Pickled Cabbage Salad

by Anne Bennett on March 9, 2016


A typical lunch for me is often a half sandwich made with either tuna or scrambled egg. Healthy but not exactly exciting. No crunch and not much tanginess, causing me to crave something…chip-like.

Enter this salad from my favorite food blogger, Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen. Deb lives in New York City, food mecca to the Americas. Years ago she fell hard for the “Health Salad” at specialty food store Zabars and decided to make it at home. Deb calls it like it is: pickled cabbage salad.

It’s crunchy. It’s slightly sweet and it’s definitely tangy.  The only real change Deb made from Zabar’s salad is that she adds celery seed, which, now that I’ve made it, is subtle but essential. This is why Deb is one of the most famous bloggers in the stratosphere–she can take an already famous and popular recipe and make it better. The devil is in the details.

Enjoy this delightful salad with the aforementioned tame tuna or use it as a side for chicken, another protein that sorely needs accessorizing. It’s fat-free and low in WW Points. It keeps in the fridge for up to a week (but it won’t last that long), it’s just what you need to kick your healthy meal up a notch.


1  1/2 cups white vinegar
1 1/2 cups water
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. celery seed
1 Tbsp. kosher salt


1 small head green cabbage (2 lbs.)
1 red bell pepper
1 carrot
1 kirby cucumber (small pickling variety) or English “seedless” cucumber (doesn’t need peeling)

Mix brine ingredients in a medium bowl and set aside. In the time it takes to prepare the vegetables, the sugar and salt will have dissolved.

Prepare vegetables: trim and core cabbage and slice thinly with a knife or a food processor slicing blade (which is what I did). You can also buy shredded cabbage in a bag. Place shredded cabbage in a large bowl. Core, seed and thinly slice red bell pepper; peel and thinly slice or julienne carrot; halve lengthwise and thinly slice cucumber. Add vegetables to bowl with cabbage.

Whisk the brine a few times to make sure sugar and salt have dissolved, taste and adjust salt and pour over vegetables. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or up to a week. The salad will become more pickled as it sits. Eat this with everything.

Makes 10 cups
WW SmartPoints per cup: 2

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