What Does Rhubarb Taste Like

Rhubarb has been around for millennia, closely related to buckwheat and sorrel due to its tart flavor.

Raw or with sugar dipped, lemon zest adds an irresistible taste to desserts like pies and jams, while its savory counterparts like stews or compotes work equally well.


Rhubarb is a beloved springtime fruit, beloved for its tart taste. Not only does it make great pie filling, but also jams and preserves that can be frozen for later.

Rhubarb’s sweet and tart flavor makes it a go-to addition to low-acid fruits like plums or strawberries, according to Mark Bittman’s “How to Cook Everything.” Not only can rhubarb help balance out the sweetness in desserts, but its tart kick also stands out as an interesting contrast in recipes, according to Bittman.

Alain Verzeroli, director of culinary operations at Le Jardinier in New York City, recommends picking rhubarb stalks that are firm and crisp with glossy skin that is free from blemishes. Avoid picking stalks that have wilted leaves or are dried out.

Raw rhubarb has a distinct flavor, which mutes when cooked. To balance its tartness, it’s often mixed with sugar; however, you can enjoy it raw if desired.

Rhubarb isn’t as sweet as other fruits, but you can balance its tartness with sweeteners like honey or maple syrup in baked goods. Additionally, you can mix rhubarb with spices such as cinnamon or vanilla to intensify its sweetness even further.

When cooking rhubarb, it is essential to cook the stalks quickly so they do not become mushy and crumbly. This method produces a jellied but tender-but-cohesive texture which works great for making jam and chutneys with rhubarb.


Rhubarb is a long, stalky plant that looks similar to red celery. Its flavor is tart and refreshing, making it the ideal accompaniment for sweetness in sweet dishes. Rhubarb can also be used as the basis for various pies, cobblers, jams, and preserves.

Raw rhubarb is an incredibly nutritious vegetable. It boasts a substantial amount of fiber, calcium, and Vitamin C as well as antioxidants like anthocyanins that have anti-inflammatory and carcinogenic properties that may help prevent disease and slow down aging processes.

Due to its tart taste, rhubarb is rarely eaten raw; rather, it’s usually cooked and sweetened.

Rhubarb’s tart taste makes it ideal for desserts, but can also be used in savory recipes. For instance, stewing rhubarb with ginger and nutmeg creates a delicious compote that has both sweet and savory notes. Serve this on its own or as an accompaniment to meats, seafood dishes, and other vegetables.

Another way to use rhubarb is in an ice cream recipe. All you need to do is combine some sugars, water, and star anise for a delicious treat that everyone will love!

To prepare this ice cream, cut the rhubarb into smaller pieces to cook faster and soften faster. Additionally, adding a pinch of salt to the mixture can enhance its flavor while keeping it from becoming too dry.


Though many people think of rhubarb as a sweet vegetable, tart vegetables can also be used in savory recipes. It makes an excellent addition to stir-fries and soups.

Rhubarb can be enjoyed raw or stewed, and its tart taste pairs well with many dishes. It especially pairs well with meat and fish dishes, bringing their flavors together in an exquisite way.

To enhance the sweet and tart flavors of rhubarb, you can pair it with fruit or spices. For instance, try pairing it with sticky-sweet dates for an irresistibly tasty combination. Or add a hint of lavender to any recipe for an aromatic experience that will have you wanting to sit back and savor every bite.

Another delicious pairing is rhubarb with lemongrass. This combination balances out the intense tartness of rhubarb, creating a lighter-flavored stew or soup that otherwise might seem heavy and rich.

This tart is the ideal spring dessert and it’s so simple to make at home. Blind-baked, the crust will get firm and crunchy while the custard and scored rhubarb stalks bake into an irresistibly vibrant pink dessert.

Once cooked down, rhubarb’s tartness is balanced by its sweetness from honey. This makes it a wonderful topping for pancakes, toast, or scones; alternatively, you could top off a berry crisp or cake with it.

Add rhubarb to your smoothies for an additional dose of antioxidants. Furthermore, this fruit is packed with calcium and fiber – two important nutrients for overall well-being.


Rhubarb’s tart, tart flavor can be difficult to balance in certain dishes, but it also adds an interesting dimension. It pairs beautifully with sweet ingredients like strawberries, vanilla, honey, and cinnamon; however, it shines brightest when used for savory applications that call for tart flavors.

Rhubarb’s tartness is due to oxalic acid, a dicarboxylic acid found in high concentrations. Eating too much rhubarb should be discouraged as this acid is highly toxic if consumed regularly.

To reduce the risk of poisoning, rhubarb should only be consumed in small amounts during spring and summer when its oxalic acid content is lowest. Signs of overexposure include burning in the mouth, throat, eyes, and ears; diarrhea; difficulty breathing; weakness or vomiting.

One way to temper rhubarb’s tartness is by using sugar alternatives like stevia or aspartame. These calorie-free sweeteners add sweetness without additional calories, making them ideal for people who want to avoid added sugars while still enjoying various foods.

Another option is pickled rhubarb, which can be used as a garnish or added to salads and yogurt bowls. It’s an easy recipe that anyone can prepare with just minimal ingredients.

If you’re searching for a unique way to enjoy rhubarb, why not make your own liqueurs or bitters? New York bartender Greg Seider’s recipe for Rhubarb-Cinnamon Bitters incorporates high-proof alcohol with fresh rhubarb, citrus zest, and cinnamon bark for an impressive drink that will surely please any palate.

Rhubarb may not have a pleasant flavor, but it does contain beneficial vitamins and minerals for health. It’s an excellent source of vitamins C and K as well as antioxidants and fiber.

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