Are you into rhubarb? If not, I’m here to tell you what’s up. This Strawberry Rhubarb Pie is one of my absolute FAVORITE pies of all time! Tart rhubarb paired with bright and sweet strawberries, tucked into a flaky golden pie crust, OR layered with a truly phenomenal crumble topping, you choose! I honestly can’t decide which I like better, so we’re going with BOTH.

piece of lattice crust rhubarb and strawberry pie with lots of filling in a pie pan.
Table of Contents
  1. Rhubarb forever
  2. Best strawberry rhubarb pie
  3. Strawberry rhubarb pie recipe ingredients
  4. How to make strawberry rhubarb pie
  5. Double Crust Strawberry Rhubarb Pie
  6. Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Pie
  7. What to serve with rhubarb strawberry pie
  8. Does strawberry rhubarb pie need to be refrigerated?
  9. Can you freeze strawberry rhubarb pie?
  10. Strawberry rhubarb pie frequently asked questions
  11. More fabulous fruit desserts
  12. Strawberry Rhubarb Pie Recipe
  13. Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Pie:

I spent last week back and forth between home and my friend Mardee’s house, looking out for her kids while she and her husband took a much-needed trip away together. Several friends checked in on me over the course of the week, bringing dinners and making sure I wasn’t breaking down from taking care of two families. (Eric helped sooo much, bless him!)

I told my friends everything with the kids was totally fine, but I was definitely having a mental breakdown trying to wrap my head around all the perfect systems in Mardee’s house.

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vertical shot of a whole, baked, lattice crust strawberry rhubarb pie with a serving pie serving spoon.

I spent an entire morning taking pictures of all her under-sink cupboards and sending them to Eric. “Look at these handy shelves Mardee has to organize her cleaning products! There is not a single wadded up grocery bag shoved in the side!” (My under-sink cupboards are the kind where something falls out whenever you open them.)

Or, “Look at Mardee’s pantry. She has BINS for every snack item, applesauces here, granola bars here! Amazing!” I have one bin for all the snacks in my cupboard. It’s full of loose Cheez-It’s and at least twelve half-eaten sleeves of Ritz crackers (because the kids never check to see if there is one already open). Oh, and probably some half eaten pretzels, with literal bite marks in them, because 4-year-old Edison often decides halfway through eating a snack that he’s done with it and just…puts it back.

a slice of crumble topping strawberry rhubarb pie in a pie pan with strawberry slice garnish.

Mardee even has labels on all her kitchen cupboard shelves. Pitchers go here, serving bowls go here. When house guests offer to help unload my dishwasher, they say things like, where does this serving bowl go? And I will say, “Good question. Where would YOU put it in this kitchen??” This exact scenario has happened multiple times.

I took pictures of the ice packs she uses in her kids lunch boxes. Why have I never considered this? My kids don’t want string cheese packed in their lunch anymore because they get floppy and warm by noon. Of course you buy an ice pack to solve this problem. Not me. We just stopped buying string cheese. Guys!!

I’ve never lived in someone else’s house before, pretending to be them. Mardee’s house is like a well oiled machine of perfectly functioning intimidation. She even has laminated chore charts, encouraging signs, and reminders everywhere for her kids.

sign in the bathroom- body sludge.

Like this one 🤣

I spent the entire week searching for handy bins and organizers, and added them all to my Amazon account. Where they still sit, because I can’t get my act together enough to actually follow through on this. My house is just going to remain in its state of body sludge.

Although, Mardee told me when she came back, “In transparency, I don’t think anyone has improved their body-sludge wiping since I made this–even though it is laminated.” Welp. Can’t win them all I guess 😅

Rhubarb forever

Every single year in March or April I start obsessively calling grocery stores near me to chat with the produce guy. “Is there rhubarb yet??” I send texts to every group thread I’m on. “Has anyone seen rhubarb? If you see it, BUY OUT THE STORE and I will come get it from you!” Seriously, this happens every single year. My rhubarb love goes deep, and my tradition of to making Rhubarb Meringue Layers and Rhubarb Shortbread Bars every single spring requires a lot of coordination to get my hands on this stuff! I seriously need to start growing it myself.

looking down at a bunch of about 7 or 8 whole stalks of rhubarb on a wooden cutting board.

