There's something utterly satisfying about stepping outside to grab a fresh stalk of rhubarb and a pint of strawberries right from your garden and getting baking. Fresh. Sweet. Tart. Red. Juicy. Beautiful. Fragrant. Easy. Classic. Canadian (sorry, had to slip that one in ;) ). Strawberry rhubarb pie is a rather satisfying summer tradition around these parts, and one that I'm always more than happy to partake in.
Celebrating summer with a strawberry rhubarb pie is a treat that I'll never tire of. A few years ago I tried it with lime instead of lemon juice and loved it heaps. I think strawberries and lime make such a lovely duo, don't you think? I already learned that via this cake, but somehow in the pie it was a completely different experience.
Of course you don't need your own rhubarb plant or strawberry patch to join in -- that was just a lucky bonus for me; the pie is delightful no matter where you source your fruit. I'm really grateful to the previous owners at the house we used to live at at that time. They must have really loved their rhubarb -- the plants they put into place yielded the most delicious stalks for us each year. Likewise between the abundance of wild strawberries and the strawberry plants I put into the garden, I was supplied with a good yearly quota of my favorite berry (that is if I beat the bunnies, deer, and bears to them ;) ).
Lucky for me these two goodies come in abundance since I lived far north enough that not much else that is perennial grows well here. Experiencing first hand the nature of growing food in a cold climate, it dawned on me just why this classic is considered Canadian -- strawberries and rhubarb feel right at home; no tending required -- they just love it up here and are happy to do their thing.
You may have noticed I've been on cashew butter pie crust kick lately. I have to admit, I'm a bit obsessed. It's really easy to work with, requires no fake butters, is oil-free, and tastes just like a delicious shortbread crust. Worked great for this rhubarb pie. That said, I'm also aware many of you are nut-free and must be dismayed at the sight of another delicious treat that's out of reach. So just throwing it out there -- feel free to use sunflower seed butter in this instead. I prefer the cashew butter because it has quite a mild sweet flavor, but sunbutter will work just as well for the texture and consistency, though with a more pronounced sunflower seed taste. And if you prefer a completely nut-free, seed-free, or grain-free crust, you can always try the crust from one of these recipes:
Now back to the crust in this recipe (or if you're going with sunbutter), make sure the crust dough is very soft -- not too sticky to handle, but very soft and pliable. If it seems too dry or cracks as you try to work with it, return it back to the food processor and add a bit more maple syrup or cashew butter and process again until you have the right texture. You usually know the dough is at a good consistency when it forms a ball in the food processor. And be sure to use a fresh and well stirred together cashew butter for this, as older butters (especially the end of the jar portion) can be on the dry side.
And... if you prefer not to bother with the lattice top, feel free to skip (though it is arguably one of the most delicious parts -- it turns into a lightly crispy shortbread-like topping which complements the filling quite well). If you're not comfortable working with a lattice but still want the topping, just roll out the dough, use a small cookie cutter to cut out little patterns (hello American friends...cute little stars for the 4th of July...?) and decorate the top with them -- I like to use my leaf cookie cutter for that to create beautiful edging on pies.
Final note: I also made this in my mini 6″ pie plate. If you don’t have a dish that small, use any other oven safe dish of a similar size, or make a few tarts instead in a muffin pan or ramekins. Otherwise, triple the recipe for a 9″ plate.
Strawberry Rhubarb Pie
Sweet, tart, and juicy vegan pie made with strawberries and rhubarb. Gluten-free crust that's totally simple to make -- a summertime classic!
- Prep Time: 25 minutes
- Cook Time: 45 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
- Yield: 6" pie
- Category: Pie
- Method: Baked
- Cuisine: Dessert
- 6 tbsp white rice flour
- 2 tbsp cashew butter
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/16 tsp salt
- ⅔ cup chopped strawberries
- ⅔ cup chopped rhubarb
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tbsp tapioca flour
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ⅛ tsp salt
Top Lattice Crust:
- 6 tbsp white rice flour
- 2 tbsp cashew butter
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/16 tsp salt
- Preheat oven to 350F. Oil a 6" pie plate (or see notes above for alternative dish sizes). Set aside.
