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Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

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April 21, 2012

Sweet & Tart Rhubarb and Berry Dessert Sauce

By Worker Bee
58 Comments

Rhubarb is a mysterious vegetable, one that is loved by many despite its toxic leaves and puckering, tart flavor. It’s possibly one of the least versatile vegetables out there and resists most attempts at making it palatable, unless a cup of sugar is involved. There are some savory rhubarb recipes out there, but most make an unintentionally convincing argument that rhubarb really is best served for dessert.

So what’s a Primal rhubarb lover to do? If spring is not really spring until you’ve had a taste of seasonal rhubarb, but you want to avoid the sugar and flour in cakes and crumbles, then try Rhubarb and Berry Dessert Sauce instead. Rhubarb is simmered in butter, vanilla and just enough honey to sweeten it up without masking the tart flavor. Fresh berries are mixed in and then the sauce is spooned on top of full-fat yogurt or layered with homemade whipped (coconut) cream. The contrast of the tart, fruity sauce and rich yogurt or whipped cream truly tastes like an indulgent dessert. If you need a little crunch, sprinkle ground nuts or dried coconut on top. The bold flavor of this dessert makes small amounts really satisfying, so a little bit of the sauce will go a long way.

Lest you think that rhubarb desserts are all indulgence with no virtue, there are some health benefits to be had. Rhubarb is a decent source of calcium, fiber and vitamin C and can potentially reduce heartburn, cholesterol and hot flashes in menopausal women. As you’re eating your rhubarb and berry sauce with whipped cream, however, it’s unlikely you’ll be thinking about this. You’ll simply be enjoying a fabulous new dessert.

Servings: 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 3 stalks of rhubarb, peeled if needed and sliced thinly
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries
  • 1 cup fresh blackberries

Instructions:

If the peel on the rhubarb is thick and/or stringy, you can peel it off before cutting the stalks up.

Melt butter with honey and vanilla over medium heat.

Add rhubarb and simmer 10 minutes.

Add berries. You can remove the sauce from the heat immediately so the berries stay firm and fresh, or simmer for 3-5 minutes so the berries become soft and release their juice.

Serve over full-fat yogurt or with whipped cream or coconut whipped cream. To make homemade whipped cream, whisk a cup of whole cream and 2 teaspoons of vanilla by hand (or with an electric mixer) until soft peaks form.

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58 Comments on "Sweet & Tart Rhubarb and Berry Dessert Sauce"

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Cherice
Cherice
4 years 5 months ago

Goodness! That looks delicious! Wish my body could tolerate the dairy in it though. 🙁

Colin
Colin
4 years 5 months ago

There’s no dairy in coconut cream 🙂

Rachel
Rachel
4 years 5 months ago

That looks so beautiful and delicious!

PrimalPotter
PrimalPotter
4 years 5 months ago

Cherice, can you tolerate coconut milk? Have you tried making coconut whipped cream? I love rhubarb. I want to try making this.

Helen
Helen
4 years 5 months ago

Oops-I’ve been regarding full fat yogurt with homemade fruit sauce as a dietary staple, not as a dessert.

Was thinking of getting so rhubarb and wondered what to do with it. I will make this! Thanks.

SophieE
SophieE
4 years 5 months ago

I looove rhubarb! I will definitely make this.

P.S first time first comment!

oliviascotland
oliviascotland
4 years 5 months ago

Mmm – now I know what to do with all the rhubarb that’s sprouting in my garden!

Shoobidooo
Shoobidooo
4 years 5 months ago

Yummo, was craving dessert last 2 days and this will help with the hot flushes too. Anybody got any winter “primallly correct” after dinner comfort food recipes… don’t want to put on the winter weight this year…..

Shoobidooo
Shoobidooo
4 years 5 months ago

just been cruising and found out how to make coconut cream and a found a few other recipes … yeahhhaa

Jerrymat
Jerrymat
4 years 5 months ago

Rhubarb is a known cause of kidney stones. I have been told to avoid it at all costs. Similarly spinach, kale and most dark green leafy vegetables.

Mamachibi
Mamachibi
4 years 5 months ago

Kale, spinach and other dark, leafies do contain significant amounts of oxalic acid, the precursor to oxalate stones, but cooking them reduces the oxalic acid significantly. Making sure your diet contains adequate calcium, salt and friendly bacteria is vital in any reduced-carb scenario.

There are four distinct types of stones, and oxalates are only implicated in one (the most common) variety: the calcium stone.

Amber
4 years 5 months ago

Making the whipped cream by hand helps me feel that I’ve truly earned dessert 😉

Wenda
Wenda
4 years 5 months ago

Your recipes led me to this site. I love them. But here I have to disagree. Rhubarb is great as a vegetable. I use it with chicken, tuna, and lamb and it’s irreplaceable. It stays fairly crisp and has a mild, lemony flavor.

