Sweet, creamy custard is the perfect balance to tangy, flavorful rhubarb in this old-fashioned Rhubarb Custard Pie. Like all of my mom’s recipes, it’s easy to prepare, elegant, and super delicious! It’s been a family favorite for years, and soon will be for your family, too.
My mom grew rhubarb in her garden just so she could make her Rhubarb Custard Pie. No strawberries in her version – just creamy, sweet egg custard combined together with tart, green apple-tasting rhubarb. Mom also kicked up the flavor a bit by adding nutmeg. The flavors all combine together perfectly!
The first time I made mom’s version of this old-fashioned rhubarb pie, I was surprised at how easy it is to prepare. Simply whisk together eggs, milk and melted butter, then stir in rhubarb, sugar, flour and nutmeg. Spread in a prepared pie crust, top with a lattice (or second crust) and bake. How easy is that?
The resulting luscious, classic rhubarb pie is juicy, delicious, and full of perfect rhubarb flavor. She always served it to rave reviews, and you will, too!
Note that I include directions on how to make a lattice top, but you can just use a solid top if you prefer.
Rhubarb tastes like tart green apples brushed with lemon. So, Mom’s Rhubarb Custard Pie combines the flavors of crème brulée, apples and lemon, with a hint of nutmeg.
Peel off any stringy covering and remove all leaves (they are poisonous!) before chopping. If your rhubarb isn’t looking crisp and fresh, stand stalks in cold water for about an hour to refresh.
No, the rhubarb cooks right along with the custard, so no need to pre-cook.
Yes, you can make Rhubarb Custard Pie the day before serving. Before filling and baking, brush inside of crust with a mixture of 1 beaten egg and 1 tablespoon water. This seals the crust while it’s baking, so it won’t get soggy.
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- 2 prepared 9-inch pie crusts (top and bottom), uncooked and refrigerated (see our Easy Flaky Pie Crust recipe)
- 4 eggs, beaten, divided
- 2 2/3 tablespoons whole milk
- 2 tablespoons melted butter, cooled
- 4 cups chopped, peeled rhubarb stalks (around 12 to 14 stalks)
- 1 3/4 to 2 cups sugar
- 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon water
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- On a lightly floured work surface, roll out bottom crust dough to an an even 1/8-inch thickness and into a 12-inch circle. Transfer into a 9-inch pie plate. Trim pastry edge to around a 3/4-inch overhang. Poke bottom of crust with a fork in several places. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- Roll out the second (top) crust to the same size as the first (2 to 3 inches larger than the pan). Roll the dough to around 1/8-inch thickness. Use a fluted pie cutter to cut the second crust into 1/2 to 3/4-inch wide strips. Refrigerate strips for at least 30 minutes.
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together 3 of the eggs, milk and melted butter. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, stir together the rhubarb, sugar, flour and nutmeg. Add the liquid ingredients and stir to mix.
- Remove pie crusts from refrigerator. Spread rhubarb mixture evenly in pie pan.
- Remove lattice strips from refrigerator and make a lattice top. (See our directions on how to make a lattice top.)
- Place lattice on top of filling. Brush water or beaten egg on the rim of the lower crust under the lattice ends. Cut the lattice ends as needed to the edge of the pan, making sure not to cut the lower crust.
- Fold the lower crust edge over the lattice ends and press to seal. Pinch the dough edge up into a raised rim – and flute if desired.
- Brush top crust with an egg wash (mixture of 1 beaten egg and 1 tablespoon water) before baking.
- Bake pie for around 40 minutes or until the filling is set and lattice top is golden brown. Cover edge of crust with a pie crust shield or foil if it browns too fast.
- Let pie sit for 10 minutes before serving. Can be served warm or at room temperature. I like to serve it with vanilla or caramel ice cream.
More about Rhubarb: Rhubarb comes in both red and green varieties. Both varieties work equally well for cooking, canning and making pie. Rhubarb is often sold by the “bunch” which is usually 2 to 2 1/2 pounds. One pound of rhubarb yields about 3/4 cup cooked. When you buy your rhubarb, choose fresh crisp stalks. Always peel off any stringy covering before use, and then stand the stalks in cold water for about an hour to refresh them before cooking (skip this step if you grow your own!). It’s important to note that you should never eat the leaves of a rhubarb plant – they’re toxic.
- Category: desserts, pies, make ahead
Keywords: rhubarb, custard, pie