Best strawberry rhubarb pie

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie is definitely the most traditional way to use up rhubarb, but I had never even had a slice before a few weeks ago. Every time I get my hands on rhubarb, I make my previous-favorite ​Rhubarb Custard Pie​. That pie is so freaking good that I had no room in my heart to even try America’s beloved Strawberry Rhubarb. But after 16 years of Rhubarb Custard Pie (I celebrate my rhubarbiversary alongside mine and Eric’s anniversary, since his family introduced us) I was finally ready to branch out. You know, maybe go on a few dates.

Y’allllll it has been love at first taste. Strawberry and rhubarb play off each other in the most magical way, the sweetness of the berries and the sharp tartness of the rhubarb combine to make something perfectly balanced. And THEN we wrap it up in a flaky buttery pie crust.

Or do we top with it with a ridiculous amount of buttery crumble?? How to choose??

Let’s try both, shall we?

whole crumble topped rhubarb strawberry pie with slices cut and one removed from pan.

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie with Streusel Crumb Topping (above): A regular pie crust on the bottom, the same strawberry rhubarb filling, and a party on top in the form of some butter, sugar, and flour crumbled together to make the most amazing streusel-y situation of your life. This was the crowd favorite among all my testers.

Double Crust Strawberry Rhubarb Pie (below): The main star of this pie is the fruit fruit fruit, complemented by copious amounts of the flakiest, butteriest pasty crust. It is simple, and I love that you can focus on the flavor of the rhubarb and strawberry. If you threatened me to the point of death, I might admit a small preference for a double crust pie!

But honestly guys, they are both so good. You will have to try them both and let me know which one you love the most! Are we ready? Let’s do this thing!

close up of side view of a slice of strawberry rhubarb pie with flaky crust and strawberry garnish.

Strawberry rhubarb pie recipe ingredients

For a pie, this recipe is pretty easy to throw together. Strawberries, rhubarb, and a just a few extras that you might already have on hand. Full instructions and recipe measurements are included in the recipe card below, this is just an overview!

ingredients for strawberry rhubarb pie like rhubarb, strawberries, butter, lemon, etc.
  • 1 homemade pie crust
  • grenadine syrup, optional!
  • strawberries
  • rhubarb
  • granulated sugar
  • lemon
piece of lattice crust strawberry and rhubarb pie with lots of filling and fresh strawberry garnish.

How to make strawberry rhubarb pie

First things first, grab some rhubarb! I like small pieces of rhubarb in my pie, so I usually slice it lengthwise before chopping.

top pic: several stalks of rhubarb sliced lengthwise, bottom: the sliced stalks being cut perpendicular into cubes.
chopped rhubarb with some ribbony string still attached that the knife struggled to cut through.

In the photo above you can kind of see how rhubarb is a little stubborn when you are chopping it. If you don’t have a very sharp knife, it won’t cut all the way through the ribbon-like outer edge of the rhubarb. Some people peel these off entirely, which is such a shame because it often is the prettiest most colorful part of the rhubarb. No matter how stringy and weird it looks, I promise once it’s cooked, it breaks down into the most delicious pie, so don’t worry about the strange texture right now. Use a sharp knife, cut all the way through, and peel off what you have to, but keep as much as you can!

The other thing you might notice from the photos above is the huge color difference of rhubarb from one stalk to the next! Sometimes you will get red and white rhubarb, sometimes it’s as green as celery with a reddish edge. I love my desserts to look RED because that’s the most appetizing color, so I always soak my chopped rhubarb in grenadine syrup for a couple hours before making my dessert:

chopped rhubarb soaking in grenadine in a glass bowl to get extra red coloring.