Victor Venema
4 years 5 months ago

Sounds interesting, I love liver with baked unions and apples a lot. Another mix of meat with fruits.

Could you describe the preparation of Rhubarb in a bit more detail? How do you cook it, how long, how much.

Wenda
Wenda
4 years 5 months ago
Happy to oblige. I’m pretty new here, do people post entire recipes? Here’s the one for tuna: scatter about 2 pounds, about 2 inches thick, cut into cubes across the bottom of a casserole. Top with 3 cups of rhubarb sliced thin, then add a cup of chopped tomatoes (drained diced are fine), 1/2 cup red wine, 2 T each olive oil and honey. Cover, cook in a microwave at 100% power for about 15 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste. The chicken one is more fun–radishes and scallions as well as rhubarb. It really tastes like spring. Would you… Read more »
rarebird
rarebird
4 years 5 months ago

Yes, people do post entire recipes here – and, yes, please do post the chicken one, too.

Wenda
Wenda
4 years 5 months ago
Okay, here’s the chicken/rhubarb recipe: 8 half-breasts 3 cups rhubarb, sliced thin 3 cups asparagus in 2″ lengths 1 cup radishes sliced thin 1/4 cup shallots, peeled and halved or quartered, depending on the size 1 1/2 cup heavy cream 3 T cornstarch 2 T cold water 1/2 cup scallions sliced thin Scatter the rhubarb across the bottom of a large oval dish that will go in the microwave. Chicken goes on top, with thick side toward the inside rim of the dish. Scatter asparagus, radishes, and shallots over the chicken. Lightly press on all the layers. Pour cream over… Read more »
Victor Venema
4 years 5 months ago

Thank you very much. The two recipes sound great and are combinations I would never have thought of myself.

I see your new: a recipe with corn starch. 🙂

Girleegirl
Girleegirl
4 years 4 months ago

It didn’t even occur to me to use rhubarb in a savory way. Can’t wait to try. My rhubarb plants will be ready to harvest in a couple of weeks

Kevin
Kevin
4 years 5 months ago

Do you have any good liver recipes you can share? Thanks!

Victor Venema
4 years 5 months ago
My standard recipe, which may be the German standard recipe is this. Bake one or two apples in a little butter. The normal version is probably with water. Stop well before it becomes apple sauce. Chop union in small pieces and slowly bake until they get a nice golden tan. Cut the liver in small pieces, heat up the pan with the unions and quickly bake the liver. Just so long that the colour changes and maybe one or two minutes more, but not much longer otherwise it becomes bitter. Add pepper and salt. I like chicken liver most. Before… Read more »
Nionvox
4 years 5 months ago

Oooh! I’m gonna try this, I have a mess of rhubarb in the freezer.

Harry Mossman
4 years 5 months ago

Sounds wonderful!

Andrea
Andrea
4 years 5 months ago

YUM! I definitely plan on trying this in the summer. 🙂

ChiroLisa
4 years 5 months ago
Cherise and Amber: KEY TO WHIPPING COCONUT MILK INTO WHIPPED COCONUT CREAM: Refrigerate a can of full fat coconut milk for a full 24 hours before attempting to whip it. scoop off the fatty part that has risen to top. pour of the watery part and reserve for other recipes or smoothies. whip on high in a cold metallic bowl (put that in freezer for an hour). Cold and FAT are key to whipping coconut milk. add a splash of vanilla to “sweeten”. I have been known to add a shot of amaretto as well. hehehehe. Mark, thanks for such… Read more »
Jodi
Jodi
4 years 5 months ago

I was going to look up a rhubarb recipe. It is the season. Didn’t have to search far. Sounds mmmmm good.

Susan Alexander
4 years 5 months ago

Since PrimalCon, I’ve sidelined fruit for a while, but I am going to put that Coconut Whipped Cream to use pronto!!

ajt
ajt
4 years 5 months ago

It would never have occurred to me to use butter (yum!) but I’ve been making a simple rhubarb sauce for years: just cook it down with a little water like you would apples for applesauce. Tastes great on pork or mixed in with yogurt (or on ice cream, in my less primal days).

Sigi
Sigi
4 years 5 months ago

Drool… Love rhubarb, love raspberries. They’re pretty good shmooshed together and topped with mascarpone too (if you do dairy).

Justin Miller
4 years 5 months ago

I’m going to be honest… I’m craving this

Sugaraholics.com
4 years 5 months ago

Rhubarb, like other large leafy greens/stalks are considered “tonic” and especially healthy in the spring/early summer. Rhubarb crumble (a mix of almond flour or just some chopped walnuts, butter,w/cinnamon, stevia or touch of honey) is my favorite dessert.

mars
mars
4 years 5 months ago

Perfect! Today is my husband’s birthday and we’re headed to the farmer’s market this morning…now I know what I’m making for his birthday party dessert! Thanks!

mars
mars
4 years 5 months ago

ps… coconut whipped cream OMG

Decaf Debi
Decaf Debi
4 years 5 months ago

I grew up with strawberry-rhubarb pie as a Southern summer staple. I was starting to feel sad about missing out during my first paleo summer because of the sugar. I’ll give the butter/honey combo a try. Thank you!

rarebird
rarebird
4 years 5 months ago

I love rhubarb and its great to see ways to use it in primal cooking. Thanks!

