This simple rhubarb compote recipe requires only three ingredients and takes just 15 minutes to make! Serve it over vanilla ice cream, waffles, or a slice of delicious pound cake.
This is one of my favorite rhubarb recipes. Of course, I love rhubarb cheesecake squares, an oatmeal-topped rhubarb crisp, or a glass of rhubarb lemonade, but this is such a quick treat to whip up you really can’t beat it!
What is fruit compote?
Fruit compote is a fancy, French term to describe a sauce made of whole fruit or pieces of fruit cooked in a sugar syrup. It is less time intensive than a jam and contains no pectin or thickeners.
This recipe is a quick and easy version that combines the sugar, fruit, and a bit of citrus juice all at once to create a sauce that is thick, luxurious, and perfectly balanced between tangy and sweet.
Ingredients for this recipe
- Rhubarb (fresh or frozen)
How to make rhubarb compote
- Combine the ingredients. In a shallow saucepan and place over medium heat.
- Boil the fruit and sugar. Stirring occasionally, until it’s thick and gorgeous and the rhubarb pieces have broken down naturally. Only about 15 minutes!
- Remove from heat, cool, and enjoy! You’ll love pouring this sauce over vanilla bean ice cream.
It’s really that simple!
Storage and freezing instructions
This compote is a quick and simple sauce, not a jam recipe, so it is not preserved or shelf stable as a jam recipe could be.
The compote can be stored in a container in the refrigerator for up to five days. Alternatively, it can be frozen. Here’s how:
Fill a quart-sized, freeze-safe plastic bag with rhubarb compote. Squeeze out any excess air. Properly label and date the bag with the contents. Lay flat in the freezer until solid (you can then store the bag upright, if desired).
Compote can be frozen for up to six months. Thaw in the fridge before using.
Recipe Tips and FAQ
Can this be made with fresh or frozen rhubarb? This compote can be made with either! I have an entire post outlining how to freeze rhubarb and these photos were taken using frozen pieces.
How many cups is 1 pound of rhubarb? A little over 3 cups, depending on the size of your pieces. If the rhubarb is cut between ½ and 1 inch, you’ll need 3 heaping cups for this recipe.
If you don’t have a kitchen scale, I highly recommend buying one! They’re so useful!
What if I don’t have fresh lemons? You can use 3 tablespoons of bottled lemon juice. Alternatively, a fresh lime or orange can be used in place of the lemon if that’s all you have on hand. The key is to add a bit of acid via citrus juice to balance the sweetness of the compote.
Simple Rhubarb Compote
- Rubber Spatula
- 1 pound rhubarb pieces fresh or frozen (a little over 3 cups)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 lemon zested and juiced
- Combine 1 pound rhubarb pieces, 1 cup granulated sugar, and the zest and juice of one lemon in a medium saucepan. Place over medium heat and bring to a boil.
- Boil rapidly for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until rhubarb has released its natural juices, broken down, and reduced to a beautifully silky sauce.
- Remove from heat and cool to room temperature before storing in refrigerator.
- Serve compote over vanilla ice cream, waffles, or a slice of pound cake!
- Compote can be stored in refrigerator for up to five days.