Sugar-Free Rhubarb Custard is a delightful and delicious dessert I have fallen in love with. The tangy, bright flavors of the rhubarb, combined with the rich, creamy sweetness of a custard, create an irresistible symphony of tastes and textures. As someone who loves to indulge in various low-carb culinary creations, I must admit that this dessert has become quite a favorite in my kitchen.
What is Rhubarb Custard
Rhubarb is a unique plant often considered a vegetable, but it’s typically treated as a fruit in culinary applications. Its long, red stalks have an exceptionally tart flavor, making them an excellent component for sweet dishes like pies, jams, and of course, custard desserts. Please note that rhubarb leaves are toxic and should not be consumed. As rhubarb is quite high in oxalate, make sure to consume calcium with it because calcium binds the oxalate, so it doesn’t wreak havoc in your intestines.
On the other hand, custard is a creamy concoction made of cream, sweetener, and eggs and often flavored with vanilla. It can be enjoyed on its own, as a topping, or as a filling for various desserts. This custard contains heavy cream, which is a great source of calcium and thus binds the oxalates in rhubarb.
The most common form of rhubarb custard is a pie, where a layer of rhubarb is topped with a rich custard mixture and baked until set. The contrasting flavors and textures create a delicious harmony that is both satisfying and refreshing. You will get a recipe for gluten-free keto-friendly Rhubarb Custard Pie at the end of this post, so stay tuned!
Rhubarb custard can also be enjoyed as is, where rhubarb is mixed into a smooth custard base and baked in individual dishes or a larger baking dish. This form is similar to the pie version but without the crust, emphasizing the creamy, velvety texture of the custard. This Easy Sugar-Free Rhubarb Custard recipe is baked in individual dishes. Baking the dishes in a water bath results in a smooth and creamy texture.
Another variation is Rhubarb Custard Dessert, which features a layer of rhubarb topped with custard and finished with a meringue topping. This three-layered dessert showcases the versatility of the ingredients while adding a crispy and light element to the classic rhubarb custard combination. To your delight, I will include a variation of a keto-friendly Rhubarb Custard Dessert in this post — check the variations further down.
How to Prepare This Sugar-Free Rhubarb Custard
Growing rhubarb in my garden has allowed me to enjoy this seasonal ingredient and to experiment with various recipes to find the perfect way to showcase its distinct flavor. I have found that creating a particularly exceptional rhubarb custard involves finding the right balance between the tartness of the rhubarb and the smoothness of the custard. Additionally, using high-quality ingredients, such as farm-fresh eggs and heavy cream, can make all the difference in the outcome of this delightful treat — both taste-wise and nutrient-wise.
When making this rhubarb custard, start with fresh, crisp rhubarb stalks. About 2 cups (470 ml) of rhubarb cut into 1/4-inch (0.6 cm) pieces should be enough for this recipe, resulting in 6 servings of rhubarb custard. To prepare the rhubarb, first wash it thoroughly, remove the leaves, and trim the ends.
After that, you’ll cook the rhubarb with vanilla stevia until the rhubarb is soft. Then, you’ll pour the scrumptious-smelling mixture into 6 ramekins.
Next, you’ll make the custard. Preparing the custard for this recipe is incredibly easy. Often, when making custard, you have to cook the cream in a saucepan and add it to beaten eggs. Moreover, you need to add thickeners and other dubious stuff to your mixture. This process is criminally complicated, and I simply refuse to take that kind of effort in my kitchen — especially when you can make heavenly custard so much easier, like in this recipe.
For this custard, you simply combine all custard ingredients in a bowl, whisk, and pour over the rhubarb mixture in the ramekins.
Finally, you’ll bake your rhubarb custard in a water bath in the oven. That’s it! Super easy.
Step-by-Step Instructions on How to Make This Recipe
Without further ado, let’s take a closer look at how to prepare this tongue-tickling tangy yet rich and creamy dessert:
Add your 2 cups (470 ml) of chopped rhubarb to a small saucepan.
Add also 40 drops of vanilla stevia. I prefer NuNaturals alcohol-free vanilla stevia.
Cook, uncovered, over low heat, all the time mixing…
…until soft, about 10—20 minutes.
Place 6 ramekins or other small oven-proof dishes into a roasting pan or other large oven-proof dish. Divide the rhubarb mixture into the ramekins.
In a medium bowl, combine 4 eggs…
…1/3 cup (80 ml) allulose or powdered erythritol…
…and 1 2/3 cups (400 ml) heavy cream.
