Best Rhubarb Crumble Cake Ever

I made this coffee cake while we were at the beach last week and within ONE lunch sitting, which equaled about ONE hour, it was gone, finished and thoroughly enjoyed. Hardly a crumb left in the pan.

This was my first time cooking or even eating rhubarb! I have seen a ton of recipes that use it and I’ve been curious all summer to try it myself. However, since James saw it as a big celery stick in his baked good, I had postponed cooking with it until I had more mouths to feed. In this case eleven. And in the end, James loved it too. And you will too. Don’t be afraid of veggies in your coffee cakes or desserts, they’ll most likely become your favorite.

(And for the record, this photo was taken with an iPhone. What do you think?)

strawberry rhubarb crumble cake
strawberry rhubarb crumble cake

Source: Slightly Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
the strawberry-rhubarb filling
1/2 pound rhubarb, sliced
3/4 cup strawberries, quartered
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp. flour
1/2 tsp. ground ginger

the crumbs
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/8 tsp. salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
1 3/4 cups cake or all-purpose flour

the cake:

1/3 cup sour cream
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup cake or all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
6 T. softened butter, cut into 8 pieces.

Preheat oven to 325. Grease an 8×8 baking pan.
the filling
1. Slice rhubarb 1/2 inch thick and toss with sugar, strawberries flour and ginger. Set aside.

the amazing crumb topping
1. In a large bowl, whisk sugars, spices and salt into melted butter until smooth.
2. Add flour with a spatula or wooden spoon. It will look and feel like a solid dough. Press it together in the bottom of the bowl and set aside.

the cake

1. In a small bowl, stir together the sour cream, egg, egg yolk and vanilla.
2. In a separate small bowl, using an electric mixer (or by hand), mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add butter and a spoonful of sour cream mixture and mix on medium speed until flour is moistened.
3. Increase speed and beat for 30 seconds. Add remaining sour cream mixture in two batches, beating after each addition.
4. Scoop out about 1/2 cup batter and set aside.

final assembly
1. Scrape remaining batter into prepared pan. Spoon strawberry-rhubarb over batter. Dollop “set-aside” batter over rhubarb; it does not have to be even.
2. Using your fingers, break topping mixture into big crumbs, about 1/2 to 3/4 inch in size. Sprinkle over cake.
3. Bake cake until a toothpick or knife inserted into center comes out clean of batter, 45 to 55 minutes. Cool completely before serving.

Voila! Impress your guests and family with this seasonal treat!


Post-baking thoughts: The original recipes does not use strawberries, although we thought it was a great addition. If you want try it without the berries, let me know how it turns out.

6 Comments Add yours

  1. Kate says:

    mmm. I love rhubarb. I would have never known it was an iPhone picture.

    1. Emily says:

      Yes it is delicious! Yea my phone broke over the week but I needed to take a photo — not bad for a phone!

  2. Deborah Kotecki says:

    YES! It was AWESOME! Thanks for making it Emily!!! Now I have had a positive Rhubarb experience!

    1. Emily says:

      Thanks Debbie!

  3. Peter says:

    Go emily go! we love you in LA!

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