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Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

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Strawberry and rhubarb are an irresistible combo in the spring and early summer. Both sweet and tart with a crisp, buttery topping, it's perfect for dessert or (dare we say) breakfast.

Photography Credit:Irvin Lin

Rhubarb season is here, and I’m excited to make anything and everything with it!

For most folks, strawberry rhubarb pie is the immediate go-to dessert. Although I adore that classic pie, making a crisp is not only significantly easier, but it allows you to serve it to a larger group of people—everyone can scoop out as much as they want!


People tend to confuse crisps, crumbles, and cobblers—they’re all easy rustic desserts with fruit filling on the bottom, after all.

Crisps and crumbles are pretty similar in my mind: both have a streusel-like crumb topping, but the difference is that the topping for a crisp includes rolled oats or other grains. Cobblers, meanwhile, typically have biscuits on top, giving it a cobble-stoned or cobbled-together appearance.


For today’s crisp, I used an oat-based crumb topping to give the dessert texture and nutty wholesome flavor as well as a touch of cinnamon spice to help compliment the ginger and rhubarb berry filling.

You’ll want to first mix the strawberries with the sugar and cornstarch and let it sit for a bit (called macerating) to pull out the strawberry juices a bit. This also allows the cornstarch to dissolve without adding any more liquid.

Then you cook the rhubarb a bit on the stovetop to help evaporate some of the liquid, which helps thicken up the filling without resorting to using more cornstarch.


My favorite way to prepare this Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp is in a cast iron skillet, which makes it look even more homey.

If you don’t have a cast iron skillet, you can also use an 8×8 baking pan, or a 9×9 baking pan. Just skip the step where you heat the pan on the stovetop first. Instead, cook the filling an additional 5 to 10 minutes before adding the crisp topping.


Serve this crisp directly from the warm pan for maximum impact, with a big scoop or two of vanilla ice cream on top for everyone to share. You can also portion it out into individual bowls with smaller scoops of ice cream if you prefer.


  • Apple Crisp
  • Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler
  • Berry Almond Crumble
  • Rhubarb Crumble
  • Berry Cobbler with Coconut Walnut Streusel

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp Recipe

If you don't have a cast iron skillet, you can also use an 8x8 baking pan, or a 9x9 baking pan. Skip the step where you heat the pan on the stovetop, and instead cook the filling an additional 5 to 10 minutes before transferring to the baking pan and adding the crisp topping.


For the topping:

  • 1 1/2 cups (190 g) rolled oats
  • 1 cup (140 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (110 g) packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) white granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 12 tablespoons (175 g or 1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled

For the filling:

  • 4 cups (620 g) strawberries, stemmed, hulled and, cut in half if large
  • 3/4 cup (250 g) white granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 tablespoon chopped candied ginger
  • 2 tablespoon cornstarch
  • Zest from 1 medium orange
  • 4 cups (500 g or a little bit over 1 pound) sliced rhubarb (1-inch chunks) from about 5 to 6 thick stalks or 10 to 12 skinny stalks

To serve:

  • Vanilla ice cream, store-bought or homemade
  • 10-inch cast iron skillet


1 Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2 Make the topping: Combine the oats, flour, both sugars, cinnamon, and salt in a medium-sized bowl. Mix with a balloon whisk until consistent in color and all the ingredients are evenly distributed. Use your fingers to break up any chunks of brown sugar.

Drizzle the melted butter over the dry ingredients, tossing with a fork until the topping starts to clump together and the dry ingredients are moist. Place the bowl in the refrigerator to chill while you prepare the fruit.

3 Macerate the strawberries: Combine the strawberries, 1/2 cup of the sugar, candied ginger, cornstarch and orange zest in a large bowl, tossing to make sure the strawberries are coated with the dry ingredients. Set aside.

4 Cook the rhubarb: Spray a 10-inch cast iron skillet with cooking oil, and add the rhubarb and the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the sugar has dissolved and the rhubarb juice starts to thicken. You want to cook off some of the liquid, but you don’t want the rhubarb to get mushy or break down.

