Make the best of rhubarb season with this easy-to-make and delectable rhubarb cake. This cake is fluffy, moist, and loaded with jammy bits of tangy rhubarb that will make your tastebuds sing!A slice of rhubarb cake being removed from the rest of the cake.

What is rhubarb cake?

Rhubarb cake is a type of cake that features rhubarb as one of its main ingredients and flavor. The cake can be fluffy or dense and it’s usually topped with granulated sugar or a streusel.

Why you’ll love this recipe:

  • Easy to make – Simply beat the wet ingredients and combine with the dry ingredients, fold in the rhubarb, sprinkle with sugar, and bake.
  • Sweet, tangy, and lightly spiced – Rhubarb adds a bright and tart flavor, which balances perfectly with the sweetness and richness of the cake. There is a touch of cinnamon and nutmeg added to bring out the rhubarb’s natural flare and unique taste.
  • Soft and moist – The buttermilk in the cake helps create a moist and tender crumb, making each bite of the cake incredibly soft and enjoyable. The moisture from the rhubarb also adds to the overall moistness of the cake, which is even better the next day.

A whole rhubarb cake on a blue and white plate surrounded by rhubarb on the light brown surface.

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • all-purpose flour
  • baking powder & salt
  • unsalted butter & egg
  • buttermilk – store-bought or homemade
  • granulated sugar
  • vanilla extract
  • ground cinnamon & nutmeg (or cloves)
  • fresh rhubarb – see FAQ if using frozen rhubarb

How to make rhubarb cake:

(the ingredient amounts are listed in the printable recipe card further below) 

  1. In a medium bowl, toss together the flour, baking powder, salt, and spices. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg and vanilla.
  3. Stir in half of the flour mixture, followed by the buttermilk, then the rest of the flour mixture until just combined. Fold in the rhubarb.
  4. Spoon the batter into a buttered 9″ springform pan lined with parchment paper. Sprinkle with sugar on top. Bake at 350F for 40-45 minutes.

picture collage of how to make rhubarb cake

How to serve:

Enjoy it plain or with a dusting of powdered sugar, a dollop of whipped cream, or a scoop of ice cream. It’s also great with your morning cup of coffee or afternoon tea.

FAQ:

How to prepare rhubarb for cake:

Trim the stalks and cut off the leaves, then wash and pat dry with a paper towel or clean dish towel. Slice or dice into small pieces.

Can I use frozen rhubarb?

Yes, you can. However, it’s important to thaw the frozen rhubarb and drain any excess liquid before adding it to the cake batter. 

Does rhubarb cake need to be refrigerated?

It can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 3 days or in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Can you freeze rhubarb cake?

Yes! To freeze the cake, double-wrap it in plastic wrap and store it in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw the cake overnight in the fridge and bring it to room temperature before serving.

A slice of rhubarb cake topped with whipped cream on a pink vintage plate.

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Rhubarb Cake

  • Author: Lily Ernst
  • Prep Time: 15 min
  • Cook Time: 45 min
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 8-10
  • Category: dessert
  • Method: bake
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Make the best of rhubarb season with this easy-to-make and delectable rhubarb cake. This cake is fluffy, moist, and loaded with jammy bits of tangy rhubarb that will make your tastebuds sing!


Ingredients

  • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg or cloves (or both)
  • 1/2 cup (114g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar plus 1 tbsp for sprinkling
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (125ml) buttermilk (store-bought or homemade, see notes*)
  • 2 cups fresh rhubarb, thinly sliced (see notes** if using frozen)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Butter a 9″ springform pan and line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, toss together the flour, baking powder, salt, and spices. Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg and vanilla.
  4. Stir in half of the flour mixture, followed by the buttermilk, then the rest of the flour mixture until almost combined. Fold in the rhubarb until just combined.
  5. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with sugar on top.
  6. Bake at 350F for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean

Notes

Leftovers can be placed in an airtight container and stored at room temperature for up to 3 days or in the fridge for up to 5 days.

* To make your own buttermilk – add a teaspoon of white vinegar or lemon juice to a measuring cup, add just enough milk (of any kind) to make 1/2 cup, stir and let stand for 5 minutes. 

**If using frozen rhubarb – thaw and drain well before adding it to the cake batter. 

Keywords: rhubarb cake recipe

Recipe adapted from The View From Great Island.