Lebanese Cabbage Salad (Malfouf Salad) is packed with crunchy cabbage, fresh herbs, and a tangy lemon dressing. Quick, easy & delicious! It makes a perfect side dish or light meal.
Why I Love This Salad
Lebanese cuisine is renowned for its bold flavors and vibrant dishes.
And, one dish that never fails to impress is the Lebanese cabbage salad.
Perfect for the summer, and bursting with fresh ingredients, this salad offers a delightful combination of crunchy cabbage, fresh herbs, peppery radishes, and a tangy lemon dressing.
Its simplicity, versatility, and refreshing taste make it a fantastic addition to any meal. Plus it’s incredibly easy to make and requires minimal effort, yet the end result is always amazing.
Whether enjoyed as a light lunch, a refreshing side dish, or a colorful addition to a meze platter, this Salatet Malfouf is a winner every time.
To prepare this delectable Lebanese slaw, you will need the following ingredients:
- Green Cabbage – You’ll need about 1/2 of a large head of cabbage, finely shredded. You can also purchase pre-shredded cabbage for this recipe. Or, use coleslaw mix, though it usually includes red cabbage and carrots along with the cabbage.
- Tomatoes – I used 1/2 cup of diced tomatoes. You can use cherry tomatoes, roma tomatoes, or any fresh tomatoes that you have on hand.
- Radishes – These add a peppery bite to the salad, but they’re optional if you don’t enjoy them.
- Green Onions – Aka scallions.
- Fresh Herbs – Parsley, mint and dill.
- Olive Oil – A good quality extra virgin olive oil is best.
- Lemon Juice & Lemon Zest
- Za’atar or Sumac – This is optional, but used in most traditional recipes.
How to Make It
- Start by preparing the vegetables. Shred the cabbage finely and dice the tomatoes and cucumber into small, bite-sized pieces. Thinly slice the red onion, and chop the parsley and mint leaves.
- Make the dressing. In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, salt, sugar and za’atar or sumac.
- Combine everything together. Add the remaining ingredients and toss gently to coat everything in the dressing.
- Season to taste. Season with additional lemon juice, salt, sugar and/or za’atar or sumac, to taste.
- Enjoy! Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 4 hours.
- For added crunch, consider adding some toasted pine nuts or slivered almonds to the salad.
- Adjust the lemon juice and olive oil quantities according to your personal taste preferences.
- For a spicier kick, sprinkle in an additional pinch of sumac or red pepper flakes.
- For a creamier version, add a dollop of Greek yogurt or tahini to the dressing.
- Fattoush-Inspired Variation: Enhance the salad by adding toasted pita bread pieces and a sprinkle of sumac for a Fattoush-inspired twist.
- Mediterranean-Inspired Variation: Incorporate ingredients like Kalamata olives, crumbled feta cheese, and a drizzle of balsamic glaze to infuse the salad with Mediterranean flavors.
How to Make Ahead & Store
You can prepare the salad in advance, but it’s best to dress it just before serving to maintain its freshness. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days. However, note that the salad may become slightly wilted after being stored.
What to Serve with It
Lebanese cabbage salad pairs beautifully with a variety of dishes, including:
- Grilled chicken or lamb skewers
- Falafel wraps or sandwiches
- Creamy hummus or tahini yogurt sauce with warm pita bread
- Grilled halloumi cheese
- Tabbouleh Salad
- Lentil soup or a hearty lentil stew
While traditional Lebanese cabbage salad uses green cabbage, you can experiment with other varieties like red cabbage or Napa cabbage for a different twist.
Absolutely! Chicken, shrimp, and chickpeas are all great additions. They can be grilled, sautéed, or roasted separately and then added to the salad.
Absolutely! Lebanese cuisine is known for its fresh and vibrant flavors. Feel free to add other vegetables such as bell peppers, celery or carrots to the salad. Additionally, you can experiment with different herbs like cilantro or tarragon to add an extra layer of flavor.
More Salad Recipes
- Arugula Salad
- Shirazi Salad
- Thai Cucumber Salad
- Tomato Cucumber Salad
- Farro Salad with Basil Lemon Tahini Dressing
- Thai Chicken Salad
- Cauliflower Chickpea Salad
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Lebanese Cabbage Salad Recipe (Malfouf Salad)
- In a large bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients.
- Add the remaining ingredients and toss gently to combine.
- Season with additional lemon juice, salt, sugar and/or za’atar or sumac, to taste.
- Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 4 hours.