5 Add the strawberries and bake in the oven: Add the strawberry mixture to the hot pan with the rhubarb, covering the rhubarb evenly. Bake in the oven for 30 to 35 minutes.

6 Add the topping and continue baking: Take the pan out of the oven and sprinkle the crisp topping over the fruit filling. Return to the oven for an additional 15 to 20 minutes, or until the top of the crisp is golden brown and the fruit filling is bubbling hot.

7 Cool and serve: Let the crisp cool at least 15 to 20 minutes before serving, to allow the filling to thicken a bit. Serve with your favorite vanilla ice cream.

This crisp is best eaten the same day but you can store it in the fridge after it has completely cooled, covered with plastic wrap, for up to 2 days (the crisp topping will soften, but still be delicious). Warm up in a 350°F oven for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

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Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

Jump To Recipe

This Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp is a quintessential summer dessert. This recipe for this dessert is bursting with bright, fruity summer flavor and finished off with a crisp oatmeal topping. The combination of strawberry and rhubarb is a favorite. What&rsquos not to love?

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

Here’s a delicious crisp that’s the perfect flavor combination of sour, sweet, buttery and crunchy. With minimal prep work. It can also be made vegan and gluten free. Why not try this seasonal crisp for breakfast and/or dessert!

This delicious Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp is easy to make, can be made vegan and gluten free, taste just as great days later. Sweet, sour and buttery flavors. The perfect spring/summer seasonal recipe!

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Crisps are a favorite in our house, we love them for a dessert after dinner and also with my morning coffee. They can be made year round with so many fruits and veggies. One our favorite during the late spring and early summer is strawberry rhubarb.

Nothing beats going to the farmers market, getting fresh local berries and rhubarb, bringing it home and whipping up a crisp.

They’re delicious with or without a scoop of ice cream/whip cream.


We are big sweet fans in our house crisps, cookies, cakes, ice cream… yum!! We love to bake them ourselves but any fresh homemade goodies will do.


  • Rhubarb
  • Strawberries
  • Sugar
  • Corn Starch
  • Lemon Juice
  • Pure Vanilla Extract – In my honest opinion don’t ever buy imitation vanilla, only buy pure vanilla extract!
  • Butter
  • All-purpose Flour – My favorite flour company to use is King Arthur Flour.
  • Ground Cinnamon
  • Salt
  • Quick Cooking Oats

Can I make these vegan? This recipe can be made vegan by substituting the butter for a vegan butter stick.

Can I make these gluten free? This recipe can also be made gluten free by substituting the flour for a gluten free flour substitute and you use 100% cornstarch and gluten free cooking oats.


In a bowl, toss your sliced rhubarb with 3/4 cup of the sugar and let stand for 15 minutes.

In a large bowl, toss your chopped strawberries with the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar and let stand for 10 minutes.

Preheat the oven 375°. Transfer the rhubarb to the strawberries, if your rhubarb produced a lot of juice carefully drain it out. Add your cornstarch, lemon juice and vanilla to the strawberry/rhubarb bowl and stir to combine. Pour the mixture into a 9吉 baking dish.


In the large bowl(it’s okay to use the same fruit bowl), combine the “topping” ingredients butter, maple syrup, flour, ground cinnamon, salt and quick cooking oats. Use a pastry blender, your fingers or a fork and mix the ingredients together until combined.


Sprinkle or scoop the topping evenly over the fruit filling. Bake for 30 minutes. Then reduce the oven temperature to 325° and continue baking for 30 minutes longer or until the fruit filling is bubbling and topping is nicely browned.

Let the crisp rest for at least 30-60 minutes before serving. Taste amazing the next day(or a few days later even).

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

For the fruit, toss the rhubarb, strawberries, ¾ cup granulated sugar, and the orange zest together in a large bowl. In a measuring cup, dissolve the cornstarch in the orange juice and then mix it into the fruit. Pour the mixture into an 8 × 11-inch baking dish and place it on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.

