How to Clean Cabbage for Coleslaw: Quick, Easy Cleaning and Cutting Instructions

Are you planning to make coleslaw for your next family get-together? If so, one of the most important steps is cleaning and cutting the cabbage. While this sounds like a simple task, it can be difficult if you don’t know how to do it correctly. This blog post will teach you everything you need to know about how to clean cabbage for coleslaw – including quick and easy ways of doing it!

How to clean cabbage?

Cabbage is a must for coleslaw, but it can be tricky to prepare. If you don’t clean your cabbage correctly this could lead to an unappetizing dish with gritty chunks of dirt or sand that are not easy on the teeth and make their way into every bite. So before adding any salad dressing, give those leaves some love first!

clean cabbage

Trim the ends

You need a sharp paring knife to trim off any browned edges from the bottom of the cabbage. This will ensure there is enough cabbage without overcutting and wasting any part of it.

Don’t forget about those outer layers too, they often are damaged and have dirt in between them so take care when cleaning cabbage as well!

Remove the core

To remove the core of the cabbage, cut it from top to bottom. Cut each half into a quarter and then give them a twist to break them apart. Next, remove the core at the bottom of each piece.

This way you can easily remove the core of your cabbage and it is already cut into a perfect size to cut “julienne” with a mandolin or food processor to make coleslaw.

Cutting cabbage with a mandolin

Cutting cabbage with a mandolin can be done with great ease. Especially when your cabbage is already cut into quarters.

  • Place the cabbage quarters on the mandolin.
  • Slide each quarter down and up by changing the pressure you’re applying to the cabbage. You will need to press as you slide down for one second at a time.
  • Continue until all cabbage quarters (or the desired amount) are sliced and placed in a bowl.

Pro tip: A mandolin is a dangerous tool, so always use the safety dop (this is a black plastic dop) that comes with buying one of these bad boys. You don’t want to risk cutting yourself on this thing!

Cutting cabbage with a food processor

Cutting cabbage with a food processor is both efficient and easy. To do this, you will need to process the cabbage in small batches.

  • Cut the cabbage into small pieces. The smaller the pieces, the easier it will be to process them.
  • Process the cabbage in batches.
  • Add a batch at a time to your food processor.
  • Turn the food processor on and process until you have processed all of the cabbage, adding more as needed.

Pro tip: When it comes to cabbage, a shredding disk for your food processor will give you evenly sized slices every time and can be used for other vegetables as well!


Use the right kitchen tools

If you are trying to clean and cut cabbage for coleslaw, you need to make sure that your kitchen tools are up to the task. Kitchen tools come in all shapes and sizes and it can be hard knowing which ones will work best.

The good news is that there are a few things to keep in mind when choosing your kitchen tools so that you know what’s going to be most helpful for getting the job done quickly, efficiently, and with as little mess as possible.

Here are some kitchen tools we recommend:

  • Multi Blade Adjustable Mandoline
  • Professional SaladShooter Electric Slicer/Shredder
  • J.A Henckels International Classic Kitchen Knife Set for Beginner


Whether you’re hosting a family get-together, or just want to make some coleslaw for yourself and your loved ones, cleaning cabbage is an important step that should not be overlooked. If you need help with the cleaning process, we hope this blog post has provided some helpful information on how to clean cabbage for coleslaw. If you do have any questions leave a comment below.

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