A sturdy, crunchy streusel topping is the secret to this homemade gluten-free strawberry rhubarb crisp (or crumble). The fruit-to-topping ratio is spot-on, with some of each in every bite. Easy recipe, tested to perfection using just 2 gluten-free flours: sweet rice flour and oat flour.
Add a scoop of homemade fresh ginger ice cream if you want to take this fruit crisp recipe over the top.
Note from Alanna: I first shared this recipe in 2012, and it quickly became a reader favorite of all my homemade crisps and crumbles and rhubarb recipes! I borrowed the unique mixing method for the crumble from Marion Burros' famous plum crumble, detailed below. The crisp topping stands up beautifully to juicy baked strawberries and rhubarb. Best of all, it only uses 2 gluten-free flours: sweet rice flour and oat flour. I remade and reshot it recently, and I wouldn't change a thing.
I originally paired this crisp with homemade fresh ginger ice cream, which adds a delightful zip. I loved this combination so much that I shared a strawberry rhubarb cobbler with ginger amaranth biscuits in my cookbook.
If you give this fruit crisp recipe a try, I hope it becomes a favorite in your home as well!
For more strawberry love, try this buttery gluten-free strawberry shortcake made with almond flour scones. So dreamy!
In Search of the Best Gluten-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
Upon tasting strawberry-rhubarb anything, it becomes evident why this fruit and veg duo are a classic pair:
- Strawberries soften rhubarb's tart edge, and rhubarb adds tangy complexity to the sweet berries.
- While strawberries cook down into juicy mush, rhubarb holds its shape, giving the compote body.
- The strawberries' juices help break down the rhubarb into tender goodness, softening any tough fibers.
- Strawberries add lovely color to rhubarb which can bake up looking drab when the stalks are tinged with green.
With these odds stacked in my favor, I thought that making a gluten-free strawberry rhubarb crisp worthy of sharing on TBG would be easy. It needed to be gluten-free, not overly sweet, with a well-cooked but thick filling, and with a sturdy topping that lived up to its name.
Instead, it took me six tries to come up with this formula! Strawberries let off a lot of juice when they cook, and many gluten-free crisp toppings tend to disintegrate into a soupy mess in the face of such juicy fruit. I experimented with different methods and ratios, including pre-cooking the fruit to let off some liquid.
I eventually turned to the aforementioned crisp topping made with an unusual mixing method and fortified with egg and leavening. When paired with thinly sliced rhubarb, larger pieces of strawberries, and a bit of cornstarch to thicken the juices, this turned out the best gluten-free strawberry rhubarb crumble I could have hoped for.
Ingredients & Substitution Suggestions
This recipe comes together with a handful of simple ingredients.
I like using slightly more rhubarb than strawberries here. This ensures a bright, rhubarb-forward flavor with plenty of punch.
- Rhubarb sliced fairly thinly cooks into tangy, jammy goodness. Look for rhubarb stalks that are about an inch wide and pink or red throughout the stalk. Frozen rhubarb can also be used; just extend the baking time as needed.
- Strawberries, cut into halves or quarters, condense into a flavorful, chunky compote. You can swap in other berries if you like, such as raspberries. Frozen berries will work; just increase the bake time as needed.
- Sugar sweetens the filling just enough. I've tested this with light brown sugar, organic granulated sugar, and coconut sugar. All work beautifully!
- Cornstarch thickens the filling. For corn allergies, try using arrowroot flour or sweet rice flour instead.
- A pinch of salt sharpens the flavors.
Recipe for fruit crisp topping
This gluten-free crisp topping uses just 2 gluten-free flours – sweet rice and oat flour.
- Sweet rice flour's sticky, starchy texture helps the crumble clump together. Sub by weight regular white rice flour, or a gluten-free all-purpose blend such as Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1.
- Oat flour adds earthy flavor and makes the crisp taste like an oatmeal cookie. Be sure to use oat flour that's certified gluten-free! Sub by weight sorghum flour, light buckwheat flour, or ivory teff flour.
- Oats add chunky goodness, forming nubby clusters and adding heft. Be sure to use oats that are certified gluten-free! Sub by weight quinoa flakes or rice flakes, or try using chopped nuts such as pecans or sliced almonds instead.
- Sugar sweetens the topping. I've tested this with organic granulated sugar and with maple sugar. The maple sugar adds lovely depth of flavor, while granulated sugar tastes more clean and classic.
- Egg moistens the dough and makes the topping bake up like a giant oatmeal cookie with crunchy top and chewy underside where it meets the jammy fruit. My egg-free readers can make the topping from my gluten-free rhubarb crisp for an egg-free variation.
- Butter adds richness. Use plant butter for dairy-free, or try melted coconut oil.
