If you’re looking for a delicious, moist, melt-in-your-mouth Rhubarb Crumble Cake, then you’ve come to the right place. You may be more familiar with Apple Crumble Cakes (which are equally glorious FYI!), but there’s something wonderful about the flavourful zing of rhubarb that always hits the spot.
Hi everyone, Nicky here calling in from Kitchen Sanctuary with a cake that’s perfect for a relaxing Sunday afternoon.
This particular recipe features chunks of rhubarb throughout, and you’ll see them every time you cut a new slice of this delicate treat. Throw in the elements of streusel and the sweet and crunchy topping, and you’ll struggle not to reach for a second, third, and even fourth slice!
I’ve always found that this cake is a major hit after a roast dinner on Sunday, and it’s delicious with cream, custard, or ice cream.
I find the taste and texture of this particular cake delightful, as it perfectly balances softness and crunch to produce a moreish result that you won’t be able to stop eating. What’s more, it’s simple to create, requires little prep time, and is easily finished in the oven once the batter is mixed. Score!
Before we dive into this unique recipe, it’s worth noting that rhubarb can be slightly tricky to work with. It releases a lot of moisture which can be wonderful for keeping your sponge delicate and light. But if you add too much, you’ll have a soggy mess on your hands. Rhubarb is quite a heavy fruit and can sink to the bottom of your cake if you’re not careful!
Don’t worry though – I offer plenty of suggestions in my handy Tips and Tricks section to prevent this from happening.
So, just stay tuned!
Why You’ll Love Rhubarb Crumble Cake
- It’s extremely easy to make!
- Kids can easily get involved with making the batter.
- The tartness of the rhubarb prevents the cake from tasting too sweet.
- It freezes well and can be enjoyed by the entire family for months.
For the cake
- Chopped rhubarb
- Granulated sugar
- Large eggs
- Vanilla extract
- Sour cream
- All-purpose flour
- Baking powder
For the crumble topping
- All-purpose flour
- Baking powder
- Cold butter
- Light brown sugar
How to Make Rhubarb Crumble Cake
- Step One: Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Step Two: Line the base and sides of a 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin with baking parchment and put it to one side.
- Step Three: Place the chopped rhubarb in a bowl and top with 2 tbsp. of the granulated sugar. Stir and put to one side.
- Step Four: Next make the crumble topping. Place the flour, baking powder, and cold butter in a bowl and rub the flour into the butter with your fingertips until you have rough breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar and put it to one side.
- Step Five: Next make the cake. Place the granulated sugar and butter into a large bowl. Using a mixer or a hand whisk, beat the butter and sugar together until pale and creamy. Stir in the eggs, vanilla extract, and soured cream.
- Step Six: Then gently fold in all but 2 tbsp. of the flour, the baking powder, and the salt.
- Step Seven: Spoon out half of this mixture into the cake tin, and smooth using the back of a spoon. Ensure all of the base is covered.
- Step Eight: Sprinkle the 2 tbsp. of flour onto the rhubarb, and scatter half of the rhubarb onto the cake mix in the tin. Spoon the rest of the cake mix on top, then scatter on the remaining rhubarb.
- Step Nine: Sprinkle all of the crumble topping on. Make sure it goes right up to the sides, otherwise the cake mixture will try to rise up the sides of the tin and on top of the crumble topping.
- Step Ten: Place in the oven for 75-90 minutes – until an inserted skewer comes out clean. It’s worth covering the cake with some tinfoil after about 50-60 minutes to prevent the top from burning.
- Step Eleven: Once cooked, take out of the oven and leave to cool in the tin for at least 20 minutes. Then remove from the tin and leave to cool further on a cooling rack. Serve with fresh cream or custard.
You’ll need just a few key pieces of equipment to make this Rhubarb Crumble Cake recipe happen, and they’re all easy to find or will already be in your home!
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What to Serve with Rhubarb Crumble Cake
This recipe works great as a standalone dish, but if you want to brighten up your dessert table with things that will work well alongside this recipe, check out these delicious picks!
- Black Bottom Banana Cream Pie
- Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
- Stabilized Whipped Cream
- No-Churn Maple Pecan Ice Cream
- Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Pay attention to what rhubarb you’re using. You can use regular rhubarb or forced rhubarb, but forced rhubarb is slightly sweeter and has a pinker appearance.
- Keep an eye out for cake liners. These are incredible for lining your tin and will make clean-up quick and easy.
- When you’re making the crumbs, use chilled butter or melted butter. Chilled butter typically makes crispier and larger crumbs that work beautifully on the crumble cake, while melted butter creates softer and smaller crumbs that crumble more easily.
- Be careful when measuring with your cups. Measuring cups aren’t quite as accurate as digital kitchen scales, but you can get a great result by leveling your cups properly.
- Don’t overmix your batter. To keep your topping gloriously crumbly, make sure you don’t overmix your batter once the flour has been added. This will keep air bubbles within the mixture and help you achieve a light sponge that’s completely irresistible.