For the topping, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the flour, the remaining ½ cup granulated sugar, the brown sugar, salt, and oatmeal. With the mixer on low speed, add the butter and mix until the dry ingredients are moist and the mixture is in crumbles. Sprinkle the topping over the fruit, covering it completely, and bake for 1 hour, until the fruit is bubbling and the topping is golden brown. Serve warm with ice cream.

Note: To make this recipe gluten-free, substitute 1 cup Cup4Cup all-purpose gluten-free flour for the 1 cup all-purpose flour and use gluten-free oatmeal, such as Bob's Red Mill, for the quick-cooking oatmeal.

Copyright 2010, Barefoot Contessa How Easy is That? by Ina Garten, Clarkson Potter/Publishers, All Rights Reserved

Tips for making Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp:

  • Don’t skip the old-fashioned oats! They make the topping crispy and give you a nice crunch.
  • Whipped cream or vanilla ice cream would pair perfectly with this crisp. The warm juicy fruit, crunchy streusel, and cold ice cream are the perfect combo. So EASY and DELICIOUS!
  • I wouldn’t advise increasing the amount of strawberries in this recipe even if it is tempting. Strawberries release a lot of juice so your crisp might get a bit more liquidy.
  • Depending on how juicy the strawberries are and how deep your dish is, the filling might be more liquidy.
  • If you use a shallow baking dish place it on top of a foil-lined baking sheet to catch any spills. This makes cleaning up easier!
  • You can use frozen strawberries (or a mixture of berries) for this recipe. No need to defrost them.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

  • Author: Cookie and Kate
  • Prep Time: 20 mins
  • Cook Time: 50 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 8 1 x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American

A simple crisp bursting with sweet, juicy strawberries and tart rhubarb. Made with honey, oats and yogurt, this crisp is more healthy than most. That said, please serve it with vanilla ice cream for dessert (or yogurt for breakfast)!


Strawberry-Rhubarb Filling:

  • 1 pound strawberries, hulled and sliced into small bite-sized pieces
  • 1 pound rhubarb (about 4 stalks), cut into ¼ by ½-inch pieces (slice larger stalks in half lengthwise before slicing them into ¼-inch wide pieces)
  • ⅓ to ½ cup honey*
  • 2 tablespoons arrowroot starch or 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • ¾ cup old-fashioned oats
  • ¾ cup white whole wheat flour or regular whole wheat flour or flour of choice
  • ⅓ cup lightly packed brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon fine grain sea salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3 tablespoons plain yogurt (Greek or regular)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a 9 by 9-inch baking dish, mix together the strawberries, rhubarb, honey, arrowroot or corn starch and vanilla extract.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, stir together the oats, flour, brown sugar and salt. Mix in the Greek yogurt and melted butter. Stir until all of the flour is incorporated and the mixture is moistened throughout.
  3. Dollop spoonfuls of the oat mixture over the strawberry-rhubarb filling and use your fingers to break up the mixture until it is evenly distributed (no need to pack it down). Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until the filling is bubbling around the edges and the top is turning lightly golden. Let the crisp rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving. Serve with vanilla ice cream, I insist.


*Sweetness level note: The sweetness level of this crisp will depend on your fruit. Since rhubarb gets sweeter during the baking process, you can’t really adjust for your desired sweetness before baking. My first crisp was just right with ⅓ cup honey and my second crisp was more tart. If you know you want your crisp to be on the sweet side, go with ½ cup honey. If your baked crisp is sour, keep in mind that serving with ice cream will temper the tartness. Add a drizzle of honey to the finished product if necessary. It will probably taste sweeter the next day.

Make it gluten free: Use 1 cup certified gluten-free oats and ½ cup almond meal instead of the oat and flour mixture specified above.

