How to Make Barbecued Coleslaw

This is a variation on the ordinary coleslaw side dish making a hot stir fry. Its great for using leftovers or for making a twist with the same ingredients to old fashioned cold coleslaw and can be varied so many different ways.

The shortcut is to make a large batch of normal coleslaw then halving it. Half to have mayonnaise or the usual dressing of choice for the classic cold side dish, the other half can be reserved for this recipe which now creates 2 different dishes without any extra work.

It's great served with grilled vegetables, grilled fish or other grilled meats (however its no longer suitable for vegetarians) and can be so easily varied. This is enough to serve 4 as a side dish, or two as a main dish.


  • A little oil (approx 1 tablespoon)
  • 5 loose cups or handfuls worth of fresh or leftover coleslaw. This coleslaw should have no mayonnaise or other dressing, at this stage - just the vegetables.

A good example would be:

  • 1 lb or 1/2kg of cabbage, finely shredded.
  • 1 carrot, also shredded into thin strips (see tips).
  • 1 green capsicum / bell pepper also in thin strips

Some good optional extras or variations to make it more of a main meal:

  • A handful of bean sprouts or green beans, sliced.
  • Two sticks of celery, shredded.
  • Shredded zucchini or courgette.
  • 1/2 cup crushed or chopped cashew nuts.
  • 2 cups of leftover rice (making it similar to fried rice), you can also add some chopped omelette and add other ingredients to take the dish this way.
  • 2 cups of leftover cooked noodles.
  • 1/2 cup shredded pineapple chunks (drained).

Some optional extra sauce suggestions:

  • 3 tablespoons vinegar and 3 tablespoons sugar mixed together
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce, 2 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce or any BBQ sauce.
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice, 2 tablespoons of brown sugar, 1 teaspoon minced ginger and 1 tablespoon of soy.
  • Unsweetened Mayonnaise to taste (the Japanese style is ideal. See related wikiHow's)


  1. Image titled Make Barbecued Coleslaw Step 1
    Gather your ingredients, prepare your sauce (if desired) and heat up the BBQ plate.
    • Its quick to make so its good to cook with other things being barbecued rather than cooking it on its own.
  2. Image titled Make Barbecued Coleslaw Step 2
    Add the oil and when hot, add the vegetables and any optional extra ingredients (except any sauces) and stir fry briskly until just tender. This is typically 1-2 minutes
  3. Image titled Make Barbecued Coleslaw Step 3
    Transfer to a serving dish, add the sauce and stir through.
    • Adding sauces straight to a hotplate can make it burn and taste bad, as well as making the plate much harder to clean afterwards.
  4. Image titled Make Barbecued Coleslaw Step 4
    Serve right away.


  • When you are already barbecuing food, its so easy to make this on the side.
  • This recipe is simple and is designed for economy, flavour, reducing food wastage and the ease of making. Its so easy to make this in thousands of different ways, although the BBQ gives it its own special flavour that makes it rise above ordinary stir-fries, but can easily be a stir fry on its own.
  • Simply add herbs or spices to make a whole host of different flavours.
  • Another option is to add some mashed, grated or shredded potato (baked potatoes are also common leftovers at a BBQ). This makes the dish far more like a bubble and squeak.
  • Another option is to add some crepe or tempura batter (can be packet-mix, but preferably not pancake or waffle batters as it contains too much sweetener) and making savoury fritters by adding the batter into the vegetables.
  • Try not to grate the vegetables (as they can go mushy), but make them as Julienne style strips. This is easiest with a mandolin or using a food processor to make slices, then cutting the slices into strips.
  • Use different coloured vegetables such as purple cabbage and add red capsicum / bell peppers or sliced red onion for more colour.


  • Please don't make this with pre-made coleslaw that contains any dressing or sauce, it rarely works out. It still has potential if it was made with real whole-egg mayonnaise, but not ordinary types. You also wouldn't be able to vary it as much as the options above.

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Categories: Barbecue | Vegetarian