Mediterranean Diet Recipes, Salads, Sides, Vegetarian

Α Festive Winter Mediterranean Salad

Festive cabbage salad

When you go to a traditional tavern in Greece you often see on the menu salata epohis meaning seasonal salad, in other words salad that is made with seasonal vegetables. In the winter that salad is cabbage and carrot (lahano-karoto).

Everything is shredded very much like coleslaw, but the dressing is not mayonnaise based but as expected olive oil based. Typically this salad is served with an olive oil-lemon (or vinegar) dressing with an almost equal amount of each with a ratio of about 4:3 (olive oil to lemon juice or vinegar). It may be served with some black olives Kalamon for decoration.

Obviously this salad is super-healthy and filling. Cabbage belongs to the cruciferous vegetable family along with cauliflower and broccoli. These vegetables are rich in certain compounds that appear to have anticancer effects, although it is still not clear to what extent. As with most vegetables, cabbage has very few calories, one cup has a mere 27 calories and it is a good source of fiber, vitamin C and folate.

While this classic version is fine to be served during the holiday meals, this simple winter salad can be embellished with several other healthy and festive ingredients. The pomegranate symbolizes good luck and a decorative one is often given as a gift during the holidays for the new year, but it has many health benefits as well. It is rich in potent antioxidants and may protect from heart disease. Other ingredients that can be added is apple and walnuts both rich in nutrients and antioxidants.

I like this salad , because it looks pretty and Christmassy, but it is also refreshing, particularly when the rest of the meal choices are rich. And of course you are getting loads of beneficial nutrients.

Festive Mediterranean Salad with Cabbage and Pomegranate


  • 1 small head of cabbage or half of a larger one (about  1 1/2  pounds) grated or shredded
  • 4-5 carrots  grated
  • 2 apples cut in small pieces
  • 1 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 3/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley

For the Dressing

  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3-4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • salt/pepper to taste


1. Cut or shred cabbage. Soak in cold water and then place in colander and rinse. Dry with salad spinner or on paper towels.

2. Place shredded cabbage in large bowl and and on top in a smaller circle place the shredded carrot.

3. Add on top the carrots, than the walnuts and then the pomegranate seeds. Sprinkle with the parsley.

4. Add the dressing when ready to serve.

5. Mix all the ingredients for the dressing.

6. Add the dressing and mix at the table.

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  • Reply Cabbage and Carrot Greek Winter Salad | Olive Tomato May 16, 2016 at 2:20 pm

    […] salad and you can add other ingredients such as apples, pomegranate seeds and walnuts as I did here for a festive holiday salad. The classic version is perfect when accompanied with crumbled […]

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  • Reply Briana Johnson February 22, 2019 at 4:43 pm

    I have a history of gerd, so I need to be careful with onions and garlic, especially raw. Do you have any suggestions for replacement of these two ingredients or can I simply just leave them out? I hope I wouldn’t lose too much of the essence of the recipe however.

    • Reply Elena Paravantes RDN February 22, 2019 at 5:17 pm

      Hi Brianna, you can leave out the garlic and there are no onions in this recipe, so you are all set!

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