dessert spring and summer recipes

strawberry rhubarb tahini crisp

strawberry and rhubarb is the most classic spring pairings. rhubarb is tart, tart, tart. which matches perfect to the sweet strawberry. typically a crisp uses butter to hold together the crumble topping. here tahini is used in its place. more on that later, but lets just say, the flavors are so perfect together. i am so excited to share this strawberry rhubarb tahini crisp with you!

what is a crisp and how is it different than a cobbler?

ah, the question that I ask myself all the time! who comes up with the rules and names anyway? i digress…

  • a cobbler is: a baked fruit dessert with a drop biscuit topping
  • a crumble is: a crisp topping a baked fruit dessert without oats
  • a crisp: a baked fruit dessert with oats!

never fail formula for making any fruit crisp

one thing you are sure to find on my site is seasonal fruit crisps. they are hands down one of the easiest and tastiest desserts you can make. literally all you need to know is how to chop fruit, coat it in sugar and cornstarch, throw it in a baking dish and bake. need a bit more direction? cool:

  • chop about 6 cups (1.5 pounds) of seasonal fruit to approximately the same size
  • use cornstarch to thicken the fruit as it bakes. use about 2 tbsp per 6 cups depending on the juiciness of the fruit. the juicer it is, the more you’ll need to use
  • top with a streusel topping: flour, oats, sugar, butter (or tahini in this case). mix together until the mixture sticks into…crumbles.
  • top it with ice cream, fresh whipped cream or even yogurt

what exactly is rhubarb?

so glad you asked! rhubarb is technically a vegetable. although its sold as a fruit. i know. its like finding out a tomato is technically a fruit. food science…what can you do?! back to the rhubarb. it looks a bit like celery, but pink and thus prettier. for food testing purposes, i tasted a raw piece and its bitter, sour and celery like. not really the tastiest. hence why its paired with other fruits!! a few other things about this delightfully pink veggie:

  • the color varies from light green to dark pink
  • the intensity or range of color does NOT indicate ripeness
  • don’t eat the leaves- they’re poisonous
  • if you buy rhubarb at the store they cut of the leaves for you!
  • if you buy one with leaves attached, they should look fresh and crisp
  • their season is typically april through june, but can be found as early as february
  • if you want to learn more, check out this post

what can I pair with rhubarb?

want to try something other than strawberries? yay! some of my best creations come from deviating from the normal pairing couples. for rhubarb, look for things like:

  • citrus fruits like orange, grapefruit, blood oranges and blackberries
  • spices like cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, and ginger, vanilla and sorrel
  • savory pairings in middle eastern stews or with lentils
  • other pairings are: lavender, dates, coconut, tomatoes and other summer berries

seasonal baking and cooking is the best and the easiest!

looking for more seasonal crisp recipes?

while im currently hooked on this strawberry rhubarb tahini crisp, look no further than these recipes for more inspiration.

new crisp recipes are going up all the time. make sure to check back for more delicious recipes!

tips to make the best strawberry rhubarb tahini crisp

  • fresh rhubarb: you can use frozen here! just make sure to thaw the rhubarb before following the recipe
  • fresh strawberries: this should be an easy ingredient to find. but, if its not, frozen works great too
  • subs for rhubarb: another tart fruit like raspberries could work
  • subs for strawberries: a tart but sweet fruit, like raspberries or even blackberries would work great here
  • tahini: you can use butter or even coconut oil in its place
  • all purpose flour: use any flour you like! there’s no need to rise
  • oats: adding this is totally up to you! technically, if you omit its now a crumble, but still so delicious!
  • baking time: bake until the top is golden brown and the fruit filling is bubbling. plus, your house will smell unbelievable
raw strawberry and rhubarb filling
raw strawberry and rhubarb filling before being baked
raw strawberry rhubarb crisp with topping
baked strawberry rhubarb crisp
close up of the strawberry rhubarb filling
warm strawberry rhubarb crisp topped with cold ice cream
strawberry rhubarb crisp with melting ice cream
close up of strawberry rhubarb crisp with melting ice cream
individual bowls of strawberry rhubarb crisp with ice cream

strawberry rhubarb tahini crisp

tart rhubarb meets sweet strawberry in this classic crisp with a twist. a tahini twist brings an unmistakeable nutty flavor to the spice streusel topping.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American


  • 9X13 (or larger) baking dish


strawberry rhubarb filling

  • 1 pound rhubarb, sliced 1/2 in thick (abput 4 cups)
  • 1 1/2 pounds strawberries, stemed and quartered (about 5 cups)
  • 4 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • zest of one lemon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp rosewater, optional but recommended

tahini oat topping

  • 1 c rolled oats
  • 1/2 c all purpose flour (sub flour of choice)
  • 2/3 c granulated sugar
  • 1/2-2/3 c tahini, well stirred start with 1/2, work in 2 tbsp more as needed)
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt


  • Preheat oven to 375 F. Whisk together all dry ingredients for the tahini crumble until well combined. Stir in tahini, until well combined. Set aside in the fridge while preparing the strawberry and rhubarb filling.
  • in one mixing bowl, toss rhubarb with 1/3 c sugar. Let sit for 15 minutes. In another bowl, toss strabwberries with 1/3 c sugar. Let sit for 10 minutes.Using a slotted spoon, transfer rhubarb to the strawberry bowl.
  • Add in cornstarch, lemon zest and juice, vanilla and rosewater to the strawberry and rhubarb mixture. Transfer to the baking dish, making sure the filling is evenly distributed. Top with tahini crumble, breaking larger pieces with your fingers while crumbling on top of the fruit filling.
  • Bake crisp at 375 for 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325. Continue to bake for an addtional 20-30 minutes. Topping should be golden brown and the fruit filling should be bubbling. Remove from oven and cool for 20 minutes before serving. Top with ice cream, whipped cream or yogurt. Enjoy!
Keyword baked fruit desserts, fruit crisps, spring and summer recipe, strawberry rhubarb crumble
did you make this recipe?tag @olivesnthyme on Instagram

did you make this recipe?

tag @olivesnthyme on instagram

love this recipe?!

let others know by leaving a rating in the recipe + comment below

love this recipe?!

let others know by leaving a rating in the recipe + comment below


  1. In the intro, you note a crumble doesn’t have oats but a crisp does. Further down, when specifying which types of oats to use, you say “it’s now technically a crumble.” Do you mean if you don’t use oats? I am just curious!

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