This sweetens the rhubarb just a smidge, and turns even the greenest rhubarb a nicer shade of pink. You can absolutely skip this step if you like! Your pie will taste amazing without it!

Drain the rhubarb in a colander and return the drained rhubarb to the same now-empty large bowl. Add the other filling ingredients.

top pic: pie strawberry, rhubarb, sugar and more unmixed in glass bowl, bottom everything all mixed.

Mix it up. Stick it in the fridge if your pie crust isn’t ready yet!

top pic: pie shell fluted in pie pan, bottom: strawberry rhubarb filling poured into shell.

Head over to my Homemade Pie Crust post for a bajillion details about how to make a homemade pie crust. It’s not as hard as you think, especially with egg in the dough like my crust has – it helps bind the dough together and makes it way easier to roll out and less likely to crack.

Double Crust Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

Everything is the same up to this point no matter which topping you choose. But here are the details for a double crust.

Don’t forget to dot with butter before putting on the top crust!

top pic: butter dotting top of filling in crust, bottom lattice crust laid on top.

Lattice crusts are not as hard as they look, head over to my Lattice Pie Crust post for all the details!

top pic: pastry brush spreading milk over lattice crust, bottom sugar sprinkled over top.

Brush the top of the pie with milk, or with a combo of milk and egg. With my homemade crust, I always have a half egg leftover, but I don’t like how glossy a straight-up egg wash looks, so I do half milk, half egg. Sprinkle with sugar and she’s ready for the oven!

Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Pie

Let’s make our streusel topping! Normally, for a crumb topping (like for Dutch Apple Pie) I would use brown sugar and cinnamon, but not for this pie. Brown sugar has molasses in it, and cinnamon is such a strong spicy flavor. I do not want those deep dark flavors masking the brightness of my lemony fresh rhubarb. But that’s just me! Add in 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon if you want! (and/or 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg would also be good!)

top pic: flour and sugar in a ceramic bowl, bottom melted butter being poured into bowl.

Add in some melted butter, not too hot. I’ve tried so many different ways of making streusel: cutting in cold butter, softened butter, etc.

top pic: stirring melted butter into flour mix, bottom everything almost completely mixed.

But melting, giving it a rough stir, and then chilling and breaking up the crumbles with my hands is my favorite method. You get the biggest most delicious crumbles! Put this mixture in the fridge or freezer for 30 minutes or so. It has to be cold when it goes in the oven, or it will just melt into the pie filling.

looking down at a strawberry rhubarb pie with crumble on top ready to bake.

Add some of the crumble topping to the top of your chilled pie, but NOT all of it. We are adding it in a couple layers to ensure a super crisp topping.

top pic: pie with some baked streusel on top, bottom more streusel added on top of already baked.

About halfway through the bake time, pile on the rest, yes, all of it!! It’s so good you guys.

Now I’m going to show you how to make something you need no matter which type of pie you are making. It’s a homemade pie shield!

top pic: a square piece of foil, bottom the square folded in half to make a pie shield.

No pie goes out of my kitchen without using one of these handy shields. No more overcooked crust edges! Many pies have to be in the oven for a full hour (including today’s recipe) and the crust can get too brown a lot of the time. This foil shield protects your crust, keeping it tender and flaky.

top pic: square foil piece folded twice into quarters, bottom scissors cutting center circle out.
strawberry rhubarb pie with crumble topping with crust protected by a foil shield.

And then the center of your pie can still brown as necessary. I do this for both the crumble pie and for the double crust pie.

a perfectly baked strawberry rhubarb pie with a perfectly cooked lattice crust.

And that’s it!! Which pie are you going to make first?? Call all the grocery stores, find yourself some rhubarb! You need this!

What to serve with rhubarb strawberry pie

As a dessert, there’s really no need to serve this pie alongside anything, except a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream. Yes please! But this is one of my favorite spring time desserts, so here are some of my favorite spring time lunch and dinner recipes to eat beforehand!

looking at the side of a piece of pie with all the strawberry and rhubarb filling showing.

Does strawberry rhubarb pie need to be refrigerated?