- Process all base crust ingredients in a food processor until the mixture begins to form a ball (note if the mixture is too runny, add a bit more flour, if too dry, add a bit more maple syrup, since the consistency may vary depending on the cashew butter's consistency). Form the mixture into a ball with your hands and knead briefly, then flatten into a disk with your hands (if making a larger pie, you can roll the disk out with a rolling pin between two sheets of parchment). Place the dough disk inside the pie dish and form into a crust along the base and walls with your hands. Set aside.
- Combine all pie filling ingredients together in a bowl. Transfer into the prepared pie crust and flatten to fit inside the crust with a tiny bit of room at the top (for the lattice). Note what the liquid in the filling may rise to the top a bit while you're working on the next step, and that's ok. Set the pie aside.
- Process all lattice crust ingredients in the same way as in step 2. Note: super important that the dough is very soft and pliable, otherwise it will crack when you try to form the lattice -- see notes above for correct consistency. Put the disk in between two sheets of parchment paper and roll out into a ⅛ of an inch thick circle. Cut into strips and then use them to form a lattice on top of the pie, criss-crossing the strips. Trip the edges. optional: I formed mine into a long "pipe" and wrapped it around the top edge of the pie and then sealed the lattice in.
- Bake in a pre-heated oven for 45 mins. Cool completely on a rack and enjoy!
Keywords: Vegan Strawberry Rhubarb Pie (Gluten-Free, Oil-Free)
I do not have tapioca flour. Can I substitute corn starch, agar agar or Arrowroot powder?
Hi Maggi. Arrowroot or corn starch should work fine here.
Wonderful vegan, gluten-free pie recipe! I made my crust with almond butter, and that must have been what made it rather fragile to work with; have patience and wait to go to the grocery store if you don’t have cashew butter on hand, haha! Nevertheless, I still managed to form a crust in the pan and a “rustic-looking” (lol) lattice on top...which may not look amazing, but the taste and texture is on point! The filling is a perfect ratio of strawberry to rhubarb; both flavors are celebrated. And the cinnamon, which I thought was a strange thing to add at first, is very subtle and really compliments the flavors! All in all a great recipe that I’d make again and recommend to others. Thank you!
Hi Kat, thanks so much for sharing your thoughts. I'm so happy you enjoyed this recipe!
Is it possible to use almond flour instead of rice flour? Or will it become too heavy/nutty? I have never used rice flour before so don't really know what to or how to 🙈
Hi Armina, a nut-based flour wouldn't work as a straight substitute here. Grain-based flours are absorbent, nut-based ones are not. So you'd basically need to come up with a different crust recipe based on nuts if you wanted to go that route, otherwise it won't work so great here because there won't be anything to absorb the extra liquids in the crust and hold things together. Rice flour can just be purchased at the shops and is usually inexpensive. And if not gluten-free, you can even just use regular flour here if you prefer.
If you want to make a larger pie like a regular pie I think that’s like a 12 inch pie can you double the recipe or what woukd those measurements be for the ingredients be if we were to make a larger pie?
Hi Michelle. A standard pie plate size around here is 9", and for that you'd need to triple the recipe.
Would stevia work in place of maple syrup for a dibetic.
Hi Doreen. I haven't tried this recipe with stevia, so can only offer hypothetical ideas. For the crust, I'd use a bit more cashew butter and some water (or almond milk) to replace the missing liquid from the maple syrup. You might need to play around with the consistency a little bit -- if the dough ends up being too wet / sticky, add a tiny bit of flour, or if too dry / crumbly add a bit more water / cashew butter. For the filling you can use a little bit of water to dissolve the stevia in (so it can coat things more easily), and you can probably use less tapioca starch than the recipe calls for. If you give it a go, would love to hear what you did and how it worked out.
Is there any possible (grain free) flour substitute for the rice flour? Thank you so much!
Hi Tessa. You can try cassava. I found that it alters the flavor a little bit, but otherwise when I tried it in a cookie recipe (which closely resembles the crust of this pie) it worked just fine. I haven't tried making something like a lattice with the cassava base, but I suspect that should be fine too. If you find for some reason that the dough isn't sturdy enough though, you can always just use small cookie cutters on the rolled out dough and decorate the top of the pie with that. If you give it a try, would love to hear how you go.
