Full of herbaceous notes and with the zing of lemon, Green Goddess Slaw, is a cool and crisp summer salad.
Green and red cabbage, fennel, sweet onion, and feta are tossed in a piquant green goddess dressing. Full of bright flavors and textures, this slaw can be used as a salad or a side for your next barbeque.
The history of Green Goddess dressing
While you may think the name of the dressing comes from its bright green color, there is more to the story. Debuted in 1923, green goddess dressing was created by Chef Philip Roemer, the chef at the Palace Hotel in San Fransico. The chef fashioned the recipe as a tribute to the actor Goerge Arliss, who was performing in the play, "The Green Goddess". This bold flavored dressing was soon a hit.
What does Green Goddess dressing taste like?
The original recipe contained mayonnaise, sour cream, parsley, chives, anchovies, lemon juice, and vinegar. Most green goddess dressing recipes contain many of these assertive ingredients. The predominant flavor of the dressing is bright, full of herbs, and with the tang of vinegar.
Green Goddess dressing ingredients
There are many recipes for green goddess dressing, each with its own combination of ingredients. This is my go-to.
- fresh dill
- fresh tarragon
- flat-leaf parsley
- lemon zest and juice
- anchovy paste
- greek yogurt
- salt and pepper
I start the dressing with the liquid ingredients first. I know - garlic is not a liquid. But the point is to process all the dressing ingredients except the herbs.
Combine in a high-speed blender or a food processor. A regular blender may not be able to process the herbs. Once the dressing base is combined, add the herbs. I like to have bits of the herbs visible in the dressing. It adds visual interest and I like to have an occasional taste of the individual herbs.
Tarragon, parsley, and chives are often included. But use what you prefer -
- Worchestershire sauce
- red pepper flakes
- sour cream
- anchovy fillets instead of paster
- As a dip for vegetables - Crunchy vegetables such as carrots and celery are tasty crudites but also think a little outside of the box and try jicama or watermelon radishes.
- For composed salads such as the viral TikTok recipe but others such as a little gem salad or a spinach salad.
- In any salad recipe in which you use mayonnaise as a base such as chicken salad or a pasta salad.
The definition of slaw is a salad comprised of raw cabbage and vegetables such as carrots mixed in mayonnaise. All ingredients add to the crunch experience. But that is where the comparison ends.
Green Goddess Slaw does feature both green and red cabbage. But a few varied ingredients add some interest, flavor, and texture. Fennel adds a slight anise background. Onions such as Vidalia or Walla Walla are sweeter than their astringent cousins like white onions but add a little zest.
I like to add sprigs of the herbs already present in the dressing. Dill and parsley combine well with the slaw ingredients. Toss in some chopped chives.
I like the vegetables to be sliced very thinly. I generally slice the cabbage by hand so that I can control the length of the strands. However, you can use a food processor. If you do, the vegetables will be chopped into small pieces.
I use a mandoline to slice the fennel and the onion. These two ingredients have a more pronounced flavor so I want to be sure the slices are paper-thin. It is easier to use a mandolin for this job.
The recipe for the green goddess dressing makes 1 ¼ cups. I add ¾ cup of dressing to the slaw. If needed, I add an additional ¼ cup. As a rule, I have a little left over.
I think it is better to start with a smaller amount of dressing, adding more if needed.
Check the salt
I am careful with the amount of salt in the slaw since it draws water out of the cabbage. The amount added to the green goddess dressing should be enough. But to add a little more salt and a briny flavor, toss in some chunks of feta cheese. It is a perfect addition to the garlicky, herby dressing.
How long will the slaw last
As mentioned above, salt draws water out of the cabbage. Thus the cabbage becomes softer, losing its crispness. After about 3 days, you will notice water at the bottom of the bowl and the cabbage is becoming limp. These are signs the slaw is no longer fresh.
Cold and crunchy is when Green Goddess Slaw is at its best. The bold and herbaceous flavors of the dressing perk up the vegetables.
Next hot day, when you are grilling, try a side of this slaw for a cool counterpart to your hot barbeque. Or if you are like me, this is a refreshing salad on a summer day.
Other summer salads
Green Goddess Slaw
- 1 large bowl
- 1 Microplane or zester
- 1 blender or food processor Use a food processor or a high-speed blender.
- 1 mandoline You can use a knife if you don't have a mandoline.
Green Goddess Dressing
- ½ cup fresh dill (.4 ounce/11 grams)
- ½ cup fresh tarragon (.4 ounce/11 grams)
- ½ cup Italian parsley (.4 ounce/11 grams)
- ½ cup chives (.4 ounce/11 grams)
- 1 large clove garlic
- ¾ cup mayonnaise (6 ounces/165 grams)
- ½ teaspoon anchovy paste
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 4 teaspoons lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons plain greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons water
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 7 cups green cabbage (18.3 ounces/522 grams)
- 3 cups red cabbage (7.9 ounces/222 grams)
- 1½ cups fennel (3.8 ounces/106 grams)
- 1 cup sweet onion such as Vidalia or Walla Walla (3.6 ounces/102 grams)
- 4 ounces Feta cheese, packed in brine (114 grams)
Green Goddess Dressing
- Strip the leaves of the herb off the stems, especially if the stems are little woody.
- Rough chop the chives.
- Add the mayonnaise, anchovy paste, lemon zest and juice, yogurt, water, garlic, salt, and pepper to a high-speed blender or a food processor. Process until all the ingredients are combined.
- Add the dill, tarragon, parsley, and chives to the mayonnaise mix. Process until the herbs have been almost pureed. You still want to see pieces of the herbs so don't completely process them.
- Scrape down the blender jar or food processor bowl and process again. Make sure the garlic has been chopped. Add another tablespoon of water if the dressing is too thick and not processing correctly.
- Adjust seasoning.
- Makes a generous 1¼ cup.
- With a serrated knife, very thinly slice the green and red cabbages.
- I used a mandoline to slice the fennel and sweet onion. If you do not have a mandoline, use a serrated knife. The fennel and the onion should be sliced very thinly.
- Toss the vegetables together, thoroughly combining.
- Add 1 cup of the green goddess dressing to the vegetables. Toss until all slaw ingredients are coated.
- Break the feta cheese into small pieces. Add to the slaw, tossing to combine.
- The slaw will get softer the longer it is combined with the dressing. If you want a crisp and crunchy slaw, do not toss it with the green goddess dressing until just before serving.
- Best served cold.