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Charred Poblano Coleslaw with Pepitas

Magic happens to a slaw recipe with the addition of smokey peppers and crunchy pumpkin seeds. Take coleslaw to a new level with Charred Poblano Coleslaw with Pepitas.

October 27, 2020

Charred Poblano Slaw with Pepitasin a white bowl

How to Make Memorable Coleslaw

This irresistible recipe for charred poblano coleslaw with pepitas takes classic slaw up a notch. The first bite is unforgettable with the crunchy cabbage and pumpkin seeds mixed with a creamy citrus dressing. This slaw recipe goes well with many main courses, but it significantly enhances any Tex Mex dishes.

Unique Ingredients

Special ingredients include:

  • Poblano peppers
  • Pepitas – pumpkin seeds
  • Lime juice 
  • Good quality mayonaise
  • Smoked paprika
  • Adding red cabbage to the slaw mix makes the dish colorful and nutritious

Taking the extra step to char the poblanos adds a rich smokey flavor and the peppers maintain their color and texture. Toasting the pepitas brings out their fantastic taste and adds a crunchy dimension. The lime juice provides brightness and Mexican flair to the dressing, and the mayonnaise gives that creamy tang that everyone loves about homemade slaw. I use Primal Kitchen Mayonaise. The smoked paprika is also a must for this recipe. If you don’t have it, please try it. You will find opportunities to use it in other dishes. A bit of red cabbage is also a great way to add color. If it is not in the slaw mix, purchase a small head of red cabbage or head to the salad bar and get a handful.

Benefits of Cabbage

Cabbage is a crunchy and inexpensive vegetable that keeps well in the fridge. It also provides fiber, potassium, folate, and vitamin K to the diet.  It’s low in calories and can help defend against diseases. Verywellfit includes a list of the health benefits of cabbage. Both red and green cabbage are very nutritional, and this recipe for sweet and sour red cabbage explains the dietary advantages of this vegetable. 

Top Coleslaw with Power Packed Pepitas

Seeds are nutritional powerhouses because they contain all the starting components to grow into plants. Pumpkin seeds are rich in antioxidants that help protect against disease and reduce inflammation. They are also a good source of magnesium which is important for your blood pressure and blood sugar levels, as well as heart and bone health. A one-ounce serving has 8.6 grams of protein and is a good source of unsaturated fats. Healthline explains the Science-Based Health Benefits of Pumpkin Seeds.

Charring poblano peppers in a cast iron skillet
Charred Poblano

Charring diced poblano peppers in a cast-iron skillet adds a smokey flavor to the coleslaw.

Toasting pepitas in a skillet
Toasted Pepitas

Toasting pepitas (pumpkin seeds) brings a salty crunch additional protein and health benefits.


Boost your taste buds, immunity, and health with Charred Poblano Coleslaw with Pepitas. It goes with many dishes, and leftovers are fresh for one to two days. 

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Charred Poblano Slaw with Pepitasin a white bowl

Charred Poblano Coleslaw with Pepitas

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.5 from 2 reviews
  • Author: Karen
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Salad
  • Method: No Cook
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean, Mexican
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Magic happens to a slaw recipe with smokey peppers and crunchy pumpkin seeds. Take coleslaw to a new level with Charred Poblano Coleslaw with Pepitas. This coleslaw salad goes well with any Spanish, Latin, or Mexican dish. Your friends will ask for this recipe, but you will hate sharing the secret.


Units Scale

1 poblano pepper, seeded and chopped into 1/2” bites size pieces

1 teaspoon olive oil

1/4 cup raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds)*

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup avocado mayonnaise**

1 lime, juiced

1 teaspoon raw honey

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

14 oz. package coleslaw mix

1/4 cup red shredded cabbage, optional ***

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper


  1. Char Poblano Pepper: stem and seed pepper cut into 1/2″ pieces. Wash hands and cutting board – some peppers can be hot, although every poblano pepper I  purchased has been mild. Place a nonstick pan over medium heat and add oil. Add pepper pieces to the pan and occasionally stir until lightly charred, about 2- 3 minutes. Place the peppers in a serving bowl.
  2. Roast Pepitas: add pepitas to the same nonstick pan and toast for 2 – 3 minutes or until several seeds have popped and the green color begins to brown. Place on a plate or wax paper to cool and lightly salt. Cool before adding to the slaw.
  3. Make Dressing: whisk together mayonnaise, lime juice, honey, onion powder, and smoked paprika in a bowl.
  4. Prepare Slaw: add shredded cabbage to the serving bowl with charred peppers. Pour mayonnaise dressing over slaw mix and stir to combine—season with salt and pepper.
  5. Garnish: Place pepitas on the top and sprinkle with more smoked paprika, if desired.


* If using toasted and salted pepitas, omit step 2.

** I use Primal Kitchen Avacado Mayonaisse, wich is Paleo. The salt and lime will soften the cabbage as it sits, and the dressing will spread a little further than you think. If you prefer more sauce but are trying to cut calories, try adding a few tablespoons of Greek yogurt.

***  Red cabbage adds color, and some prepared slaw mixes contain it in the bag. Look in the salad bar to purchase a small amount.

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Let me know your thoughts on this post!

4 responses to “Charred Poblano Coleslaw with Pepitas”

  1. Great recipe for the cabbage you forgot is in the fridge. I used canned chipotle in adobo sauce so my mix was not true to Karen’s recipe but it was a time saver!

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Karen the Supper Sanity Home Chef

Welcome to Supper Sanity

Hello, I’m Karen, a very passionate meal planner. As a mother of three, I have been planning family menus for years. When I was diagnosed with a digestive condition, I found it necessary to follow an eating regime that eliminated many ingredients. That made meal planning a health necessity. I’ve learned a lot and want to share my resources to simplify meal planning, shop efficiently and cook affordable homemade meals. If you wish to try new recipes, plan healthier meals, and enjoy a great dinner with your friends and family, Supper Sanity can help.

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