Ditch the highly processed and sugar-packed snacks with this tasty homemade recipe!
Who wouldn’t like a healthier option than your standard almost-completely-sugar fruit roll-ups?!
Especially when it is so fast and easy to make homemade rhubarb leather?
While this recipe does call for some sugar, there is a sugar-free option to use stevia powder instead.
(I will, however warn you that the version with stevia isn’t as supple as a fruit “roll-up” and tends to be more brittle. Sugar has certain properties that simply can’t always be replaced)
If you have already made my rhubarb simple syrup recipe and want to skip right to the rhubarb leather go for it!
If you haven’t made my rhubarb simple syrup, check out the recipe here and continue reading for the full directions to make rhubarb leather.
(These two recipes together use all of the rhubarb, thus creating zero waste!)
The first step is obviously harvesting your rhubarb.
The leaves are poisonous, so discard them in a safe place where no little ones or critters will be tempted to try nibbling on them.
You want the stalks to be relatively young so they are nice and dense; old woody stalks will not have the peak flavour you are looking for.
Wash well, then chop 4 cups into roughly 1 inch pieces; this part does not need to be anything fancy or precise as they will simmer down into a sauce as you cook the rhubarb.
Bring 4 cups of water to a boil in a large pot.
Add the rhubarb and 1 cup of white sugar.
For a sugar-free option, you can substitute 1 teaspoon of powdered stevia in place of the sugar.
I haven’t tried this recipe using honey yet, however do plan to try it out since we keep bees and they produce way more honey than I expected!
Using honey would obviously change the flavour a bit, but I imagine it would be in a good way.
Return the pot to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
After 20 minutes, the rhubarb should be very soft and falling apart.
I personally love to add 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla and 1/4 lemon (juiced) at this point for a bit of extra flavour.
Place a large colander inside a large bowl and line the colander with cheese cloth.
Carefully pour the hot mixture into the colander and allow to drain, then lift the cheese cloth and give it a gentle squeeze to get a bit more of the remaining juice.
NOTE: do not squeeze all of the juice out.
Place the rhubarb pulp back into the original pot.
You will use the juice later to make rhubarb simple syrup (this is where the zero-waste comes in!)
Using an immersion blender, blend the rhubarb into a fine paste.
(If you don’t have an immersion blender, you can use a regular blender; this method just makes for less dishes to wash)
If you left a little juice in the pulp, you shouldn’t have to add any liquids.
The consistency should be a little thicker than apple sauce.
Spread evenly on the dehydrator fruit leather tray and turn onto about 140º F for 4-5 hours.
(Oh! On a side note; remember that juice we saved earlier in this process? Now that the rhubarb paste is in the dehydrator and working on turning into rhubarb leather, we get to start on rhubarb simple syrup!)
The time will vary depending on how thick the paste is spread and how much liquid you left in the mixture.
You will know it is ready when it is no longer gummy feeling.
Pro tip: use the tip of a knife to work the edge of the rhubarb leather up if it gives you trouble removing it from the tray.
Roll the rhubarb leather and cut into pieces.
Store in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for a longer shelf life (if it doesn’t get eaten as soon as it comes off the dehydrator!)
4 cups rhubarb, chopped
4 cups water
1 cup sugar (or 1 teaspoon powdered stevia)
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 lemon, juiced
Chop 4 cups rhubarb and add to pot with 4 cups boiling water.
Add 1 cup sugar or 1 teaspoon powdered stevia.
Return to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
Remove from heat and add vanilla and lemon juice.
Strain well, leaving a little juice in the pulp.
Return to the original pot and blend with an immersion blender until it turns into a paste a little thicker than the consistency of apple sauce.
Spread evenly on a dehydrator fruit leather tray and place in dehydrator at 140º F for 4-5 hours or until thoroughly dry.
Roll and cut into pieces.