Grandma’s Rhubarb Custard Pie

I’ve been meaning to post this recipe for a year now so I figured I’d better get on it while rhubarb is once again in season.  Back in the day my husband would speak longingly about his favorite childhood pie, a rhubarb custard pie.  I’ve always been a rhubarb purist.  A nice rhubarb cobbler with nothing to interfere with the favor of rhubarb was my idea of heaven.  I poo-pood the rhubarb custard pie and kept up my purist rhubarb ways. 

Then once while we were visiting my mother in law during spring she made this pie and I saw the error of my ways.  I do still love rhubarb cobbler, don’t get me wrong.  And I know legions of fans worship the rhubarb strawberry combination, including my father.  But this pie has  come to herald spring for us.  I love it for all the same reasons I love key lime pie – it’s at once creamy and tart and sweet, all wrapped up in each perfect bite. I try to make it once a week while rhubarb is in season yet we somehow don’t manage to tire of it by the time the strawberries ripen.

Even if you are a hardcore rhubarb purist I hope you’ll give this pie a chance. 

Rhubarb Custard Pie

1 double pie crust or shortbread crust

Finely chop enough rhubarb to fill a pie crust, the fresher the better
Mix together well:
3  beaten eggs
2 cups sugar (adjust up or down to your liking next time)
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon mace (not necessary but adds to the flavor)
1/2 cup Golden Glen cream

Line a deep dish pie plate with one crust  then line the inside of the crust with aluminum foil.  Cover the lined bottom of the pie crust with beans and pre-bake it at 425 for 15 minutes.  Fill the crust with chopped rhubarb and pour the custard over the top.  Use cookie cutters to cut shapes from the remaining crust and arrange them on top of the pie.  Sprinkle the cutouts with sugar or a cinnamon sugar mixture.

Bake at 450 farenheit for 10 minutes then reduce the oven to 325 and continue baking for 1 hour.

19 Responses to Grandma’s Rhubarb Custard Pie

  1. I am a rhubarb purist too, but I’m trying this pie!! Thanks for posting it. There is a recipe in Jerry Traunfeld’s Herbal Kitchen cookbook for a rhubarb mint cobbler. It’s really good too!

  2. Wow! That looks fabulous! I will have to make that!

  3. Brittney, anything jerry says to do I’m down with. I can’t wait to try that one too! And I hope you really like this.

    Meg – get your yum on!

  4. I was just looking at the rhubarb plants this evening (in the rain) and was thinking to myself I needed to do another harvest soon. Looks like I may have to give this recipe a whirl instead of my usual and customary basic rhubarb pie!

  5. Now that it’s Springtime, our rhubarb is on its way to growing in full bloom (& when I say full bloom, I mean a jungle of rhubarb!) … and we STILL have leftover rhubarb in the freezer that I’ve yet to use! So … I’m thinking of trying this recipe out. :) However, I do have one question: what is “Golden Glen Cream”? And where could I find it? Thanks!

  6. KFG – I hope you like it!
    Roberta – any heavy cream will do, Golden Glen is just a local farmer so I try to support them. I had found some rhubarb juice in the freezer not long ago so we made rhurbarb ade. Last year I made jello too using pomona’s pectin but you could use gelatin. There are so many ways to use up rhubarb!

  7. I have a recipe for rhubarb custard pie that I treasure. It’s the most delicious thing ever!

  8. Thank you! That was going to be my next question for you. :) I’ve been trying to think of ways, healthy ways, to use up the rhubarb (I noticed an interesting soup recipe on your site, so I might try that out too). As for supporting the local farmers, yes! Totally right on.

  9. Julia – how is yours different? Sometimes I make this recipe using apples too with less sugar.

    Roberta – we make rhubarb sorbet and popsicles too or sometimes just freeze rhubarb juice in ice cube trays to add to water like you would lemon. I figure there must be some nutrition in it but I’m not sure what it is.

  10. My rhubarb is nearly ready to be picked and this recipe looks very close to my grandmother’s. Sooo delicious!

  11. Sense of Home, Grandma’s recipes are the best, aren’t they? Especially when she makes them for you!

  12. This is one of my favorite pie combos. I have my favorite recipe for the fruit/custard pie, and I’ll have to post it shortly. Yours looks amazing!

  13. Thanks Tom, I had really picked the plants over so there is not as much rhubarb as normal in this particular pie and I always forget to make a double crust recipe for the little heart cutouts that go on the top but it’s tasty nonetheless. I’ll watch for your post! Next year we should have LOTS of rhubarb since it will be the third year. I know I’m not supposed to be picking the plants yet but I can’t help it. It’s like cleaning up chicken poop for 6 months waiting for them to lay eggs.

  14. We made this last weekend for a BBQ and it was quite a hit! Thank you so much for the recipe. Love it.

  15. Shannon I’m so glad! Thanks for coming back and letting me know. I’m eyeing those rhubarb plants waiting for the next pie. ;p

  16. Pingback: “Never Rub Another Man’s Rhubarb” « Grow & Resist

  17. I made it at is was SO GOOD! I posted pics on FB and because I did a family member made it for Mother’s Day. She loved it too and so did her guests. Can’t wait to make it again.

  18. Brittney, I’m so glad you all liked it! I can’t wait for those rhubarb plants to give me some more for this. It’s been 2 weeks now and we’re jonesing.

  19. I have to say I’m so excited to see someone else post this pie recipe for the world to enjoy! Somewhat like you, I met this dessert through my mother in law. It’s my husband’s favorite “birthday cake”. I make it at least a few times every year. It’s not too pretty to look at, but I’ve never shared a pie/cake/cookie and had so many people ask for the recipe!

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