Gluten-free,  Salads

Broccoli Cranberry Slaw plus the healthy benefits of raw cider vinegar

In between all the rich desserts and indulgences that fill up this holiday month, I make sure healthy soups and salads balance out my meals, plus an extra few miles on my bike ride!   Recently I’ve begun adding raw apple cider vinegar to many of my dishes after reading several articles on its health benefits. 

It is suggested to add the vinegar to a glass of water and drink it before each meal.  Now, I follow one motto in my life…I’m all about pleasure!  In my eating, my exercise routines and whatever else I add to my busy day, I strive to make them as pleasurable as possible!  Drinking a glass of water with vinegar simply is not! 

But the allure of a flat belly along with several other health benefits to look and feel better and more energized had me intrigued….

  • smoothes skin texture and tone
  • promotes a healthy immune system
  • improves digestion and helps eliminate toxins
  • speeds up metabolism

So, while I’m not pouring myself a vinegar cocktail before my meals, I am incorporating it into marinades for meats and vinaigrettes as used in this salad.  A good quality raw apple cider is recommended; such as Bragg’s Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar.  

This salad is a great side for Panini’s and by itself with the addition of leftover grilled or roasted chicken makes a nice lunch to take to work.  The flavor improves overnight so it’s a perfect make ahead dish. 

(The “drink” taken prior to each meal consists of 2 tablespoons of vinegar to a 8 oz glass of water with agave or organic honey to sweeten to taste.)

Broccoli Cranberry Slaw

½ cup organic raw apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoons agave – or more to your preferred sweetness

½ teaspoon Kosher salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

½ teaspoon ground mustard

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

12 oz bag of broccoli slaw

2 organic apples, diced – remove skin if not organic

1 cup dried cranberries

½ cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Combine all dressing ingredients, from the vinegar to the olive oil in a jar and shake well.  In a large bowl, combine the slaw, apples, cranberries and nuts.  Pour vinaigrette over the slaw and mix well.  Best to make several hours ahead or overnight to marry the flavors well.  Makes about 8 one cup servings.  For a main meal, add in chopped leftover turkey or chicken.

On a side note, I’m looking at self-hosting and totally confused..does anyone have any advice for me??

I love being in the kitchen. Early mornings, soft music, a hot espresso. Easing into the preparation of delicious meals. Glancing through cookbooks, gathering inspiration and planning my day. I look forward to the cycles of the seasons, the pleasures of tasting and savoring and sharing this with those dear to me. Weekends are special to me as my week days are often rushed, but still I create the ambiance, light the candles, set the table and uncork the wine.


  • Food, Flowers, Herbs and Life!

    What a lovely salad! And my thoughts for supper tonight were something healthy! This salad with a bowl of soup sounds perfect! My sister takes a tablespoon of vinegar every night before going to bed. I can’t say that I’m brave enough to do that. I think your suggestion of incorporating vinegar into our cooking sounds better!

  • sprint2thetable

    I’ve been doing the Bragg’s thing every morning as soon as I get up. I do think it is energizing and for sure helps with digestion! It’s not so bad after you get used to it.

    your salad looks like another great way to incorporate it! I love broccoli slaws – in fact, raw is the only way I will eat broccoli!

  • ChgoJohn

    Such a fresh looking and colorful salad, Lynda! I’ve not heard of drinking vinegar, raw or otherwise, but I have heard of people taking olive oil daily. Then of course, there was my Grandfather’s approach: a shot and a beer a day. I dunno which method is best but can you guess which one I lean toward? Must be genetic. 🙂

    • spicegirlfla

      I see you and Greg follow my all about pleasure attitude!! I like a little liquor, like Amaretto or Frangelico in the evening, beer just won’t do it for me! I also found a Biscotti Liqueur that I love, imagine that!

  • Fitness Nut

    Looks delicious! I love trying different salads and I also drink Bragg’s diluted in water pretty much every morning. Apple Cider Vinegar has many health benefits and I wish more and more people knew about them.

    • spicegirlfla

      Mmmm….I’m really getting convinced to try the drink again. I know people have thought the vinegar would create too much acid in your stomach but in fact, it doesn’t and helps those that have acid reflux!

  • Kristy

    You know I actually started drinking and gargling with the water with apple cider vinegar, honey and a dash of cayenne when I have sore throats. It works wonders!!! II actually got rather used to the taste and it was surprisingly easy on the digestion. I also felt like I get more energy afterwards too. I had no idea it had other health benefits. Now I’m going to have to explore this a bit more. I like the idea of adding it to salads and marinades – sounds a bit more appetizing than the drink. 🙂

    • spicegirlfla

      I’m getting excited by all those who are commenting that they do drink vinegar! I’m liking you addition of cayenne and didn’t realize this would help sore throats. My mother’s remedy was warm wine, go figure, she was Italian after all!

