Old Fashioned Rhubarb Coffee Cake

This Rhubarb Coffee Cake is a basic cake that was made in the old days. I used my own homegrown rhubarb, that I had in the freezer, to make this one. There are not a lot of ingredients in this coffee cake and it is not real sweet. Once the cake is cool, cover it with plastic wrap and let it sit overnight. It has delicious tart rhubarb pieces and a sugar topping that you can serve room temperature as is or warm it up and add a scoop of vanilla ice cream for even more sweetness.

Source: Grandmother Neill’s recipe



In a medium mixing bowl whisk

together the oil, vanilla, egg and milk.

In a small bowl whisk together the flour,

baking powder, salt and 1/2 cup of sugar.

Stir the flour mixture gradually

into the egg mixture until combined.

Add the rhubarb to the bowl.

Stir to combine.

Lightly grease an 8” or 9” square

baking dish with cooking oil. Pour

the batter into the baking dish.

Sprinkle with the remaining 2 – 3 Tbsp. of sugar.

Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for about

25 minutes or until the sides start to turn a light brown.


Old Fashioned Rhubarb Coffee Cake



  • 1 large egg
  • 3 Tbsp. melted shortening or oil
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract 
  • 1½ cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups diced frozen rhubarb, thawed
  • 2- 3 Tbsp. Granulated sugar for the top


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl whisk together egg, oil, milk and vanilla.
  3. In a small bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and 1/2 cup of sugar.
  4. Gradually stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture until combined.
  5. Add the rhubarb stirring to combine.
  6. Spray a 8” or 9” square baking dish with cooking oil. Add the batter to the baking dish.
  7. Sprinkle the remaining sugar evenly over the top.
  8. Bake for about 25 minutes or until the edges are turning a light brown.
  9. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream, optional.



      • It sure is Christy! We didn’t have much money when I was a kid and we ate a lot of what was free. We grew our own rhubarb so that made for great desserts, we went mushroom and asparagus hunting in the woods, my dad went hunting for rabbit and squirrel and we fished a lot.

      • Throw in those mushrooms with the squirrel and rabbit…..some potatoes too and you’d have some tasty stew. I love asparagus as well, but I don’t cook with it enough. Thanks so much for sharing this great dessert.

    • How exciting!!!! I pick mine, rise it off, slice it in about 1/2” pieces and freeze 2 cups each in freezer bags. That is the amount most recipes call for. It keeps all year long and I can make it whenever I want that way.

    • Whenever I have had anything rhubarb in a dessert like this, the fresh rhubarb always tastes dry to me after it is baked. I found that by freezing it it is always moist and tastes amazing. Try it fresh and see what you think as you may like it. If you don’t, try freezing it and see what you think.

  1. I’ve never heard of rhubarb and coffee cake (maybe it’s not a thing in the UK), but now I have I’m excited to give it a go. Does the rhubarb need to be frozen before hand or could fresh be used?

      • I was thinking it must be with the paid plan. It would be worth it! Thanks for sharing 🙂 I’ll have to think that!

      • Keep in mind though, I lose money blogging. I would be happy to break even but I don’t know enough about advertising other than what I do now. I didn’t start blogging to get rich but I would love to break even at least..lol It’s just a hobby for me at this point.

      • I look at that a little different. Are you losing money? Or are you investing in something that you love doing? Therefore investing in YOURSELF? Hmmm… Lol. Hope you had a great weekend Diane!

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