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Copycat Popeye’s Coleslaw Recipe

This creamy, tangy Popeye’s coleslaw recipe tastes just like what you would order at the popular American fast food restaurant. Zesty raw cabbage, carrots, and onions tossed with a creamy mayonnaise-based dressing makes a delicious side dish with only 15 minutes of prep time.

Popeye's coleslaw.

Does Popeye’s Have Coleslaw?

Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen, most commonly known as just Popeye’s, is known for its buttermilk-battered chicken sandwiches.

However, those chicken sandwiches wouldn’t be what they are today if it weren’t for coleslaw accompanying them. Coleslaw is perfectly creamy and tangy with just the right amount of sweetness that pairs so well with fried chicken. 

But Popeye’s coleslaw isn’t just great with chicken. It’s a perfect accompaniment for any protein, like 321 ribs, pork tenderloin and smoked tri tip. It’s especially tasty with anything that includes BBQ sauce.

This Popeye’s Coleslaw recipe can easily be recreated at home – so you can enjoy this delicious side dish with your choice of meat without hitting the drive-thru. It also makes a great romantic picnic food because it’s easy to prepare and can easily be paired with plenty of dishes.

It’s worth making it at home, especially considering it takes only 15 minutes of hands-on time and just a handful of ingredients. So, let’s begin!

Copycat popeyes coleslaw dressing in a glass bowl with metal serving tongs.

How to Make Popeye’s Coleslaw

Gather just a few essential ingredients, and you’re already halfway to making a copycat coleslaw recipe in just 15 minutes! This Popeye’s copycat recipe comes together effortlessly because it’s quick, easy, and tastes great when made ahead of time. 

I suggest making this the day before your event and letting it marinate in the fridge. Coleslaw usually needs time for all the flavors to meld together, so it’s a perfect dish for meal prep. Not to mention, it smells heavenly when all the flavors can mingle together.

Since this recipe uses only real food ingredients, you can feel good about serving it to your family and any guests that come to visit.

Popeye’s Coleslaw Ingredients

For the dressing:

  • Mayonnaise – This is the base of the dressing, so make sure you get good quality mayonnaise or make your own. Alternatively, you can use Greek yogurt as a leaner option.
  • Sugar – We prefer organic sugar, but you can even use honey for a healthier coleslaw dressing.
  • Apple cider vinegar – If preferred, you may use white vinegar but don’t skip this ingredient as it adds great tangy flavor to the coleslaw.
  • Extra virgin olive oil – As with mayonnaise, get good quality olive oil that is not cut with other oils.

For the salad: 

  • Green cabbage – Finely shredded raw green cabbage makes the best coleslaw.
  • Carrot – Pick fresh carrots and shred them yourself for the best flavor and texture.
  • Yellow onion – This adds great flavor, and you can easily run it through the food processor after cabbage and carrot.

Step-By-Step Directions

Follow these simple directions, and you can’t go wrong!

This recipe literally takes 15 minutes of active prep time. And remember, coleslaw gets better with age, so consider making it the day before serving.

White dressing in a white mug.

Step one: Make dressing

Whisk mayonnaise, sugar, apple cider vinegar, and extra virgin olive oil in a small mixing bowl and set aside.

Substitute with Popeyes spicy mayonnaise if you’re a Popeyes super fan and love spicy!

Copycat popeyes coleslaw dressing in a glass bowl on a wooden table.

Step two: Make salad

Add shredded cabbage, carrots, and onions to a large bowl and toss to combine. Pour the dressing over, and mix well with a pair of tongs until the dressing coats everything evenly. 

This coleslaw is a perfect recipe for turning to the food processor for help – it makes all the shredding a breeze! 

I used a ¼” slicing disk on my food processor to generate thin, even slices. The uniform cabbage ribbons also make the coleslaw look nice and professional. And since the food processor was out already, I shredded the onion too.

If you choose to shred by hand, watch this tutorial on cutting cabbage for coleslaw and check out those knife skills first.

Step three: Chill and marinate

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a lid and transfer to the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours before serving. 

Serve chilled straight from the refrigerator. Popeye’s Coleslaw pairs well with fried chicken, ribs, or any other meat.

