Side Essentials: To-Die-For Bacon-Fried Coleslaw

Andy Anderson !


This is an amazing side dish, and can be ready in 20 minutes. The warm bacon, mixed with the cabbage, and vinegar, makes your tongue do the happy dance.

The spices are simple… Just salt, and pepper. And that is all it needs.

So, you ready… Let’s get into the kitchen.


★★★★★ 1 vote

10 Min
10 Min
Stove Top



  • 6 oz
    slab bacon, diced
  • 1 medium
    carrot, shredded
  • 1 stalk(s)
    celery, diced
  • 1/2 medium
    napa cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tbsp
    rice vinegar, divided
  • 1 tsp
    poppy seeds
  • ·
    salt, kosher variety, to taste
  • ·
    black pepper, freshly ground, to taste

How to Make Side Essentials: To-Die-For Bacon-Fried Coleslaw


  2. You could use another type of cabbage, but I feel that the Napa variety works better for this recipe.
  3. One the extras I put into this recipe is the rice vinegar. It brightens the dish, and gives a distinctive tangy flavor. Although the recipe calls for two tablespoons, I usually use more.
  4. Okay, let us face the truth… All bacon is not created equal. I have used bacon for this recipe that is so lean, I was obliged to add some olive oil, and I have used bacon that has so much fat, I had to drain some out of the pan.

    Here is what you need to know. After removing the bacon from the skillet, if you have less than 2 tablespoons of bacon grease, then add some olive oil to make up the deficit. If you have more than two tablespoons, then remove the surplus, and reserve.

    When you are wilting the cabbage, if it appears a bit dry, then add a bit of reserved bacon grease, or olive oil… but just a bit at a time. This recipe can quickly go from delicious to greasy in a short time.
  5. Gather your Ingredients (mise en place).
  6. Dice the bacon.
  7. Place the bacon into a skillet, over medium heat.
  8. Allow to cook until the fat is rendered into the pan, and the bacon is beginning to crisp, about 7 – 9 minutes.
  9. While the bacon is cooking, thinly slice the cabbage, dice the celery, and grate the carrot.
  10. Remove the bacon, and reserve, then add the carrots, and celery to the pan, with the bacon fat, add 1 tablespoon of rice vinegar, and a pinch of salt.
  11. Stir until the carrots begin to soften, about 2 - 3 minutes.
  12. Add the cabbage.
  13. Stir until it begins to wilt, and soften, about 2 – 3 minutes.
  14. Chef’s Note: The amount of wilting is up to you. I like the cabbage with a bit of crunch. So, every once-and-awhile grab a piece of the cabbage, give it a taste, and stop the cooking process when you like what you taste.
  15. Take the skillet off the heat, add the bacon, and toss combine.
  16. Add the poppy seeds, 1 tablespoon of rice vinegar, and season with salt and pepper.
  17. Chef’s Note: At this point, I usually add an additional splash or two rice vinegar. I think it gives it a great tangy flavor.
  19. Serve while still warm. I am planning on serving this with a brisket I have in the smoker. Enjoy.
  20. Keep the faith, and keep cooking.

Printable Recipe Card

About Side Essentials: To-Die-For Bacon-Fried Coleslaw

Course/Dish: Vegetables
Main Ingredient: Vegetable
Regional Style: American

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