Last Updated on May 5, 2023
Do you like tart rhubarb? How about cold slushy drinks on hot days? You will absolutely love this incredibly refreshing, delicious rhubarb slush recipe!
It’s peak rhubarb season, and that means the heat of summer is just around the corner. Get ready to cool off with this refreshing, healthy recipe for rhubarb slush!
WHAT IS A RHUBARB SLUSH?
On sweltering days, something icy and refreshing can help hydrate and cool you off fast.
Referred to as slush, or slushie (or on Wikipedia, Slushy), this peculiar word for a thick, icy drink actually has an interesting backstory involving an accidental discovery about what happens when carbonated soda freezes. If you want a little history lesson and a chuckle, you can check out this amusing article from The Atlantic.
Not being a fan of sugar- and chemical-filled drinks, I didn’t realize most of slushie-type drinks you’ll find in scary neon colors in convenience stores and gas stations across the country involved carbonation. If you’d like to honor that history, you can add some plain seltzer, or you can keep it uncarbonated, like a virgin margarita.
–> If you’re a seltzer drinker, you’ll save a ton of money and plastic by making your own seltzer. We’ve been using a Sodastream home soda maker for the last 20 years, which has meant an enormous reduction in the plastic waste our seltzer generates. Plus these easy-to-use machines mean you’ll always have seltzer on hand when you want it, without having to haul home cases of the stuff from the grocery store.
Now, if you search for ‘rhubarb slush’ in your favorite search engine, you’re going to find a lot of recipes calling for chemical-filled ingredients like strawberry jello and 7-up.
As you know, we are healthy, green, and savvy around here, so we’ll skip the chemical garbage and make a healthier rhubarb slushie recipe. We’ll use some juice to counter the tartness of the rhubarb, and you can add some stevia or other sweetener if you want your slushie sweeter.
The best part about a healthied-up rhubarb slush recipe is that you can enjoy the lovely color and appealing flavor you might associate with slushies without all the chemical flavorings and colors you would get if you bought a frozen slushie at a convenience store.
RHUBARB SLUSH IS THE PERFECT WAY TO ENJOY SURPLUS RHUBARB
Every year at about this time, I look at my growing rhubarb plants and realize that no matter how much I love rhubarb — I mean it’s a vegetable you get to eat for dessert, after all! — we won’t be able to eat enough rhubarb crisp, rhubarb muffins, and homemade rhubarb fruit leather to eat all these plants can produce each season.
So of course, I dutifully chop and freeze rhubarb and stash it in the freezer to use another time.
Invariably, I’ll discover a bag of frozen rhubarb languishing on the bottom of the freezer in February or early March, just before the ground thaws and the new crop of rhubarb begins peeking out from the frigid soil. I’ll dutifully cook it up into a rhubarb sauce.
But this year — lightbulb moment! — I realized that the tart flavor of rhubarb would be absolutely stellar in a rhubarb slushie drink, something I’d never heard of or tried before. After seeing that all the rhubarb slush recipes out there filled with sketchy ingredients that pretty much killed all the healthy benefits of rhubarb, I started experimenting cooking my rhubarb in juice.
I’m thrilled to report this streamlined, healthied-up rhubarb slushie is a winner! It is SO good!
I’m hopeful this means the amount of rhubarb taking up space in the freezer for the better part of a year will go down, leaving more room for all the other things I put up over the course of the growing season.
We eat a lot of frozen smoothies around here, more now that I got a Vitamix blender. It makes blending up loads of frozen fruit a snap, and best of all, it is SO easy to clean.
One of the things that always held me back from making smoothies more often was knowing that I’d have to take the blender apart and clean all the pieces, something I detest doing.
The Vitamix blender doesn’t need to be disassembled and even has a self-cleaning function! You just add soap and water and poke the button. It runs for a minute, then you dump it out and rinse. Doesn’t get any easier than that!
You’d better believe I’m reaching for the blender and smoothie ingredients A LOT more often!
Find out more about Vitamix and how they can make healthy drinks and meals a snap here.
