Texas-born actor Matthew McConaughey and his wife Camila Alves have enjoyed a storybook romance since they met in 2006. At their Austin, TX home, the couple shares three children, many laughs, and delicious food, all with a Southern flair. 


Alves, a Brazilian model and entrepreneur, makes a variety of tried-and-true recipes for the family, which includes McConaughey’s mother Kay “Ma Mac,” who celebrated her 92nd birthday in January. 

Which recipe is the most popular? Alves revealed to Southern Living that it’s actually a vegan take on a classic side salad the family asks for most. “The most requested recipe in the house for me to make—by Ma Mac and Matthew—would be the no-mayo coleslaw,” she said.

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Matthew McConaughey’s favorite coleslaw

In a video recipe Alves shared with her online community Women of Today, McConaughey raved about the no-mayo slaw. “It’s one of those things that I love so much and you haven’t done it for weeks, and I actually forgot about it,” he says. “And now that you made it again, I don’t know how I forgot about it because I don’t know anything it doesn’t go with it.”

“I miss it now,” McConaughey says about the salad. “And please don’t let me forget about it for so long again.”  

Coleslaw is a classic Southern salad made with plenty of mayonnaise, which is not usually vegan as it typically contains eggs. As its name suggests, Alves’ no-mayo coleslaw does not contain mayonnaise and instead features a zesty dressing made with plenty of lemon juice, olive oil, vinegar (both red and white wine), and fresh mint.

The main ingredient is cabbage, a budget-friendly, nutritious vegetable. To make the recipe even easier, buy pre-shredded cabbage for quicker assembly. Plus, you can sub in Brussels sprouts, broccoli, or other vegetables to mix it up for any day of the week. The trick to making this coleslaw great is a mandoline, a kitchen device that helps to cut the whole cabbage into thin shreds, which helps to better absorb the dressing.

The addition of apple and onion—both very thinly sliced—is also a trick to varying the flavor profile, adding astringency, tartness, and sweetness to the dish. Alves suggests mixing with your hands and adjusting the recipe to your own taste. Lastly, marinating this salad overnight allows all of the flavors to meld together, creating a dish that is on major rotation in the Alves-McConaughey household.


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3 vegan coleslaw recipes to try

For more plant-based inspiration, try these three easy-to-make coleslaw recipes. 

Shaved Asparagus Slaw

Fresh dill and scallions add depth to shredded red cabbage and shaved asparagus for a complex and delectable slaw.
GEt the recipe

Crispy Asian Coleslaw

Toasted sesame oil, rice vinegar, and ginger add a tangy, Asian-inspired flavor to otherwise plain coleslaw. 
get the recipe

3 Indian Cabbage Slaw With Roasted Cashews

Koshimbir is the Indian equivalent of refreshing slaw but with a fiery twist that’s usually accompanied by savory summer meals.
get the recipe

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