- Instead of placing the topping on top of the cake, try gently pressing it in. This will help it stick to the cake layer, giving you an even bite and preventing your crumbs from spilling everywhere!
- Make sure you leave the rhubarb in a bowl with some sugar. This sweetens the fruit and helps it release a little moisture.
- Don’t forget to add your rhubarb in two layers. This should be reasonably easy to follow as it’s listed clearly in the recipe, but adding the rhubarb in two layers prevents the plant from sinking to the bottom of the pan. This will keep your cake moist without drowning the bottom layer!
Variations and Substitutions
- I don’t necessarily recommend swapping out the rhubarb in this recipe as it’s the star ingredient, but this cake also works well with berries, plums, cherries, nectarines, and any other uber-juicy fruit!
- If you’re not a fan of incredibly sweet cakes, then you can reduce the amount of sugar you use in this recipe. However, I find that the added sugar balances the natural tartness of the rhubarb, so proceed with caution!
- For a bit of spice, feel free to add cinnamon or nutmeg to your dish. I find that it gives the cake a slight kick.
I highly recommend storing this cake in the fridge, as the moistness of the rhubarb may lead your cake to spoil faster.
The cake itself is best at room temperature though, so remove it from the fridge a couple of hours before serving before dolloping a generous amount of pouring or whipped cream on top!
It’s worth noting that the crumbs will lose their crunch after a while. However, you can revive your crumbs by putting your cake back in the oven for 10 minutes before serving.
You’ll want to leave it to cool to room temperature again before eating, so bear this in mind if you’re in a time crunch!
Can I Freeze?
Yes! You can freeze this Rhubarb Crumble Cake.
To do this, place the slices onto a plate and put the entire thing in the freezer. Once frozen, you can transfer the slices into individual freezer bags and freeze for up to 3 months.
When you’re ready to eat them again, you can either defrost your slices on the counter or overnight in the refrigerator. If you’re in a rush, you can put them in the oven until heated through at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Easy Dessert Recipes
Looking for more? Check out these dessert recipes that will have your mouth watering!
- Jelly Donut Ice Cream Bowl – made with bits of glazed donuts, fresh strawberries, strawberry sauce, and vanilla ice cream for the perfect summertime dessert!
- Streusel Coffee Cake – to keep up the streusel and cake theme, try this incredibly tender cake that’s topped with cinnamon crumbs!
- Vanilla Cream Cheese Cake – if you’re partial to cheesecake, then you’ll adore this decadent vanilla-based cheesecake that’s ideal for special occasions.
- Peanut Butter Magic Shell – if you’re on the hunt for something to top your ice cream sundae with, this easy-to-make recipe is perfect.
- Classic Lemon Pie – is there anything better than a tangy, rich, and creamy dessert pie? This one is perfect for citrus lovers who adore tart treats.
If you make the recipe, rate it on the recipe card below and tag me on Instagram and use #simplystacie. I like sharing the photos on my Instagram stories!
- 2 cups chopped rhubarb (cut into small chunks)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ¾ cup butter, softened
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup soured cream
- 1+1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 5 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/3 cup cold butter, chopped into small chunks
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Line the base and sides of a 20cm loose bottomed cake tin with baking parchment and put to one side.
- Place the chopped rhubarb in a bowl and top with 2 tbsp of the granulated sugar. Stir and put to one side.
- Next make the crumble topping. Place the flour, baking powder and cold butter in a bowl and rub the flour into the butter with your fingertips until you have rough breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar and put to one side.
- Next make the cake. Place the granulated sugar and butter into a large bowl. Using a mixer or a hand whisk, beat the butter and sugar together until pale and creamy. Stir in the eggs, vanilla extract and soured cream. Then gently fold in all but 2 tbsp of the flour, the baking powder and the salt.
- Spoon out half of this mixture into the cake tin, and smooth using the back of a spoon. Ensure all of the base is covered.
- Sprinkle the 2 tbsp of flour onto the rhubarb, and scatter half of the rhubarb onto the cake mix in the tin. Spoon the rest of the cake mix on top, then scatter on the remaining rhubarb. Sprinkle all of the crumble topping on. Make sure it goes right up to the sides, otherwise the cake mixture will try to rise up the sides of the tin and on top of the crumble topping. Place in the oven for 75-90 minutes – until an inserted skewer comes out clean. It’s worth covering the cake with some tinfoil after about 50-60 minutes to prevent the top from burning.
- Once cooked, take out of the oven and leave to cool in the tin for at least 20 minutes. Then remove from the tin and leave to cool further on a cooling rack. Serve with fresh cream.
This cake will stay fresh for 2-3 days, wrapped and stored in an air tight container at room temperature.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 769Total Fat: 40gSaturated Fat: 25gTrans Fat: 2gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 165mgSodium: 977mgCarbohydrates: 95gFiber: 2gSugar: 44gProtein: 10g