Six women are among the 42 executive members of government named by Mr Abbott. Julie Bishop, the deputy leader of the ruling Liberal Party, will be foreign minister and five women will serve in lower ministries or as parliamentary secretary.
Mr Abbott, a 55-year-old former Roman Catholic seminarian, battled perceptions of sexism to lead his conservative coalition to an election victory.
Sue Boyce, a Liberal MP who will retire from parliament next year, said the lack of women in his cabinet spoiled the win.
She said: "It's a shame this shocking and embarrassing statistic will permanently tarnish a wonderful victory."
Mr Abbott said he had hoped party stalwart Sophie Mirabella would become a minister but she appears likely to become the only Liberal MP to lose her seat at the election. Vote counting is continuing.
He added: "I am disappointed there are not at least two women in the cabinet. Nevertheless, there are some very good and talented women knocking on the door of the Cabinet and there are lots of good and talented women knocking on the door of the ministries."
Former prime minister Julia Gillard, the first woman to lead the country, had five women in her Labor Party-led government's 22-member cabinet in 2012.