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Spicy Korean Coleslaw

Super easy Korean coleslaw recipe!

Do you want to try cabbage salad that is light, tangy and slightly sweet? (And there’s no mayo!) Then, how would you feel if this Korean slaw has a little bit of Korean spice to give it a kick? It sounds very mouthwatering to me!

Here I present my spicy Korean coleslaw recipe for you. This salad is a perfect match for Korean bbq. ❤

Spicy Korean Coleslaw | MyKoreanKitchen.com

Recently, I’ve been making Korean style roast pork. And, to accompany this grand dish, I looked around for a good salad recipe. Then I came across today’s recipe – spicy Korean coleslaw!

This spicy cabbage salad is full of Korean flavor. Gochugaru (Korean chili flakes), Korean fish sauce, rice vinegar and sesame oil!

It’s adequately spicy, sweet and tangy and also crunchy. I also particularly loved the smell of fresh perilla leaves in this salad too.

As I mentioned already this coleslaw is perfect with Korean bbq, and I think it will be great in Korean tacos or hamburgers wherever you want to lend some spicy and zingy Korean flavor! I hope you like it too!

P.S. If you are not into a spicy salad, try my sweet and tangy Korean cabbage salad recipe.

Ingredients for Spicy Korean Coleslaw (Serves 6 to 8)


  • 400g to 500g / 0.9 to 1.1 pounds cabbage, cored
  • 60g / 2 ounces carrots, julienned
  • 1 stalk green onion, thinly sliced
  • (optional) 6 perilla leaves, thinly sliced
  • fine sea salt

Sauce (Mix these in a bowl)

  • 2 Tbsp gochugaru (Korean chili flakes)
  • 2 Tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 to 1.5 Tbsp Korean fish sauce or 2 Tbsp regular soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp (raw) castor sugar
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 Tbsp roasted sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp minced garlic

*1 Tbsp = 15 ml

**If you want to learn more about Korean ingredients, check my essential Korean ingredients list.

How to Make Spicy Korean Coleslaw

1. Thinly slice the cabbage. Place it into a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle some salt and gently mix the cabbage to wilt it lightly.

Thinly sliced cabbage on a cutting board

2. Add the carrots and the sauce. Mix them well. Garnish with green onion and perilla leaves.

Mixing Korean coleslaw ingredients

3. Serve. (It works very well with Korean BBQ.) Best to consume within 24 hours of making it.

Spicy Korean coleslaw served with Korean roast pork

Korean Coleslaw Recipe


If making this salad ahead of time, keep the shredded vegetables and the sauce in separate containers. Only combine them about 15 mins prior to serving to enjoy more crisp (& less watery) salad.

***Recipe adapted from chef Julie Yoon’s Korean cole slaw recipe.

Spicy Korean Coleslaw | MyKoreanKitchen.com

Spicy Korean Coleslaw

Quick and easy spicy Korean coleslaw
4.5 from 12 votes
Print Pin Rate Save
Course: Side dishes
Cuisine: Korean
Keyword: korean coleslaw, spicy coleslaw
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 6 to 8
Calories: 61kcal
Author: Sue | My Korean Kitchen



  • 400 to 500 g cabbage (0.9 to 1.1 pounds), cored
  • 60 g carrots (2 ounces), julienned
  • 1 stalk green onion , thinly sliced
  • 6 perilla leaves (optional), thinly sliced
  • fine sea salt



  • Thinly slice the cabbage. Place it into a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle some salt and gently mix the cabbage to wilt it lightly.
  • Add the carrots and the sauce. Mix them well. Garnish with green onion and perilla leaves.
  • Serve. (It works very well with Korean BBQ.) Best to consume within 24 hours of making it.

Nutrition Info (per serving)

Calories: 61kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 3g | Sodium: 298mg | Potassium: 212mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 2545IU | Vitamin C: 26.5mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 1mg

The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

Tried this recipe?I love hearing how you went with my recipes! Rate this recipe with a comment below and tag me on Instagram @MyKoreanKitchen.

Written by: Sue

Last Updated:

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Welcome to my Korean kitchen! I’m so happy that you're here. I am Sue, the creator behind My Korean Kitchen (since 2006). I love good food and simplifying recipes. Here you will find my best and family approved recipes. Thanks for stopping by!


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33 thoughts on “Spicy Korean Coleslaw”

  1. This is fantastic; amazing. I first found your recipe about 6 months ago when I was taking my first stab at Korean BBQ and wanted an appropriate side.

    Now, I’ve made it several times. I’ve shared it with family and friends, and occasionally distant acquaintances. Everyone loves it.


  2. Hello, I was wondering whether I can incorporate perilla leaf oil in the recipe instead of the leaf itself? The leaves are hard to find in NL but I have the oil at home. Looking forward to try this. Thank you!

    • I’m not sure how the perilla oil will go in the recipe as I haven’t tried it myself. Perhaps a little dash won’t hurt?
      On the other hand, I have made it without the perilla leaves and it turned out ok too. Though I much prefer with them. 🙂

  3. Recipe was great , I have been experimenting with Korean food for a while now and have made a few different coleslaws. Like to use them as a banchan option and also when I make Korean tacos. Look forward to trying other recipes from your website. Korean cuisine has grown to be my favorite food. Followed closely by Japanese and Thai. I have been fortunate to have traveled to Korea numerous times for work and love eating there. Thanks,
    gamsahamnida (감사합니다)

  4. Hi Sue, I’m going to try to make this with your Korean BBQ recipe for some friends this weekend. We both have kids who don’e like really spicy foods. Can I cut the heat in half or eliminate it all together and still have it taste great?

  5. Thank you for it the recipe. I made this yesterday, and it was delicious. It made a huge amount of coleslaw enough for 6 to 8 people and it was only 2 of us at home, so there’s plenty left over. The Korean ingredients could all be found at the Korean supermarket near to our home.

    We had the coleslaw with grilled chicken with a sweet and sticky plum marinade.

  6. Delicious recipe. I tried it tonight to get some go-to diet food in the fridge, and was surprised at how rich and tasty it was. As you said, spicy, sweet, tangy, crunchy. The hot pepper will warm up any metabolism, and it’s healthy, low-calorie and clean-tasting. A new classic. Thanks for sharing!

  7. This looks like such an amazing coleslaw recipe Sue! Love that it doesn’t have any mayo in it 😀 I can totally see this being perfect with Korean BBQ, just like you suggested, as well as a great and healthy veggie side dish in bento boxes. Can’t wait to give it a try sometime!

    One quick question though: would regular fish sauce work instead of Korean fish sauce? Not sure how different the two are in terms of taste.

    • I haven’t tried with them, but I think it will still work. (I would start with adding less than what the recipe calls for then add more gradually while tasting.) Let us know how you go! I’m sure my readers will very appreciate it.

  8. Dear Sue:

    Thanks for this recipe.. i will definitely try this recipe. I wonder if you have the traditional version of the bo ssam ( the boiled version). I would be happy if you can share it.

    Thank you very much

    • Hi Sarah, do you use any sweetener in your food? If so, you can add those instead. Sugar is really used to balance the taste out. Otherwise, the salad could be too spicy and/or too salty & tangy. Hopefully it still works out! 🙂


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