Two-in-One Recipe for Rhubarb Syrup + Rhubarb Compote

April 27, 2017
4 Ratings
Photo by Emily Farris
  • Makes 3 cups syrup, 2 – 2.5 cups compote
Author Notes

This easy, no-waste rhubarb recipe yields two great products. The first is a rhubarb syrup that’s sweet and slightly tart, and perfect for mixing into cocktails and mocktails. The second is a delicious rhubarb compote that’s wonderful on toast, yogurt, and vanilla ice cream. Because the whole thing cooks on the stovetop for about an hour, the syrup gets the vibrant pink color of the rhubarb, leaving the compote looking a little bland. But don’t worry; it still tastes great. —Emily Farris

What You'll Need
  • 6 cups (about 2 pounds) rhubarb, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 pinch cinnamon
  • 1 pinch cardamom
  1. Add the rhubarb, sugar, and water to a medium-sized pot over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally.
  2. Once it reaches a boil, reduce the heat to low, and add the vinegar, cinnamon, and cardamom. Stir, then let the mixture simmer for at least 45 minutes, or up to an hour. (The longer it simmers, the more syrupy it will become.)
  3. Using a fine mesh strainer, strain the syrup into a bowl or large measuring cup, reserving the mash. Strain the mash one or two more times until it reaches the consistency of a compote. (The more you strain, the more syrup you’ll get.)
  4. Let both products cool to room temperature, then store them in covered Mason jars in the fridge. Covered and refrigerated, the compote should keep at least a week, and the syrup three weeks.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Karen Steele Morrow
    Karen Steele Morrow
  • Nora
  • CW Saunders
    CW Saunders
  • Emily Farris
    Emily Farris
Emily is a writer, recipe developer, prop stylist, social media manager, potty mouth, and blogger. She lives in Kansas City, MO, with her husband, toddler son, and two rowdy dogs.

9 Reviews

Hallie July 18, 2017
Any thoughts about adding berries (blueberries, strawberries) to the mix? I like to experiment, but don't want to waste any fresh produce on one gone bad ;)
Hallie July 19, 2017
Ok, went for it. Used 3 cups rhubarb, 1.5 each of blue/strawberries... omitted cardamom (ran out) but used 2 pinches cinnamon. Cut the sugar by 3/4 cup because of the natural sugar in the berries. Followed the rest of the recipe, but it needed longer to cook to thicken. It's a great mixture of flavors, a little sweet (but not unpleasantly so) and the color is lovely :) Look forward to using it! Thanks for the recipe.
CW S. September 19, 2017
That is a fantastic idea! I used just 2 c. of blueberries, reduced the sugar as you did, then added about 1/4 c. Karo to the syrup to help it thicken more quickly. Yummy!
judy May 13, 2017
Great Idea! I am going to give this a try. Made my first rhubarb dessert of the season last week. Rhubarb cake of sorts, with the compote on the bottom and the cake on top. All baked together. Delicious! I am so ready for Rhubarb syrup. Never gave it a thought, but I love the idea. I like to make my own sodas, and i think it would be a great base for a soda--or a mock moscow mule. MMMM.
Karen S. April 28, 2017
My rhubarb is a southern variety that is all green. We still love the taste, but it looks like swamp goo!
Emily F. April 28, 2017
Ha! I've never seen all-green rhubarb.
Nora April 27, 2017
I do not come from a rhubarb culture and don't quite get it. How would you use the compote. Thanks, and don't judge!
Emily F. April 27, 2017
Not judging! The compote can be used like a jam, on toast or bread. Or you can put it on ice cream or yogurt.
Nora May 5, 2017
Thanks, Emily! My husband cherishes his memories of his great-grand's rhubarb pie. Maybe I can surprise him with something on ice cream. Or maybe I should leave him with his memories.