Rhubarb Crumble, a very British Dessert

Rhubarb Crumble is a quintessentially British dessert. Its sweet and sour fruit contrasts beautifully with the crumbly, shortbread-like flavour of the topping. Pair it with custard, ice cream or clotted cream, and you have dessert heaven!

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Rhubarb Crumble
Rhubarb Crumble – I like my crumble crispy!

Rhubarb Crumble Recipe

It is one of my favourite desserts of all time. While I love apple crumble and in the autumn – it always makes an appearance on our dinner table – rhubarb crumble to me, is phenomenally better.

Take a look at the recipe and you’ll see that making rhubarb crumble really is simplicity itself. There is no need to pre cook the rhubarb; you just chop it up, mix it with some sugar, cornflour and ginger and dump it in the baking dish.

Ginger is great with, I almost always add ginger when using rhubarb. Like in our Homemade Rhubarb Gin, below.

pink gin photo rhubarb gin photo pinterest linsfood
Homemade Rhubarb Gin

Then you top it with the crumble mixture, which again, is a case of rubbing the butter into the flour, with added sugar. My crumble is straight up flour, butter and sugar, I don’t believe in messing with perfection and altering the taste by adding oats and stuff.

We add demerara sugar for added crunch. Demerara sugar is just that toffee flavoured coarse brown cane sugar you get in sachets for coffee. It’s processed in the same way as turbinado, so you can use that too, if you’re not in the UK.

Everything can be done under an hour and while the crumble is baking, you can go wash up, then put your feet up.

Freshly baked Rhubarb Crumble
Freshly baked Rhubarb Crumble

Making Rhubarb Crumble Ahead

You can make the crumble topping the day before and place it in a bag and store in the fridge. If you don’t have a food processor, making the crumble can take a bit of time and effort (15 minutes instead of 5!). The next day, get the crumble out of the fridge about 30 minutes before you intend to bake, then just break it all up with your fingertips (keep it light and airy) before topping the rhubarb.

If I’m serving it as a dessert for a sit down meal, I prepare the filling up to 4 hours ahead, cover with clingfilm and place it in the fridge. The crumble will also have been prepared earlier. Then, about 1 hour before dessert is to be served, I pop into the kitchen, assemble the rhubarb crumble and bake it in the preheated oven for about 1 hour, so that’s an additional 15 minutes to make up for the cold rhubarb.

And while I wouldn’t bake it the day before to serve guests, because it’ll no longer be crumbly, I love it the next day, heated up in the microwave oven.

It is a super easy dessert to make, so there really isn’t much to say about it! There is a fine line between too sweet a rhubarb crumble and just right, so that’s always something to bear in mind. The recipe here gives you a lovely balance between the topping and the filling. You may find it a bit heavy on the crumble, because that’s my favourite part! I’m always “exchanging” crumble for filling with the family!

Shall we get our aprons on?

Rhubarb Crumble

Rhubarb Crumble is a quintessentially British dessert, and delicious, topped with custard, ice cream or plain old cream.
5 from 25 votes
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: British
Keyword: crumble, dessert, rhubarb
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 8 (Serves 6-8)
Calories: 314kcal
Author: Azlin Bloor


  • A round baking dish with a diameter of about 20cm-23cm (8"-9") , and at least 5cm (2") deep. Or something similar sized, any shape.


  • 500 g rhubarb
  • 60 g white sugar
  • ¼ ground ginger
  • 1 tsp cornflour


  • 200 g plain flour
  • 150 g cold salted butter
  • 60 g demerara sugar
  • 30 g white sugar

To Serve

  • Custard ice cream, clotted cream


  • Preheat the oven to 200˚C (Fan 180˚/400˚F).

Rhubarb Filling

  • Chop the rhubarb into 2.5cm/1″ pieces and place them in a bowl.
  • Sprinkle the white sugar, ground ginger and cornflour all over and mix thoroughly using your hands. Place in the baking dish and set aside.

The Crumble

  • If you have a large chopper or food processor, place the cold butter and flour and pulse until the mixture resembles wet sand, then tip into a large bowl. Otherwise, chop up the butter into little cubes and rub into the flour using your fingertips. Don’t knead. Do all this in a large bowl.
  • Add the demerara and white sugar to the flour/butter mix and using your fingertips, mix it all in. Do not overwork, keep it light, crumbly and airy.


  • Sprinkle the crumble all over the rhubarb in an even layer. Don’t press it down. This will leave the crumble light and crispy.
  • Bake for about 35-45 minutes, until the top is a golden brown, looks crispy and the sides are bubbling a little with the rhubarb. I like mine brown and crispy, so I tend to go for 45 minutes. It’s a matter of taste.
  • Take it out of the oven and let it rest for 5 minutes, then serve as mentioned above.

Still great, heated up the next day!


    The nutrition is just for the rhubarb crumble.


    Calories: 314kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 40mg | Sodium: 137mg | Potassium: 218mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 532IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 63mg | Iron: 1mg
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    30 thoughts on “Rhubarb Crumble, a very British Dessert”

    1. 5 stars
      The last time I saw a rhubarb pie was on some Jamie Oliver show and your recipe looks so easy and drool worthy. And this would definitely make a lovely surprise at the dinner table along with ice cream as you have suggested.

    2. 5 stars
      Am a sucker for British pies! Shephard’s pie being my favorite. SO this one right here goes into my folder. I love how simple the preparation is – “I can go wash up while it’s in the oven” NICE!

      My sweet-toothed family will love this. Thanks for sharing.

    3. Elizabeth O.

      5 stars
      I don’t think I’ve used rhubarb in a crumble recipe before. It looks amazing though and I would love to try it.

    4. Nothing beats a good homemade rhubarb crumble and your recipe sounds amazing! I’ve got loads of rhubarb left in the freezer from last season – I should defrost some and try your recipe!

    5. I remember having my first slice of rhubarb pie when I was with my great Aunt Jessie. It was the most amazing tart and sweet pie I had ever tasted. I loved it. But then when I started to bake and cook myself someone told me that rhubarb the plant was poisonous unless cooked right. I know that I could cook it right but it kind of scared me off for a while. Seeing this, I am definitely going to have to try and make some rhubarb crumble very soon.

    6. Jessica Taylor

      I’ve never tried Rhubarb, but I heard it is great. Really looming forward to trying this.

    7. Joanna Villarreal

      I have never tried Rhubarb, but this dish looks absolutely delicious!! I am going to have to try your recipe, my family and I LOVE to bake, thanks for sharing!!

    8. Rhubarb and I are yet to meet! I don’t really know how rhubarb tastes but this simple yet delicious looking recipe is encouraging me to make that meeting soon 🙂

    9. Jane Taylor

      How delightful! I love rhubarb crumble but have never made it. I intend to change that, planning to make it tomorrow! Thank you!

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