Rhubarb Johnnycake: Wheat-Free & Delicious

I can barely even keep track of all the wonderful rhubarb recipes I’ve seen lately.

From this amazingly inspirational round-up on Punk Domestics to several recipes in Marisa McLellan’s brand-new cookbook, Food in Jars (including pickled rhubarb stalks – doesn’t that sound interesting?), to this gorgeous rhubarb crusted crumb pie from Apt. 2B Baking Co. and this uber-comforting milk and honey pudding with stewed rhubarb from Autumn Makes & Does, I’ve been thoroughly overwhelmed by good ideas.

Beautiful rhubarb stalks by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2012

There are so many that I’ve been at a loss as to where to begin (not to mention that I’ve had limited time and limited energy — this whole being pregnant with a toddler and a job deal does kinda take it out of you…)

Sliced rhubarb by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2012

But then I saw this recipe for rhubarb johnnycake pop up on The Hudson Valley Food Network‘s Seasonal Eating page and I sprang into action!

Local sourcream, local eggs by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2012

You see, I have been wanting to make this simple yet scrumptious cake since I tasted it at our Woodstock Farm Festival committee meeting a few weeks ago.

Cake batter and macerated rhubarb with ginger meet by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2012

The recipe comes from Cheryl Pfaff, an excellent cook and caterer who has served as the farmer’s market manager here in Woodstock for the last few years. Check out her blog, At The Farmer’s Market for tons of mouth-watering recipes that feature local, seasonal ingredients. My only complaint was that she did not make two of these cakes since we were fighting over the slices at the meeting…

Rhubarb Johnnycake about to go into the oven by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2012

Head to your local farmer’s market ASAP — my guess is there should be plenty of fresh, local rhubarb for sale!

Next: Get the recipe!

Rhubarb Johnnycake by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2012

Enjoy this simple but delicious cake – there is something magical about the combination of the slightly spicy ginger, sour rhubarb, sweet sugar and the light, crispy corn flour.

Rhubarb Johnnycake
By Cheryl Pfaff of At The Farmer’s Market

* 2 cups sliced rhubarb
* 3 Tbsp raw sugar
* 1/4 tsp ground ginger
* 1 cup corn flour
* 1 tsp baking powder
* 1/4 tsp salt
* 1/2 cup raw sugar
* 1 stick of unsalted butter – softened
* 2 eggs (use local, free range, organic if you can get ‘em)
* 2 Tbsp sour cream
* 1 tsp pure vanilla extract


1. Preheat the oven to 350° and grease a 9” springform pan.

2. Toss the sliced rhubarb with 3 Tbsp of sugar and the ginger. Set aside.

3. In another bowl, whisk together the corn flour, baking powder and salt.

4. In a separate bowl, beat 1/2 cup sugar with the butter until creamy. Beat in the eggs, sour cream and vanilla.

5. Add the corn flour mixture to the butter mixture and stir just enough to combine. Pour the batter into the cake pan. Arrange the rhubarb slices on top of the batter and sprinkle the top with a little sugar.

6. Bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Slice and serve. Goes great with vanilla ice cream (or a non-dairy equivalent – I love this coconut based ice cream) or whipped cream.

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Abbe A.
Azaima A5 years ago

thank you so much

Magyar Girl
Past Member 5 years ago


Callie Johnson
Callie Johnson5 years ago

Yum! I love rhubarb recipes. Thanks!

Terry Vanderbush
Terry V5 years ago


Michele Wilkinson

Thank you

Mary Mattarelli
Mary Mattarelli5 years ago

thanks for the article

Heidi Aubrey
Heidi Aubrey5 years ago

What is it with rhubarb? The non-poisonous parts are barely edible no matter how one prepares it.

Deborah F.
Deborah F5 years ago

This sounds wonderful.

Winn Adams
Winn A5 years ago


John B.
John B5 years ago

Sounds delicious and looks great. Thanks for sharing the recipe Eve.