When I first made this snow was on the ground, no signs of spring outside but I was at that point where I no longer want warm bowls of soup, roasted vegetables, or “comfort food” every night and I want fun, bright, and flavorful! It happens every year around this time and is a slow progression from warm dinners like soup, veggie chili, pasta to roasted beet salads, wraps, and lighter rice bowls and then into fun fruity salads! Usually it would be a strawberry spinach salad but I jumped right into picnics and tropical with this Pineapple Coconut Coleslaw! I don’t even know where to start with this salad it is so full of flavor and honestly not even sure it could be compared with traditional coleslaw as this in itself can stand alone on a dinner plate. It is one of those creations when I get excited about when I think or talk about it and feel that I can never really put into words or photos how good it truly is. I’m not a huge coleslaw fan, because I don’t like mayo, but love cabbage. There has been one that was ok with a lot of spicy mustard but I could still taste the mayo when others couldn’t. A couple years ago I made one with Vegenaise and while it looked like the stuff I hated I actually enjoyed it. I also don’t like watered down soggy coleslaw. While out for a nice lunch with my husband a salad bar had a tropical pineapple coleslaw and again they had the thin watery mushy coleslaw and I’m sure it would taste like mayo but it didn’t but it was missing something. I liked the idea thought so I thought to myself why couldn’t I make a coleslaw with canned coconut milk. From there I adapted one of my go to coleslaw recipes, a spicy mustard one but obviously not adding mustard. I wanted it to have a sweeter and coconutty flavor but yet still have a little bite but not too much which seemed to be a balance and in the end went a little less bite to keep the flavors I wanted. Add in toasted coconut (I added large flakes for texture and finely shredded for taste as there is so much more taste in the finely shredded) and fresh chopped pineapple (you can used canned that is drained well) and ahh I could sit back and eat this coleslaw all day, well until I get full or get to the bottom of the bowl! This is sure to be a hit a must make at picnics and get together this summer! I’m already envisioning it with some spicy bbq as well. For now we will just enjoy it as a side or just add some protein or serve with a bigger portion like a main salad and pretend it’s spring or summer!
5-6 bigger main servings if just adding with a protein, 8-10 smaller side servings
8c, about 20oz, shredded cabbage (used 3 cups red and 5 cups green)
2/3c vegenaise, vegan mayo
1/3c lite coconut milk, boxed/canned not the refrigerated beverage (used So Delicious Culinary Coconut Milk Lite)
2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
2 TBSP coconut palm sugar
2c diced pineapple, used fresh but you could use canned
1c toasted coconut flakes*
1/2c toasted finely shredded unsweetened coconut*
*Used flakes and shredded coconut as I wanted the flakes for texture but there is more flavor in the finely shredded. You can combine the two and use 1 1/2 cups of just shredded or flakes. If you are looking for more flavor add all or at least 1/2 a cup of finely shredded.
If coconut is not yet toasted spread on a baking sheet and put under the broiler, watching carefully, until evenly toasted. Set coconut aside to cool. In a large bowl whisk together mayo, coconut milk, apple cider vinegar and coconut palm sugar. If not serving right away place mixture in the refrigerator until 1-2 hours before serving. You can make it ahead of time as well but I tend to throw it together a couple hours before so the flavors come together but so it is still really crunchy but the longer it sits the softer it can get. One to two hours before serving toss cabbage with the coconut sauce until well coated. Add pineapple and shredded coconut and toss to mix. Cover and place in the refrigerator for at least an hour so the flavors come together. If serving at a buffet or get together be sure to keep cool. Enjoy!
Linking up with fellow blogger, The Fit Foodie Mama for Foodie Friday! Check out other great recipes here: