A delicious and easy vegan Rhubarb Mousse -- the perfect dessert for a lazy spring or summer afternoon. The mousse is sweetened with maple syrup and fruit juice and has hints of vanilla and cinnamon.
Every year, when Spring rolls around, I cannot wait to get my hands on some rhubarb.
Rhubarb apparently grows wild in the mid-west, but here in my part of the United States its popularity makes it a hard stalk to come by. This year, I started looking for rhubarb in just about every supermarket and farmer's market in my neighborhood weeks ago, but everywhere I went I'd be met with empty baskets and apologies. I got so tired of hearing, "Sorry, we're out of it," that I started to resign myself to the idea of a rhubarb-less Spring. And then, lo and behold, I was at this little grocery store not one block from our home and there, right in front of me, was a big basket of juicy, colorful rhubarb stalks.
I squealed with delight and picked one, and a friend from China who happened to be staying with us looked at me, puzzled, and asked, "celery?" She couldn't quite understand why I was so excited.
Truth is, there is just something magical about these ruby-red stalks. Rhubarb is incredibly tart-- so much so that it is hard to imagine its popularity as a dessert ingredient, if you've never had it. And if you never have, well, there's only one way to remedy that.
One of my favorite ways to eat rhubarb is in a Rhubarb Pie, but this time I wanted to make something cool and refreshing and delicious that would be perfect to gorge on during a lazy weekend afternoon. Like this Rhubarb Mousse.
I wanted to make this mousse soy-free, so instead of tofu, which I might have normally added, I chose coconut milk. This is the kind of coconut milk that comes out of a can, and you want to use just the thickest part. Also make sure your coconut milk is fresh and sweet-- this is one ingredient that loves to go rancid on you when you leave the can someplace hot.
To add more flavor to my Rhubarb Mousse, I threw in the seeds of a vanilla bean, some cinnamon, and some delicious, deep, rich maple syrup. Perfect.
Try making this beautiful mousse if you have some time this weekend. It doesn't take long at all, I promise.
Vegan Rhubarb Mousse
- 3 stalks rhubarb (ends trimmed and stalks chopped into ½-inch pieces)
- ⅓ cup apple juice (or cranberry juice)
- ½ cup coconut milk
- 1 vanilla bean (split in the middle and seeds removed, or 2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract)
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ cup maple syrup
- ½- 1 cup powdered sugar (use more or less based on your taste and the tartness of the rhubarb)
- 1 teaspoon agar powder (mixed with 2 tablespoon hot water, optional)
- Place the rhubarb in a saucepan with the apple or cranberry juice. Bring to a boil, cover, and cook about five minutes or until the rhubarb is really soft and mushy.
- Place the rhubarb with the juice and the remaining ingredients in a blender and blitz until really smooth and airy, about 2 minutes.
- Put the mousse into serving bowls and chill before serving.
More vegan rhubarb desserts:
- Vegan Rhubarb Ginger Upside Down Cake
- Vegan Rhubarb Pie
- Vegan Rhubarb Bread
- Easy Vegan Rhubarb Galette
Hi! This sounds wonderful, but I can't have coconut milk. Would almond milk or another plant milk work?
Hi Diana, yes, either would be fine!
Hey, this recipe looks great, and just what I was looking for! How does it keep in the fridge, and for how long? 🙂
Hi Kate, you could keep it refrigerated about two to three days. Cheers.
Perfect1 You just solved y how-to-use-all-out omegrown-rhubarb dilemma, thanks 🙂 I have all the ingredients to hand...
Great! I hope you will try this. Lucky you with the homegrown rhubarb! 🙂
Looks beautiful, though I'm not sure I like the idea of coconut and rhubarb flavours together. Does the coconut taste come through?
Hi Karen, yes, you can taste the coconut and I really liked the flavors together, although I guess it's a matter of taste.
Vaishali, I have serious rhubarb envy! I missed the short window of opportunity that rhubarb is available here in Atlanta, so this recipe will need to wait until next year. Sadly, I've only tried rhubarb once. A vegan blog I follow had a recipe for tofu in a rhubarb sweet and sour sauce. I was a little dubious about it but loved it.
Hi Ellen, that sweet and sour rhubarb dish sounds delicious. Next year, I think I'm going to try growing some rhubarb-- I was looking for it again yesterday and couldn't find it anywhere. If it grows as easily as it's supposed to, I will just take the easy way out. 🙂
Hi V. Thanks for the recipe! So excited to try this one. I have a big patch of rhubarb growing in my back yard, and I never really give it a second thought. (don't hate me cuz I'm beautiful..lol). Now I can march on out there and hack some down and make this yummy looking moose (sic cuz I'm Canadian and moose are abundant.) Have a nice weekend.
Hi Mary, I am so jealous of that rhubarb patch! 🙂 And I hope you try this animal-free moose. 🙂 I polished off the last bit yesterday and miss it already.
Ooo I've only ever made pie with rhubarb. I didn't grow up with it so I had the same reaction as your friend when I first encountered it! lol I really want to give your recipe a try so I'll hunt down down rhubarb!
Hi Mary, yes, it does look so much like celery, doesn't it-- like the prettier, flashier twin? 🙂 Hope you will try.