Hello rhubarb lovers! Are you ready for Rhubarb Fritters? Chunks of fresh rhubarb are embedded in a sweet, yeasty dough which is spiced with a hint of cardamom. The fritters are fried until golden brown and iced with a glaze made from the rhubarb juice. Yummm!
Admittedly this is not exactly a diet-friendly recipe. But it is definitely a taste-bud friendly recipe. When you’re ready for a cheat day I suggest you make Rhubarb Fritters for breakfast, brunch or for a snack.
These are not the type of fritter made with a pancake batter. These rhubarb fritters are big, yeasty, donut-type confections.
Now listen, I know we bakers can sometimes be perfectionists, but fritter making is not the time to get too fussy. These are supposed to be big, glorious blobs of messy, fried-dough heaven.
- All purpose flour – Medium protein all purpose flour will make a dough with enough elasticity to hold in the chunks of rhubarb, but the fritters are still pillowy and soft.
- Baking soda – In addition to the yeast the dough has a little baking soda for a quick lift when the dough hits the oil.
- Buttermilk – Not only does buttermilk have great flavor, the acidic milk tenderizes the dough.
- Instant yeast – I prefer instant yeast to rapid rise yeast for a slightly slower rise. A slower rise creates a deeper flavor.
- Rhubarb – Select fresh rhubarb that is plump and crisp.
How to make Rhubarb Fritters
See recipe card for detailed measurements and instructions.
- Combine the wet ingredients with the yeast.
- Add the dry ingredients. Mix to combine then knead.
- Set the dough aside to rise until doubled. The dough can be held in the refrigerator overnight.
- Toss the chopped rhubarb with sugar and set aside to macerate for 1 hour.
- Drain the rhubarb and save the juice to make the glaze.
- Roll the dough.
- Layer and fold the rhubarb into the dough.
- Divide the dough into 12 portions.
- Shape each fritter into a rough oval shape. Push the rhubarb chunks into the dough.
- Make the glaze.
- Fry the fritters and set them on a rack to drain.
- Dip the fritters in the glaze while they’re still warm.
Tips for making Rhubarb Fritters
- When you’re working with the dough don’t be too precious with it. If some of the fruit falls out while shaping the fritters simply shove it back into the dough.
- After the first rise the dough can be wrapped and refrigerated overnight. Roll and shape the fritters the next day.
- Even if it seems that the fritters will never hold together in the fryer, they will. The dough will puff up and trap the chunks of fruit.
Rhubarb fritters are best eaten within a few hours of frying. They can be held at room temperature for 1 day. Leftovers can be frozen before glazing. Defrost, reheat in a warm oven and then glaze.
I am obsessed with the unique flavor of rhubarb. You too? Here are a few more recipes for you to try:
- Pure Rhubarb Pie
- Rhubarb Meringue Tart
- Rhubarb Crumb Pie
- Rhubarb Summer Pudding
- Rhubarb Crumb Cake
- Rhubarb Upside Down Cake
- Rhubarb Shortcakes
- Rhubarb Crumb Bars
- Rhubarb Sorbet
- Rhubarb Ice Cream
If you love this recipe as much as I do, I’d really appreciate a 5-star review.
Rhubarb Fritters Recipe
- 17 ½ oz all purpose flour (3 ½ cups, see note)
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
- ½ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- 8 oz buttermilk (1 cup, room temperature)
- 2 oz butter (melted)
- 2 eggs (room temperature)
- 4 oz granulated sugar (½ cup)
- 1 tablespoon instant yeast
- 1 ½ pounds rhubarb (diced into ½" pieces)
- 8 oz granulated sugar (1 cup)
- ¼ teaspoon table salt
- 8 oz Confectioners sugar (2 cups)
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- Whisk together 2 cups of the flour with ¼ teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon ground cardamom and ½ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper. Set aside.
- Combine 8 oz buttermilk, 2 oz butter, 2 eggs, 4 oz granulated sugar and 1 tablespoon instant yeast in a mixer bowl. Mix with the paddle or beater until combined. (Or mix by hand). Add the dry ingredients and mix for 1 minute until it forms a thick batter. Switch to the dough hook. Add the remaining flour.
- Knead the dough on the mixer for 5 minutes. Sprinkle more flour if the dough begins to stick to the sides of the bowl. If working by hand add as much of the flour as you can with a wooden spoon then knead in the remaining flour by hand.
- Turn the dough out onto a well floured surface and knead until the dough is smooth, supple and not sticky. Use a little more flour as needed. Form the dough into a smooth ball and place it into a lightly oiled bowl, turning once to coat the dough. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside until doubled in volume (about 1 – 1 ½ hours).
- Toss the diced rhubarb with 8 oz granulated sugar and ¼ teaspoon table salt, allow to macerate for at least 60 minutes. Drain the juice from the rhubarb into a small pot.
- Cook the rhubarb juice over medium low heat until the sugar is melted. Combine 8 oz Confectioners sugar with the 1 teaspoon lemon juice Add enough of the rhubarb juice to form a glaze that has the consistency of thin pancake batter. You can use a little extra lemon juice if you run out of rhubarb juice and the glaze is still too thick.
Roll the Fritters
- Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead into a smooth ball. Roll to a 16" x 12" rectangle. Distribute ⅔ the rhubarb evenly over ½ the surface of the dough. Fold the dough over the rhubarb.
- Gently press with your hands or rolling pin until the roll is flattened to 1" thick and the rhubarb is embedded in the dough. If you get air bubbles just poke the dough with the tip of a knife to release the trapped air. Scatter the remaining rhubarb over ½ the dough and fold in half again. Flatten to embed the rhubarb into the dough and form into a 12" x 3" log. Use a bench scraper to cut into 12 even pieces.
- Use your hands to pinch each piece of dough into a rough disc shape, and to contain the rhubarb. If some pieces of rhubarb fall out, push them back into the dough. Don’t worry if they’re not perfect, they aren’t supposed to be. If some fritters have too much rhubarb and some have too little simply pluck pieces of rhubarb out of one and push it into the other.
- Place on a silpat or parchment lined sheet pan dusted with flour. Cover and allow to rise until almost doubled, about 1 hour. The fritters should feel light and puffy. When you poke the dough with the tip of your finger the dent should slowly fill in. If it bounces right back it's not ready.
- Meanwhile, heat 2 quarts of oil to 350 °F in a large Dutch oven. Fry the fritters a couple at a time, about 4-5 minutes per side. Drain on a cooling rack while continuing to fry the rest of the fritters.
- While the fritters are still slightly warm dip the top of each fritter into the glaze and return to the cooling rack to set the glaze. Best eaten warm or within a couple of hours of frying.
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