Rhubarb Crisp with Cardamom and Almonds is plant-based and gluten free, full of tangy rhubarb flavor and just the right amount of sweetness!Jump to Recipe
One of my favorite signs of spring is when bright green bulbs of rhubarb leaves start emerging from the ground with their tender pink stalks. Plenty of gentle rain and warm days this season have given me quite a crop already. Rhubarb Crisp with Cardamom and Almonds is a wonderful, homey dish to highlight the tangy flavor of this vibrant vegetable.
Interesting Facts about Rhubarb:
- Rhubarb leaves are toxic if ingested in large quantities, especially to animals such as cats and dogs. Be sure to trim them away after harvesting. Put the leaves to good use in your compost bin or as a ground cover for weeds.
- “Field Rhubarb” comes in varieties that range from green to pink to bright red and can grow outdoors much of the year in temperate climates. Rhubarb is at its best from spring to early fall.
- “Forced Rhubarb” is commonly grown in dark hothouses. Stalks grow quickly in this environment and are deep red color throughout. The leaves stay small without the necessary light to photosynthesize.
- Rhubarb is often thought of as a fruit, but is truly a vegetable! The flavor lends itself well to being combined with berries and other fruits but is also delicious in savory preparations, such as pickled or roasted rhubarb.
- Below is a picture of both field and forced rhubarb:
I have two varieties of rhubarb in my garden. One of the patches has a bright magenta exterior and the other stays mostly green with some pink streaking. Both are equally delicious but neither has the deep color that forced rhubarb yields. To give more color (and some additional flavor) to my dish I add some fresh red raspberries and a bit of cooked beet. The earthy beet flavor is also quite nice with the tang of the rhubarb. Raw turbinado sugar adds sweetness and a hint of caramel and lemon juice and zest add brightness. I use a whole vanilla bean in this recipe, but vanilla extract is just fine. Not pictured here is a bit of cornstarch, which I add to the filling to help thicken up the juices as the mixture cooks.
For the crisp topping, I use a mixture of almond and oat flours, along with rolled oats and sliced almonds. The almond flour adds moisture, texture, and chewiness as do the oats and sliced almonds. Oat flour makes the crisp topping light and delicate. Brown sugar gives a nice deep sweet flavor enhanced by the Scandinavian flavors of cardamom and cinnamon. I like using virgin coconut oil to make this recipe plant-based, but unsalted butter can be substituted.
Assembling and Baking the Rhubarb Crisp with Cardamom and Almonds:
Mix together all filling ingredients. I like to split the vanilla bean and cut it in half. If using vanilla extract, simply mix it in with the rest.
Transfer the filling to a baking dish. I am using this lovely Dansk 13 x 8-inch casserole dish.
Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 30 minutes until quite bubbly, stirring occasionally.
While the filling is baking, mix together all of the topping ingredients until well-combined.
Sprinkle the topping over the cooked filling and return to the oven.
Bake the crisp for 30 more minutes until golden brown and bubbling. Cool slightly before serving.
Enjoying the Rhubarb Crisp with Cardamom and Almonds:
The crisp is best the day it is baked, served warm from the oven.
The filling should be soft and juicy, with a crunchy crisp topping.
I think the crisp is best with a scoop of ice cream! Enjoy the crisp for up to 3 days straight out of the refrigerator, or gently re-warmed. This is a most lovely brunch dish, Fika treat, Mother’s Day, or summer gathering dessert! Enjoy!
You might also enjoy this recipe for Rhubarb Rye Cream Scones
Rhubarb Crisp with Cardamom and Almonds
- 5 cups rhubarb stalks, cut into 1-inch slices
- 1 cup fresh raspberries
- 2 tablespoons cooked red beet pieces, optional
- ½ cup raw turbinado sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 vanilla bean, split (or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
- Zest and juice of 1 large lemon
- ½ cup blanched almond flour
- ½ cup oat flour
- ½ cup rolled oats
- ½ cup sliced raw almonds
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ cup virgin coconut oil, melted (can substitute unsalted butter)
For the Filling:
- Preheat oven to 350℉.
- In a large bowl, toss together all filling ingredients.
- Transfer filling to an oiled baking dish, roughly 13 x 9-inch in size.
- Bake for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until bubbly and juices have released and thickened slightly. Remove pan from oven and let cool slightly.
For the Topping:
- In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients thoroughly.
- Sprinkle topping evenly over the cooked filling and return pan to oven.
- Bake for about 30 minutes until golden brown and quite bubbly.
- Remove from oven and cool slightly before serving.
- Serve warm topped with ice cream, if desired. Store leftover crisp in refrigerator for up to 3 days.