Make Rhubarb Syrup for a Week of Drinks and Desserts

Find out why rhubarb is a great add-on to spritzers, cocktails, and frozen desserts.

Rhubarb in pie — that’s easy. But there are many other things you can do with the tangy tart vegetable. This month, Samantha Weiss Hills of Electrolux partner Food52 shares tips, insights, and recipes on how to cook with it.

When it comes to rhubarb, there area a lot of ways to prepare it.
Bakingroastingsaucingcompote-ing, or boiling into a syrup, it’s your choice.

One way to prepare rhubarb that gives you a lot of flexibility is by making it into a syrup.

The secret to this rhubarb cardamom syrup is to boil the rhubarb until it goes all loose and stringy. You’ll want to keep the cardamom pods whole to avoidspecks of black or grey floating around in the gorgeously sunset-pink syrup, but feel free to play with the amount you add (four pods for the cardamom enthusiast, more for the obsessed). Lean over it once the rhubarb goes limp for a big whiff of all of those tart, floral, and slightly sweet notes.

Live.Love.Lux Tip: Achieve the perfect simmer needed for this rhubarb syrup with the precise heat control of our Electrolux Induction Range.

Over the weekend, stock up on a pound of rhubarb, sugar, lemons, and cardamom pods. Follow the recipe, gather complementary ingredients, and you’ll have springy drinks and desserts all week, like so:

For non-boozy drinks:
Add it to sparkling water with a slice of lime.
Try it in your next batch of lemonade, with fresh herbs or some vanilla bean.
Drop some into your next batch of switchel.

For more, ahem, spirited options:
Use the rhubarb cardamom syrup in these Champagne jelly shots.
Switch up the flavor in a bellini.
In the place of honey, try a barspoon of the syrup in a whiskey peach smash.
This Pomelder Prosecco Punch, with its cardamom, ginger, and bubbles, would do well with a stream of rhubarb syrup added.

For frozen desserts:
Swap in rhubarb syrup for the ginger syrup in this egg cream — or split it up so you get both flavors.
Stir some into this genius one-ingredient ice cream — or any of its variants.
Top off a bowl of Jeni’s Splendid Lemon Cream ice cream with it.
Couple the syrup with fresh fruit for an Italian ice.

Rhubarb Cardamom Syrup

“When cooking rhubarb, it’s about coaxing out the flavor, bleeding the stalks dry of what they’re not willing to share unless you treat them right.” — Samantha

Servings: 1 1/2 cups



1 pound rhubarb stalks, chopped

4 cardamom pods, or more to taste

2 cups granulated sugar

2 cups water

Juice of 1 1/2 lemons


In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine the chopped rhubarb, cardamom pods, and sugar. Do not turn on the heat — stir together so that the rhubarb and cardamom pods are covered in sugar and let it sit for at least 45 minutes.

Add the water and simmer the mixture over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Once the sugar dissolves, continue simmering for 20 minutes until the rhubarb starts to break down and look stringy.

Turn off the heat and strain the syrup through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl so that you no longer have any rhubarb or cardamom pods in it.

Add the lemon juice to a new saucepan, pour in the syrup, and bring the mixture to a simmer. Let it simmer over medium heat for 20 minutes. (If the syrup simmers too long, it will be quite weighty. So, keep this in mind if you are using it for drinks — the syrup will probably be thinner than you think it should be.)

Remove from the heat and let cool completely before using. It will keep in the refrigerator in a sealed container for about a week.

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