How to Freeze Rhubarb

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Rhubarb season is short, but you can extend it by learning how to freeze rhubarb! This simple method will have you enjoying rhubarb all year long.

The rosy color of rhubarb makes it incredibly tempting whenever I’m roaming the farmers market stands, but I don’t always have immediate plans for it.

That doesn’t stop me from buying all of my favorite seasonal items, though.

I love to freeze excess fruits and vegetables to enjoy later. If you’re wondering how to store fresh rhubarb and take advantage of its season, freezing rhubarb is the way to go!

frozen rhubarb on sheet pan

Choosing rhubarb for freezing

If you’re lucky, you can harvest fresh rhubarb from your own backyard or purchase it at the farmers market in late spring or early summer, depending on where you live.

Look for stalks that are crisp and firm, and avoid any that are wilted or very thick.

The color of rhubarb stalks can vary from deep, dark pink to pale green with a light pink blush. Rhubarb’s color does not affect how it tastes, so don’t worry if yours isn’t brightly hued!

If there is a leaf or two on the stalks, simply trim them.

rhubarb stalks

Do you need to peel rhubarb?

Generally, you do not need to peel rhubarb. 

As the season goes on, the outer layer of the rhubarb stalks gets thicker, and more fibrous. This can cause “strings” to separate from the stalks a little, similar to what happens to celery stalks.

You can still eat it without peeling, but some choose to remove these fibers. 

Keep in mind that if you peel your rhubarb, it will lose some of the classic pink color.

rhubarb on sheet pan

How to freeze rhubarb

We do not need to blanch rhubarb before freezing it. Blanching does preserve the color and texture, but I only take this step if I want to keep the rhubarb longer than 6 months. It doesn’t last that long around here, so I flash freeze!

Wash the rhubarb and pat dry with a towel. You want the pieces to be completely dry before freezing to prevent ice crystals from forming.

Cut the rhubarb into small chunks (1-inch pieces are great) and place in a single layer on a lined baking sheet. You can line the baking sheet with parchment paper or a reusable silicone liner.

Pop the pan into the freezer and freeze until completely frozen and firm. This will take about 2 hours.

Then, remove the pan and transfer the frozen rhubarb into freezer bags.

freezer bag of rhubarb with sheet pan

Remove as much air as possible from the bag, seal, and label. If you have a vacuum sealer, you can remove the excess air that way, or use a straw to suck out the air and quickly seal.

If you decide to blanch the rhubarb, set a large pot of water to boil. Place a bowl of ice water nearby. Boil the sliced rhubarb (in batches if needed) for just 1 minute, then transfer to the ice bath to cool.

Once cooled, drain and pat dry before freezing as directed above.

I recommend storing the frozen rhubarb in easily measured amounts, such as 1 pound or ½ pound increments. This will make it a lot easier to measure for recipes later on!

The frozen rhubarb will last for 3-6 months.

sealing freezer bag of rhubarb

How to use frozen rhubarb

You can use frozen rhubarb anywhere you use fresh. Rhubarb is most often used for desserts recipes. It’s great for rhubarb sauce, rhubarb pie, or even rhubarb cookies

Rhubarb pairs wonderfully with strawberry recipes, so whip up a batch of strawberry rhubarb jam or add fresh berries to a rhubarb crisp.

As with any other frozen vegetable or fruit, the rhubarb pieces will break down somewhat as it thaws, so it’s best used in recipes where you don’t need neat pieces.

Depending on the recipe, you might not need to thaw the rhubarb before using, but if you need to cut it into smaller pieces, I recommend it. 

frozen rhubarb in bag

Thaw overnight in the refrigerator for best results. Make sure to place the bag in a shallow bowl to collect any water or juices that escape.

You can also thaw rhubarb quickly by placing it in a colander and running warm water over it. A sprayer nozzle will work best, or you can move the colander around to ensure the water gets on all the pieces.

If you have more time, you can submerge the sealed bag in a bowl of warm water and let it sit until thawed.

Whether you grow your own rhubarb or buy it, you’ll definitely want to freeze rhubarb for enjoying later!

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frozen rhubarb on sheet pan

How to Freeze Rhubarb

Rhubarb season is short, but you can extend it by learning how to freeze rhubarb! This simple method will have you enjoying rhubarb all year long.
Author : Megan Myers
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Recipe Review
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Freeze time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 5 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 12 kcal


  • 1 pound rhubarb


  • Cut rhubarb into small chunks. Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or silicone liner.
  • Place baking sheet in the freezer and chill until rhubarb is frozen, about 2 hours.
  • Transfer frozen rhubarb to freezer bags. Label and store in the freezer for 3-6 months.


Calories: 12 kcalCarbohydrates: 3 gProtein: 1 gFat: 0.1 gSaturated Fat: 0.03 gSodium: 2 mgPotassium: 163 mgFiber: 1 gSugar: 1 gIron: 0.1 mg

Nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate based on online calculators. Any nutritional information found on Stetted should be used as a general guideline only.

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About Megan

I focus on fresh ingredients and easy methods, with spins that keep meals interesting. Dinnertime shouldn’t be stressful or complicated, and I’m here to help you enjoy the time spent in the kitchen. Read more…

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