This rhubarb cake is truly one of our favorites.

It’s incredibly easy to make with a handful of ingredients that you likely have on hand. It comes out moist and full of tart rhubarb flavor.

Rhubarb Cake on a plate with a scoop of ice cream

It’s rhubarb season and this fruit (yes, it’s a fruit!) is making appearances in everything from pies to muffins! This recipe for rhubarb cake showcases its unique color and flavor in a lightly sweetened, fluffy cake that’s perfect as a quick snack or dessert.

You’ll LOVE This Cake Because…

  • It’s so moist and delicious that it requires no frosting.
  • This rhubarb cake recipe is super easy to make.
  • It’s made with ingredients you likely have on hand, along with some rhubarb stalks.
  • It freezes well, so it can be made ahead of time.
Rhubarb Cake ingredients with labels

Ingredients for Rhubarb Cake

  • Rhubarb – Choose ripe and firm red stalks. Rinse the stalks thoroughly and chop them into even pieces. If you don’t have enough rhubarb to equal 3 cups, add sliced strawberries or chopped apples. You can use frozen rhubarb in this recipe too.
  • Flour – All-purpose flour is the base of this cake, it hasn’t been tested with other varities.
  • Butter – Use unsalted butter. If using salted butter, skip the salt in the recipe.
  • Lemon – Fresh lemon adds flavor and also reacts with the soda to make the cake light and fluffy (so it cannot be left out). If you’d like zest the lemon and add 1 teaspoon of lemon zest to the cake.
  • Other – Use large eggs and granulated sugar.

Did you know?

The rhubarb leaves are toxic and should not be ingested so be sure to chop them off and discard them.

How to Make Rhubarb Cake

This is a delicious and sweet way to enjoy a harvest of rhubarb.

  1. Whisk dry ingredients together in a large bowl and wet ingredients in a medium bowl.
  2. Toss the rhubarb in the dry mixture.
  3. Combine the wet and dry ingredients (recipe below). Pour the cake batter into the prepared baking dish or cake pan.
  4. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and bake.

If you’d like, this cake is great with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, a sprinkle of powdered sugar, or whipped cream.

Tips for a Perfect Cake

Create a well in the center of the dry mixture and pour the wet into the dry. Gently fold the dry into the center and turn the bowl as you stir. This method aerates the batter, ensuring a light, fluffy cake.

  • Mixing the rhubarb with the flour first ensures it doesn’t sink to the bottom of the cake.
  • Rhubarb is very tart, so there is a little bit of extra sweetness in this cake.
  • Make sure all ingredients are at room temperature.
cooked Rhubarb Cake in a dish

Storing Rhubarb Cake

Keep rhubarb cake covered at room temperature for up to 3 days. Freeze leftover portions by wrapping them tightly in plastic wrap and storing them in zippered bags for up to 10 weeks.

More Rhubarb Recipes

Did you make this Rhubarb Cake? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

Rhubarb Cake with ice cream and a bite taken out
4.99 from 72 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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Rhubarb Cake

Sweet & tart rhubarb cake is the best way to use up all that summer harvest!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings 8
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Ingredients  

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup unsalted butter melted
  • 1 ½ tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg room temperature
  • 3 cups chopped fresh rhubarb chopped

Topping

  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9×13-inch baking pan and set aside.
  • Whisk flour, salt, & baking soda in a large bowl. Set aside.
  • In a small bowl, combine sugar, milk, melted butter, lemon juice, and vanilla. Stir in the egg.
  • Add the rhubarb to the flour mixture and gently mix.
  • Combine the wet and dry ingredients and stir with a spoon until well combined.
  • Transfer the batter to the prepared pan. Combine the sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle on top of the batter.
  • Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  • Cool and serve with ice cream.

