lime & Blistered Peanut Coleslaw

If you ask me, a great coleslaw recipe is created with good knife skills and a short list of easy-to-find ingredients. Equal importance being placed on both ingredients and the cut of the cabbage. When cabbage is cut into ribbons that are too wide, the slaw ends up awkward, heavy, and daunting on the fork. If the pieces are too long, cheeks get dirtied with dressing-soaked cabbage sticks - awkward and messy. I like to shred my cabbage into ribbons that are thin as can be, half a pencil width at most. The cabbage becomes feather light and yet each bite maintains the perfect amount of coleslaw crunch.

Lime & Blistered Peanut Coleslaw Recipe

Inspiration for this Coleslaw

When Wayne and I visited Mexico City I discovered a simple snack that quickly became a favorite - salt-kissed peanuts that tasted as if they had been misted with lime. I made this coleslaw the other night with those flavors in mind. It builds on the peanut salad I included in Super Natural Cooking and is a tasty (and colorful) alternative to more typical, mayo-based coleslaws. I made it to go along with fajitas, but I suspect it would be a welcome addition to any potluck, BBQ, or summertime party or picnic - tacos, burgers, or whatever else you have planned for this holiday weekend.

Lime & Blistered Peanut Coleslaw Recipe

Ingredients & Variations

I've been buying my tomatoes direct from farmers. If tomatoes aren't your thing right now, I would substitute chopped avocado and red onion. Or, now that I'm thinking about it - shredded apple, or apple slices, or jicama. Other ideas: roasted cherry tomatoes in place of the fresh ones - would take longer but would add an entirely different flavor profile. 

Lime & Blistered Peanut Coleslaw Recipe

Creamy Coleslaw

You can easily make this a creamier coleslaw by adding a dollop of your favorite mayo or yogurt after the initial tossing of ingredients - before you add the peanuts. It's one of those things that is all about personal preference. Sometimes a hint of creamy is perfect, but some people really like to go for it! I mean, I've definitely had conversations with people convinced that a good coleslaw is as much about the mayo as it is about the cabbage.
Lime & Blistered Peanut Coleslaw Recipe
This coleslaw is great for picnics and BBQs, alongside other classics like macaroni salad, this sriracha rainbow noodle salad, ultimate veggie burgers, corn salad, and the like. There's a whole list of salad recipes if you'd like to browse, as well as lots of summer recipes here. Enjoy!

101 Cookbooks Membership

Premium Ad-Free membership includes:
-Ad-free content
-Print-friendly recipes
-Spice / Herb / Flower / Zest recipe collection PDF
-Weeknight Express recipe collection PDF
-Surprise bonuses throughout the year

spice herb flower zest
weeknight express

Lime & Blistered Peanut Coleslaw

3.84 from 36 votes

Go ahead and leave out the jalapeño if you like it milder. I also thought about adding shredded, baked tortilla chips (like the ones from the tortilla soup recipe). Also, I've mentioned this before - I try to seek out organic peanuts. As far as the choice of cabbage goes, you can use green cabbage, or a blend of purple and green. If you like a more creamy coleslaw, go ahead and add a dollop of mayo, or Greek yogurt!

  • 1 1/2 cups unsalted raw peanuts
  • 1/2 of a medium-large cabbage
  • 1 basket of tiny cherry tomatoes, washed and quartered
  • 1 jalapeno chile, seeded and diced
  • 3/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon + fine-grain sea salt
  • honey, to taste
Blister the Peanuts
  1. In a skillet or oven (350F) roast the peanuts for 5 to 10 minutes, shaking the pan once or twice along the way, until golden and blistered.
Prepare the Coleslaw Ingredients
  1. Cut the cabbage into two quarters and cut out the core. Using a knife shred each quarter into whisper thin slices. The key here is bite-sized and thin. If any pieces look like they might be awkwardly long, cut those in half. Combine the cabbage, tomatoes, jalapeno (opt), and cilantro in a bowl.
Make the Dressing
  1. In a separate bowl combine the lime juice, olive oil, salt. Taste, and whisk in a teaspoon or two of honey if the lime is too strong for you. Add to the cabbage mixture and gently stir to combine. Just before serving fold in the peanuts (add them too earl and they lose some of their crunch). Taste and adjust the flavor with more salt if needed.

Prep Time
15 mins
Total Time
15 mins
If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

Post Your Comment

Recipe Rating


Ooh, a coleslaw recipe without mayo! I've been looking for a good coleslaw recipe. I would have to work on those knife skills, though.

[eatingclub] vancouver || js

I generally hate coleslaw, but this is one I would LOVE!


This is just so pretty. I love the twist on traditional cole slaw, and without the usual mayo it's even more appealing to me. Very nice!


This looks awesome. I make a similar cole slaw with bananas, raisins, and peanuts instead of the cherry tomatoes and chile. The variations are unlimited! Love your dressing idea. Thanks! Melissa


If you ask me, good coleslaw is created without the heavy cream/mayo/pools of oil. This one looks light and bright, and ten bucks says I'll be taking it to my 4th of July potluck. Thanks again for giving us something new!

Becky And The Beanstock

Yum! This looks really delicious. And a perfect side to something hot off the grill.


@ Lile Frost: It's also called coriander (the fresh greenery, not the seeds). @ Heidi: Your photography is always utterly, mouth-wateringly wonderful. :-)


Great idea! I have a similar (not so healthy) recipe to a cold summer salad with peanuts. It's chopped up broccoli (raw), chopped red onion, cooked bacon bits and peanuts...tossed in a mayo/vinegar/sugar dressing. Sounds like a strange mix of ingredients...but it's a real crowd pleaser!!!!


This looks like the perfect recipe for the 4th. Thanks for sharing!


oooh, making half the cabbage red cabbage would probably add a nice color punch too!


This looks really good. I know what i'm making for the 4th of July!

Krista on the Hill

The recipe looks tempting and I hope to try it out soon

Latha K Prasad

Thanks for the interesting coleslaw alternative. For a delicious hotslaw I will toast sesame seeds in a dry skillet and set aside. After finely shredding my cabbage, I'll saute it in a skillet with olive oil and lots of crushed garlic. Add some kosher salt, saute till cabbage is wilted, top w/sesame seeds and enjoy.


I am so excited about this recipe! I've been craving Thai and Vietnamese food lately, and this will hit the spot.


What is cilantro? Would love to try this.

Lile Frost

This looks delicious! It kinda reminds me of one of my favorite Thai dishes, Som Tum, which is a green papaya salad made with lime juice & other ingredients (if you've never tried it, do!!!). What a perfect way to fix the mayo mess that regular cole slaw can be!


Heidi, this looks delicious, and I've been trying to figure out something to do with the head of cabbage I got from my farm share last week! I need to do a peanut-free version, do you think another nut like almonds would do, or maybe toasted pepitas or sunflower seeds would work? HS: I love that idea Marisa. Specifically the pepitas.


I love-love-love lime, cilantro & cabbage together. I use it to stuff my fish tacos with but would never had thought to put peanuts with it and turn it into a salad. I'll be making this and your Heavenly Pie (again) for the 4th!


Perfect timing! Was searching for a chic 4th of July alternative to the standard slaw. Can't wait to test this out...


This sounds great! I love cabbage but am not a mayo fan, so I'm excited to have a recipe for a no-mayo coleslaw. The peanuts and lime sound delicious.


More Recipes

101cookbooks social icon
Join my newsletter!
Weekly recipes and inspirations.

Popular Ingredients

Use of this site constitutes acceptance of its User Agreement and Privacy Policy.

101 Cookbooks is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Any clickable link to on the site is an affiliate link.