Rhubarb Cake with Lemon-Nutmeg Sauce

Rhubarb Cake with Lemon Nutmeg Sauce

Rhubarb Cake with Lemon-Nutmeg Sauce

I get so excited when my rhubarb emerges from the ground in the spring. This cake is one of the recipes I have faithfully made every year. The cake is not overly sweet and the lemon-nutmeg sauce complements the tart rhubarb in the cake. We would arm wrestle for the leftovers, this cake is so yummy and the rule was first one up in the morning got dibs on it for breakfast!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Course dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12
Calories 295 kcal


  • 9x13" glass baking dish


The wet ingredients:

  • ½ cup softened butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

The dry ingredients:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp baking soda

More cake ingredients:

  • 2 cups fresh rhubarb, chopped in ¼" slices
  • 1 cup buttermilk

Cake topping:

  • 1 tbsp cinnamon-sugar To make-combine ¼ cup granulated sugar and 1 tbsp cinnamon

Lemon-nutmeg sauce

  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup butter, cubed
  • cup water
  • 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice, strained
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp grated lemon peel
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg


  • Butter or grease a 9x13" baking pan.
  • Cream the butter and sugars in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla.
  • Combine the dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl.
  • Alternate adding ⅓ of the dry ingredients and the buttermilk to the creamed mixture, mixing well in between additions.
  • Fold in the rhubarb.
  • Transfer to a greased 9x13" baking dish and sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar.
  • Bake in a 35-40 minutes in a 350°F oven or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean.

While the cake is baking make the sauce:

  • Combine the sugar, butter, water and lemon juice in a small saucepan.
  • Bring to a boil over medium heat and stir constantly.
  • Whisk the egg in a one cup measuring cup or a bowl that is heat resistant.
  • Add some of the hot lemon mixture to the egg, one tablespoon at a time, and whisk in between additions. (This is to temper the egg and to prevent curdling)
  • Add the egg mixture to the remaining lemon mixture in the small pot and cook until thickened. Stir constantly to prevent curdling. This will take only about 3-5 minutes.
  • Once the mixture thickens, remove the pot from the heat and add the lemon peel and nutmeg.
  • Serve the cake warm with warm lemon-nutmeg sauce.



Calories: 295kcalCarbohydrates: 62gProtein: 6gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 35mgSodium: 236mgPotassium: 174mgFiber: 1gSugar: 37gVitamin A: 132IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 102mgIron: 2mg
Keyword rhubarb, rhubarb cake, lemon sauce
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