Growing up, I can’t tell you the number of rhubarb patches we had at our house. We lived on a large farm and with that came the plant you can’t seem to kill even if you try: rhubarb. 

My parents were (still are!) very self-sufficient and frugal. The plants went crazy in the late spring, so my mom would use our plentiful, tart rhubarb in as many ways as she could, which usually involved adding a lot of sugar to recipes to make it taste good :) 

My favorite childhood rhubarb recipes were rhubarb crispstrawberry rhubarb jamrhubarb crumble pie, and rhubarb bread. 

Check out my children holding these huge rhubarb stalks from our garden!

Today I’m sharing my family’s rhubarb bread recipe. It’s a delicious quick bread recipe for your children’s afternoon snack or any other occasion. This recipe is made with buttermilk, which, in my opinion, enhances the flavor! 

It’s an easy bread recipe you can make with your kids in the kitchen.

I use fresh rhubarb for this tender quick bread, but you could use frozen rhubarb if desired (see note below). 

Buttermilk Rhubarb Bread 

Wet Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups brown sugar 

1 egg

2/3 cup vegetable oil (or sub with 1/3 cup applesauce and 1/3 cup oil)

1 cup buttermilk*

1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

Dry Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups rhubarb, diced into small pieces*


1. Combine wet ingredients in a large bowl and stir together with a whisk or combine in an electric mixer on medium-low speed.

2. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl. Mix dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, being careful not to over-mix the rhubarb into the batter. 

3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees f. Grease a bread pan. Pour batter into the prepared pan.

Sweet Crunchy Topping for Rhubarb Bread

I like to add a little topping to the bread before baking. 

This can be as simple as sprinkling some cinnamon and sugar mixture on the top of the bread or making more of a streusel topping. 

Streusel ingredients:

​1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 

1/2 cup sugar

1-2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

4. Mix together the melted butter, sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over the entire top of the batter.

5. Set your baking time for 60-65 minutes or until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. 

6. Let the bread cool until you can gently separate the bread from the pan and finish cooling on wire racks. When at room temperature, slice the loaf with a serrated knife and serve with a pat of butter. It is SO good! 

This rhubarb bread can be stored in an airtight container and is best enjoyed within three days of baking. 

How to make buttermilk substitute:

You can use real buttermilk or make your own buttermilk substitute by combining two teaspoons of white vinegar with one cup of milk.

​How long does rhubarb bread keep in the freezer?

A reader asked me how long this rhubarb bread can be stored in the freezer. If you want to make several pans of this rhubarb bread at once, you can store them long-term by wrapping each loaf in parchment paper or plastic wrap. Seal bread loaves in a Ziploc freezer bag, and put them in the freezer for up to six months.

This buttermilk rhubarb bread is a great recipe for freezing to use later. One of our neighbors would make almost a freezer full of this recipe during rhubarb season and keep the loaves in her freezer for giving to others throughout the year. 

​How to use frozen rhubarb in a fresh rhubarb recipe

In this recipe, you can use frozen rhubarb, but you’ll first need to let it thaw and drain off excess water and rhubarb juice. Otherwise, your bread will be too wet after directly adding the frozen rhubarb.

I hope you enjoy making this tasty quick bread for your family and friends!

Click HERE to try another great recipe – Blueberry Breakfast Bake!

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