How to make a gluten-free, vegan strawberry rhubarb crisp

by Janelle Holden

Some recipes come easy. Some do not. I thought I was going to post a strawberry rhubarb cobbler recipe today. And after the first bite, I realized that rhubarb and cobbler is not a great combination.

Here’s why.

It’s too mushy. Cobblers are like having a nice biscuit on top of your favorite baked fruit. This sounds good, but in reality it’s not very satisfying to have soft fruit and a soft biscuit on top. Especially with rhubarb. Rhubarb needs a good crunch to pair with its zing. It needs something crisp and crunchy on top rather than bland and boring.

Hence, we have a crisp. Crisps are traditionally made with oats, or even just flour and sugar mixed with butter or shortening for the topping. Not this crisp. This crisp is made with nuts, flax, and buckwheat. This crisp packs an antioxidant punch and a particularly local flair with the spring rhubarb and strawberry pairing. Make it on a day with a light rain coming down and you’ll feel like you fell into a particular heaven where everything tastes warm and comforting. Just like spring.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

2 cups diced rhubarb stalks

2 cups diced fresh strawberries or cherries or any other berry

1 cup agave syrup

1/4 cup water

1/2 lemon, squeezed

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 tablespoons arrowroot starch


1/2 cup finely ground walnuts

2 tablespoons ground flaxseed

1/2 cup ground buckwheat groats or buckwheat flour

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 cup vegan palm oil shortening

2 tablespoons honey, maple syrup, or agave.


1. PreheatĀ  oven to 350 degrees.

2. Spread a small amount of shortening over the bottom and sides of a 9×13 baking dish.

3. In a large bowl, mix the diced rhubarb and strawberries together with the lemon juice and water. Add the agave syrup, vanilla extract, and arrowroot starch and mix until well-blended.

2. Cook the strawberry rhubarb mixture on the stove on medium low heat until it begins to bubble and thicken. Remove from burner and pour into baking dish.

3. In a separate bowl combine walnuts, buckwheat four, flax, spices, baking soda and salt.

4. Mix in shortening and sweetener and combine with fingers until it forms a dough.

5. Sprinkle dough over rhubarb and strawberries.

6. Bake uncovered for 45 minutes.

7. Remove from oven and cool uncovered.

8. Serve.

Janelle Holden is a gluten-free life and wellness coach who works exclusively with clients across the United States and Canada who struggle with food sensitivities, weight loss and body image. She helps her clients make healthy diet transitions and overcome emotional eating so that they can look and feel their best. Click hereto sign up for Janelle’s weekly e-zine, Gluten-Free Notes, and to learn more.


About Janelle

Janelle Holden has spent hundreds of hours coaching people world-wide with celiac disease and food sensitivities how to transition to a gluten-free diet, stop struggling with food, travel with food sensitivities, and do more of the things they love. She is the author of, "Six steps to grab control of your diet and love what you eat" and an award-winning journalist, international coach, and speaker.

One Response to “How to make a gluten-free, vegan strawberry rhubarb crisp”

  1. Caralyn @ glutenfreehappytummy June 23, 2012 3:20 am #

    that sounds so delicious! i love strawberries at this time of year!

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