Spicy Cilantro Lime Summer Slaw is a cool, refreshing slaw with a slightly spicy kick that is perfect for a summer side dish at a barbecue or as a topping for fish tacos!
Made with summer fresh corn, slaw mix, cilantro, lime, red peppers, and jalapeños, this slaw will be the picnic side dish or hot dog topping that everyone at the picnic or potluck will love!
In Texas, it seems that summer lasts almost all year long! With the hot summer weather, we need some cool Summer Recipes and Side Dishes and this Spicy Summer Slaw is perfect for summer or year-round.
Like my Cajun Honey Jalapeno Slaw, this coleslaw has a slightly spicy kick. However, instead of cajun seasoning, this slaw has fresh cilantro, lime juice, corn, and red bell peppers in addition to sliced jalapenos for added flavor!
Why You’ll Love This Slaw Recipe
- Flavor. With the flavor of fresh cilantro, lime, corn, red bell peppers, and sliced jalapenos, this coleslaw is bursting with summer flavor.
- Spicy Kick. The jalapenos add a slightly zesty kick. The nice thing is that you can make this slaw as spicy as you like or leave the jalapenos out if you don’t want it spicy.
- Summer Vegetables. This Spicy Cilantro Lime Slaw is a perfect summer side dish that allows you to use up that fresh corn, cilantro, and more.
- No Mayo. If you are looking for a lighter, more wholesome recipe, this coleslaw has no mayonnaise. Instead, it is tossed with a homemade cilantro lime vinaigrette.
- Easy To Make. No need to heat up the kitchen during the hot summer with this recipe. Just toss everything in a bowl and stir together. It doesn’t get any easier than that.
Why This Recipe Works
- The tartness of cilantro and freshly squeezed lime juice balances the sweetness of fresh summer corn, and then the zesty flavor of sliced jalapenos takes it over the top.
- It is a tried and true recipe that has been tweaked and modified until we arrived at this flavor combination.
How To Make Spicy Cilantro Lime Slaw
Below I discuss the ingredients and possible substitutions in case you don’t have a specific ingredient on hand. However, if you are looking for the specific measurements of each ingredient, be sure to scroll down to the bottom of this article, just above the comments, for the printable recipe card, which includes all the ingredients and the specific amounts of each one.
- Cole Slaw Mix. I started with taking a shortcut by using store-bought coleslaw mix to save time and make it easier. However, feel free to chop up some fresh red and green cabbage, along with shredded carrots, to make your own coleslaw mix.
- Corn. The fresher the corn, the better the slaw. In the summer, I like to use fresh corn kernels for the slaw. However, feel free to use frozen corn that has been thawed or canned corn.
- Red sweet Pepper. I like to chop up a sweet red pepper to add some color and texture to the slaw.
- Red Onion. I like to use a red onion for added color in the summer slaw. However, you can use any type of onion, from white or yellow onions to chopped green onions.
- Cilantro. I highly recommend chopping up some fresh cilantro leaves and not using dried cilantro for the best flavor.
- Lime Juice. I like to use freshly squeezed lime juice. However, if you have bottled lime juice, that would work also.
- Cotija Cheese. I like to use Cotija Cheese. However, you could use parmesan or feta cheese.
Easy Instructions With Photos
- Toss in all the ingredients in a large bowl.
- Stir together until everything is well combined. Combine the lime juice, oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl, and pour over the top of the slaw.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve. Serve in a large serving bowl.
Pro Recipe Tips
- Fresh Ingredients. For the best results, I recommend using fresh ingredients like fresh cabbage, corn, cilantro, limes, etc.
- Vegan. To make this recipe vegan, leave out the cheese, unless you use vegan cheese.
- Refrigerate. Instead of serving immediately, let the slaw sit for a few hours, at least two hours, before serving.
- Mexican Cabbage Slaw. Also known as Fish Taco Slaw, Mexican Cabbage Slaw is a cool, tangy cabbage slaw with a Mexican-spiced apple cider vinaigrette.
- Ramen Noodle Slaw. Ramen Noodle Salad is a make-ahead coleslaw made with broccoli slaw and ramen noodles.
What To Serve With Spicy Summer Slaw
- Grilled Mahi Mahi. A deliciously seasoned, mild-tasting fish filet with a smoky grilled flavor that is super easy to make and can be ready in 20 minutes!
- Blackened Fish Tacos. Made with tender tilapia, sweet and spicy Mango Salsa, and a tangy slaw, these fish tacos explode with Cajun Mexican flavor in this quick and easy dinner.
- Grilled Barbecue Chicken Kabobs. Barbecue Chicken Kabobs and vegetables are skewered, covered in a spice rub, and then brushed with a sweet, spicy, smoky, and tangy BBQ sauce and grilled.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Make this Spicy Cilantro Lime Slaw Ahead Of Time?
Yes. I recommend making it up to 24 hours ahead of time and refrigerating until you are ready to serve. This allows the flavors to combine and develop more fully.
Can I Freeze Coleslaw?
Since this is an oil and vinegar-based coleslaw, you can freeze it.
More Summer Recipes You’ll Love
- Watermelon Salsa – This light and refreshing fruit salsa with watermelon, strawberries, herbs, honey, and jalapeño, offers a sweet and spicy summer appetizer.
- Orzo Pasta Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette – A refreshingly light summer pasta salad with feta and summer vegetables like corn, tomatoes, and cucumbers.
- Tomato Pesto Green Bean Potato Salad – This easy gluten-free potato salad makes an outstanding side dish to take to a summer picnic or potluck because it has no mayo and only 5 ingredients.
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Spicy Cilantro Lime Summer Slaw Recipe
- In a large bowl, combine the slaw, corn, red peppers, jalapenos, onion, and cilantro. Toss to combine.
- In a small bowl, combine the lime juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Pour the vinaigrette over the slaw and toss.
- Refrigerate for 2 hours, up to 24 hours, before serving.
- Sprinkle with cotija cheese before serving.
- You can make this salad ahead of time and the flavors will more fully develop over time.
- Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days for best results. If left longer, the slaw may get soggy.
- Serve this summer slaw on fish tacos, burgers, or as a perfect side dish for a barbeque.