What is Rhubarb Chutney?

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  • Written By: Janis Adams
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 08 October 2019
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A condiment, rhubarb chutney is made from rhubarb, sugar, and vinegar. Its consistency and the taste of sweet juxtaposed with sour most resembles a type of relish. Rhubarb chutney is easily spreadable and can range from a thick, chunky consistency to a more refined one. While most often have a hint of sweetness, rhubarb chutney can also be made to be quite spicy.

Cinnamon and ginger are common spices that are featured as a part of many rhubarb chutney recipes. Cranberries and apples or even cherries can be added to enhance the flavor of this kind of chutney. Blueberries are also added to some chutneys. With these sweeter chutneys, red wine vinegar as opposed to white vinegar is the vinegar of choice in these types of chutneys owing to the fact that it is not as harsh and tends to be a bit sweeter. To create some heat, crushed red pepper can be added to any of these flavorings. This will create a more savory and less sweet chutney.

Sweet chutney is often served with bread or spread on crackers. It is also a popular complement to cheese. It can also be served similarly to how a salsa would be, with chips or apple slices for dipping.


A more savory rhubarb-flavored chutney will always contain onions in the recipe. Admittedly, even some of the sweeter varieties also contain onions. A deeper and more robust vinegar would be used in a recipe for a savory chutney made from rhubarb.

A common ingredient in addition to the rhubarb is strawberries. The ever popular combination of rhubarb and strawberries so often featured in pies is also popular in chutneys. The strawberry rhubarb chutney is not a savory flavor, but is instead a sweet chutney often presented alongside white meats. It is also served with toasted and can be slathered on bread much like a jelly or jam might be.

A rhubarb chutney is not difficult to make. It simply takes a bit of slicing and dicing, followed by some time for the ingredients to cook and the flavorings to blend. Though most chutneys are served cold or at room temperature, there are those who choose to serve a chutney warm, for example as a sauces over a piece of meat.

Rhubarb chutney, in its many varieties, can be served in many ways. It can enhance a main meal. It can also be served as a snack or as a condiment. Rhubarb chutney is also at times referred to as rhubarb salsa.


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