Hot Pink Rhubarb Compote

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This hot pink sweet-tart rhubarb compote is as delicious as it is beautiful. Serve over waffles or pancakes, or swirl it into oatmeal, yogurt, or ice cream.

Hot Pink Rhubarb Compote | A Couple Cooks

When I was growing up in Minnesota, my parents had a garden and in the back was a big old rhubarb plant. It looked like a giant weed. I remember trying a bite of the greenish pink stalk raw from the cutting board as my mom chopped it for a dessert. UGH, was it tart and disgusting! But sweetened with sugar and nestled under an oat crumble topping, it was the stuff dreams are made of. That sweet tart flavor takes me right back to childhood, licking the sticky pink goo from my plate. It’s exactly the inspiration for this rhubarb compote recipe! Keep reading for this fantastic solution to what to do with rhubarb.

How to make rhubarb compote

This year, we decided to start spring early with a rhubarb compote to top some waffles. True to my child self, I gave little Larson a greenish pink cube of raw rhubarb to chew on from the cutting board. His face crinkled up in confusion, but he kept chewing it all the same. But once sauteed with sugar into a hot pink rhubarb compote, he was a definite fan. After we swirled a smear of it into his oatmeal, he was in heaven.

This rhubarb compote recipe is supremely easy to make. Alex and I typically opt for natural sweetners like maple syrup, but in a compote the sugar performs some chemistry to break down and thicken the rhubarb, so we decided not to mess with perfection. It make rhubarb compote, simply chop rhubarb into cubes and then simmer it on the stovetop with sugar. The sugar makes the rhubarb break down into this electric pink sauce. After 10 minutes, place the rhubarb compote in a jar and refrigerate: cooling down the compote helps to thicken it.

From there, you can use the rhubarb compote on anything you like! It’s pretty sweet, so a little of the stuff goes a long way. We served it over these fluffy gluten free waffles, but it would be perfect on pancakes or french toast. Leftover rhubarb compote is perfect to swirl into yogurt, oatmeal, or as a simple dessert, vanilla ice cream. Here’s to the simple, seasonal pleasures: like rhubarb compote in the spring! And aside from the flavor, the vibrant hot pink color can’t be beat.

Use this rhubarb compote for topping…

Here are some recipe that would be perfect with a dollop of rhubarb compote:

This recipe is…

This rhubarb compote is vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, and plant-based.

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Hot Pink Rhubarb Compote


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  • Author: Sonja
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: About 1 cup 1x

Description

This hot pink sweet-tart rhubarb compote is as delicious as it is beautiful. Serve over waffles or pancakes, or swirl it into oatmeal, yogurt, or ice cream.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces rhubarb, about 4 large stalks
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Chop the rhubarb into small cubes, enough for 2 cups.
  2. In a saucepan, stir together the rhubarb and the sugar over low heat. Once it starts to to bubble, cook for about 10 minutes until the rhubarb is broken down and the juices have slightly thickened, mashing with the back of your spoon (exact timing depends on the size of the rhubarb and heat level).
  3. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice and vanilla. Transfer to a ball jar and chill for at least an hour, which will thicken the juices even more. Store refrigerated for a few weeks. Serve over waffles, pancakes, or swirled into oatmeal, yogurt, or ice cream.

  • Category: Sauce
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Rhubarb Compote, Rhubarb Recipes, What to Do with Rhubarb, Sauce Recipes, Compote, Rhubarb

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

4 Comments

  • Reply
    Lora
    March 12, 2018 at 12:15 am

    My parents have always had rhubarb and I would only eat it in something sweet. My son, however, has been eating it like celery ever since he was 3 years old. He loves it raw!

    • Reply
      Sonja
      March 14, 2018 at 1:14 pm

      Haha, wow you’re kidding! That’s a very strong flavor — too funny that he likes it raw!

  • Reply
    Carrie Neves
    June 6, 2019 at 10:07 am

    When do you add the lemon juice and vanilla?

    • Reply
      Sonja
      June 6, 2019 at 10:16 am

      We’ve updated the instructions to clarify — thanks for the catch!

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