If you have leftovers, they can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Copycat popeyes coleslaw dressing in a glass bowl with metal serving tongs on a wooden table.

Nutritional Info for Popeye’s Coleslaw

There are eight servings of this Copycat Popeye’s Coleslaw recipe.

Each serving contains:

  • 274 calories
  • 24 g total fat
  • 14 g total carbs
  • 3 g fiber
  • 2 g protein

Please note that the nutritional value will change if you substitute ingredients. Use a nutrition app to recalculate and reflect your changes.

Copycat popeyes coleslaw dressing in a glass bowl with metal serving tongs next to a green cloth on a wooden table.

Popeye’s Coleslaw Recipe FAQ

Is Popeye’s coleslaw good?

I far prefer this homemade version as a healthier and more affordable choice. It’s the same great flavor but made with real food and unprocessed ingredients. Coleslaw is a classic dish for summer BBQ, potlucks, and picnics. This recipe is great!

Is Popeye’s Coleslaw Keto?

No, Popeye’s Coleslaw is not keto or low carb as it has a high content of carbs per serving due to the sugar. You can modify this copycat recipe by substituting the sugar with equal parts of a keto sweetener instead. The rest of the ingredients are keto-compliant. 

How many carbs in Popeye’s coleslaw?

For comparison, check out the nutrition facts for Popeye’s coleslaw from the restaurant. Notice the difference in the carb count compared to this homemade copycat recipe. There are 306 calories coming from 21 g fat, 27 g total carb, 3 g fiber, and 2 g protein.

Nutrition facts are calculated by [CarbManager].

More Easy Copycat Recipes

Yield: 8 servings

Popeye’s Coleslaw Copycat Recipe

Copycat popeyes coleslaw dressing in a glass bowl ready to be served.

This creamy, tangy Popeye’s Coleslaw recipe tastes just like what you would order at the popular American fast food restaurant. Zesty raw cabbage, carrots, and onions tossed with a creamy mayonnaise-based dressing makes a delicious side dish with only 15 minutes of prep time.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Chill Time 2 hours
Total Time 15 minutes


For the Dressing:

For the Salad:

  • 6 cups green cabbage, finely shredded
  • ½ cup carrot, shredded
  • 1 small yellow onion, minced or shredded


  1. Whisk all dressing ingredients together in a small mixing bowl. Then, set aside.
  2. Toss the cabbage, carrot, and onion in a large mixing bowl. Pour the dressing over and mix well until the dressing coats everything evenly.
  3. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before serving.


Substitute mayonnaise with Greek yogurt or white vinegar in place of apple cider vinegar, if preferred.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 274Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 12mgSodium: 190mgCarbohydrates: 14gFiber: 3gSugar: 10gProtein: 2g

Emeraldseye Silvershadow

Tuesday 9th of April 2024

You ALMOST got it right. Change out the apple cider vinegar for dill pickle juice, remove the olive oil and trade out the finely minced onion for dill pickles and you will have it.

I went to coleslaw school way back when and got an extra 0.15 cents an hour because I did.

Easy Homemade Life

Friday 12th of April 2024

Pickle juice is a great suggestion! Thank you for sharing these tips with us!


Friday 11th of August 2023

Can I substitute stevia for the the sugar? I'm diabetic

Jessica Haggard

Monday 21st of August 2023

Hello Sandra - stevia should work fine for this recipe since it isn't cooked. Just keep tasting as you add to be sure it doesn't become too sweet.


Friday 11th of August 2023

How do you make Popeyes biscuits?

Jessica Haggard

Tuesday 15th of August 2023

Hi Dan - while we don't have the popeye's version, this copycat biscuit recipe would go well with the coleslaw!

Lori | The Kitchen Whisperer

Sunday 11th of December 2022

What a great, classic slaw recipe! I’ve never had the original one but this was super scrumptious! Thank you for sharing!

Jessica Haggard

Monday 12th of December 2022

Happy to hear you like it :) Be sure to bookmark the page to come back for more easy recipes!


Sunday 11th of December 2022

Such a great coleslaw recipe, made some homemade fried chicken and paired it with this. Perfection!

Jessica Haggard

Monday 12th of December 2022

My mouth is watering!!!

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