Wait, what’s arrowroot starch? Arrowroot starch is a great thickener to use in place of corn starch, which is often genetically modified. It’s gluten free, too. Look for it in the baking section of well-stocked grocery stores.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

It doesn't have to be a holiday for you to make this delicious Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp. Just by making it, the day becomes special.

And of course you can make it extra special by topping this favorite restaurant dessert recipe with whipped cream or ice cream!

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp Recipe

Favorite Restaurant Dessert Recipe

Preparation time:ꀕ minutes. Serves 4.

  • 2 1/2 cups rhubarb, pieces
  • 1/2 cup strawberries, sliced
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice

Ingredients for Topping:

  • 2/3 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 5 tablespoons flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 5 tablespoons pecans (or walnuts), chopped

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
  • Butter an 8 x 8 inchꂺking pan
  • In a mixing bowl combine and toss the rhubarb, strawberries, sugar, cornstarch and orange juice
  • Transfer mixture to the buttered baking dish
  • Mix the oats, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and salt in a bowl
  • Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or use your fingers until the mixture becomes coarse crumbs
  • Mix in chopped nuts and spread over the fruit mixture
  • Bake until the topping is golden brown and the fruit is bubbling (30-35 minutes)

Enjoy your delicious dessert and the company of those you share it with!

It is a favorite restaurant dessert recipe. - Donna

If you’d like to make this recipe but can’t find rhubarb anywhere, substitute with any tart fruit. This could be some firm cherries, blackberries, or granny smith apples.

Rhubarb is the best choice, so try finding that first. If you come up empty handed, any of these alternatives will be delicious!

Taste of Summer

Summer is all about quick & easy fruit-filled desserts! I don’t think I’m the only one who gets excited when berries start flooding the grocery stores and farmers markets. Fresh, juicy fruit is one of my FAVORITE things to eat & bake with.

During summer our counters overflow with ripe strawberries. We eat them at breakfast, lunch and dinner, but it’s hard to keep up. I store some in the fridge and freezer for later use.

Rhubarb has always been something I’ve wanted to experiment with, so I thought I’d start with this classic combo, and we loved it!!

Serve this strawberry rhubarb crisp while it’s warm with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream and enjoy immediately! The rhubarb was just sweet enough, had a nice hint of spice, the top was crisp not sandy, and the rhubarb was tender not crunchy.

We devoured the entire pan!

Strawberry-Rhubarb Crisp

For the topping:

3/4 cup (3 3/4 ounces) all-purpose flour

1/4 cup packed (1 3/4 ounces) light brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

For the filling:

1 pound fresh rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces, or frozen rhubarb, thawed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (3 1/2 cups)

12 ounces fresh strawberries, hulled and chopped coarse, or frozen strawberries, thawed and chopped coarse (2 cups)

1 1/4 cups packed (8 3/4 ounces) light brown sugar

1. For the topping: Whisk flour, panko, sugar, salt and cinnamon together in bowl. Add melted butter and stir until no dry spots of flour remain and mixture forms clumps. Refrigerate until ready to use.

2. For the filling: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 F. Toss all ingredients in large bowl until thoroughly combined. Transfer to a 10-inch oven-safe skillet. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until the fruit has released enough liquid to be mostly submerged, the rhubarb is just beginning to break down and the juices have thickened, about 8 minutes. Remove skillet from heat.

3. Squeeze the topping into large clumps with your hands. Crumble the topping into pea-size pieces and sprinkle evenly over the filling. Bake until the topping is browned and the filling is bubbling around the sides of the skillet, about 20 minutes. Let cool for 15 minutes. Serve.

Recipe notes: If using frozen strawberries, there’s no need to thaw them completely you can chop them as soon as they’re soft enough. If using frozen strawberries and frozen rhubarb, you may need to increase the stovetop cooking time by up to 4 minutes. Depending on the amount of trimming required, you may need to buy more than 1 pound of rhubarb to ensure that you end up with 3 1/2 cups. Serve with vanilla ice cream.

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