Easy Blue Cheese Coleslaw (No Mayo Recipe)

This blue cheese coleslaw (no mayo version) is super easy to make, and makes a great picnic style side dish or a topping for burgers, tacos, or sandwiches.

This blue cheese coleslaw is super easy to make, and makes a great picnic style side dish for a summer BBQ with friends and family.

It’s also a fabulous topping, adding a bit of crunch and creamy, blue cheese goodness to any dish blue cheese typically pairs well with. I’m talking pulled pork sliders, buffalo chicken, dressed up hot dogs or sausages, and burgers (of course).

And for those of you who prefer no mayo coleslaw, this is a great option! The creamy, pungent blue cheese pairs perfectly with the freshness of ranch dressing.

Combined with the crunch of the cabbage and veggies, it makes a refreshing yet rich side that will surprise everyone – and have them asking you for your best blue cheese coleslaw recipe!

A plate of coleslaw with blue cheese crumbles and hemp hearts showing a blue cheese coleslaw no mayo recipe

Why You’ll Love This Blue Cheese Coleslaw No Mayo Version

If you’re the type to typically pass on coleslaw, let me say: I get it.

I, too, have long been a coleslaw passer.

Thing is? I just can’t excited about bagged shredded veggies – some of which have already gone soggy – that are then slathered with mayo.

However, in the spirit of open mindedness, I’ve recently done a slaw 180. We’ve been serving up different, delightfully creative slaws with many of our meals recently to keep things interesting, and I’ve come around to the ways of the coleslaw, either as a topping or a side.

For me, the key to a fantastic slaw is in the dressing, yes, but also the quality of the cabbage: fresh, not bagged and pre-shredded cabbage; and a nice mix of red cabbage and green.

Cabbage has the perfect balance of weight and crunch to make a great slaw, and it’s healthy, too. And while blue cheese certainly isn’t the lowest fat of choices (especially when compared to something like Feta), the fat and creaminess of the blue cheese pairs so well with the fresh cabbage, cucumber, and bell pepper.

It’s a delightful combo, and is fabulous as a topping (burgers, dogs, sloppy joes, pulled pork sammies, etc) or side (great with buffalo chicken, which typically is served with blue cheese dip).

Plus, it’s the perfect way to use up any blue cheese you have left over in your fridge after an epic cheese party.

Are you as excited about this blue cheese slaw as I am? I hope so!

blue cheese coleslaw (no mayo) made with red and green cabbage, bell pepper and cucumber in a bowl

How to Make This Blue Cheese Coleslaw

This blue cheese slaw is super easy to make, and is one of those no mayo coleslaw recipes for the mayo haters (or if you just happen to be out, and need to improvise!).

It’s also made up of simple, unprocessed ingredients, meaning no mystery ingredients. And while it probably won’t meet anyone’s low fat goals, it’s real food and it’s darn delicious.

What You Need for This Blue Cheese Slaw Recipe

  • 4 cups of red cabbage, washed and chopped
  • 4 cups of green cabbage, washed and chopped
  • ½ half of a cucumber, washed and sliced (I keep the skin on for added fiber)
  • 1 red, yellow, or orange bell pepper, cored and sliced
  • 4 tbsp ranch dressing (homemade or store bought)
  • ½ cup of your favorite blue cheese, crumbled
  • Hemp hearts for garnish (don’t skip these if you’re eating the slaw as a salad!)


Prepare the Cabbage

Wash your red and green cabbage, and peel off the outer, tough layers. Be a bit mercenary with this step, and peel away any of the outer layers that are tough, damaged, or generally not that fresh for the compost.

Use a large chef’s knife to cut the root off, and then chop the heads of cabbage in half, and then again into quarters. Cut out any remaining bit of the root.

Working one quarter of the head of cabbage at a time, thinly slice the cabbage along the shorter side (i.e. not lengthwise), so you end up with thin ribbons of shredded cabbage.

If you have the time, I encourage you to chop fresh cabbage rather than using coleslaw mix. The slaw will end up that much fresher and crunchier, which is really worth it!

Prep Additional Veggies

For this blue cheese slaw recipe, I’ve included red cabbage, green cabbage, a bell pepper, and cucumber from the veggie department. But you can definitely throw in some extra veggies to this recipe – don’t be shy (and suggestions below).

At this point, wash and halve a cucumber. Working lengthwise, cut the cucumber further into quarters, and then thinly slice each quarter.

Prepare the bell pepper by washing, coring and removing the seeds, and thinly slicing. I prefer using a red, yellow, or orange pepper for this recipe, as they add a bit of sweetness, which green peppers lack.

Mix and Dress

Mix all the veggies in a large bowl, and then drizzle with 4 tbsp ranch dressing and ½ cup crumbled blue cheese.

I leave the cheese fairly separate, but if you prefer it to be mixed into the dressing, you can add the blue cheese crumbles to the ranch dressing ahead of time, gently whisk together, and then add the dressing to the veggies and toss. Doing it this way you’ll probably need a bit more ranch dressing for a proper coating.

Serve and Sprinkle

If you’re planning on eating the slaw as a salad (instead of a burger topping, etc), I recommend plating and then sprinkling with a few hemp hearts for extra crunch.

a close up of hemp hearts and blue cheese crumbles on a cabbage coleslaw recipe

Optional: Use Homemade Ranch Dressing

If you don’t have ranch dressing in the fridge, have some sour cream to use up, or simply want to experiment a bit, you can also make your own ranch dressing.

