Rhubarb & custard cake

Rhubarb & custard cake

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(206 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 1 hr Plus rhubarb cooking and cooling


Serves 16
This recipe tastes even better with homegrown rhubarb

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal278
  • fat15g
  • saturates9g
  • carbs34g
  • sugars21g
  • fibre1g
  • protein4g
  • salt0.5g
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  • 1 quantity Barney's roasted rhubarb (see recipe, below method)



    Botanically, rhubarb is a vegetable (it's related to sorrel and dock) but its thick, fleshy…

  • 250g pack butter, softened, plus extra for greasing



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 150g pot ready-made custard (not the chilled kind; I used Ambrosia)
  • 250g self-raising flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
    Baking powder

    Baking powder

    bay-king pow-dah

    Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…

  • 4 large eggs



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition packed with protein and a…

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 250g golden caster sugar
  • icing sugar, for dusting


  1. Make the roasted rhubarb first, carefully draining off the juices before you let it cool. Butter and line a 23cm loose-bottomed or springform cake tin. Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4.

  2. Reserve 3 tbsp of the custard in a bowl. Beat the rest of the custard together with the butter, flour, baking powder, eggs, vanilla and sugar until creamy and smooth. Spoon one-third of the mix into the tin, add some of the rhubarb, then dot with one-third more cake mix and spread it out as well as you can. Top with some more rhubarb, then spoon over the remaining cake mix, leaving it in rough mounds and dips rather than being too neat about it. Scatter the rest of the rhubarb over the batter, then dot the remaining custard over. Bake for 40 mins until risen and golden, then cover with foil and bake for 15-20 mins more. It’s ready when a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool in the tin, then dredge with icing sugar when cool.

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Comments, questions and tips

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27th Jun, 2020
Fabulous cake! I followed the recipe but used powdered custard, which I just made extra thick. The rhubarb came out quite soft, so next time I will not cook it as long. The flavour is amazing, the texture is light and everyone gave it 20/20! Beautiful, all year round cake!!!!
7th Jun, 2020
I made this using chilled custard, as I had some left over, despite the note in the ingredients list. I also froze most of the cake, cut into squares. Reduced the sugar by 50g as others have suggested. Works well as a cake or a pudding and would also work with other types of fruit.
Sally Douglas's picture
Sally Douglas
5th Jun, 2020
A big hit in our family- I’ve made this Several times now and it turns out perfectly each time. Dense enough to be ‘pudding-y’ but also good on its own with a cuppa. The pictures on the recipe don’t do this cake justice - so long as you don’t let the tinfoil touch the cake’s top surface, the finished article looks lovely!
1st May, 2020
Baked today, a new firm family favourite! I followed the recipe except made the cake by creaming the butter & sugar, added custard, added each egg individually then folded in flour. Cooking times were perfect.
28th Apr, 2020
Very easy, delicious too. Took 20 minutes longer to cook with foil on, then I gave it 10 more without but highly recommend.
26th Apr, 2020
Delicious! I used Gluten free flour and it turned out great! Will definitely use it again- might follow the advice of other users and drop the sugar by 50g as 250g sugar seemed ALOT!
24th Apr, 2020
Almost 5 stars and a definite one to make again. Quite a pudding-y cake that was even better the next day! I thought the roasting rhubarb technique was excellent as it was perfectly tender without falling to pieces.
Mark Eneas's picture
Mark Eneas
23rd Apr, 2020
I have made this cake twice now. The first time I followed the recipe exactly and found that the centre was still very moist when cooked. So second time split the mixture into two and put in two tins. Results were better and more thoroughly cooked. Both were delicious though.
Lyndsey Pain's picture
Lyndsey Pain
22nd Feb, 2020
Light and Moist cake. I made a couple of changes I reduced the sugar by 50g, only used 3 large eggs and used tinned rhubarb as I couldn’t get fresh. Added a tbsp of custard powder was delicious!
Alannah Keena's picture
Alannah Keena
20th Sep, 2019
Made this a few times - and it's beautiful! I have started splitting the cake mix into two tins to make a sandwich cake, and make a custard buttercream for the center: Buttercream – 150g Unsalted Butter, room temperature – 300g Icing Sugar – 1/2tsp Vanilla Bean Extract – 25g Custard Powder Beat the butter till smooth and gradually add the Icing Sugar, custard powder and vanilla until all is in the mix. Beat again for 3-4 minutes until light & fluffy and smooth! If its too thick, add 1/2tbsp of Boiling Water at a time till smooth.


3rd Jun, 2020
Hi, I can’t find the how to roast the rhubarb but? It’s so weird, how much? What do I put with it when roasting? So weird I can only see the other parts... help?
lulu_grimes's picture
7th Jun, 2020
Hi, It's in the tip under the recipe, I've pasted it below. I'll amend the recipe to make it easier. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Rinse 400g rhubarb and shake off excess water. Trim the ends, then cut into little-finger-size pieces. Put in a shallow dish or a baking tray, tip over 50g caster sugar, toss together, then shuffle rhubarb so it’s in a single layer. Cover with foil, then roast for 15 mins. Remove foil. Give everything a little shake, roast for 5 mins more or until tender and the juices are syrupy.
10th Jun, 2020
Thank you, was a bit confusing I did find on the website but it isn’t in the app at all... would be easier just having that as step 1 maybe.
13th Aug, 2018
150g pot of custard is about 3 tablespoons so doesn’t leave any custard for the mix ... have i understood this wrong
22nd Apr, 2019
My tablespoon measuring spoon indicates 15ml per level spoon, so if you want to measure by volume, it's 45ml to set aside, or about a third of a 150ml pot.
goodfoodteam's picture
19th Aug, 2018
Thanks for your question. You need to use a tbsp measure (rather than cutlery) for this and level it off to give you the correct quantity. This will ensure there us enough leftover for the mix.
Heatherladyh's picture
30th May, 2018
I followed all the instructions and recipe and used my new wizz bang Kitchen Aid but although the top half cooked, the bottom was sad (dry but kind of heavy, not aerated). Could I have over mixed it? Or maybe just taken too long getting it into the oven? (I'm disabled so 10 minutes). It's a super yummy cake + we will eat as a pudding with custard or iced cream. Would like to try again but wonder what I did wrong. Thank you I put pieces of dried ginger on the top
goodfoodteam's picture
5th Jun, 2018
We're glad to hear you enjoyed the cake overall. As for the bottom being heavy, we'd recommend the following: not overworking the mixture - as over-beating flour can make a cake dense. Also, ensure the rhubarb is properly drained so that the juice doesn't change the consistency of the bottom part. Ideally it is a good idea to get a cake in the oven as soon as it's made due to the raising agent starting to work once it comes into contact with the liquid ingredients - however the first to measures should solve the problem. Good luck! The ginger addition sounds delicious - great tip!
Becky Smale
13th Sep, 2017
Would this recipe work for cupcakes or muffins?
goodfoodteam's picture
17th Sep, 2017
Thanks for your question. The layering might prove tricky if you reduce the size to cupcakes but you could give it a go. You'll need to reduce the cooking time accordingly and as we haven't tested it ourselves we can't be specific. If you do decide to try it then let us know how you got on!


Elisabeth K
11th Aug, 2019
I also kept the juice of the roasted rhubarb aside, and drizzled on the cake while still hot. My son described it as a best ever cake. Thanks for the recipe.
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