Cabbage Salad with Chicken, Almonds, and Herbs

Is there any question that cabbage slaw should have a mayonnaise-based dressing?  Apparently there is because I am the only member of my family who appreciates the virtues of mayo on slaw.  This version of cabbage salad tweaks the standard dressing with a flavor boost and a textural modification, yielding a salad dressing that is flavorful and decidedly lighter than old-fashioned coleslaw dressing.  Add shredded chicken, almonds and sesame seeds, and lots of fresh herbs, and you have a very special slaw.

Use leftover roast chicken or purchase a rotisserie chicken from the supermarket and your salad making will go quickly.  This slaw is substantial enough to serve as a main course, with some good bread and your favorite beverage.  Slice the cabbage very thinly, or consider using Napa cabbage for a lighter weight salad.  I have been known to make this salad with a few substitutions:  walnuts in place of almonds, sunflower seeds for sesame, parsley and dill in lieu of basil.  Make this dish your own with the ingredients you have on hand.  Just don’t change the dressing!

You’ll find the ginger and lemon-spiked dressing elevates and compliments the rather humble ingredients to create a delicious and memorable cabbage salad. Give it a try and see if you don’t agree.  Enjoy!

Cabbage Salad with Chicken, Almonds, and Herbs

Shredded green cabbage, chicken, fresh herbs, and almonds are tossed with a ginger and lemon-spiked mayonnaise dressing to create a very special cabbage slaw.  Enjoy it as a main course, for lunch or a light dinner.

Course Dinner, Lunch, Salad
Cuisine American, Canadian
Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Adapted from "Food52 Mighty Salads" (see link in the recipe notes)


  • 1 small head green cabbage, very thinly sliced (8 cups) (use Napa cabbage if you prefer)
  • 8 ounces cooked chicken, shredded
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, torn into pieces
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 heaping teaspoon peeled, grated fresh gingerroot (for best results, use a microplane to grate the ginger)
  • 4-5 tablespoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt


  1. In a large mixing bowl, toss together the cabbage, chicken, almonds, sesame seeds, basil leaves, and scallions. 

  2. In a small bowl, combine the lemon juice, mayonnaise, and ginger,  Whisk in the olive oil to blend.  Season the dressing with salt.  Pour most of the dressing over the cabbage salad and toss to coat.  Taste and adjust seasoning with more salt if desired; add the remaining dressing if you like. 

  3. Transfer the salad to your favorite salad serving bowl and serve.  Refrigerate any leftovers, tightly covered, for a day or two.  

Recipe Notes

The original recipe is from Food52 Mighty Salads, which you can purchase here