The easiest thing to do is to mix store bought ranch seasoning with 1 cup of 5% sour cream. If you’re feeling really creative, you can make your own ranch dressing mix, and then mix that with sour cream!

Tips for Making This Blue Cheese Slaw Even Better

Prep Tips

If you’re in a rush, you can sub the cabbage for coleslaw mix, but I recommend buying the bagged mix on the same day you plan on using it so it doesn’t get either soggy or dried out (it’s weird how it sometimes manages to do both, right?)

Also worth noting is my salt and pepper caveat. Usually I season slaw with salt and pepper, but when cooking with blue cheese I like to taste first to see how salty it’s going to be, as the cheese itself has a fair amount of saltiness.

What Else Can You Add to This Blue Cheese Slaw?

I’m not going to lie. I love a recipe upgrade. But I really love using up the things I already have in my fridge.

If you want to bulk up my blue cheese coleslaw with extras, there are plenty of veggies (and even fruits) that will work to bring out the flavors of the blue cheese, and also compliment the crunch of the existing veggies.

If you do decide to add extras to pump up this blue cheese slaw, I recommend adding a bit more dressing.

Here are a few ideas for veggies, fruits, and yummy extras you could add to upgrade this blue cheese coleslaw:

  • Grated carrot
  • Kale (use sparingly!)
  • Chopped Red Onion
  • Crispy Bacon Bits
  • Apple Slices or Chunks
  • Green Grapes, halved or quartered
  • Celery, chopped
  • Sunflower seeds, shelled
A plate of coleslaw with blue cheese crumbles and hemp hearts

What to Serve With My Blue Cheese Coleslaw

  • Blue cheese burgers are a classic treat. You tell me we’re having blue cheese burgers, crispy fries, and a big bold glass of red wine on a Friday night, and it will be a good news day for me. This blue cheese slaw, however, is a great twist on the classic blue cheese burger! Instead of melting the blue cheese on the patty, pile the patty with this slaw and enjoy both the umami goodness of the blue cheese, and the crunch of the slaw.
  • Buffalo Wings, Buffalo Chicken Bites, Buffalo anything. Buffalo wings with blue cheese is another one of those classic flavor combos. But, if you’re not a dipper (my husband is not a wing dipper), serving your wings with a side of this blue cheese coleslaw is a guaranteed crowd pleaser. We like to make Shredded Buffalo Chicken in the Instant Pot, and then pile the slaw on top.
  • Pulled Pork Sandwiches. Like the burger combo, you can pile blue cheese coleslaw on the sandwich for some yummy crunch. It also works as a side.
  • Tacos. Okay – hear me out. I’ve spent a lot of time in Mexico, and even lived there for awhile. For the months we lived in Mexico, we ate a lot of street tacos. And I became a huge fan of tacos al pastor. And yes, blue cheese coleslaw has no place on “real” Mexican tacos. And yet – it also works on some tacos. Like buffalo chicken tacos, buffalo shrimp tacos, or buffalo cauliflower tacos.

Lets Chat Blue Cheese

Blue cheese is one of those love it or leave it foods (see also: olives and pineapple on pizza).

This coleslaw recipe calls for blue cheese. But since the blue cheese is getting mixed into the dressing, you really don’t need to use the very best blue cheese your cheese monger has to offer. In my opinion, a quick blue cheese slaw is not the time to bust out the straight outta Europe Roquefort PDO or Gorgonzola PDO.

For this recipe, I recommend a blue that crumbles well. And don’t be afraid to use a crumbled blue cheese from the supermarket. If you decide to buy the already crumbled blue cheese, take a peak in the package if you can, and look for blue cheese crumbles with more “blue” – this is what will give it that rich blue cheese flavor.

If you go for blue cheese crumbles, they’re often sold simply as “blue cheese” with no qualifier beyond that. However, if you want to go with a block of blue cheese, the following crumble fairly well:

  • Danish Blue
  • Blue Stilton
  • Gorgonzola Picante
  • Cashel Blue
  • Bleu d’Auvergne

Final thought on choosing the best blue cheese for this coleslaw: if you have a nice blue cheese in your fridge that you need to use up, by all means use it for the blue cheese coleslaw! It will be delicious! However, don’t go out and buy the fanciest version you can find just for this coleslaw – a supermarket version is generally fine for crumbling on a salad or adding to a dressing!

Final Thoughts About This Blue Cheese Coleslaw

I hope you enjoy this blue cheese coleslaw! If you have another blue cheese lover in your life, please share!

A plate of coleslaw with blue cheese crumbles and hemp hearts

Easy Blue Cheese Coleslaw (No Mayo Recipe)

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

This blue cheese coleslaw is super easy to make, and makes a great picnic style side dish for a summer BBQ or a topping for sandwiches, burgers, or tacos!


  • 4 cups of red cabbage, washed and chopped
  • 4 cups of green cabbage, washed and chopped
  • ½ half of a cucumber, washed and sliced
  • 1 red, yellow, or orange bell pepper, cored and sliced
  • 4 tbsp ranch dressing
  • ½ cup blue cheese, crumbled
  • Sprinkle of hemp hearts for garnish (optional)


  1. Chop and slice veggies.
  2. Mix all veggies in a bowl and then drizzle with dressing and crumbled cheese. 
  3. Sprinkle some hemp hearts on top and enjoy.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 259Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 17mgSodium: 384mgCarbohydrates: 24gFiber: 8gSugar: 12gProtein: 11g

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