Cole slaw was a summertime staple in my grandmother’s home. She inherited this recipe from her mother, Elsie Richey.

Courtesy photo

We couldn’t go an entire week at my grandparents’ house without the smell of sweet pickled cabbage invading our noses.

This recipe is not for creamy slaw, such as what you typically might find prepackaged in stores.

It is a vinegar-based slaw that is more akin to three-bean salad.

In honor of the warmer weather predicted for this weekend, I hope you enjoy Elsie’s recipe that will evoke fond memories of summer.

Slaw ingredients

  • 1 medium head of green cabbage
  • 1 large red pepper
  • 1 large green pepper
  • 1 large white onion
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated white sugar
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon celery seed


Slice the cabbage, peppers and onion finely.

Each slice should be so thin that it is nearly translucent. The finer the slice is, the better the flavors will marry.

Toss the vegetables together and cover them with cold water. Sprinkle the salt into the mixture.

Let this mixture stand for five minutes and then drain off the water.

While waiting for the vegetables to finish soaking, boil the remaining ingredients together on the stove.

Cool the liquid to room temperature and pour it over the vegetables.

Refrigerate the slaw before eating — it tastes better if it stands overnight. It should keep for several days.