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marcella
4 years 5 months ago

I love rhubarb but even with really sweet berries that sauce is TART! Like others have said, rhubarb is really good with meats. I make a chutney like relish with onions and spices and it’s really good with pork roast.

Adrian
Adrian
4 years 5 months ago

Incidentally, rhubarb leaves are toxic due to the amount of oxalic acid in them- same stuff that’s in barkeep’s friend and a few other kitchen cleaners. I wonder if you could use them in cleaning, somehow?

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4 years 5 months ago

[…] Sweet & Tart Rhubarb and Berry Dessert Sauce […]

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[…] Artificial is NOT Intelligent   CrossFit Games – Regional Weekend 1: April 27-29   Sweet & Tart Rhubarb and Berry Dessert Sauce […]

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Jen
Jen
4 years 4 months ago

We made this and put it on coconut crepes (recipe from “The Foodie and the Family”, except we use organic 2% instead of coconut milk). It was SO good. I told DH rhubarb will now be a staple on the grocery list whenever it’s in season!

Nicole
Nicole
4 years 4 months ago

Just made this and it is amazing! I might add strawberries next time and try to decrease the honey. So good with coconut whipped cream, would be amazing with Greek yogurt. Thanks! Can’t wait to share with my friends.

Isabel
Isabel
4 years 4 months ago

Made this recipe yesterday and was totally blown away. It’s sooooo suuuper yummy! I was a little impatient with the coconut cream so it was more like a coconut “mousse”, but that doesn’t make it worse imo. With the added honey the sauce also had just the right amount of sweetness which is usually the hardest part with rhubarb.

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[…] Sweet & Tart Rhubarb and Berry Dessert […]

Crissy
Crissy
4 years 4 months ago

I have a ton of cut up rhubarb in the freezer. How many cups does 3 stalks equate to? I’d love to try this recipe. Thanks for any input!

Angie
4 years 4 months ago

I made a really yummy rhubarb crunch/crumble the other day with almond flour topping. Hopefully my rhubarb plant will produce enough to make a few more of them this summer! http://northwestcavegirls.com/2012/05/rhubarb-crunch/

Kaitlyn
4 years 4 months ago

I tried this tonight and it was absolutely delicious! It’s my first day trying the Paleo diet and with recipes like this, I’m looking forward to the next few weeks!

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[…] dessert, I whipped up a recipe from Mark’s Daily Apple: Sweet & Tart Rhubarb and Berry Dessert Sauce. I had only blueberries on hand and no vanilla, but it turned out delicious, regardless. I used […]

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[…] Sweet & Tart Rhubarb and Berry Dessert Sauce (marksdailyapple.com) Share the love:FacebookPinterestEmailPrintLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. This entry was posted on May 27, 2012, in Desserts, Farmer's Market, Fruits, Grocery shopping adventures, snackity snacks and tagged Antioxidant, Blood sugar, Ingredient, Manganese, Recipe, rhubarb, Sugar, Vitamin. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment […]

Kerri
Kerri
4 years 3 months ago

Wow, I came to find a berry sauce recipe. Found a great new use for rhubarb (I have two varieties – my Mum’s and his Mum’s LOL and because I slackly let plants go to seed, I end up with oodles of plants as the main dies and baby plants come up). Next the great recipes in the comments…gee, I haven’t got time for this. I’ll come back!!! Thanks people, great site; great comments.

Loli
Loli
4 years 3 months ago

This was wonderful! I think I’ll reduce the amount of honey next time. After living without sugar for some time, it tasted so sweet! But my kids loved it!

molly
molly
4 years 2 months ago

This was fantastic!

Tyrone Launius @ low fat dessert recipes

Every web site I go to for Low cholesterol low carb recipes
has stuff such as sauteed fish with cranberry raspberry sauce and tofu chunks.
I live in the real world and also work at a factory.
I’m used to burgers and also lasagna y understand real people foods certainly not fancy richie people stuff..

Sally
Sally
4 years 30 days ago

The only problem is that rhubarb is available in the spring and fresh raspberries, and blackberries in mid-summer…at least here in New England. Guess I’ll have to buy California berries!

Mary in FL
3 years 10 months ago

I used a small bag each of frozen rhubarb and frozen mixed berries to make this, and it was really good! I had some with greek yogurt, which was a nice balance of taste.

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