Notes

Mixing the rhubarb with the flour first ensures it doesn’t sink to the bottom of the cake. Ensure all ingredients are at room temperature.
Leftover cake can be kept for up to 3 days at room temperature in a covered container. 
Freeze portions by wrapping in plastic wrap and storing in zippered bags for up to 10 weeks. Thaw at room temperature. 
4.99 from 72 votes

Nutrition Information

Calories: 404 | Carbohydrates: 68g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 52mg | Sodium: 541mg | Potassium: 228mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 43g | Vitamin A: 489IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 89mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Cake, Dessert
Cuisine American
Rhubarb Cake on a plate with writing
piece of Rhubarb Cake  on a plate with ice cream and a title
Rhubarb Cake on a plate with ice cream and a title
Rhubarb Cake  in a pan and a piece of Rhubarb Cake on a plate with ice cream and a title

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Holly Nilsson is the creator of Spend With Pennies, where she creates easy, comforting recipes made for real life. With a passion for nostalgic flavors and simplified techniques, Holly helps busy home cooks create delicious meals that always work. She is also the author of “Everyday Comfort,” which promises to inspire even more hearty, home-cooked meals.
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4.99 from 72 votes (58 ratings without comment)

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Comments

  1. Excellent recipe. The cake was very moist. I had to bake it for 55 minutes but it was very worth it. Thank you for the terrific recipe.5 stars

  2. I made two of these and used glass bakeware. I didnt mix the rhubarb into the flour mixture (accidentally put it in before I saw that it was supposed to be stirred into the flour mixture) but it turned out great.
    I took it to two different places and it was gone like that!
    I didn’t take ice cream but used whipped cream and it worked out great.
    Thanks for this delicious recipe.
    several people said they didn’t like rhubarb but they liked this.

  3. Such an easy recipe and turned out to be so tasty! For me, I had to take it out after 35 minutes because it was already done and I also added cinnamon 1 teaspoon and ginger 1 teaspoon. Turned out great will make it again and again.5 stars

  4. This cake is delicious! I used 1 cup of sugar instead of 1.5 and found it sweet enough. The lemon zest gives it that extra zing. I will use this recipe with cherries and other fruits as well.5 stars

  5. This is a delicious cake. Very moist and suitable as a dessert cake as well as to enjoy with a cup of tea.
    As I noted comments saying it is quite moist on the bottom, I also cooked it longer – 10 to 15 minutes.
    I would use a little less sugar on top and perhaps a little more cinnamon, however we all loved it as is.

  6. It was fantastic! I substituted lemon extract 1 tsp instead of lemon juice. I substituted 1 apple diced up for 1 cup of rhubarb as I only had 2 cups. Everyone loved it!5 stars

  7. Husband LOVED this fresh rhubarb cake! Didn’t have a lemon or any lemon juice, so I subbed white wine vinegar for the chemical reaction. Will be keeping this recipe. From garden to table was 1-1/4 hours.5 stars

  8. I really like this cake in general, but it has WAY too much salt! Need to knock it back to 1/2 teaspoon.

    I also left out the vanilla, because I usually find that it clashes with lemon flavors in a way I personally don’t like.

    But the rest is great!4 stars

  9. Hi All,
    I’ve made this about 5X so far. It’s easy. I like the light colour of the cake. It set’s of the colours in the rhubarb well. The taste is good. I’ve given the recipe out to others as well. A little thing not so great is that the cake can be a little too wet so I do not underbake it. Today I ran out of fresh lemons so I am using the bottled stuff – hope it works. Very happy to have the recipe. Thank you!5 stars

  10. This cake was easy to make and very good. I used frozen rhubarb. The bottom of the cake was wetter than I wish but still fine. I baked it 50 min. Also had that larger grind of sugar that was nice in the topping.5 stars

  11. Hi, would it be possible to provide a button that converts ‘cups’ measurements to ‘metric’ please?
    It would be so much simpler than converting each ingredient ‘cup’ measurement into metric. Recently became a subscriber and will have try at the rhubarb cake and let you know, once I’ve sorted out the ingredients.

  12. After stumbling upon some fresh rhubarb at the grocery store (sort of uncommon in my area), I decided to give this recipe a try – and wow! So simple and delicious! It easily secured its place somewhere in my “top 5 favorite cakes”.5 stars

  13. This cake is beyond delicious. The small bit of sugar and cinnamon on top add just a bit of crunch. I added 1 tsp of baking piwder on top of the soda. Just gives it a bit of extra lift.
    Family say this is a keeper!5 stars

  14. Great Recipe.
    By accident I had all the items needed and made it yesterday.
    Will do t again with my next crop of rhubarb.
    Thank you for sharing5 stars

  15. Execlent Rhubarb Cake! I just needed extra topping top cover cake. The best Rhubarb cake recipe i have tried! It’s a keeper!5 stars