Recipe Review

I Tried the Pioneer Woman’s Famous Coleslaw, and I Won’t Be Making It Again

published May 22, 2024
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Ree Drummond Coleslaw
Credit: Kiersten Hickman

Ree Drummond is one of those food celebs I love to follow. Not just for her days on the Food Network, but I also love testing the tasty recipes she’s been sharing on her Pioneer Woman blog for years. Most of the time her faithful followers rave about her recipes. Yet every now and then, I’ll come across a recipe that doesn’t have the best reviews, and I’m genuinely curious. What exactly is it that is making this recipe unlikable for home cooks? Needless to say, I decided to give this recipe a try to see if the reviews are actually true, and if the recipe is just as bad as they are making it out to be.

How to Make Ree Drummond’s Coleslaw

In a large bowl, combine shredded carrots, green cabbage sliced thin, and purple cabbage sliced thin. Set it aside.

In a medium-size bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, whole milk, sugar, white vinegar, black pepper, salt, and cayenne pepper.

Pour the dressing over the bowl of vegetables. Add in fresh parsley that has been chopped very small, almost minced.

Toss together and serve.

Credit: Kiersten Hickman

My Honest Review

While most of Drummond’s recipes are fantastic (her Chuckwagon brownies are still one of my top faves), I have to admit, this coleslaw recipe isn’t great. It’s not like it tasted bad; to be honest, I didn’t have to worry about the taste because I felt like it didn’t have much taste at all. This coleslaw was average, and not something I would choose to eat at a barbecue if I had other options. I felt like it needed something else to give it a little more flavor, because the dressing didn’t have much.

Not only that, but there was too much dressing. The recipe calls for a lot of dressing, making the coleslaw rather soupy, and that’s honestly not the kind of coleslaw I like. I know in this regard it’s personal preference. Some people enjoy a wetter coleslaw compared with a crunchy one like myself. But I still felt the dressing was taking over the vegetables, which is unfortunate when the dressing didn’t have much taste to begin with.

All in all, I would pass on this recipe again. Or at least make some serious alterations to try and fix up the taste, as well as that dressing-to-veggie ratio.

Needless to say, if you need a better coleslaw recipe to try out there, I recommend trying one of the most popular coleslaw recipes online.

Credit: Kiersten Hickman

Tips for Making Ree Drummond’s Coleslaw

Half the amount of milk: The recipe calls for a lot of milk, but honestly, I don’t think you need it. I gave this recipe another try with half the amount of milk needed, and found the texture of the coleslaw to be far more enjoyable compared with the previous batch. While I do love a creamy dressing, I don’t want it to be overpowering

Squeeze in some lemon juice: I felt this recipe was really missing something, and after some thought, I realized it needed more acid. While the white vinegar does add some, I think adding juice from one lemon could really make a difference for this recipe. That, or maybe sprinkling in a touch more sugar.

Use a coleslaw mix: Although it might be cheaper to buy the cabbages and carrots separately, the effort it takes to shred them yourself is … well, a lot of effort. I find some purchases are worth it for the convenience, and a coleslaw mix is usually that kind of purchase for me. It has the perfect ratio of cabbage to carrot that I look for in my coleslaw, and obviously saves me a lot of time.