Not at first! Like other fruit pies, strawberry rhubarb pie will be good on the counter at room temperature for about two days. Loosely cover the top of the pie plate with plastic wrap so the crust doesn’t get soggy, then slice and eat at will. I can’t personally imagine having leftover pie another two full days after making it. Like, what?! But if you happen to have more self control than I do, transfer any remaining pie to an airtight container and stick it in the fridge, and it should last another day or two (but may start to get runny or soggy).

Can you freeze strawberry rhubarb pie?

The only way I recommend freezing this pie is totally assembled but UNBAKED. It’s actually a really great method for getting all the work done in advance of the day you need it. Prepare the recipe all the way through putting the top crust on and fluting the edges. Flash freeze with the pie plate on top of a cookie sheet in the freezer for about 30-45 minutes. Then, wrap the pie carefully in a few layers of plastic wrap and one layer of heavy foil OR put the whole pie pan in a 2 gallon freezer bag and seal well with as much air removed as possible.

The pie will be good in the freezer for up to 3 months. On baking day, take the pie out of the freezer, unwrap it and brush the milk and sprinkle the sugar on the top crust, then put it in a COLD oven. If you have glass or ceramic pie pans you run the risk of them cracking and breaking if they go straight into a hot oven due to thermal shock from extreme temperature changes. Once placed in the cold oven, go ahead and bring the temperature up to 425. Plan on about double the cook time for baking from frozen.

If you won’t be baking the pie in the next few days and need the pie plate, you can line the pie plate with parchment paper or foil sprayed with non-stick spray before assembly. Flash freeze as described above, then lift the pie out of the pan with the paper/foil. Carefully pull the foil or paper off the crust of the pie. At this point you can use the wrapping, freezing, and baking instructions in the previous paragraphs. I haven’t tried this yet but it’s SUCH a good idea for times like Thanksgiving when you need all your pie dishes at once!

baked strawberry rhubarb pie with crumble topping in pie pan with slice removed.

Strawberry rhubarb pie frequently asked questions

why combine strawberry and rhubarb?

It’s a classic combo for a few reasons. First is that strawberry and rhubarb are both spring harvests (in a garden they actually help each other grow!) so they naturally are in abundance around the same time. It makes sense they would end up together at some point! They’re both a fantastic rosy pinkish red color. Also, rhubarb is quite tart/sour, so it’s often combined with other fruit like strawberries to help tame the acidity. (I mean, for rhubarb wussies. I LOVE me some straight up rhubarb!)

Where is strawberry rhubarb pie popular?

It has a cult following by many throughout the country, but it seems to be most popular in the midwest and great plains areas. Rhubarb needs the ground to freeze to do well, and growth is suppressed at temperatures over 90 degrees, so it makes sense that it’s more of a northern state, colder climate favorite.

why is my strawberry rhubarb pie soupy?

More than likely, the filling what was not cooked long enough, or you forgot to add the thickening agent, in this case cornstarch. The cornstarch needs to bind with the sugars in the fruit to thicken at a high temperature for a certain amount of time in order to thicken. Also, be sure you’re not throwing in extra fruit or juice just because you have it. You’ll want to adjust the recipe and add more cornstarch if you decide you want more fruit in the filling.

How do you keep rhubarb pie from getting soggy?

Now, to me, soggy is different than soupy. See the answer above if your pie is soupy! Soggy is when the crust, either on top or bottom, gets wet and isn’t crisp and flaky anymore. The worst! There are a few things you can do to avoid that. First, bake initially at a very high temperature so the crust cooks quickly and doesn’t soak up liquid from the filling. (That’s why we start at 425 F) Next, make sure the filling is nice and thick, so liquid doesn’t seep into the bottom crust during baking or afterward. Third, make sure you leave the crust uncovered while cooling and barely covered with plastic wrap or foil for storing, so condensation from the pie doesn’t stay in the crust.

a piece of strawberry rhubarb pie in the pan with flaky lattice crust.

