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Copycat KFC Coleslaw Recipe

Zay, my 14 year old man-child, has been asking me for weeks to get the ingredients to make KFC’s coleslaw. I found a few recipes online and they seemed like an awful lot of work compared to my way of making it (dump the slaw mix in a bowl, throw in some mayo and a wee bit of sugar, add salt & pepper then stir). But since this poor kid eats almost non-stop and is still always “starving” I felt sorry for him and agreed we’d give it a go.

After a little picking and choosing from a few different recipes, I found what would work best for us. This week what worked best for us was taking as many shortcuts as we could while still getting the job done. Zay and I got in the kitchen and had the almost-identical-to-KFC coleslaw ready faster than I expected.

Here’s our recipe if you wanna give it a try!

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • 16 oz bag of shredded coleslaw mix – get the kind with shredded carrots mixed in (or, if you have plenty of time, you can get a head of cabbage & 1 medium carrot and cut/shred them)
  • 1/2 cup of mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup of granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk (if you don’t have buttermilk you can make your own buttermilk substitute – just be sure to watch the ratios as most recipes are for 1 cup)
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp white vinegar (don’t accidentally use apple cider – YUCK!)
  • salt & pepper to taste


  • Shred the coleslaw mix in a food chopper. (This was, by far, the most annoying step, but we really wanted the look/texture of KFC’s slaw. It’s probably not absolutely necessary…I’m pretty sure we’ll skip it next time.) Set this aside.
  • Mix the mayo, sugar, milk, buttermilk, lemon juice, and vinegar.
  • Pour mixture over the shredded slaw. Stir well to combine.
  • Add salt and pepper. (I didn’t measure this…just used what I normally would for a dish of the same size.) Stir again.
  • Cover & refrigerate for at least an hour. This seems to be a pretty important step because there was a definite improvement in taste after the ingredients incorporated. (Most recipes suggested a 2 hour refrigeration, but, like I said, I was in a hurry.)

Success! It was ah-mazing!

KFC copycat coleslaw graphic


Shared with: A Life in Balance

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Candy is a southern girl who enjoys the simple things in life. Dirt road drivin’, Sunday afternoon nappin’, back yard swingin’, and sunset watchin’ are a few of the things that make her smile. She’s been married to her best friend and the love of her life for almost 25 years and is navigating motherhood with her 4 children, aged 23, 19, 14, & 11. Homeschooling for over 18 years now, she is also a bit of a word-nerd (ok, maybe more than a “bit” – she actually considers making lists of homophones to be entertaining), a lover of books and chocolate, a survivor of cancer, an author, and a hula hoop maker.

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One Response to Copycat KFC Coleslaw Recipe

  1. Pat Fenner Jones February 8, 2014 at 4:48 pm #

    Candy, thanks so much for this recipe! KFC coleslaw is my FAVORITE. Keep up the good work.

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