Sweet Vidalia Onion Slaw

Brat with Sweet Vidalia Onion Slaw --- yum!

Sweet Vidalia Onion Slaw is an utterly simple, utterly brilliant side for your next picnic, barbecue, or potluck  — the famously mellow onions are sliced paper thin and tossed with a cool buttermilk dressing — it’s a little bit of heaven on a paper plate!

*This post is in association with O Olive Oil. I’m a huge believer in this company, their oils and vinegars are stars in my kitchen — thank you for supporting them, and my other brand partners, they help keep TVFGI up and cooking!

Overhead photo of a bowl of sweet vidalia onion slaw in a white bowl.

Vidalias are super mild, sweet onions that were only discovered by accident in Vidalia Georgia in the 1930s — something about the soil in that particular area resulted in their unusual mellow quality, and  they’re so darned sweet and delicious that they eventually became trademarked. The only onions that can call themselves Vidalias are from those certain counties in Georgia. Vidalias are mild enough to eat right out of hand, like an apple, but I think this slaw is an even better idea. Serve it as a side, or on hot dogs, brats, burgers, sandwiches, etc. It goes with anything and everything and couldn’t be simper…

Photo of two vidalia onions for sweet vidalia onion slaw.

I made an appropriately Southern style slaw dressing to complement these Georgian gems. It’s a blend of buttermilk, mayo, and a lovely crisp O Citrus Champagne Vinegar.  With a recipe this simple it makes sense to go with good quality, and O’s vinegars are light and refreshing enough to drink on their own, or in a cocktail. A bit of salt, pepper, and a good dash of celery seeds completes this dressing. The buttermilk and the champagne vinegar work together to elevate even a homey slaw into something special.

Photo of a bowl of sweet vidalia onion slaw next to a bottle of Citrus Champagne vinegar.

If you’re like me and generally avoid eating too many raw onions, I think you’ll be amazed at how you can tolerate these without any problems at all. The flavor is sweet and mellow, and there’s none of the harsh sharpness we associate with regular onions. Unlike regular onions, sweet onions can be stored in the refrigerator.

Photo of sweet vidalia onion slaw in a wooden bowl, with a bottle of Citrus Champagne vinegar.

Onions are so tightly packed that when you slice one of them paper thin and separate all the strands it’ll fill a pretty good sized bowl. I love this recipe because with just one onion you can have this sweet Vidalia onion slaw on the table in no time. Most people don’t know it but onions are really healthy — they can help prevent everything from heart attacks and strokes, to ulcers and cancer. This delicious slaw might just put cabbage out of business!

A bowl of sweet vidalia onion slaw, and a sausage in a bun topped with sweet vidalia onion slaw.

tvfgi recommends: a sturdy mandoline slicer

I couldn’t do without my mandoline slicer, I use it all the time for salads, French fries, gratins, and tarts like this one. It’s earned its place in my kitchen countless times, I won’t be without one.

I recommend buying a sturdy steel mandoline, this one is currently $99.95 on Amazon Prime.

Vidalia Onion Slaw
4.08 from 14 votes

Sweet Vidalia Onion Slaw

Sweet Vidalia Onion Slaw is an utterly simple, utterly brilliant side for your next picnic, barbecue, or potluck  --- the famously mellow onions are sliced paper thin and tossed with a cool buttermilk dressing --- it's a little bit of heaven on a paper plate!
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Yield 8 servings
Author Sue Moran


  • 2 Vidalia onions or other sweet variety

buttermilk dressing

  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 Tbsp O Citrus Champagne Vinegar
  • 2 tsp celery seeds
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • lots of fresh cracked black pepper


  • dill parsley, thyme, or chive


  • Peel and slice the onions into 1/8 inch slices. This is best done on a mandolin slicer. Cut the slices in half or thirds.
  • Put the onions into a bowl, carefully separating the strands as you add them.
  • Whisk together the dressing and be sure to taste to adjust any of the ingredients.
  • Pour enough dressing over the onions to saturate them, but don't drown them. Toss well and refrigerate for several hours before serving.
  • Garnish with just a bit of green before serving, it could be dill, thyme, parsley, or chive.
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although theviewfromgreatisland.com tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.

make it your own ~

  • make it creamy ~ this dressing is on the thin side…if you’d like it thicker and creamier, use half the amount of buttermilk.
  • make it with a kick ~ I almost added a bit of horseradish, I think that would be nice. Or a bit of grainy Dijon mustard…depends on your mood.
  • make it light ~ to lighten the dressing try using Greek yogurt in place of the mayo. Don’t worry about the buttermilk, despite its name, it’s super low in fat. If you don’t have buttermilk you can use regular milk, but the flavor won’t be as good.


Thanks for pinning!



You Might Also Like


    Leave a Reply

    Please rate this recipe!

  • Reply
    April 29, 2016 at 12:52 pm

    This sounds totally delicious. I love all kinda slaw/relish and this looks so simple to make.

  • Reply
    April 29, 2016 at 12:19 pm

    This looks like something my dad would absolutely love! I don’t actually eat onions myself, but I’m forwarding the recipe his way to try!

    • Reply
      April 29, 2016 at 12:30 pm

      Let us know how he likes it Britni 🙂

  • Reply
    Laura | Tutti Dolci
    April 29, 2016 at 11:51 am

    I can so see this slaw becoming a summer staple. Love the Vidalia onions!

  • Reply
    April 29, 2016 at 9:31 am

    I love a good slaw recipe for topping things with and this one sounds like a great new one to try this summer! I’ve never heard of using buttermilk in a slaw recipe, but I’m so intrigued by the idea!

  • Reply
    April 29, 2016 at 9:09 am

    I’m not a huge fan of onions but I do love them on my hot dogs so I’ll have to give this a try sometime this summer 😀
    Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    April 29, 2016 at 8:36 am

    Woohooo! It’s s 3 day weekend in Shanghai and we’re grilling sausages. Now I know exactly what to top them with. Just need to find sweet onions… The hunt is on!

    • Reply
      April 29, 2016 at 10:37 am

      let me know how you like it Hanady, and have a fun weekend!

  • Reply
    Matt @ Plating Pixels
    April 29, 2016 at 8:12 am

    That’s a lot of onions but looks amazing! Excited about those sweet onions!

    • Reply
      April 29, 2016 at 8:24 am

      You know it’s so funny Matt, one little onion explodes into a whole bowlful when you slice them on a mandolin!

  • Reply
    Just Jo
    April 29, 2016 at 7:30 am

    Oh I just adore onions and don’t mind regular ones raw so I bet I would adore this slaw. I adore most slaws lol! I’ll have to see if I can source these onions in the UK as I’d love to try this recipe.

    • Reply
      April 29, 2016 at 7:38 am

      I think you’re in for a treat, Jo. Not sure if you can get Vidalias in the UK, my guess is not…but I bet there is another variety of sweet onion available to you.

  • Reply
    April 29, 2016 at 7:29 am

    You took an ordinary onion and made it into something extraordinary!

    • Reply
      April 29, 2016 at 7:39 am

      Thanks Tanya, I was really pleased with this recipe…I thought I had invented it, but after I finished the post I googled it and saw that it’s, of course, a ‘thing’. But I did notice that most if not all recipes add cabbage to the onion, and I like my pure version better 😉

  • Reply
    April 29, 2016 at 7:27 am

    You have the most creative recipes, Sue. I would never in a million years have thought of this, but I love Vidalia onions, I get a crate of them shipped from Georgia every year!

1 2 3

Sharing is Caring

Help spread the word. You're awesome for doing it!


Get my tips, tricks & recipes for easy

foolproof baking


logo png