More fabulous fruit desserts

side view with all the strawberry rhubarb filling of a piece of pie in a pie pan with strawberry garnish.

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Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

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Prep: 30 minutes
Cook: 1 hour
Cooling time: 4 hours
Total: 5 hours 30 minutes
Servings: 10

Ingredients

For the filling:

  • 3 and 1/4 cups rhubarb, chopped (about 6 stalks, buy 1.5 pounds)
  • 3 and 1/4 cups strawberries, chopped (buy 1.5 pounds)
  • 1 and 1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest, from 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons butter, cut in pieces

Pie assembly and serving:

  • 1 tablespoon milk, to brush on pie crust
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar, for sprinkling on pie crust
  • vanilla ice cream or whipped cream, for serving

Instructions

  • Soak your rhubarb in grenadine: This step is totally optional. It helps bring out the RED color of rhubarb. Rhubarb is greenish sometimes, and can look a little funny in a pie. Soaking in grenadine not only sweetens the rhubarb slightly, but brightens the fruit to make your pie more appetizing. After all, we eat with our eyes first. You can skip it no problem!
  • Chop about 4-6 stalks of rhubarb in half lengthwise, if they are thick. Then chop each split stalk into 1/4 inch pieces. You need a very sharp knife for rhubarb, and you need to cut through all the way. If you don't, the edges of the stalk will strand off in ribbons. This is no big deal, but it is kind of annoying, and you often lose the outer edge of red color if you peel off the outside strands. So chop confidently and thoroughly.
  • Measure the rhubarb to make sure you have about 3 and 1/4 cups. (Don't just toss in all that you have.) Add to a medium bowl and pour 1/2 cup grenadine syrup over the top. Stir together well and cover. Chill in the fridge for about 60 minutes, or up to overnight.
  • Make your pie crust: If you know what's good for you, make a homemade pie crust. Seriously. No shade, Pillsbury, but you cannot compete. I've got lots of tips and tricks for success on my pie crust post. Make the recipe as written for a double pie crust.*
  • Roll out your pie dough and place in a deep 9 inch pie dish, with the excess hanging over the edges. Chill in the fridge until your filling is ready.
  • Make the filling. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F. Drain the rhubarb in a colander. Return the drained rhubarb to the now-empty bowl (no need to wash it.) Chop 3 and 1/4 cups strawberries into bite size pieces. Add to the rhubarb.
  • Add 1 and 1/3 cups granulated sugar, 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest (I love to use my microplane grater for zesting), 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, 1/4 teaspoon kosher or sea salt, 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg, and 1/4 cup cornstarch. Stir with a rubber spatula until well combined.
  • Roll out the second pie crust quickly, to keep it cold.
  • Pour the filling into the chilled bottom pie crust. Mound the filling in the center slightly. Chop 2 tablespoons butter into small pieces and scatter them over the top of the strawberry rhubarb filling.
  • Top the pie with the second rolled out crust. You can even make a Lattice Pie Crust if you are feeling fancy! If you top with the whole pie crust, be sure to use a sharp knife to make a few cuts in the top of the pie, so the steam from the filling can vent.
    (If you have any down time at all during the pie assembly process, the pie dough and filled pie should be chilled in the fridge or freezer, if possible. Chilled pie going into a hot oven makes for a super flaky crust!)
  • If you have time and space, freeze the assembled pie for 20 minutes.
  • Place your gorgeous pie on a baking sheet, in case the filling overflows. Brush the top with 1 tablespoon milk. (Or you can do 1 tablespoon milk whisked together with half a beaten egg. I always have a half egg leftover from my homemade pie crust.) Milk brushed on top of the pie will make the crust brown and matte. Egg brushed on will make it brown and shiny. I like a combo :)
  • Sprinkle the brushed pie with 1 tablespoon demerara sugar, or regular granulated sugar is great too.
  • Bake at 425 degrees F, with the rack in the lower 1/3 of the oven, for 15 minutes. The crust on the edge should be turning light brown.
  • Make a pie shield out of tin foil. Get a square of foil that is the same size as your pie. Fold it in half, then in half again. Cut out the center. Open it up again. You should have a square of foil with a circle cut out of the center. See photos above.
  • Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Remove the pie from the oven and place the foil on the edges of the crust. Loosely crimp it around the edges. This will protect it from burning.
  • Return the pie on the baking sheet to the oven. Don't forget, the oven should be at 350 now. Bake for 30 minutes.
  • Take a peek at your pie through the door. If the whole top of the pie looks golden brown, top the pie with another square of tin foil. No need to crimp or anything fancy, literally just place the foil on top of the pie.
  • Bake for another 15 minutes. The pie should be in the oven a total of about an hour.
  • Cool. Take the pie out of the oven and let cool completely on a wire rack. It will take at least 3-5 hours for this pie to reach room temperature. If you cut into it early, it will be a juicy mess. (Delicious, but the wrong texture.) Pie! a lesson in patience indeed.
  • Serve this pie with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream, you cannot miss out on this opportunity!! Such an amazing combo.