Whisk until well combined.
Pour carefully the egg and cream mixture into the ramekins over the rhubarb mixture.
Here we go, ready to bake.
Place the pan with ramekins in the oven at 300 °F (150 °C).
Pour boiling water into the pan so that the water is halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake for about 45 minutes, until the custards are almost firm. (The center should be slightly wobbly, but the edges firm.)
Remove from the oven.
Remove the ramekins carefully from the pan and place them on a cooling rack or heat-proof plate.
Serve warm with heavy cream or sugar-free vanilla ice cream — or as is.
How I Came Up with This Easy Low-Carb Dessert Recipe
Last week, I was dreaming of springtime desserts. I was about to travel, and I needed to prepare my blog posts beforehand. Therefore, I craved something really easy and satisfying to be able to handle this extra task in my busy schedule.
After a while, I came up with the idea of a rhubarb dessert. Rhubarb is low in carbs and perfect for spring. I do have rhubarb growing in my backyard, but thanks to the super-cold spring, only a couple of buds bravely show their heads from the ground. So, I had to rely on store-bought rhubarb.
As rhubarb cries for dairy to bind the oxalate, I decided to go for a creamy rhubarb custard. I have a go-to custard recipe that I have been using successfully with tart berries, like cranberries and lingonberries. It should work well with tart rhubarb, too, I contemplated.
I decided to use allulose for the custard but cook rhubarb with vanilla stevia to sweeten this super-tart ingredient and lend a hint of elegant vanilla taste. In all its simplicity, vanilla is a perfect match with rustic rhubarb. I was planning to spoon the cooked rhubarb into ramekins and then pour the custard mixture on top — just like I do with my berry versions.
I also wanted to bake the ramekins in a water bath to prevent cracking and ensure even cooking and velvety custard. I have learned the hard way that a water bath is a must for the best and smooth custard.
After pondering the measures, I was ready to conduct my first Sugar-Free Rhubarb Custard experiment and also shoot the photos.
When cooking the rhubarb with vanilla stevia, the smell was incredible! This dessert is going to be sooo good, I thought.
After baking the creamy custard in the oven, I was ready to taste my creation. Oh mine, the taste was heavenly — a symphony of sweet, tart, and creamy flavors with a perfect accompaniment of vanilla. The texture was velvety, and the soft, cooked rhubarb has mixed in the custard creating mouth-watering contrast to the creamy custard.
I also served the custard to my Ketokamu colleagues who visited me for a meeting. They were totally raving about the dessert and happily gulped down several servings!
I bet you’ll fall in love with this healthified yet creamy and scrumptious rhubarb custard!
Here’s the recipe for you to enjoy:
- 2 cups = 470 ml chopped rhubarb
- 40 drops vanilla stevia
- 4 eggs
- 1/3 cup = 80 ml (or to taste) allulose or powdered erythritol
- 1 2/3 cups = 400 ml heavy cream
- Preheat the oven to 300 °F (150 °C).
- Combine the rhubarb and vanilla stevia in a small saucepan.
- Cook, uncovered, all the time, mixing over low heat until the rhubarb is soft, about 10—20 minutes.
- Place 6 ramekins or other small oven-proof dishes into a roasting pan or other large oven-proof dish.
- Divide the rhubarb mixture into the ramekins. Set aside.
- Combine the eggs, allulose/erythritol, and heavy cream in a medium bowl. Whisk until well combined.
- Pour the egg and cream mixture carefully into the ramekins over the rhubarb mixture.
- Place the pan with ramekins in the oven. Pour boiling water into the pan so that the water is halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
- Bake for about 45 minutes until the custards are almost firm. (The center should be slightly wobbly, but the edges firm.)
- Remove from the oven. Remove the ramekins carefully from the pan and place them on a cooling rack.
- Serve warm with whipped cream or sugar-free vanilla ice cream — or just as is.
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Low Sugar, So Simple: 100 Delicious Low-Sugar, Low-Carb, Gluten-Free Recipes for Eating Clean and Living Healthy
NuNaturals Plant Based Vanilla-Alcohol Free Stevia Extract Drops - All Natural Liquid Sweetener - 2 oz (2 Pack)
It's Just - Allulose, Sugar Substitute, Keto Friendly Sweetener, Non-Glycemic, Made in USA (32oz)
Anthony's Allulose Sweetener, 2 lb, Batch Tested Gluten Free, Keto Friendly Sugar Alternative, Zero Net Carb, Low Calorie
|Per serving if 6 servings in total
Tips for a Perfect Sugar-Free Rhubarb Custard
- Choose fresh rhubarb: Use fresh rhubarb that is firm and crisp, with bright red stalks. Avoid using rhubarb that is wilted or has brown spots.
