If you’ve found yourself with an abundance of coleslaw after a barbecue or family gathering, you may be asking yourself, “Can I freeze this?” While the answer is technically yes, there are a few important considerations to keep in mind.

🧊 Freezing

Can You Freeze Coleslaw?

You can freeze coleslaw, but it’s important to note that the outcome largely depends on its ingredients. Coleslaw made with vinegar or citrus-based dressings usually freezes better than coleslaw made with a mayo-based dressing, which can separate and become watery when thawed.

Does Freezing Change Texture?

Yes, freezing does affect the texture of coleslaw. The freezing and thawing process can break down the cellular structure of the cabbage, resulting in a softer texture. Also, mayo-based coleslaw tends to separate and become watery upon thawing.

How to Freeze Coleslaw: Step by Step Guide

  1. Place the coleslaw in a freezer-safe bag or container.
  2. Press out as much air as possible before sealing the container to reduce the risk of freezer burn.
  3. Label the container with the date and place it in the freezer.

Can You Freeze Uncooked/Fresh Coleslaw?

Freshly shredded cabbage can be frozen without any issues. However, if you’ve already mixed in the dressing, refer to the points above regarding texture changes.

How Long Can You Freeze Coleslaw?

When properly stored, coleslaw can be frozen for up to two months. Beyond this period, it’s likely to experience significant texture and flavor changes.

frozen coleslaw

🫠 Defrosting

Refrigerator Thawing

To thaw frozen coleslaw, move it from the freezer to the refrigerator and let it thaw overnight.

Quick Thawing

If you’re in a rush, you can thaw coleslaw in a cold water bath. Just make sure to keep it in its sealed bag or container.

“Chilling” Facts about Coleslaw

5 Tips for Freezing Coleslaw

  • Coleslaw with vinegar-based dressings generally freeze better than those with mayo-based dressings.
  • Squeeze out as much air as possible from the container to minimize freezer burn.
  • Always label your containers with the freezing date.
  • If you’re uncertain about the outcome, freeze a small portion first to test the result.
  • Consider freezing just the shredded cabbage and adding the dressing after thawing for a fresher taste and texture.

Does Coleslaw Freeze Well?

While coleslaw can be frozen, the outcome varies depending on the dressing used and your personal taste. Expect some texture changes in the thawed product.

Can You Refreeze Coleslaw?

Refreezing coleslaw is not recommended due to further texture and quality degradation.


While coleslaw can technically be frozen, the change in texture and potential for a watery consistency upon thawing mean it’s not always the best candidate for the freezer. However, in a pinch, you can freeze it and still have a passable side dish when needed. Remember, the quality of the defrosted coleslaw may not match that of its fresh counterpart, but when hunger strikes, it can definitely come to the rescue!

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About me:

Hi, I'm Alex. I love to cook and bake, and I'm always looking for new recipes to try. I started this blog — to collect and share most delicious and easy recipes in one place. I remember, how many questions recipes raised to me, when I started cooking. To make sure that doesn't happen to you, I take step-by-step photos of the cooking process for every recipe so you can see how all the steps are supposed to go together, even if you're not following my recipes exactly.

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