Simple Rhubarb Compote
Last week, on a much-needed grocery shopping trip, I couldn’t help but spy, tucked into the corner of the produce section at Whole Foods, a ton of fresh rhubarb.
It was just sitting there, silently willing me to pick it up and take it home with me. Fully expecting it to cost a small fortune, I searched for the price and was pleasantly surprised to see that it was only $2.49 a pound.
Not cheap in the grand scheme of things, but for rhubarb, practically a steal! I took it as a sign. Without any sort of plan or recipe in mind, I snatched up a lot of it. About two pounds to be precise.
I could have made a pie, a crumble, and any other number of delicious creations. But after a bit of deliberation, I ended up preparing it one of my favorite, go-to ways.
A ridiculously simple rhubarb compote made with just four ingredients: rhubarb, lemon peel, sugar, and vanilla. It is delicious as a topping on yogurt for breakfast, tastes even better on steel-cut oatmeal, or can even be swirled into ice cream.
Simple Rhubarb Compote
- 2 lbs fresh rhubarb roughly chopped
- ½ cup water
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- thinly shaved peel of half a lemon or orange
- ½ teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract)
- Combine all ingredients (excluding vanilla) in large sauce pot.
- Heat to medium-high and stir occasionally until rhubarb begins to break down completely.
- Remove from heat, stir in vanilla bean paste (or extract), and allow to cool to room temperature. Refrigerate and use as desired.
- This recipe has just the right amount of sugar, so that the rhubarb still maintains its distinct tart flavor, without being too overpowering. However, if you find it too tart for your liking, feel free to add a bit more sweetness with sugar, maple syrup, or whatever else your heart desires.
25 Comments on “Simple Rhubarb Compote”
Can it be preserved by boiling for 10 mins in jars like jam?
Hi! Preserving and canning requires checking the pH of the contents and this recipe has not been tested or intended to be canned for pantry storage. You need acid of a certain level to safely preserve jams and compotes – please don’t do this unless you are a very seasoned preserver and have the tools necessary to tweak or adapt the recipe to make this possible.
However, the compote lasts for quite some time when stored in the fridge! You can also freeze any extras or leftovers too. Hope this helps!
Super easy recipe. After reading reviews I reduced the amount of orange peel to a couple one inch pieces and it resulted in a subtle orange zest flavour. Probably still could reduce the sugar a little if you like it more tart.
loved it! i substituted 1/4 of the rhubarb for haskaps (honey berrys) and we had the with biscuits soooo yummy!
Such a fabulous and easy to follow recipe, thank you! Beautiful flavour. The kids had it with dairy free yoghurt and asked for seconds. 🙂
That’s so great to hear! Thanks for the feedback Natalie!
Yummy recipe and great to see nutrition guide. How much is a ‘portion’ in that respect?
Easy to make and delicious too. Think the orange zest was a little overpowering, but I’ll use less next time and see if that works better. Thank you!
Yum! Perfect balance of sugar allowing tartness of rhubarb to come through. Love it 🙂
Easy, simple and DELICIOUS!
Check out Jamie Oliver’s ginger and rhubarb kinda soufflé. Uses rhubarb compote. Delicious!
I made a big delicious batches of this recipe. I love it but we didn’t use it all. Can I use it in a pie – perhaps add strawberries to it? How would I modify a strawberry rhubarb pie recipe if I am using compote rather than just the rhubarb junks? I assume I would eliminate the sugar…any other suggestions?
Hi Sandra! Glad you enjoyed it. I personally wouldn’t use something like this in a pie – I guess you could put a small layer in the bottom of an otherwise regular pie recipe (apple, strawberry, etc.), but I would use it for other things. It goes wonderfully with ice cream, could be put on oatmeal/overnight oats, pancakes, etc. I just don’t think the texture when it’s cooked down like this is best for a pie, but maybe swirled into a cake or something could also work!
I had something like this in a cafe recently, so keen to make it at home.
How long will it last in the refrigerator in a jar considering I’ll be using only a few spoonfuls at a time..?
I would say about a week (to be safe), probably a bit longer! If you don’t think you’ll use it in a short time, you could also freeze a portion and defrost it at a later date ?
I love this recipe. Is it possible to can this for use later in the year and if yes how?
I would just freeze in a container and thaw in fridge before using!
This stuff is addictive! I love rhubarb pie and I know for some it is an acquired taste, but for such an unique flavor that rhubarb has you would be passing up one of natures most unique treats! I only have seen rhubarb in small quantities oand only rarely in the regular grocery stores…so I planted my own and glad I did!!!
Thank you all for the lovely comments and words! Please be sure to let me know if you've tried the recipe 🙂
I love rhubarb — this compote looks fantastic. Makes me excited we still have some rhubarb left in my garden 🙂
It just occurred to me that I've never cooked with rhubarb. So strange, I need to fix that.
Yum! Rhubarb compote is one of my most favorite summer recipes! Thanks for motivating me to hunt some down before it's to late.
My husband loves rhubarb and this for sure will make him happy!
Oh my gosh; those rhubarb hearts are TOO adorable! I still can't believe I've never cooked or baked with rhubarb and think that needs to change ASAP. This is great motivation 🙂
What a lovely and simple recipe – I have several big rhubarb plants, so I'll be giving this a try for sure – thanks!