- When creating tangy and delightful rhubarb custard desserts, I’ve learned that finding the perfect balance between sweet and sour is essential. Boiling the rhubarb with natural calorie-free sweetener such as stevia, erythritol, monk fruit, or allulose can tone down the tartness of rhubarb while preserving its natural flavor. Also, don’t be afraid to add a touch of spice or citrus to enhance the overall taste. Experiment with flavored stevias or monk fruit drops. My recommendations are cinnamon stevia and caramel-flavored monk fruit drops.
- Use a natural sugar substitute for the custard: To make the custard sugar-free, use a natural calorie-free sugar substitute such as allulose (which I recommend to this recipe), stevia, powdered erythritol, or monk fruit. Follow the recommended amounts for the specific sugar substitute you are using, as the dosing varies a lot depending on the sweetener.
- Be sure to cook your rhubarb until soft. This rich custard needs soft rhubarb to complement the smooth and velvety experience.
- Bake the custard at a low temperature: To prevent the custard from curdling or cracking, bake it at a low temperature, around 300 °F (150 °C). Check the custard frequently during baking to ensure it is not overcooked, i.e., the center stays a bit wobbly.
- Let the custard cool before serving: Allow the custard to cool close to room temperature before serving. This will help it set and develop its full flavor. You can also chill the custard in the fridge for a few hours before serving it as a refreshing dessert on a hot day.
Variation 1: Sugar-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Custard
For this delectable variation, add 1 cup (240 ml) of chopped fresh strawberries with the rhubarb to the saucepan and cook until soft. Proceed with the custard as directed.
Variation 2: Sugar-Free Ginger Rhubarb Custard
This variation adds a spicy kick to the basic rhubarb custard with the addition of fresh ginger. To make this variation, add 1 tablespoon of freshly grated ginger to the saucepan together with rhubarb and cook until soft. Proceed with the custard as directed.
Variation 3: Keto Rhubarb Custard Pie
Make the best pie of the spring! Prepare a 3-Ingredient Pie Crust. Spread your cooked rhubarb on the prebaked crust and top with the custard mixture. Bake at 350 °F (175 °C) for about 45 minutes, or until the filling is almost set but still a bit wobbly in the center. Let cool and dig in!
Variation 4: Low-Carb Rhubarb Custard Dessert
For this ultimately palatable creation, prepare half a batch of 3-Ingredient Pie Crust. Press the crust dough into the bottom of a 9×9-inch (23×23-cm) baking pan. Prebake at 350 °F (175 °C) for 15 minutes. Pour your cooked rhubarb on the prebaked pie crust. Top with the custard mixture and bake for about 40 minutes, or until the filling is almost set but still a bit wobbly in the center. Let cool until room temperature. Make a keto meringue by beating 3 egg whites and 1/4 cup (60 ml) of allulose or powdered erythritol until stiff peaks form. Spread the meringue evenly on the custard. Return to the oven for about 15 minutes until the top of the meringue gets golden brown color. Remove from the oven, let cool, and serve warm.
Variation 5: Gluten-Free Sugar-Free Rhubarb Custard Bars
These delicious bars are made with a shortbread crust and a creamy rhubarb custard filling. To make these bars, prepare this cookie dough for a shortbread crust and press it in the bottom of a greased 9×13-inch (23×33-cm) baking pan. Top with the cooked rhubarb and the custard mixture. Bake the bars at 350 °F (175 °C) until golden brown, about 45 minutes. Let cool and cut into bars. Serve the bars warm or chilled.
I’m traveling this week to a beautiful Greek island called Kythnos. It has been quite a long time since I have been in Greece, and I have really missed the idyllic white houses, picture-perfect landscape, soft white sand, and the clear water this country lavishly offers for its visitors.
Kythnos is another jewel of the Aegean Sea with rugged hills, turquoise waters, ancient ruins, and quaint villages that remind me of Greece’s rich and storied heritage. I have been walking the sun-kissed shores as well as rough and narrow paths up and down the picturesque hills. The beauty and tranquility of this small island is adorable.