The curtido recipe is so easy to prepare yet so flavorful. Recently, I asked a friend what one of her favorite dishes that her mother-in-law makes. She told me she loved Pupusa, an El Salvadoran flatbread served with Curtido and salsa. I remembered seeing pupusa but could not eat them because they were stuffed with cheese so preparing my vegan version was the best option.

I was so excited to prepare Curtido. The recipes I saw online mostly used vinegar as the acid, but I decided to use lime juice instead. The recipe is a version of pickled cabbage, and it’s amazing how different countries have their own versions of fermenting cabbage.

For instance, Kimchee is another version, and so is sauerkraut. I’m a huge lover of cabbage so this recipe, please check out  Jamaican Steamed Cabbage, Cabbage Curry, Roasted Cabbage Steak, 20 Amazing Vegan Cabbage Recipes.

What Is Curtido?

Curtido is a  fermented Salvadoran cabbage slaw. relish or pickled cabbage,  made from cabbage, carrots, onion, an accompaniment dish for Pupusa, El Salvador’s national dish.  

My recipe is unfermented but you can ferment yours with brine by leaving the jar on the counter in a cool dry place for 48 hours, as the cabbage slaw sits the better it gets. Curtido can be made ahead and store in the refrigerator.

It is also delicious served in sandwiches, burgers, tacos, wraps.

Curtido Ingredients         

  • Cabbage   
  • Carrot
  • Onion
  • Lime
  • Lime Zest
  • Dried Oregano
  • Salt               

How To Make Curtido?

  1. Cut cabbage in half, store one half of the cabbage in the refrigerator. Using a sharp knife, thinly shred cabbage, place in a large bowl. 
  2. Shred carrots and add to the cabbage, slice the onion and jalapeno in thin slices and add to the cabbage and carrots.
  3. Combine lime juice, lime zest, oregano and salt in a bowl, mix well.
  4. Pour lime mixture over cabbage slaw and massage with hands. Cover and allow cabbage to release its liquid for about 2 hours. Massage every 30 minutes.
  5. After the 2 hours, transfer Curtido including the liquid that was released to a clean glass jar. Make sure that the cabbage slaw is completely submerged. You can make a mixture of 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 cup water (brine) for extra liquid.
  6. Eat immediately or place a jar in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. 

Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit 

Other Delicious Condiments To Make

curtido, fermented cabbage slaw in brine ina jar

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Curtido El Salvadoran relish in a jar

Curtido Recipe

Curtido recipe is the perfect cabbage relish, crunchy cabbage, carrots, onion with tangy lime and oregano makes this El Salvadoran condiment special.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Condiments
Cuisine: American
Keyword: curtido recipe
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 244kcal

Equipment

  • 1 large saucepan

Ingredients

  • 1/2 small cabbage shredded
  • 2 medium carrots shredded
  • 1/2 medium onion
  • 2 medium lime
  • 1 medium lime zest
  • 1/2 medium jalapeno cut into slices
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar optional
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Cut cabbage in half, and store one-half of the cabbage in the refrigerator. Using a sharp knife, thinly shred cabbage, place in a colander and rinse, drain cabbage and transfer to a large bowl.
  • Shred carrots and add them to the cabbage. Slice the onion and jalapeno into thin slices and add them to the cabbage and carrots.
  • Combine lime juice, zest, sugar, oregano, and salt in a bowl and mix well.
  • Pour lime mixture over cabbage slaw and massage with hands. Cover and allow cabbage to release its liquid for about 2 hours. Massage every 30 minutes.
  • After 2 hours, transfer Curtido, including the liquid that was released, to a clean glass jar with a tight-fitting lid. Make sure that the cabbage slaw is completely submerged. For extra liquid, you can mix salt and water (brine).
  • Place jar in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Nutrition

Calories: 244kcal | Carbohydrates: 62g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0.3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Sodium: 2497mg | Potassium: 1432mg | Fiber: 21g | Sugar: 28g | Vitamin A: 21007IU | Vitamin C: 233mg | Calcium: 321mg | Iron: 4mg