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This rhubarb muffins recipe comes out tender and fluffy, with sweet tart pops of fruit and a crunchy streusel topping—perfect for breakfast or a delightful snack!

Rhubarb Muffins with chopped rhubarb.
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Got a load of rhubarb? If you’re not in the mood for pie or crisp, here’s a recipe that might be even better: rhubarb muffins! These truly are the best (make them and see if you agree!).

Why we love this recipe: These muffins are light and fluffy, with a golden muffin top showered with crunchy streusel topping. They taste like a handheld version of rhubarb crisp! The interior is flecked with just the right amount of sweet tart rhubarb, which gives us all the nostalgic summer vibes. We make these every year and they get rave reviews!

“These were perfect: very light, great flavor, wonderful texture. Thank you for the recipe!” -Sally

Ingredients in rhubarb muffins

These rhubarb muffins really are crowd-pleasers, and there are a few reasons why. The big secret is buttermilk, which makes for a tall, soft, and fluffy muffin. Other than that, you’ll need your typical cast of baking ingredients and a good amount of rhubarb. Here are the ingredients for rhubarb muffins:

  • Rhubarb: Choose rhubarb with firm, crisp stalks that are brightly colored, avoiding any with blemishes or soft spots. If you’re using garden rhubarb, keep in mind that if the stalk is green, it will remain green when cooked (it tastes great, it might just look different than you’re expecting).
  • Buttermilk: Buttermilk is crucial to making a light and fluffy muffin with a beautiful crumb. Don’t be tempted to use even a buttermilk substitute; it’s got to be the real thing.
  • Butter and oil. Butter and oil work uniquely in baked goods. Typically we use oil in our muffin recipes, but we love the richness in flavor and texture that butter adds here.
  • Vanilla extract and cinnamon: These add a cozy nuance to the flavor that makes it taste like rhubarb crisp.
  • All-purpose flour, granulated sugar, eggs, baking powder, baking soda, and salt: These common baking ingredients round out the recipe.
Rhubarb Muffins Ingredients

How to make rhubarb muffins: step by step

This rhubarb muffins recipe comes together simply, following the typical muffin formula. We love this one because of the light and fluffy crumb and of course those sweet tart pops of rhubarb in each bite! Here’s what to do (or jump to the full recipe):

Step 1: In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk the granulated sugar, buttermilk, melted butter, neutral oil, eggs, and vanilla extract.

Step 2: In a small bowl, mix the streusel ingredients: sugar, all-purpose flour, and cinnamon. Cut the butter into small pieces, then use your fingers to rub it into the dry ingredients until crumbles form.

Step 3: Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix gently until just combined. Add the rhubarb and fold it in with a spatula. Scoop the batter into muffin papers using a dough scoop and sprinkle the tops with the streusel.

Step 4: Bake at 375°F until the tops are golden brown and a toothpick in the center comes out with a few crumbs, about 20 to 26 minutes total (rotate the pans halfway through baking). Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then transfer to a baking rack to fully cool, about 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Rhubarb muffins recipe with rhubarb stalks.

Tricks to this rhubarb muffins recipe

There are a few tricks we learned for this muffins recipe from our friend Sarah’s Kieffer’s baking book, 100 Morning Treats. Sarah is a cookbook author and trained baker, and everything that she whips up is incredible (even better, we get to know her in real life since she lives in my home state of Minnesota!). This recipe is not in her book, but we created it heavily influenced by Sarah’s muffin recipes. Here are a few things we learned:

  • Fill every other cup in two 12-cup muffin tins. This helps the muffins to bake evenly, getting that nice domed top. You can bake in one tin if you don’t have two: this simply achieves the nicest looking muffins.
  • Fill the muffin cups up to the top. This recipe is optimized so you fill the muffin cups very full up to the top, just like in our other muffin recipes. This makes beautifully tall and fluffy muffins.
  • Baking at 375°F makes a taller muffin. A slightly hotter oven makes a taller and fluffier muffin, versus the standard 350°F.
Rhubarb stalks.

Rhubarb muffins storage info

How to store rhubarb muffins? These rhubarb muffins taste best the day they’re baked. However, they hold up pretty well over time! Here’s what to know:

  • Refrigerator: These muffins store well in the refrigerator for up to 1 week! Let them stand at room temperature for a few minutes before eating.
  • Freeze: Freeze in a sealable container and store up to 3 months.
Rhubarb muffins recipe with rhubarb stalks and chopped rhubarb.

More rhubarb recipes

Rhubarb season is our favorite! Here are a few more rhubarb recipes you might enjoy:

Dietary notes

This rhubarb muffins recipe is vegetarian. For dairy-free, use refined coconut oil or vegan butter in place of the butter.

