Rhubarb Custard Pie with an Oatmeal Cookie Crust

Rhubarb Custard Pie

A rainy weekend + a freezer too full to accommodate any more rhubarb can only mean one thing: pie. I picked up a copy of The Four & Twenty Blackbirds Pie Book (from the Brooklyn pie shop of the same name) at the Calgary Reads book sale – I showed some restraint, I think, and only came home with ten books – from this one, I want to make every single pie. It was only a matter of time anyway, with all this rhubarb, so I thought I’d get the first pie out of the way before the strawberries showed up. (Or the raspberries – I love a raspberry-rhubarb pie.)

A few things about this pie: 1) it has an oatmeal cookie crust.

oatmeal cookie pie crust 2

2) The rhubarb is stewed before it goes into the shell, and is topped with a thin layer of sour cream custard before going into the oven. I might attempt a greater rhubarb:custard ratio next time, but it was pretty fantastic as is. (It would do well with other berries along with the rhubarb too, if you can’t imagine leaving the strawberries out. Peaches would be great too, I think.)

rhubarb custard pie 1

The crust itself – and I imagine you could swap a gingersnap, graham cracker or other cookie crust, or even a blind baked pastry crust – was perfect for people intimidated by pastry, and grainy crumbles always go well with fruit. It held up well, and was a bit chewy – I’m a fan of straight-up pie crusts, but imagine this could take its place with all kinds of fillings. But a rhubarb-custard pie is a good start.

Screen Shot 2016-05-25 at 9.43.05 PM
Screen Shot 2016-05-25 at 9.43.05 PM

Rhubarb Custard Pie with an Oatmeal Cookie Crust


May 25, 2016


Oatmeal cookie crust:

3/4 cup oats

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

pinch salt

1/4 cup butter, cut into pieces


3 cups chopped rhubarb (about 1 lb)

1 1/4 cup sugar, divided

3 Tbsp. cornstarch

3/4 cup sour cream

1/4 cup heavy (whipping) or half & half cream

2 large eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

pinch salt


1Preheat the oven to 350F. In a medium bowl, combine the oats, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt. Add the butter and blend until crumbly; press into the bottom and sides of a 9-inch pie plate and bake for 15 minutes, or until pale golden.

2To make the filling, combine the rhubarb, 3/4 cup of the sugar and the cornstarch in a medium saucepan. If you like, add a splash (a couple tablespoons) of water or orange juice to help get things going. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring often, until the rhubarb breaks down and the mixture thickens.

3Spread the rhubarb in the pie crust and in a medium bowl, whisk together the sour cream, cream, remaining 1/2 cup sugar, eggs, vanilla and salt. Pour over the rhubarb and bake for 30-40 minutes, until the pie is golden and set around the edges, but still a bit wobbly in the middle. Cool, then refrigerate for a few hours, until chilled.

4Serves 8.


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40 comments on “Rhubarb Custard Pie with an Oatmeal Cookie Crust

  1. Medeja
    May 26, 2016 at 4:36 am

    Both crust and filling sound so yummy!

  2. Carolyn
    May 26, 2016 at 4:34 pm

    HI – I think the sugar (1/2 cup) is missing in the directions for the custard filling. Have this in the oven now and can’t wait to try it — I’ll either have to stay up late until it’s cool enough, or try it for breakfast.

    • Julie
      May 27, 2016 at 1:07 pm

      Sorry yes, it should go into the custard. Sorry! Distracted week! :)

  3. Vivian
    May 26, 2016 at 8:52 pm

    My wee rhubarb is only up about 3 inches (long drought) but now that rains have come I’m sure it will be shooting up soon. So want to try this as I fondly remember a Bee Bell bakery rhubarb custard pie that my Mom and I shared in the car one sunny Saturday morning right outside the bakery!

  4. sandie
    May 28, 2016 at 11:47 am

    I used chocolate evaporated milk and the flavor is awesome!!!

    • Julie
      May 29, 2016 at 7:33 pm

      Wow, so interesting! I never would have thought of that!

  5. Jules @ WolfItDown
    May 28, 2016 at 12:54 pm

    This. Looks. Perfect.

  6. Liesel
    May 28, 2016 at 8:32 pm

    Looks so good, like an upside down crisp:)

  7. Alicia
    July 15, 2016 at 9:41 pm

    I just made this for dessert and it was fantastic! Thanks for sharing!

  8. Geri
    March 13, 2017 at 5:58 pm

    Rhubarb lover drooling here. Rhubarb in any form works for me, although my fave is straight up rhubarb. I will be making this recipe with gluten free flour for the gluten free daughter as soon as the spring rhubarb pops up far enough to use. Bring on spring!

    • Julie
      March 13, 2017 at 9:52 pm

      Good to hear it!

  9. Krystal-Kay Hawkins
    May 25, 2017 at 9:33 am

    Hi Julie, so thrilled to try this recipe! If I want to add strawberries to the filling would I reduce the rhubarb and would I add them to the rhubarb filling when cooking or after. Thanks for your help!

