These rhubarb cookies get rave reviews. The rhubarb keeps them extra soft and give a fun flavor twist to old fashioned oatmeal cookies.
Happy May! We can officially get fresh rhubarb locally so I’m excited to bring you a few more rhubarb recipes, starting with these rhubarb cookies. When I first heard of rhubarb cookies, I was a bit skeptical, but if you are an old fashioned oatmeal cookie fan, you will love these rhubarb cookies. The rhubarb keeps them extra soft and moist.
I chose to frost some of them with cream cheese frosting and others I left plain and sprinkled with coarse sugar right after they came out of the oven for a pretty sparkle. Some of my testers loved the frosting version and the extra sweetness it gave and others preferred the old fashioned unfrosted the best.
How to make Rhubarb Cookies
These are very similar to a standard oatmeal cookie recipe. The only extra ingredient you need is rhubarb. You’ll dice it small and then stir it in at the end. You can choose to use frozen rhubarb if you prefer, just be sure to thaw and drain it completely before using it in the cookies.
Start by making sure your butter and eggs are room temperature. Then cream together the butter and sugar, beat in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the dry ingredients and last gently fold in the rhubarb.
I chilled my cookie dough for about 30 minutes before baking. The humidity of the room, the protein content of your all purpose flour and how cold the butter is are all factors that effect how much the cookies will spread in the oven. I found chilling my dough for about 30 minutes was about the perfect length of time for a soft, pillowy cookie.
I recommend doing a test cookie first and then if it spreads a bit too much, chilling the dough a bit longer. Also, always use room temperature pans to bake on. If you place your cookie dough balls on a warm cookie sheet, they will spread more in the oven.
Variations on rhubarb cookies
Here are some flavor variations you can make to this cookie recipe to make the perfect rhubarb cookie for you.
Turn this recipe into lemon rhubarb cookies by adding the zest of a lemon to the batter with the eggs.
Substitute half of the oatmeal in the recipe for shredded coconut to make coconut rhubarb cookies.
Add 2/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans in place of 1/2 cup of oatmeal for a rhubarb nut cookie. What is your perfect rhubarb cookie recipe? Let me know in the comments.
Other Old Fashioned Rhubarb Recipes
Rhubarb season is a favorite around here. I have a whole collection of other old fashioned rhubarb recipes to make next. Be sure to check them out below.
- Rhubarb Bars
- Rhubarb Coffee Cake
- Rhubarb Crunch
- Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
- Rhubarb Sauce
- Old Fashioned Rhubarb Custard Pie
- Rhubarb Cake with Butter Sauce
If you make these rhubarb cookies, let me know in the comments and leave me a review on the recipe. I love hearing from you when you make my recipes.
For the Cookies
- 1 cup butter softened
- 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
- 2 eggs room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 3/4 cup quick cooking oatmeal
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 1/2 cups rhubarb finely diced (see note below about using frozen rhubarb)
For the Cream Cheese Frosting (if desired)
- 4 ounces cream cheese room temperature
- 4 tablespoons butter softened
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 - 3 tablespoons of milk as needed.
- Preheat oven to 350° F. In a large bowl, cream together butter and brown sugar. Beat in eggs and vanilla. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, oatmeal, salt, cinnamon and baking soda. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet. Gently stir in the rhubarb.
- Drop dough by teaspoonfuls onto a cookie sheet. Bake in a preheated oven for 15-18 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with coarse sugar if desired. Let cool on the tray for 2 minutes before moving to a wire rack to cool completely.
- If the cookies are spreading too much, the dough is probably too warm. Chill the dough for 30 minutes or longer and then try baking. Variations in the temperature of the butter, protein content of the flour and water content of the rhubarb can all have an impact on how much the cookies spread.
- Thanks to the rhubarb, these cookies will be softer the second day. Store tightly covered or freeze for longer storage.
- To make the cream cheese frosting, beat the cream cheese and the butter until combined and fluffy. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla and beat until smooth. Add milk as needed to get a spreadable consistency.