Frequently asked questions

What kind of rhubarb should I use for muffins?

Look for firm, crisp stalks with vibrant red color. Avoid rhubarb with blemishes, soft spots, or leaves (as they can be bitter).

Do I need to peel rhubarb before using it?

No, peeling rhubarb is not necessary. Simply wash the stalks, trim the ends, and chop them into bite-sized pieces.

My rhubarb is a little too tart. How can I adjust the sweetness in the muffins?

The sugar in this recipe should account for the tartness of the rhubarb. If you’re worried about tartness, feel free to add a few more tablespoons of sugar.

Can I substitute other fruits for rhubarb in these muffins?

Absolutely! Try substituting chopped apples, strawberries, or blueberries for a delicious twist.

How can I store leftover rhubarb muffins?

Store leftover muffins in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. You can also freeze them for longer storage.

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Rhubarb muffins

Rhubarb Muffins with Streusel


5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

5 from 4 reviews

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x

Description

This rhubarb muffins recipe comes out tender and fluffy, with sweet tart pops of fruit and a crunchy streusel topping—perfect for breakfast or a delightful snack!


Ingredients

Scale

For the muffins

  • 1 ½ cups rhubarb, finely chopped (about 12 ounces)
  • 2 cups [280 g] all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup buttermilk*
  • 5 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
  • ⅓ cup neutral oil (grapeseed, canola, or vegetable oil)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the streusel topping

  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  2. Chop the rhubarb and set it aside. Place muffin wrappers in every other muffin cup of two 12-cup muffin tins.**
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Make a well in the center.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk the granulated sugar, buttermilk, melted butter, neutral oil, eggs, and vanilla extract.
  5. Make the streusel: In a small bowl, mix the sugar, all-purpose flour, and cinnamon. Cut the butter into small pieces, then use your fingers to rub it into the dry ingredients until well distributed and crumbles form.
  6. Pour the wet ingredients for the batter (Step 4) into the well in the dry ingredients. Mix gently until just combined and there are no longer streaks of flour.
  7. Add the rhubarb and fold it in with a spatula, taking care not to overwork the batter. (If desired, you can store the batter up to 24 hours before baking.)
  8. Scoop the batter into the muffin papers using a dough scoop: it should fill to the top of the muffin papers. Sprinkle the tops with the streusel.
  9. Bake until the tops are golden brown and a toothpick in the center comes out with a few crumbs, about 20 to 26 minutes total (rotate the pans halfway through baking). Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then transfer to a baking rack to fully cool (about 30 minutes to 1 hour). The muffins are best eaten the day they are made, but they store very well in an airtight container in the refrigerator and last up to 1 week.

Notes

*Buttermilk is the magic ingredient which makes the most consistent texture and rise! Don’t be tempted to leave it out or use a buttermilk substitute. It’s worth it (we promise).

**Baking in every other tin makes for a more consistent bake. If all you have is a 12-cup muffin tin, you can use that too.

  • Category: Muffin
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes and the joy of cooking! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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11 Comments

  1. Renee Cook says:

    Hi!

    Have you subbed the sugar out and tried either maple syrup or honey? If so, what would the equivalent amount be?

    Thank you!

      1. Renee Cook says:

        Will do thank you!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Made this recipe 4 times delicious. U have to watch the calories. I skipped the strudel.






  3. Terri says:

    Just made these today with frozen rhubarb that I thawed and added all The liquid. Turned out great and so yummy! Thanks for the tips👍🏻🤩






  4. Kristi Graul says:

    I will be making these next weekend, but my rhubarb is frozen. Do you thaw first and include the liquid in recipe, or leave frozen?

    1. Sonja Overhiser says:

      Great question! We haven’t tried this with frozen rhubarb, so it’s possible it may not work. I think to test you can use it directly from frozen: don’t bother thawing. Let us know if it works!

  5. Sally Swanson says:

    These were perfect: very light, great flavor, wonderful texture. I did have to concoct a desperate version of buttermilk: whole milk, yogurt, sour cream, powdered buttermilk – whisk together and let it set maybe 20 minutes. I can’t imagine that real buttermilk could’ve made the end result any more delightful! Thank you for the recipe.






  6. Sharon Bush says:

    Very good recipe… Add 2 strawberrys…






  7. Patti Studaker says:

    I’m going to make your rhubarb muffin recipe, I just have a question regarding the ingredients. You mention that you will need granulated sugar and brown sugar. But the ingredient amount only calls for 1cup of granulated sugar and no mention of brown sugar. Thanks Patti

    1. Sonja Overhiser says:

      That is a typo — there is no brown sugar needed, just granulated. Thank you so much!