- Salt sharpens the flavor while baking powder adds lift.
- Cinnamon adds a hint of spice. Feel free to play with other spices such as ginger, cardamom, or nutmeg.
Method: How to Make Gluten-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble
This recipe is easy and foolproof to make with just 15 minutes of active time, plus about 50 minutes to bake. It makes one 10-inch fruit crisp, serving 6-8.
Is fruit crisp gluten-free?
Most fruit crisps use all-purpose wheat flour and are not gluten-free by default. But fruit crisp can easily be made gluten-free by swapping the wheat flour for gluten-free flours.
How long does gluten-free strawberry rhubarb crisp keep for?
Gluten-free strawberry rhubarb crisp will keep, refrigerated, for up to 3 or 4 days, though it's best when eaten shortly after baking.
Can you make gluten-free strawberry rhubarb crisp in advance?
Yes you can! Gluten-free strawberry rhubarb crisp keeps well at room temperature for up to 6 hours after baking, or up to 3 days in the refrigerator. Crisp also freezes well for up to 1 month. Re-warm before serving for best results.
Gluten-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp for Everyone
Here are some allergy-friendly adaptations for everyone to enjoy!
Refined Sugar-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
My original recipe used light brown sugar in the fruit and granulated sugar in the topping. I also tested a version using coconut sugar in the fruit and maple sugar in the topping (both subbed by weight.) I loved both versions, but I had a slight preference for the one made with unrefined sweeteners. The recipe is versatile, so feel free to experiment!
Dairy-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
Use plant butter in the topping, or try melted coconut oil.
Egg-Free / Vegan Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
This recipe needs the egg in order to work. Instead, make this filling with 4 teaspoons of cornstarch, and top it with the crisp topping from my gluten-free rhubarb crisp for an egg-free option. Use plant butter in the streusel to make this recipe completely vegan.
Paleo Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
Make this filling with coconut sugar or maple sugar, 4 teaspoons arrowroot powder, and top it with my paleo almond flour crumble topping.
Low-FODMAP Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
Use sugar or maple sugar in the fruit and topping and a serving of this will be low-FODMAP. Serve with dairy-free ice cream or low-lactose ice cream.
However you make this recipe, I hope you enjoy it as much in your home as we do in ours!
Bojon appétit! For more Bojon Gourmet in your life, follow along on Instagram, Facebook, or Pinterest, purchase my gluten-free cookbook Alternative Baker, or subscribe to receive new posts via email. And if you make this gluten-free strawberry rhubarb crisp recipe, I’d love to know. Leave a comment and rating below, and tag your Instagram snaps @The_Bojon_Gourmet and #bojongourmet.
Gluten-Free Fresh Strawberry & Rhubarb CrispPrint Recipe Pin Recipe
- ⅓ cup (75 g) lightly packed brown sugar (or ½ cup coconut sugar)
- 2 teaspoons (6 g) cornstarch
- pinch salt
- 1 pound trimmed rhubarb, sliced ¼-inch thick (about 4 cups)
- 12 ounces strawberries, hulled, quartered if large, halved if small (about 3 cups)
- ½ cup (100 g) organic granulated sugar (or ½ cup + 2 tablespoons maple sugar)
- ¾ cup (75 g) gluten-free oat flour (such as Bob's Red Mill)
- ¼ cup (35 g) sweet rice flour (such as Koda Farms Mochiko)
- ½ cup (50 g) old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ⅜ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 large egg, beaten well
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon coarse sugar for sprinkling (such as demerara)
- Position a rack in the center of your oven, and preheat to 375°F. Place a 10-inch round baking pan (or oven-proof skillet) on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper to catch drips, and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Add the rhubarb and strawberries, and gently toss to coat. Spread the fruit in the prepared pan and set aside.
- In another medium bowl (or the same one, scraped fairly clean), whisk together the granulated sugar, flours, oats, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt. Add the egg and, using your hands, mix thoroughly, squeezing, tossing and pinching handfuls of the mixture, to produce moist little particles. Sprinkle the mixture evenly over the fruit.
- Use a spoon to drizzle the melted butter evenly all over the topping, and sprinkle evenly with the coarse sugar.
- Place the crumble in the oven and bake for 45-55 minutes, until the top is deeply golden and the fruit is bubbling thickly. Cool slightly.
- Serve the crumble warm or at room temperature (preferably with fresh ginger ice cream!).
- The crumble will keep in the fridge for a few days. Re-warm in a 300º oven before serving.
- In place of brown sugar, sub coconut sugar
- In place of granulated sugar, sub maple sugar
- In place of oat flour, sub sorghum flour or teff flour
- In place of sweet rice flour, sub a GF AP blend such as Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1