This looks unbelievably good! Id never be able to make a pie this pretty
Hi Kristiana. Thanks very much. It's actually super simple -- I hope the added video can help you see the process. It's a lot less complicated than it seems :) That said, even if you end up with something not as pretty, it'll still be tasty. So no biggie at all either way.
Would love to make this with rhubarb freshly in season! :D Do you think coconut butter would be a successful substitute for the cashew butter? I can't have cashews and don't have my usual macadamia nut butter on hand which I usually use when a recipe calls for cashew butter :(
Thanks so much!
Hi Bella, my experience baking with coconut butter in place of cashew butter (or another nut butter) is that:
a) it burns a lot more easily, so you'd need to watch the baking time and temperature quite closely.
b) you end up with a more brittle dough / crust. So it probably wont work as well for a fancy lattice, as it crumbles more. But it can still be made to work as a topping if for example you simple roll out the dough and use very small cookie cutters and decorate the top of the pie with something like that instead.
Let me know if you give it a try with the coconut butter.
Hi Audrey, I'm so sorry. I mixed up maple with Agave. You are right maple is a healthy Option. If you like you can delete my first comment ;o) xoxo Janine
Ah, no worries at all :) I do use agave once in a while when I don't have access to maple or if I want to avoid the maple flavor for some reason. I know it has a bad reputation online, but I personally go with how things make me feel as a priority -- good quality agave doesn't make me feel sick like sugar does, nor does it have the same effect on me as corn syrup (which is what a lot of people compare it to). But I agree -- maple is much healthier and tastes great too. And brown rice syrup or coconut nectar, yacon syrup, etc. can be great alternatives as well.
Absolutely gorgeous! I have been staring at my overgrown rhubarb plants out of the kitchen window for weeks now and I bought some strawberries this week because.. pie. I think I will be giving this a go! Love the lattice!! <3
Thanks :) You know, I also enjoyed just the filling on its own btw. You can just bake it in a dish without the crust -- sooo delicious with a spoon!
Hi Audrey! What a mouthwatering Picture! To be honest I don't use rubarb very often. But in combination with a healthy treat I Need to give it a try. Haha. By the way. You can use Rice syrup instead of maple because maple isn't that healthy. xoxo Janine
Hi Janine :) I use like rhubarb because it's a perennial -- once you plant it, it keeps coming back each year with zero care on my part. But it's definitely best with something like strawberries or raspberries. Why do you think maple syrup is not healthy? It's higher in minerals and is quite pure in terms of how its processed. Plus it doesn't make me feel sick and tastes delicious :) It's also much easier for me to find. Rice syrup would definitely work here, but I don't love using it because it's not as sweet so you have to use more of it and also it makes pastries like this very crispy / crunchy.
Natalie | Feasting on Fruit says
This has all the classic summertime pie vibes, so much so that I can't help but want to plop a scoop of ice cream on top! Your lattice skills are quite impressive too, such a simple crust recipe but it lattices and browns perfectly. I think cashew butter is one of my favorite for using in recipes too :) I must admit I have a little bit of garden envy, fresh strawberries are the best. But yes it is usually a race with the critters for them here too!
Thanks :) Summer vibes caught me on my way to pick rhubarb, so grabbed some of the rhubarb flowers and a few stray weeds on the way back for decoration. I had it with a light coconut whip and it was delicious, so I can imagine it would be amazing with ice cream, but it didn't last long enough around for me to give that a go ? And so much yes on cashew butter -- it's hands down my favorite nut butter EVER. Speaking of critters, one dug up all my celery plants today and just left them uneaten all over the garden -- all I could think was vandalism! ?
Kari @ bite-sized thoughts says
What a beautiful pie and perfect for summer time - I love the lime twist!
Thanks Kari :) Lime really freshens it up.
valentina | sweet kabocha says
This crust seems so flaky but not crumbly - something that happens a lot with gluten-free fours! <3
Yes, I know what you mean -- I quite like the consistency of this crust. With the gf crusts I think my bigger woe is not so much crumbly but crunchy... This one was just right.