Notes

*Pie Crust: If you are making the Crumble topping, you only need a single pie crust.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Pie:

Make the pie as directed, until you have the filling poured into the pie crust. Flute the edges of your single pie crust. Skip the 2 tablespoons butter that are normally chopped and sprinkled on top of the pie. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt:
  • 1 and 1/4 cups flour
  • 3/4 cups + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 10 tablespoons butter (1 stick + 2 tablespoons), melted and cooled
Melt the butter in a medium bowl and let cool slightly. Add the flour to the butter mixture and use a rubber spatula to mix it together. (put your flour bowl back in the cupboard.) See photos, you don’t want to combine the flour and butter too much. Some flour streaks are ok. Put this mixture in the fridge or freezer for 20-40 minutes until it’s chilled. Keep your assembled pie in the fridge or freezer if there is wait time. 
Preheat the oven to 425. When the oven is really hot and the crumble is completely chilled, add less than half of the crumble to the top of the pie. Use your fingers to break up the crumble into chunks that about about the size of a dime or less. You want some sandy bits, and some bigger chunks. Work it with your fingers. Only sprinkle on as much of the mixture as you need to barely cover the strawberry rhubarb filling. Save the remaining crumble in the fridge.
Bake the pie on a metal baking sheet (to protect from overflow) on a rack this is placed in the lower 1/3 of the oven. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes. Then lower the heat to 350. 
Make a tin foil pie shield, see photos in the post.
Remove the pie from the oven and cover the edges of the crust with the tin foil shield.
Don’t forget to lower the heat to 350. Place the pie back in the oven and bake another 15 minutes. 
Remove the pie from the oven one last time. Take off the pie shield and add the remaining crumble, all of it, pile it on. Replace the pie shield on the edges of the pie, making sure the crumble part is exposed. 
Bake at 350 for another 20-30 minutes. (the pie should be in the oven for a total of 50-60 minutes.) Check the pie toward the end, and if the crumble topping looks very brown, get a square of tin foil and place it right on top of the other shield (no need to crimp or anything, just toss it on top.) This is to protect the top from overbrowning, but you want the rhubarb to be in the oven for at least 50-60 minutes, to make sure it gets fully cooked. 

Nutrition

Calories: 411kcal | Carbohydrates: 69g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 6mg | Sodium: 264mg | Potassium: 240mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 39g | Vitamin A: 119IU | Vitamin C: 32mg | Calcium: 54mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Calories: 411
Keyword: pie, rhubarb, strawberry
Did you make this? I’d love to see it!Mention @thefoodcharlatan or tag #thefoodcharlatan!

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Comments

  1. The crust was spectacular but the filling was a soupy mess. I followed the instructions exactly.

    1. Hi Susan! So sorry to hear that your filling didn’t set enough. Did you let it set up for at least 3-5 hours following baking it? I know it’s tempting to cut into a warm pie but it’s always so soupy (I’ve definitely done this). Hope your next pie turns out perfectly!

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