Cherry Rhubarb Pie

Is it still ‘homemade’ pie if you use a pre-made store-bought pie crust? Yes, I think so! I’ll claim it is because the filling is the important part anyway, right? I like being able to make everything from scratch but sometimes using one or two things that are ready to go makes life more convenient.

For this recipe– I’m highlighting the pie filling 🙂 Use a store-bought crust or a homemade crust depending on how you feel that day– but definitely make the pie filling yourself because it’s a) easy, b) delicious and c) doesn’t contain preservatives, weird additives, or fake colors!

Cherry Rhubarb Pie will be a go-to for your sweet-tart cravings. Rhubarb’s natural tartness is a perfect pair for sweet fruits. It’s an odd food that looks like red celery and smells sour but somehow transforms into an amazing pie filling?! I’ve had my share of strawberry rhubarb pies but I had extra frozen sweet cherries on hand so I put the two together one day and that’s how I settled on cherry rhubarb instead 🙂

What’s Rhubarb?

Rhubarb is sold at farmers’ markets and grocery stores by the stalk, like celery. It’s harvested in the spring, with a short season that spans from April to June. Rhubarb stalks are famous for their bright pink color, as pictured above, but they can also be light pink and even pale green. The color is not an indication of ripeness or sweetness, like it is with other fruits. The stalks are the only edible part of the plant; in fact, the leaves of rhubarb are poisonous.

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/what-is-rhubarb-fruit-or-vegetable_n_7534888

How to Store Rhubarb:

The stalks are fine in a plastic bag on a shelf in the fridge or in a drawer, but avoid crowding them and avoid moisture. I’ve found wrapping the stalks in paper towels or cloth as soon as I get them home keeps the moisture away. Raw, fresh rhubarb should keep for a week in the fridge.

You can freeze rhubarb for longer storage, too! Wash stalks, trim ends and chop as desired then freeze on a sheet pan until cubes are solid (about 1-2 hours). Then transfer to a freezer bag and store for 9-12 months. Rhubarb freezes well without blanching first. Use as the recipe directs.

For Cherry Rhubarb Pie, you’ll need:

  • 3 cups sweet cherries (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 cups chopped rhubarb (about 3 stalks)
  • double crust pie dough (homemade or store-bought)
  • About 2.5 hours from start to finish (baking and cooling time mostly!)

Rhubarb season is nearing it’s end but thankfully our stores are still fully stocked. And cherries are coming in so it’s like prime-time to make this pie! You may be able to find frozen rhubarb if not fresh. Either way, save the recipe for summers to come 🙂

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Cherry Rhubarb Pie

Delicious easy pie featuring sweet cherries and tart rhubarb filling. Filling recipe makes 4 cups and can be made 4-5 days ahead. Makes a 9 inch pie. Vegan.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword Cherry Rhubarb Pie, Homemade Cherry Pie, Homemade Pie Filling
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Cooling Time 1 hour
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings 8 slices
Calories 270kcal

Equipment

  • 9 inch pie pan
  • medium saucepan

Ingredients

  • 3 c sweet cherries, whole fresh or frozen
  • 2 c rhubarb, chopped
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • ¼ c water
  • ¼ c cornstarch
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp almond extract
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • prepared dough for double crust 9 inch pie store-bought or homemade
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest, optional
  • sugar for topping, optional

Instructions

Have pie dough prepared and/or thawed according to package directions.

    Make the Cherry Rhubarb Pie Filling:

    • Combine cherries, rhubarb, sugar, lemon juice, and lemon zest (if using) in saucepan. In a small bowl, stir together water and cornstarch. Add cornstarch slurry to saucepan with fruit mixture.
    • Bring fruit mixture to a boil over medium heat, approximately 10 minutes. Stir often to avoid sticking. Once bubbling, remove from heat immediately.
    • Stir in vanilla extract, almond extract, and cinnamon. Pour filling mixture into storage container and let cool to be refrigerated for later or continue to bake the pie.

    Make and Bake the Cherry Rhubarb Pie:

    • Preheat oven to 400°F. Place bottom crust of pie dough into 9 inch pie pan.
    • Spoon in fruit filling and level to evenly distribute.
    • Top with remaining pie crust and design as desired (lattice crust or whole crust with slits cut for steam to escape). Pinch edges or finish as desired, sealing edges with water or cream wash. Brush crust with cream or milk and sprinkle on decorator's sugar if desired.*
      *Adding a cream or milk wash is optional but helps with the golden crust color.
    • Place prepared pie on a cookie sheet (this is optional but helps to avoid any filling spills).
    • Bake on 400°F for 15 minutes then reduce oven temperature to 350°F and continue to bake for 40-45 minutes, or until crust is golden brown.
    • Let pie cool for approximately 1 hour before slicing and serve. Enjoy as is or with whipped cream or ice cream.
    • Refrigerate leftover pie overnight, lightly covered. Bring to room temperature for serving or reheat if desired.

    Notes

    • To keep crust edges from browning too quickly, wrap edges with foil during the first 30 minutes of baking or use an edge guard (as pictured). Remove foil for remaining baking time. Edge guards can often be used the entire bake time.
    • I use vanilla almond/coconutmilk creamer for my crust wash but any milk or cream will work. Decorator’s sugar is optional but always adds a nice finish 🙂
    • Lemon zest is optional but brightens the fruit!

    Nutrition

    Calories: 270kcal

    What are your thoughts on rhubarb? Don’t let it intimidate you because it looks funny and smells sour– trust me, it makes an excellent pie or cobbler filling. If you’re looking for an easy, beautiful dessert– try making a cherry rhubarb pie and enjoy the best produce late May has to offer!

    Have a great weekend, friends!

    -Emma



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