Rhubarb Upside Down Cake


As I looked at our nearly bare garden and spotted our healthy rhubarb plants, a sudden fancy hit me. Rhubarb upside down cake. We had made this recipe once before with success. So my sister & I quickly harvested the tenderest shoots.

Then, as we were prepping our ingredients, panic stuck. There wasn’t a stick of butter in the house. Amanda & I looked at each other and shrieked.



Thankfully, Grandma lent us a couple sticks of butter and our cake was saved! And it was definitely worth the trip to Grandma’s.

Notes: We of course substituted whole wheat flour & a natural sweetener in this recipe. Even with all whole wheat, the cake was very tender.
We like to serve this with a warm vanilla custard. You can use the recipe for vanilla saucefound here & increase the milk to 3 cups.


Rhubarb Upside Down Cake

Adapted from Taste of Home

Printable Page

  • 2/3 cup maple sugar or sweetener of choice
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2-1/4 cups diced fresh or frozen rhubarb
  • 4-1/2 teaspoons maple sugar or sweetener of choice
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup maple sugar
  • 2 large eggs, separated
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (4 1/2 ounces) whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • Whipped cream or vanilla custard, optional

1) Preheat oven to 325° F. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan. In a small bowl, combine the sugar & melted butter. Spread in the bottom of the prepared pan. Layer with the rhubarb & sprinkle with 4 1/2 teaspoons of maple sugar. Set aside.
2) In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter & 3/4 cups of maple sugar until light & fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the egg yolks & vanilla extract and mix.
3) In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. With the mixer running on low, slowly add half of the flour, the milk, and the other half of the flour, beating well after each addition & scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
4) In a clean, medium-sized bowl, beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar until stiff peaks form. Gradually fold into the batter. Gently spoon over the rhubarb in the pan.
5) Bake in preheated oven until the cake springs back when lightly touched, about 50-60 minutes. Cool in pan on a rack for 10 minutes before inverting onto a serving plate. Serve warm with whipped cream or vanilla custard.
Makes approximately 8-10 servings

24 Responses to “Rhubarb Upside Down Cake”

  1. Esther says:

    We just made a rhubarb dessert yesterday! Yours looks like a good recipe, we’ll have to try it sometime!

  2. Maria says:

    I am so glad you posted this cake recipe. I have four rhubarb plants and I am always looking for new recipes to try. This one looks like a winner. Thanks. Love the photos too!

  3. cindy says:

    your rhubarb is gorgeous! and the cake looks fantastic too :)

  4. What a beautiful photo of rhubarb! I’m so proud it’s home-grown!

  5. I LOVE all things rhubarb and this is one BEAUTIFUL cake!!!!! I cannot wait to try this! Gorgeous pictures!

  6. Amy says:

    This looks delicious! I just made rhubarb-strawberry crisp and THEN found this, I wish I would’ve come across this sooner! This is definitely on my list to make next.

  7. Oh my I have to make this! I have 4 rhubarb plants. I am jealous though…ours are much more green. I found out that there are different varieties and the one that grows best here doesn’t get that pretty dark red color. :(

  8. Malin says:

    I made rhubarb-cake (of a muffin recipe) for the first time last year, and it was soo good. Yesterday I got such a craving, and had to ask my mom how the rhubarb plants were coming along in their garden. But snow started falling – again – so for now I guess I just have to look at your beautiful cake…

  9. I have never tried rhubarb (very hard to find it here), but know for sure I would love this cake – it looks wonderful!

  10. Tracy says:

    This looks wonderful! Bookmarking it!

  11. emily s says:

    Okay, now I really need to try rhubarb again… I haven’t had it in forever, and remember not liking it, but this cake is making me DROOL!
    It looks insanely delish!
    thanks Erica : ))
    Oh, I also like your use of the maple syrup …

  12. I’m so weird about rhubarb. I kinda don’t like it, but I’ve been seen so many recipes lately–this one included–that are making me question myself. This looks beautiful!

  13. That rhubarb cake looks so good!

  14. […] Rhubarb Upside Down Cake | Cooking for Seven – As I looked at our nearly bare garden and spotted our healthy rhubarb plants, a sudden fancy hit me. Rhubarb upside down cake. We had made this recipe once. […]

  15. […] Rhubarb Upside Down Cake with rhubarb fresh from the garden. Rhubarb desserts seem to be popping up left, right and centre at the moment so clearly we had to take part in the rhubarb loving mayhem.   […]

  16. Patty says:

    I’m sure this tastes awesome with the maple sugar and fresh rhubarb – yum! Thank you for sharing!

  17. Lily says:

    This cake is ok, but more like a cookie than a cake. The mixing directions are confusing to follow and I kind of had to end up guessing how to put it all together in the end.

  18. prodigious register you’ve latch on to

  19. That looks ridiculously delicious! I can’t wait to bake this… perfect for spring!

    Great blog; happy I found you!

    Mary xo
    Delightful Bitefuls

  20. I can’t wait for the rhubarb to be up in our garden!!

  21. Verity says:

    I tried this cake yesterday for my family of 8 and it is all gone already. It was absolutely amazing! Thank you so very much for this recipe!

  22. Julie says:

    Can you substitute the maple sugar for brown sugar? I’ve never tried maple sugar and am not sure of the availability in my area. This recipe looks great and can’t wait to check out more of your website.

  23. Looks scrumptious! Thanks for the recipe. :)

  24. Rachel says:

    This is the best cake I’ve ever eaten, and my family very much agreed. Four of us finished it in one night and they requested I bake it again a week later!! Can’t wait till rhubarb is back in season. :) Thank you for the recipe!


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