Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

This strawberry rhubarb crisp is sweet tart and nostalgic, sweetened with maple syrup with a crumbly topping of pure oats.

Strawberry rhubarb crisp

Growing up, my family had a massive rhubarb plant. Rhubarb is quite ugly really; it looks like a monstrous weed with thick leaves and stalks. But every year my mom would harvest the pink-green stalks and make a rhubarb crisp. Boy, was it heavenly! The neon pink filling was intensely sweet tart, like a Jolly Rancher. Here’s an updated take on my family recipe: a strawberry rhubarb crisp made with maple and a pure oat topping. It’s naturally gluten free, and most importantly naturally so darn good.

How to make a strawberry rhubarb crisp

Why make this strawberry rhubarb crisp?

As you may know, Alex and I love healthy desserts. But here’s the thing: desserts just need to taste good! They’re a treat food, by definition! This strawberry rhubarb crisp has a tinge of healthy, but most of all: it tastes really, really good. There are also several ingredients you can modify to make it work for different diets. Here are the features of this tasty summer dessert:

  • The crisp topping is oats and oat flour (or almond flour). No all purpose flour here, making it naturally gluten free! You can use either oat flour or almond flour for a crunchy topping.
  • You can use sugar or maple syrup, and butter or coconut oil. Pure maple syrup is a great natural sweetener, and adds a gently sweetness and nuance to the flavor. Maple results in a cakier topping, where as with sugar it’s crispier. This crisp also has an option of using butter or coconut oil to turn it into a vegan dessert.
  • It’s just sweet enough (not sickly sweet). Some strawberry rhubarb crisp recipes call for boat-loads of sugar. This one uses just enough to get the right sweet flavor, without being sickly sweet. Using more berries in the filling than rhubarb helps accentuate the natural sweetness and balance out the tart rhubarb.
Spring produce

Crisp topping: the keys to crispy vs soft!

This strawberry rhubarb crisp has a few different options when it comes to the crumble ingredients. You’ll find that some result in a softer, more cake-like crumble, and some result in a more crisp crumble. Big takeaway: The crispiest crumble is with sugar, almond flour and butter; the cakiest crumble is with maple syrup, oat flour and coconut oil. Here’s more detail:

  • Sugar vs maple syrup: Use sugar for the crispiest crumble topping! This is for all you crunchy topping fans. But if using a natural sweetener is important to you, maple syrup works too! It results in a more cake-like, softer topping.
  • Oat flour vs almond flour: The topping makes this crisp into a gluten-free dessert because: well, we think it tastes better that way! Oat flour comes out slightly cakier, but if you use butter and sugar it will still be pretty crispy. You can make your own oat flour using a blender or food processor. Almond flour comes out the crispiest!
  • Butter vs coconut oil: Butter helps to make a crispy topping that tastes a little richer. But for a vegan and plant-based dessert, coconut oil tastes just as good! It has a light coconut essence, but it not overly strong.
Strawberry rhubarb crisp

How to store leftovers

Most of all, we hope this strawberry rhubarb crisp recipe will bring back nostalgic memories if you grew up eating rhubarb too! There’s something magical about this weed-like plant. And eating it in a crumble is one of the best sweet treats, if you ask us! Now, if you make it and have leftovers…how do you store them? Does crisp need to be refrigerated?

  • Room temperature: store for 1 day! You can leave your strawberry rhubarb crisp on the counter for up to 1 day (cover it at night). This way, the crumbly topping will stay crisp.
  • Refrigerated: Day 2-3! After 1 day at room temperature, refrigerate any leftovers. They’ll stay good for about 3 days.
Healthy strawberry rhubarb crisp

Mix it up! Ways to customize strawberry rhubarb crisp

This recipe results in a straightforward strawberry rhubarb crisp, with a sweet tart flavor and a crunchy crumble. If you’re looking for ways to customize it even further, try one of our flavor adders! Here are some ideas of flavors that add complexity:

  • Citrus: Add 1 teaspoon orange zest or lemon zest to the filling
  • Fresh ginger: Add 1 tablespoon finely minced fresh ginger root to the filling
  • Cardamom: Add 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom to the crumble

What are your favorite ways to eat rhubarb?

Let us know in the comments: we’d love to know! In the meantime, here are some of our favorite rhubarb recipes:

Healthy strawberry rhubarb crisp

This strawberry rhubarb crisp recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free. For vegan, plant-based, and dairy-free, use coconut oil instead of butter.

Print
Strawberry rhubarb crisp

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (14 votes, average: 4.43 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings 1x

Description

This strawberry rhubarb crisp is sweet tart and nostalgic, sweetened with maple syrup with a crumbly topping of pure oats.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 cups chopped rhubarb (10 ounces)
  • 3 cups sliced strawberries (1 pound)
  • 3/4 cup pure maple syrup or sugar, divided*
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 3/4 cup oat flour (oats ground finely in a food processor or high speed blender) or almond flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 5 tablespoons butter or coconut oil
  • Add-in ideas: 1 teaspoon orange or lemon zest or 1 tablespoon finely minced fresh ginger root in the filling adds complexity; 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom in the crumble would also be nice

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Make the filling: Chop the rhubarb into small pieces (about 1/2 inch wide). Slice the strawberries, cutting any large strawberry slices in half. In a medium bowl, mix the strawberries and rhubarb with 6 tablespoons maple syrup, the cornstarch and the vanilla.
  3. Make the topping: If necessary, process your oats into oat flour in a food processor or high speed blender (should take only a minute or so!). In a medium bowl, mix together the oats, oat flour, cinnamon, and kosher salt. Cut the butter into small pieces and then use your hands to mix it into the oats until fully distributed and a crumbly dough forms. (If using coconut oil, it can be room temperature; use the same method to add it.) Stir in the remaining 6 tablespoons of maple syrup.
  4. Pour the filling into a round 9-inch pie pan (or 9 x 9 inch pan). Pour the crumble on top and smooth it into an even layer with your fingers.
  5. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes until the top is evenly lightly browned and the filling is bubbly. Cool for a few minutes, then serve warm. You can leave out your strawberry rhubarb crisp on the counter for up to 1 day (covered, at night) so the crisp topping can stay crisp. After 1 day, refrigerate any leftovers.

Notes

*Sugar will get you a crispier crisp topping; maple syrup will make it cakier and softer. The crispiest crisp topping is achieved using sugar, butter, and almond flour.

  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp, Healthy Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp, How to Make a Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp, Easy Dessert Recipes

Looking for easy desserts?

Outside of this healthy strawberry rhubarb crisp, here are a few more easy desserts we love:

Last updated: January 2020

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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
    sheenam | thetwincookingproject
    May 10, 2019 at 3:12 am

    Looks really yummy!!!!! Definitely giving this a try.

  • Reply
    Diane
    June 27, 2020 at 7:22 am

    Can’t wait to make this tonight! Can you please tell me what a serving size is? Thanks!

  • Reply
    Katie
    July 20, 2020 at 9:56 pm

    Hey, this recipe was great! Really enjoying working my way through y’all’s cookbook as well :)

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      July 21, 2020 at 9:04 pm

      So glad to hear that! Thank you :)

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