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King Kullen Coleslaw

King Kullen Coleslaw
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If you love Coleslaw, this version from our local supermarket is well-worth making.

What is summer without coleslaw? Who can imagine Fried Chicken without it?  As Colonel Sanders himself said, “It’s always a tough decision between that, the Mac and Cheese, and the mashed potatoes, isn’t it?”.  Coleslaw is never really top of mind. But it’s right up there with Hot Dogs, Hamburgers and Fried Chicken in availability.  While it passes for a salad, it’s not exactly health food.  This is why this version—light on the mayo and heavier on the veggie side—is one that we can’t get enough of.  It’s crunchy and crisp.  The mayo is lightened up with Apple Cider Vinegar. This gives it a great tang while the mayo keeps it creamy.  And yes, there’s a little sugar—your choice white or brown.  It’s also an absolute breeze to make. Our copycat version takes advantage of all that shredding of cabbage and carrots that you find—guess where? At King Kullen, of course.

King Kullen, “America’s First Supermarket”, has been the definition of a supermarket since 1930.

America’s First King Kullen

None other than the Smithsonian Institution declared that by definition, King Kullen was first in the nation, beating out Ralph’s and Kroger’s. To be a supermarket, the store had to be “self-service, having separate product departments, discount pricing, marketing and volume selling”. On August 4th, 1930, Michael J. Cullen, a former employee of Kroger’s, opened the first true supermarket in a 6000 square foot space in Jamaica, Queens. in a former garage, Cullen expanded the idea of Self-Service, by adding separate food departments.  His other contribution was to sell food at discount prices. King Kullen’s slogan was “Pile it high. Sell it low”.  In just six years, Cullen expanded to 17 locations. After his death in 1936, King Kullen remained a family business. A recent merger with Stop and Shop was called off, much to the relief of King Kullen’s loyal customers who can’t imagine shopping anywhere but in “America’s First Supermarket”.

The first American Coleslaw made its appearance in American literature in 1785.

A Cabbage and vinegar salad that involved eggs has been eaten since Ancient Rome. But American Coleslaw comes from the Dutch word “Koolsla” which was shortened from “Koolsalade” which literally means “Cabbage Salad”.  “Koolsla” became “Coleslaw” which Dutch immigrants came to America.  As a result, Coleslaw is considered to be an iconic American dish. Over the course of some years, Coleslaw evolved to contain carrots. There are even versions that add cheese.  But at King Kullen, today’s recipe for Store made coleslaw (which is what it’s actually called) adds red and green bell peppers for crunch. And just maybe to make you think, this really is “good for you”.  Here is the recipe:


King Kullen Coleslaw

August 18, 2020
: Makes 12 cups
: 10 min
: 15 min
: Since we rely on pre-packaged slaw and carrots, all that's required is the dicing of two Bell Peppers

A crispy, crunchy coleslaw with just enough tang and a whole lot of texture makes this a slaw to love.


  • For the Slaw: 2-14 oz. Packages of Coleslaw mix
  • 2 cups Shredded Carrots--pre-packaged
  • 1 large Green Bell Pepper, diced 1/4 inch
  • 1 large Red Bell Pepper, diced 1/4 inch
  • For the Dressing:
  • 1 Cup Mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Juice of 1 half Lemon
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste
  • Step 1 Toss all 4 Coleslaw ingredients in a large bowl.
  • Step 2 In a small bowl, add Mayonnaise.
  • Step 3 Whisk in the Apple Cider Vinegar and the lemon juice.
  • Step 4 Pour evenly over the slaw and using two wooden spoons, incorporate the dressing. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Step 5 Note: This coleslaw keeps well in the refrigerator for at least a week, so you can always have some on hand.


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