  • Sissi

    This slaw looks delicious and so seasonal with cranberries…
    I do hope vinegar makes the fat easier to digest… At least when I have vinaigrette sauce with salad I feel it lightens a rich meal (but maybe it’s only psychological?). I didn’t know about so many other health benefits of vinegar. I might try drinking it the way you describe it (I don’t mind very acid drinks, so I wouldn’t even need agave syrup). I must try it and see if there are any results. Thank you so much for sharing this precious tip!

  • Chica Andaluza

    I´ve heard this is good for you and I´ve also heard that a few minutes after drinking you should jump up and down two or three times to “rinse” the system through! Sounds bonkers but there is a kind of weird logic 🙂 The salad looks amazing. I feel detoxed just by reading it!

  • Courtney

    How interesting…I’ve never heard about raw apple cider vinegar before, but it sounds like something to look into for sure. And I really like how you incorporated it into your lovely salad.

  • Kelly

    Greg is hilarious! Love having some men on board for these discussions…;) Although there isn’t a lot of science behind it, if apple cider vinegar works for you, that’s all the evidence you’ll ever need. Love your life philosophy! – and, I agree. If it isn’t pleasurable, it’s not sustainable. This is a gorgeous, colourful slaw and I just happen to love vinegar – the cranberry and apple are a perfect contrast to the acid. Delightful Linda.

  • smartfoodandfit

    I love this salad, very colorful and full of antioxidants. I have friends that like to drink water with a touch of Bragg’s apple cider vinegar too! It’s suppose to help w/ digestion and more. But I prefer to drink hot water with fresh lemon juice in the morning sometimes with a touch of raw honey. I do like to use apple cider vinegar in some of my recipes.
    I think this is informative link from webmd on apple cider vinegar and it’s health benefits:

    • spicegirlfla

      I’ve heard about the fresh lemon juice in water for the morning too. I drink a full glass of water every morning before my coffee 🙂 but have not yet gotten into the habit of adding anything into it!

  • Just A Smidgen

    This salad has all of my favorite flavors and I can just imagine the crunch of each bite! It would be a good Christmas salad with all those colors in there! My husband once had some sort of drink that he did for a “cleanse”.. I wouldn’t have the stomach for it!

  • France

    I love the new look. The salad sounds wonderful. I love all the fresh flavors. Cider vinegar is delicious in dressings. The health benefits are a bonus! I’ll be giving this a try this week!

  • kitchenbelleicious

    this slaw looks incredible. I love the flavors and the nice little crunch factor. I use cider vinegar in so many things because I just love the taste it gives to certain dishes. My grandfather who is 86 and going strong has taken 2-3 spoonfuls of vinegar every morning for the past 40 years and he has never had anything more than an ear infection! I definitely believe in its healthy benefits

  • Karen

    I can just see my husband’s face in the morning if I take my vitamins with a vinegar cocktail followed by jumping up and down a few times as a way to be healthier. I think I like your idea of having the vinegar mixed with food. The slaw sounds so good.

  • Caroline

    Not sure if I could down a glass of vinegar, but maybe it’d be worth it, haha. I agree though, eating should be an enjoyable experience! This slaw looks/sounds fabulous, Linda! Love all of the colors.

  • Geni - Sweet and Crumby

    Love this slaw Linda. I usually use cider vinegar but never knew of the raw cider vinegar benefits. I guess my next bottle will have to be raw. I love the idea of a flatter stomach and better skin. Sounds great! But I have to agree with you that doing a “shot” of it with water does not sound appealing. Ew.

  • Charles

    Hi Linda – firstly… “lol”… I wondered what was going on at first, then I realised that there’s some sort of “snow” effect going on at the top of your pages right now (or am I just going crazy?). If you’re interested in self-hosting I can help you out with any questions you might have – shoot me a mail to the address I left this comment with if you wanted to talk about it in more depth. I can advise some good hosts and registrars as well as moving itself 🙂

    The dish looks delicious, but excuse my ignorance… what exactly is “broccoli slaw”? :$ I’ve never heard of it at all… not sure if I could find it here…

  • Stefanie

    Beautiful slaw and perfect for the holidays with the cranberries 🙂
    I think I’ve heard that “vinegar drinks” help with arthritis or something too… One of my old coworkers would drink it. I think I’ll pass too. hehe

  • Erika

    Hi – We don’t have broccoli slaw available (never heard of it, in fact). Can you please tell me whether it is the florets or the stems of the broccoli used in this salad, and approximately how much cabbage to how much broccoli the recipe would call for? Thanks!

    • spicegirlfla

      The slaw uses the stems of the broccoli and the majority of the mix is the brocolli along with carrots and red cabbage. I’d say its about 50% broccoli and the other 50% a mix of carrots and red cabbage. I hope that helps!!

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