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Easy Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp – Oh Sweet Basil


This strawberry rhubarb crisp is pure comfort with the perfect balance of sweetness and tartness and a buttery oat topping. I always eat it a la mode!

I grew up with a rhubarb obsessed father. Is it a generational thing? I’m going to bet most people these days have never even tried rhubarb yet everyone’s Mom and Dad seem to love it. I hated it. I mean, wouldn’t even touch the stuff! I’m still a bit weird about it depending on how it is used, but cook it down with sweet berries and sugar and I don’t even know how to explain it, it becomes a whole new creature! It’s so good!!

Recommended Equipment

Before You Begin…

Get about 3 cups of water boiling over high heat. You’ll use the boiling water to soften and prep the rhubarb for the crisp. Rhubarb can be quite bitter but letting in sit in boiling water for a couple of minutes will dull the bitterness.

Ingredients for Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

For the Filling

  • Rhubarb: A vegetable that has edible stalks that are usually pink in color. It is quite sour like a lemon but it becomes sweeter as it cooks. It is a great source of antioxidants, fiber and vitamin K.
  • Strawberries: You will want to wash and hull the strawberries before cutting them up.
  • Sugar: Helps sweeten the filling.
  • Brown Sugar: Adds richness and sweetness to the filling.
  • Sure Gel Ultra Gel: Thickens the filling so that the filling isn’t water. You can also use flour or cornstarch.
  • Lemon Zest: Adds an extra pop of flavor and brightness
  • Cardamom: A spice commonly used in Indian food that has a complex flavor that is floral but also citrusy.

For the Topping

  • Old Fashioned Rolled Oats: You can use quick oats too but I love the texture and chewiness the old fashioned oats add.
  • Brown Sugar: Adds sweetness to the topping
  • Flour: Adds structure to the topping
  • Cinnamon: Adds warmth and flavor
  • Salt: Enhances all the flavors of the topping
  • Unsalted Butter: Adds flavor and binds all the ingredients together

The measurements for all the ingredients can be found in the recipe card down below. This is just meant to be an overview of the ingredients so keep on scrolling down for all the details.

a photo of an unbaked strawberry rhubarb crisp topped with chunky buttery oat topping.

What are Substitutes for Ultra Gel?

I prefer ultra gel over flour or cornstarch for thickening. I feel like there’s a flavor that accompanies both whereas the ultra gel is flavorless. But if you don’t have ultra gel or you don’t want to buy it, you can use flour or cornstarch.

Can I Use Frozen Fruit?

Yes, thaw both the rhubarb and strawberries completely and drain off any excess juices.

a photo of a strawberry rhubarb crisp in a circular white ceramic baking dish with a serving removed so you can see the juicy bright red fulling and butter oat topping.

How to Use Rhubarb in a Dessert

I don’t like the bitterness or crunch of undercooked rhubarb. Pouring the boiling water over the top will tackle that.

Why is My Rhubarb Crisp Watery?

Both strawberries and rhubarb contain a lot of water and as they cook, they release their juices. Now, this isn’t a bad thing because those juices taste delicious, but you want to make sure you have your thickening agent (ultra gel, cornstarch or flour) mixed into the filling well.

a photo of a serving of strawberry rhubarb crisp topped with two scoops of melting vanilla ice cream.

Want More Topping?

If you’re like us and you loooove the topping, do 1 1/2 cups oats, 1 1/2 cups brown sugar, 3/4 cup butter, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. It’s my favorite part of the whole dish. That’s the same amount you should use for a 9×13″ as well, you’ll just want to 1.5 times the filling for a 9×13.

How to Eat Rhubarb Crisp

As with any fruit crisp dessert, I highly recommend eating it warm with a scoop or two of vanilla ice cream! Heaven!

Topping rhubarb crisp with a dollop of whipped cream is also divine! And for some reason, it feels like if you don’t top it with anything, it changes from a dessert to a suitable breakfast food! What think ye?

a photo of a strawberry rhubarb crisp in a round baking dish and a serving missing so you can see the juice red filling and the crunchy buttery oat topping.

Making Ahead, Freezing and Storing

The topping can be made a day ahead as well as frozen in a ziploc for 3-4 months. The entire dish can be frozen pre baking and post baking. Wrap in plastic wrap and foil and freeze. Bake for 50-60 minutes after removing the plastic wrap and replacing the foil straight from frozen.

Store strawberry rhubarb crisp in the refrigerator and make sure it is covered. It will keep for 4-5 days.

a photo of a serving of strawberry rhubarb crisp in a bowl topped with two scoops of melting vanilla ice cream.

Skip the strawberry rhubarb pie and try this strawberry rhubarb crisp instead! On second thought, don’t skip the pie…have BOTH! You will know summer has arrived when your devouring a serving of this warm comforting dessert!

Fruit Crisps for Every Season

Servings: 8

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Prevent your screen from going dark

  • Place the rhubarb in a bowl. Boil about 3 cups of water over the stove on medium high heat. Pour over the rhubarb, let stand 2 minutes and then drain and pat dry.

    4 Cups Rhubarb

  • Prepare the topping. Mix the dry ingredients together and then chop the butter into bite sized pieces. Mix the butter into the dry ingredients until it begins to stick together in clumps. Set aside.

    1 Cup Old Fashioned Rolled Oats, 1 Cup Brown Sugar, 3/4 Cup Flour, 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon Salt, 1/2 Cup Unsalted Butter

  • In a large bowl, add the rhubarb, strawberries, sugars, cardamom, lemon zest and ultra gel. Fold together and pour into a deep dish pie dish or an 8×8″ baking dish that has been greased. You can even do a 9×13 but you will need to do 1.5 times the fruit filling mixture.

    4 Cups Strawberries, 1/2 Cup Sugar, 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar, 1/4 teaspoon Cardamom, 3 Tablespoons Sure Gel Ultra Gel

  • Top with the crisp topping and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Serving: 1cupCalories: 433kcalCarbohydrates: 77gProtein: 6gFat: 13gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.5gCholesterol: 31mgSodium: 95mgPotassium: 395mgFiber: 4gSugar: 57gVitamin A: 426IUVitamin C: 47mgCalcium: 112mgIron: 2mg

Author: Sweet Basil

Course: 500+ Best Dessert Recipes, Over 100 Favorite Fruit Dessert Recipes

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