We Tested the Pioneer Woman’s Rhubarb Pie Recipe—and Can’t Wait to Make it Again

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Move over, apple pie! This Pioneer Woman rhubarb pie is bound to be your family's new sweet-tart favorite.

 Toh Pioneer Woman Rhubarb Pie Via Jamie Thrower 3x2Getty Images, Jamie Thrower for Taste of Home

Every spring, rhubarb is one of the first things to arrive at the farmers market, and this Pioneer Woman rhubarb pie is the perfect way to showcase the perennial vegetable.

You’ve probably heard of the classic strawberry rhubarb pie, but if you love rhubarb, it deserves the spotlight!

How to Prepare Rhubarb for Pie

Rhubarb famously has poisonous leaves. To prepare for cooking, remove any leaves and the bottom end of the stalk. Rinse well to remove dirt, using a vegetable scrubber if needed. Pat dry. Pare away any blemishes or bruises. Slice into thin 1/4 – 1/2″ pieces. Cut any very thick stalks in half vertically before slicing.

At this point you can use the rhubarb immediately, or you can freeze the rhubarb for later use. To freeze, spread the slices in a single layer onto a parchment-lined sheet tray and freeze for several hours. Transfer the frozen slices to a resealable plastic bag and squeeze out as much air as possible. The rhubarb will be easy to pop into pies, jams and most of our favorite rhubarb recipes.

The Pioneer Woman Rhubarb Pie Recipe

Ingredients

pioneer woman rhubarb pie ingredientsJamie Thrower for Taste of Home

Crust:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1-1/2 cups vegetable shortening
  • 1 large egg
  • 5 tablespoons cold water
  • 1 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Filling:

  • 6 cups sliced fresh rhubarb, ends and leaves removed
  • 2 tablespoons apricot jam
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1-1/4 cups sugar, plus more for sprinkling
  • 6 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream

Tools You’ll Need

  • Measuring Cups: A set of measuring cups is essential!
  • Mixing Bowls: These mixing bowls are practical and adorable.
  • Pie Plate: You can’t make a Pioneer Woman rhubarb pie without a Pioneer Woman pie dish, and this one is perfect for summer pies.

Directions

Step 1: Make crust

the Pioneer Woman's rhubarb pie step 1Jamie Thrower for Taste of Home

Put the flour in a large bowl, then work in the shortening with a pastry cutter or your fingers until the mixture resembles a coarse meal.

In a small bowl, beat the egg with a fork. Pour it into the flour mixture. Add the cold water, vinegar and salt. Stir gently—don’t overwork it!—until all the ingredients are combined. Make sure there is no flour left at the bottom of the bowl, then add another tablespoon of water and mix well.

Editor’s Tip: If you’re new to homemade crust, follow our step-by-step guide on how to make pie crust.

Step 2: Chill crust

the Pioneer Woman's rhubarb pie step 3Jamie Thrower for Taste of Home

Divide the dough in half. Form into 2 disks, wrap each one tightly in plastic wrap and place them in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes.

You can make the dough ahead of time. If you’re baking later, skip the freezer part and put the pie dough in the fridge for up to 48 hours. Allow to soften on the counter a bit before using.

Step 3: Make filling

the Pioneer Woman's rhubarb pie step 2Jamie Thrower for Taste of Home

In a large bowl, toss the rhubarb with the jam, vanilla and salt. In a small bowl, whisk the sugar and cornstarch, then add to the rhubarb. Mix well and set aside.

Step 4: Roll out dough and fill pie

the Pioneer Woman's rhubarb pie step 3Jamie Thrower for Taste of Home

Position a rack in the lower third of the oven. Preheat to 425˚F. Sprinkle some flour on a clean surface. Roll out 1 piece of dough into a 12-inch round, starting in the center and working your way out. If the dough is sticking, add flour as needed, though the more flour you add, the tougher the crust may be.

Place the dough in a 9-inch pie plate. Do not trim the excess!

Pour in the rhubarb mixture and spread evenly.

Step 5: Make lattice top

the Pioneer Woman's rhubarb pie step 3Jamie Thrower for Taste of Home

Roll out the second piece of dough into a 12-inch round. Cut into 12 even strips. Lay 6 strips across the top of the pie. Gently fold back every other strip halfway. Lay another strip of dough on the pie over the unfolded ones, perpendicular to them. Unfold the strips so they lie over the perpendicular one. Fold back the strips that haven’t been folded yet, and add another perpendicular strip; unfold the strips over it.

Repeat the folding and unfolding process until you have a lattice. If the dough strips tear, gently press them back together.

Trim the ends of the strips. Fold the overhanging bottom crust up and trim any uneven areas. Crimp the edges. Brush the lattice with the heavy cream and sprinkle with sugar.

Step 6: Bake

Place the pie on a baking sheet and place on the lower oven rack. Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 375˚. Continue baking until bubbly and golden brown, about 45 more minutes. Tent with foil if the pie starts getting too brown.

Step 7: Allow to cool

the Pioneer Woman's rhubarb pieJamie Thrower for Taste of Home

This might not merit a separate step, but try to resist digging into the hot-from-the-oven pie! Allowing the pie to cool completely lets the filling to set. Then it’s time to slice, serve and enjoy!

Here’s What I Thought

This pie is a real beauty, with bright rhubarb peaking through the sugared lattice top. I loved the pure rhubarb flavor, with that hint of sourness, and was excited to try it on its own without strawberries or other summer fruits mixed in.

I am a fan of butter pie dough crusts, and have not worked with shortening much before. Despite it being a very different feel, I thought the dough came out well. But if you’re a buttered pie dough purist, then it wouldn’t hurt at all to sub the crust with a butter pastry. I recommend using turbinado sugar for sprinkling over top rather than the recommended cane sugar, for added texture.

When I first took the pie out of the oven, I was worried the filling was way too runny. I exerted all my patience to let it cool completely before cutting into it. It set well and although it was a touch runny, it held up to being sliced. I don’t mind a little extra liquid, especially if it’s this bright pink, sweet and sour rhubarb juice.

Whether it’s your first time trying rhubarb or you’re a longtime fan, this pie is sure to win your heart. But try it quickly, as seasonal spring fruits come and go fast!

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Risa Lichtman
Risa Lichtman is a chef and writer living in Portland, Oregon. She is the owner/chef of Lepage Food & Drinks, a small food company featuring Jewish seasonal foods, providing takeaway all around Portland. She has previously published poems in Poetica Magazine, the anthology The Art of Bicycling, Maggid: A Journal of Jewish Literature, and The Dos Passos Review. She lives with her wife Jamie, their dog Isaac, and their cat Sylvia. Follow her at @risaexpizza, or find her delicious food offerings on @lepagefoodanddrinks.