    • Julie
      May 26, 2017 at 12:03 pm

      Yes, I’d just swap strawberries for some of the rhubarb! Yum!!

  10. Lee
    May 28, 2017 at 8:15 am

    Do you use quick oats in the crust or old-fashioned?

    • Julie
      May 28, 2017 at 10:58 pm

      Either would work – just not instant!

  11. Carol
    June 5, 2017 at 12:40 pm

    This recipe just sounds so amazing! I am such a fan of rhubarb and I am watching my plants coming up, so I will look forward to trying this very soon now! Can’ t wait!

  12. Danielle
    June 5, 2017 at 10:33 pm

    Sooo good!! I have a ginormous rhubarb plant and had no clue what to do with it. This was my first attempt at baking with it and it will not be my last. I swapped out a bit of the rhubarb for peaches that I canned last year and used gluten free flour. Yum!

  13. Jo
    June 12, 2017 at 1:14 am

    I made this last night, was a bit weirded out by the sour cream but I persevered and was glad I did. It was totally delicious. I mistakenly took out frozen plums not rhubarb but means I can make a rhubarb one another time. Was totally gorgeous. I also found it easier to melt the butter then mix in the oats and dry ingredients. One question. Do you think the left overs could be frozen?

    • Julie
      June 13, 2017 at 12:21 pm

      Hmm.. it’s worth trying, but custard tends to go funny once frozen and thawed.

      • Jo
        July 29, 2017 at 10:34 am

        I did freeze it, and it was just as delicious when thawed, a little soggier but no real change to the custard. It was only frozen about a week though! But would definitely freeze again. ThIs time I’m making it a little larger so that I get a bit more of the oatmeal base! Also it was easier to melt the butter in a saucepan and add the oats…

      • Julie
        July 29, 2017 at 2:07 pm

        So great to hear it!! Now I need to make another pie!! I bet it’s just as tasty frozen…

  14. Aja Szep
    June 21, 2017 at 8:55 pm

    I made this for my husband, since he grew up with rhubarb pies. I made a classic rhubarb pie previously, and this rhubarb custard pie absolutely blew it out of the water. Even with my ghastly mistake of leaving out heavy cream (which i will not repeat next time), my husband held the plate to his face and shoveled the pie in his mouth. The crust was chewy, but absolutely perfect. I will make this over and over again.

    I doubled the crust recipe to fit the pie pan I had, added about an extra cup of rhubarb and just a bit more sugar, but changed nothing else except for the heavy cream I forgot.

    • Julie
      June 22, 2017 at 4:35 pm

      So glad to hear it was a hit!

  15. Danielle
    June 27, 2017 at 12:09 pm

    Looks amazing! What would I change in order to use frozen rhubarb? Or thaw first?

    • Julie
      June 27, 2017 at 8:56 pm

      Just add it frozen!

      • Danielle
        July 1, 2017 at 6:58 am

        I was hoping you’d say that. Thanks!

  16. Vickie
    July 4, 2017 at 8:20 pm

    This recipe looks incredible! I can’t wait to try it this weekend! I was wondering if I could swap the sour cream with greek yogurt. Thanks!

    • Julie
      July 7, 2017 at 10:34 am

      Worth a try, as long as it’s not fat free yogurt!

  17. Chrystal
    November 23, 2017 at 6:13 pm

    Made for dessert tonight!!!….so good!!?

  18. Nina
    May 27, 2018 at 4:02 pm

    Hi! I think the heavy cream is missing in the recipe – do you at it when making the custard? Thanks!

  19. Tamia Barnett
    June 28, 2018 at 6:34 pm

    I cannot eat eggs, due to an allergy… I used 3 cups of prepared (rhubarb simmered in water with 1/2c sugar), 1/4c brown sugar, 3 tbsp tapioca with the corn starch, omitted the eggs and mixed all of the ingredients together.poured it into the parbaked shell and baked it for 45 min… it was fabulous…thank you for such a beautiful recipe, I hope you don’t mind the tweeks.

    • Julie
      July 1, 2018 at 2:57 pm

      Ooh yum! so glad to hear it!

  20. Carol
    July 8, 2018 at 6:18 pm

    AMAZING,I cannot wait to make this.

  21. Elizabeth Vlug
    August 17, 2018 at 9:18 am

    I have this in the oven right now. Pinned the recipe. Thanks for sharing.

  22. Judy Hubbard
    September 19, 2018 at 12:18 pm

    I have this in the oven right now and I have high hopes for it. I’ve made many many rhubarb pies in the past and sadly, they were not good. This one is so different from all the others and I really want it to be delish as I love rhubarb. I’ll let you know!

  23. Judy Hubbard
    September 19, 2018 at 4:41 pm

    Okay, I’m letting you know! This pie is fabulous and I will be making it again and again! Thank you so much.

    • Julie
      September 19, 2018 at 6:45 pm

      Yay! So glad to hear it!

  24. Ania Kordiuk
    September 24, 2018 at 11:42 am

    Is it eaten day-of or can it sit a day or two?

    • Julie
      September 25, 2018 at 7:49 pm

      It can definitely wait a day or two!

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