Vitamix is one of the sites you can use Rakuten to get cash back on, so you’ll get an additional rebate of around 4.5% when you activate it. Join Rakuten and get a $20 bonus using this link. Learn more about saving online with Rakuten.
Ready to cool off with a delicious rhubarb slushie? Here’s the easy recipe!
This rhubarb slush recipe is
- Cooling and refreshing
- Not overly sweet
- Easy to make
- Made with healthy, whole food ingredients
- Can be made with or without alcohol
- Includes a serving of veggies!
You will love making this refreshing rhubarb slush recipe on repeat all season long!
HOW TO MAKE A RHUBARB SLUSH
Unlike other frozen produce you might whip up into a slushie, raw rhubarb needs to be cooked to break down its fibers. While you can toss frozen berries in your blender and get something slushy, even small pieces of frozen raw rhubarb will leave you with an extra-fibrous (and not slushy) blob in your blender. (Speaking from experience here!)
So even if it seems simpler to put the frozen rhubarb into the blender, I’m afraid we have to dirty a pot and cook it on the stove briefly first. This helps break down the fibers into a smooth sauce that once frozen creates something far more slurpable.
I hope you love it!
- 3 cups chopped fresh or frozen rhubarb
- 1 1/4 cup juice of choice (red juices work best, like pomegranate, but apple or grape would be fine as well)
- 1 squirt stevia liquid or sweetener of choice (optional)
- 1 cup ice
- Place chopped rhubarb in a sauce pan with juice and simmer, stirring occasionally, until all the chunks disappear and you're left with a smooth sauce.
- Add sweetener if needed and stir well.
- Allow to cool. Add ice and blend till smooth.
- Serve immediately on its own, or mixed with sparkling water.
Alternative method: If you don't have juice on hand, you can make a rhubarb slushie using a sauce made from rhubarb and sweetener, outlined in our rhubarb sauce recipe. Once cool, add ice and blend.
You can make your slushie sweeter without adding sugar or stevia by increasing the amount of juice used.
Refrigerate or freeze any remaining rhubarb puree for use in later slushes.
For a delicious frozen cocktail, try adding some elderflower liqueur or a shot of vodka.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 120Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 102mgCarbohydrates: 30gFiber: 3gSugar: 20gProtein: 2g
Nutritional information was auto-generated based on serving size, number of servings, and typical information for the ingredients listed. To obtain the most accurate representation of the nutritional information in a given recipe, please calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients and amounts used, using your preferred nutrition calculator. Under no circumstances shall this website or author be responsible for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on the given nutritional information. You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information provided is accurate and complete.
Can you make a rhubarb slushie without juice?
Yes! In place of juice, you can sweeten your slushie with a sweetener of your choosing. When you cook the rhubarb, add enough water to cover. Once it’s cooked, add in sweetener and taste. A one-cup serving of juice contains 24g of sugar, so start with that as a guideline. For reference, each teaspoon of sugar contains 4g, so that would be 6 teaspoons or 2 tablespoons.
My blender isn’t quite powerful enough to crush ice. Can I still make a rhubarb slushie?
Yes, but it might take a bit more attention. You can freeze the rhubarb mixture until it’s mostly frozen, giving it a little mix along the way to prevent it from becoming a giant ice cube. If you’re adding alcohol, putting some in before you freeze the rhubarb can also help.
Once it’s the consistency of a sorbet, mix it with some seltzer and serve.
Need some other cooling drinks this summer? Try some of these delicious healthy smoothie recipes or my favorite anti-inflammatory smoothie featuring foraged purslane. Rhubarb juice is also outstanding with seltzer over ice.
Got more rhubarb to use? Check out these 40+ creative healthy rhubarb recipes.
Save this rhubarb slushie recipe for later!
Susannah is a proud garden geek and energy nerd who loves healthy food and natural remedies. Her work has appeared in Mother Earth Living, Ensia, Northern Gardener, Sierra, and on numerous websites. Her first book, Everything Elderberry, released in September 2020 and has been a #1 new release in holistic medicine, naturopathy, herb gardening, and other categories. Find out more and grab your copy here.