Simple syrups are super easy to make and are a fun way to make desserts, ice cream, cocktails, and mocktails! Rhubarb Simple Syrup is made three easy ingredients - fresh rhubarb, sugar, and water (if that's even considered an ingredient!), and is full of rhubarb flavor.
Rhubarb always, ALWAYS makes me think of my Grandma Esther. I have great memories of running out in her backyard, past her giant (GIANT!!!!) garden to the back fence that separated their yard from a farmers field. Along that back fence was a lush, green row of rhubarb plants. This Rhubarb Simple Syrup is unfortunately not made with rhubarb from her garden, but the taste reminded me of her every sip!
Because of these memories, rhubarb season is always super nostalgic for me. If only I go back, just for one day, and be that carefree kid again, running through my grandmas backyard and trying to find the best rhubarb. Oh, to be a kid!
These days I pick up rhubarb at my local grocery store or, better yet, the farmers market. I know I'll make a pan of my Brown Butter Rhubarb Cake and some Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp for dessert, but I was itching to try something new this year, and that was Rhubarb Simple Syrup.
This recipe only requires three ingredients - and one of them is water!
Fresh Rhubarb - obviously this rhubarb simple syrup is made with rhubarb. This is typically available only in the spring and summer months, however you could definitely use frozen rhubarb. I have seen frozen rhubarb at my local grocery store year round.
Granulated Sugar - simple syrup is typically made with white granulated sugar. The purpose is solely to offer sweetness, which is very important in simple syrup.
It turns out, like most simple syrups, rhubarb simple syrup is quite easy.
Prep the rhubarb. To start, chop the rhubarb into small pieces.
Cook the rhubarb. Add the chopped rhubarb, sugar, and water to a medium pot, give it a little stir, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium low to let the mixture simmer for about 10-15 minutes. At this point, the rhubarb should be softened. Remove from the heat and let it sit for awhile to really let the mixture meld together.
Strain. Strain out the rhubarb using a cheesecloth or a fine mesh sieve, and keep the tasty rhubarb syrup.
Chill. Place in an airtight container (I like using mason jars) and place in the fridge to let the simple syrup cool.
Use! Use this homemade rhubarb syrup in drinks, in yogurt, and desserts! I love adding a tablespoon to my club soda or into a glass of lemonade, for a splash of flavor and sweetness.
Fresh vs. Frozen Rhubarb. I have only used fresh rhubarb in this recipe, but frozen rhubarb would also work well. Frozen rhubarb is frozen at peak freshness, so it will still have delicious rhubarb flavor!
Choose the Best Stalks. Look for rhubarb stalks that are firm and have few to no blemishes. You also want to find stalks that are as deep red as possible, as this will make for a very pretty rhubarb simple syrup.
Add Additional Flavor. If you want to jazz up this rhubarb syrup a little you can definitely add some additional flavors. Mint, fresh ginger, and strawberries would also be delicious!
Do Not Use the Leaves. Rhubarb leaves are not meant to be consumed, so be sure to dispose of those if your rhubarb has leaves on them.