Latin Pickled Slaw Recipe (Curtido)

Mark Stewart Recipe Leave a Comment

This might very well be one of the easiest recipes you’ll ever make. It originally accompanied another recipe on this site. However, seeing as curtido compliments so many other foods, we decided it deserves its own post.

During our first day in El Salvador is when we encountered curtido for the first time. The simple yet perfect pupusa, national dish of the country, is never served without this delicious slaw. Almost like a Latin saurkraut, the sharpness of the vinegar cuts through rich, fatty foods with ease. The cumin gives the curtido its trademark flavour while the jalapeño gives it just the slightest heat.

Typically used for Latin American staples such as vigoron and pupusas, this condiment is almost as versatile as the spicy Mexican pickles. Consider using it as a topping for anything from fish tacos, hot dogs or even fried rice.

The recipe itself contains only a few simple ingredients, commonly found almost everywhere. Add to that the ease of preparation and versatility, this condiment should be in every fridge.

Carrots, cabbage, onions, garlic and jalapeno on a cutting board.
Simple, easy to find ingredients
Curtido (Latin Pickled Slaw)

Curtido (Latin Pickled Slaw)

Yield: 1 L
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes


  • 1/2 green cabbage
  • 1 carrot
  • 1/2 onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 jalapeno
  • 2 cups white vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1Tbsp cumin seed
  • 1/4 cup sugar


  1. Shred cabbage, julienne carrots, thinly slice onion and jalapeno, and slice garlic as thin as possible. Add oregano and mix thoroughly in a heatproof bowl or jar.
  2. In a small saucepan heat up vinegar, sugar, cumin seeds and salt. When it comes to a boil, pour over vegetables and cover with a cloth. The cover is to help keep the heat in, don't seal with a fitted lid, the pressure will blow it off or crack the container.
  3. Let sit on counter until cool and refrigerate. Serve cold.
  4. Will last in the fridge for up to two weeks.
About the Author

Mark Stewart

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Mark is a multi-passionate creative with a fascination for getting the most out of the human experience. While he isn't chasing adventures around the globe as a travel journalist and photographer, he works as a freelance writer, private chef and web developer.

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