June 7, 2018

Old-fashioned rhubarb crumble

Pan of rhubarb crumble.

This dessert combines humble, tart rhubarb with sugar, a little bit of spice, and a delicious buttery crumb topping for a classic old-fashioned family favorite.

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Sometimes simple is the best in my book. Rhubarb is often combined with strawberries or other fruits, but for this dessert, it's rhubarb all the way. You can, of course, substitute some of the rhubarb in this recipe for strawberries, blueberries, chopped apples, or any other fruits you like.

Plus, you can't beat a delicious crumble top on a dessert like this! I like crisp tops as well with oats in them, but for this dessert the crumble top is my favorite. 

This rhubarb crumble is simple and homey. It has just a touch of spices - a bit of cinnamon and a bit of ginger. You can use all cinnamon if you prefer. Another lovely spice with rhubarb is cardamom. 

This recipe can be made with fresh rhubarb or rhubarb that has been frozen and thawed. If the thawed rhubarb is very juicy and wet, drain off the excess water before using in the recipe.

I've shared quite a few rhubarb recipes in the past, including this rhubarb recipe round-up. Rhubarb is something we grew up with - there was a giant plant growing in our backyard and backyards of pretty much everyone in our area. Now a days I feel like people don't eat rhubarb as much as I remember. 

Rhubarb stalks can be eaten only. The leaves are toxic and are not intended to be eaten. If you grow the plant at home or get it from the market with the leaves still attached, discard them before using in cooking.

Serve this old-fashioned rhubarb crumble as is or topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or whipped cream, if desired (I really like it with a little ice cream, especially when still warm from the oven). It's delicious both warm from the oven and room temperature.

Hungry for more rhubarb recipes? Check out this round-up of

 25 Rhubarb Recipes that aren't Strawberry Rhubarb Pie!

Large pan of baked rhubarb crumble.
Yield: 6-8 servings

Old-Fashioned Rhubarb Crumble

This dessert combines humble, tart rhubarb with sugar, a little bit of spice, and a delicious buttery crumb topping for a classic family favorite.


for the filling
  • 2 lbs rhubarb stalks, cut into about 1/2-in pieces
  • 1-1/3 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
for the crumble
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick cold unsalted butter, diced into cubes, plus more for greasing


How to cook Old-Fashioned Rhubarb Crumble

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly butter a 9"x13" baking dish.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the filling ingredients.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour through salt. Cut in the butter using a pastry cutter or your fingers until it resembles crumbs.
  4. Spread the rhubarb mixture into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the crumble evenly on top.
  5. Bake for about 40-45 minutes, until the filling is bubbling and the crumble is golden.
  6. Let cool for about 20-30 minutes before serving. Top with whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream, if desired.
Created using The Recipes Generator

I hope you give this old-fashioned rhubarb crumble a try! Let me know how it turns out in the comments below! 
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Spoon scooping up some rhubarb crumble.

Check out these other rhubarb recipes: 

Rhubarb Applesauce (No Sugar Added)

Chocolate Chip Rhubarb Brownies 

Rhubarb Oatmeal Bars

Rhubarb Sour Cream Bread 


  1. I simply can't resist anything with crumble!

  2. Yum! I love a good crumble! I cannot wait until rhubarb season comes back around now!

  3. old-fashioned recipes are most often my favorites! love that crumbly top.

  4. I really need to make a rhubarb dessert before it goes away! This sounds perfect.

  5. Made this exactly as written and there was not nearly enough topping for the amount of rhubarb. The topping seemed to disappear into the rhubarb. Disappointed.

    1. I'm sorry this recipe didn't work well for you. The toppings on crumbles can definitely sink, especially if your fruit is extra juicy.

  6. Made the rhubarb crumble tonight, turned out great. I also used frozen rhubarb that I had collected from my garden. I will be making this again. Thanks for the recipe

  7. I was also wondering —2 pounds = about how many cups?

    1. Probably around 6 cups of chopped rhubarb.

  8. Have just made this crumble, OMG , it was gorgeous thank you for recipe .

  9. Made this for my book club dessert. Big hit. Loved the cardamon, it paired well. Crumble was just the way I hoped and imagined it would be. Thank you! Now do you have a rhubarb bread recipe…I’m checking now!

    1. I'm so glad to hear that. I have a lot of rhubarb recipes, including a sour cream rhubarb bread and an oatmeal rhubarb bread. Thanks!

  10. Could you make this, and freeze for later baking?

    1. I have not tried that before, but it would probably work. Let me know if you try it.

  11. Finally had a chance to make this. It was delicious!!

  12. My friend just brought me a hot bowl of this rhubarb! Super yummy!!I have made perfect rhubarb crisps in the microwave. Have you tried this in microwave?

    1. Hi! I'm glad you enjoyed this rhubarb crumble. I've never made this or any sort of crumble/crisp in the microwave (I haven't owned one in more than a decade), so I can't help there - sorry!


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