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Food & Recipes

Shortcut Rhubarb Pie Recipe Makes It So Easy to Celebrate a Taste of Summer

Pro baker secrets guarantee delicious results!

It’s rhubarb season! Those vibrant, tart stalks signal summertime like no other. And what better way to celebrate this seasonal plant than in a classic dessert: rhubarb pie. My grandmother always made one every summer, and I remember getting seconds of that flaky golden crust and ruby-red filling. But if you don’t want to be stuck in the kitchen at your next gathering, I found the perfect recipe using store-bought pie dough so you can prep in no time. Plus, learn how to cut rhubarb safely and other tips from expert bakers, as well as how to store it. Here’s everything you need to know to make a classic rhubarb pie.

A bit about rhubarb pie

Rhubarb pie traces back to 17th-century England, where rhubarb was initially prized for its medicinal properties. In fact, rhubarb stalks were once believed to cure almost any sickness. Thankfully, today we enjoy it for its delicious flavor. The characteristic tartness pairs well with sugar and spices, making this pie a popular dessert choice throughout the summer. 

What is rhubarb?

Many mistake rhubarb for a fruit, but it’s a vegetable. A highly seasonal plant, it’s typically available from April through June. The edible part is the stalk. “Rhubarb stalks vary in color from deep red to pink to pale green depending on how and where they’re grown,” explains Ann Kirk, pastry chef at Little Dom’s. They offer a good source of fiber, are relatively low in calories and fat and contain essential vitamins like K1, which helps with blood clotting and bone health.

“Rhubarb is extra tart and needs sugar to make it palatable,” Kirk adds. “It’s tartness allows it to pair well with summer fruits, especially berries, and warm spices like vanilla and cinnamon.”

How to cut rhubarb

“When prepping rhubarb, make sure to cut off the leaves and toss them out,” says Kirk. First, gently clean the stalks under cool running water. Then discard the leafy tops entirely. Using a sharp knife, trim the ends and cut the stalks into the desired pieces, typically ½ to 1 inch thick.

Related: How to Clean Fruit So It’s Safe to Eat + The One Thing You Should Always Skip

Tips for making a shortcut rhubarb pie

Now that you have all your ingredients, it’s time to make a pie! But before you get started, here are tips from pro bakers so you can get perfect results.

1. Pre-bake the crust

For a crispier and less soggy bottom crust, pre-bak it for 10-15 minutes at 375°F before adding the filling.

2. Macerate your rhubarb

Rhubarb contains a lot of water and will become very loose when cooked into your pie,” says Kirk. “Before making the filling, its a good idea to macerate the rhubarb and then cook down the resulting juices so that your pie isn’t soggy in the end. You can also add a thickening agent to the filling like cornstarch or flour.

3. Add an egg wash

Brush the top crust with an egg wash (one egg beaten with a splash of water) before baking for a golden brown and glossy finish. Plus, it makes the pre-made crusts taste better.

4. Vent the crust

Cut a few small slits in the top crust to allow steam to escape during baking and prevent the pie from overflowing.

Shortcut rhubarb pie recipe

This easy recipe from Stephie Cooks takes just 20 minutes to prep with 4 ingredients. I made this for a family dinner party, and it became an instant hit. Be sure to check the pie after 30 minutes to make sure the edges don’t brown too much.

slice of rhubarb pie
from_my_point_of_view/Getty

Rhubarb Pie

Ingredients:

  • 1 pie crust for a 9-inch double-crust pie
  • 4 cups chopped rhubarb, be generous here
  • 1⅓ cups sugar
  • 6 Tbs. flour

Directions:

  • Active Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings
  1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Move rack to lowest position in the oven. Then, in a bowl, combine flour and sugar. Set aside.
  2. Roll out half of the pastry and place in a 9-inch pie plate. Chill the bottom crust while you roll out the top crust.
  3. After rolling the pastry for the top crust, remove bottom crust from the refrigerator. Sprinkle ⅓ of the flour-sugar mixture over the bottom crust. Pile the chopped rhubarb on top of the flour-sugar. Sprinkle the remaining sugar mixture over the rhubarb. Cover with the top crust. Then, trim and crimp/flute the edges.
  4. Set pie on a baking sheet. Bake on the lowest rack for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F and bake for an additional 40-45 minutes or until crust is golden and the juices are bubbly.

Note: If using frozen rhubarb, do not thaw the rhubarb first. Add it to the pie while still frozen.

Storing tips

“Rhubarb pie should be eaten the day it’s made. If you have leftovers, they can be kept at room temp or wrapped well and frozen,” says Kirk. You can store a tightly covered rhubarb pie at room temperature for up to 3 days. But the pie crust may lose its crispiness after the first day. It also keeps in the refrigerator for up to 5 days and in the freezer for up to 2 months.

See also: Baking Pro’s Top Secret for Freezing Pies So They Stay Fresh and Flavorful for Months

How to elevate your rhubarb pie

While you can’t go wrong with rhubarb pie on its own, my grandmother would experiment throughout the years with fun add-ins. I’ll never say no to classic pairings like strawberries or apples. Here are some other ways to elevate your pie.

1. Spice it up

A pinch of ground ginger, cinnamon as well as nutmeg can add a warm and festive touch to your pie (yes, even in the summer).

2. Add some nuts

For a textural contrast and extra richness, sprinkle chopped almonds, pecans or walnuts over the filling before baking.

3. Top with cream

Top a warm slice of rhubarb pie with a dollop of whipped cream. I also love a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a refreshing bite.


For more delicious pie recipes, check out these below:

Our Berry Cream Pie Recipe Is the Ultimate Sweet Treat — And It’s No-Bake Easy

Easy Homemade Kentucky Derby Pie Recipe Makes the Perfect Gooey Chocolate + Walnut Treat

Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe Is a Burst of Sunshine on a Plate — So Easy to Make at Home

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