Self Saucing Rhubarb & Custard Pudding

A light airy vanilla sponge blanketing a layer of rhubarb in a pool of custard, complete with tips to the perfect Self Saucing Rhubarb & Custard Pudding!

My love of an easy to make ‘as if by magic’ self saucing pudding set me wondering. What if I could incorporate one of my favourite classic British flavour combinations, rhubarb and custard ? Remember those rhubarb and custard boiled sweets ? So sharp, yet so sweet and creamy.

After a few trials experimenting with quantities and methods, I finally cracked it! A tender vanilla sponge over a layer of sharp rhubarb revealing its own pool of creamy custard beneath.

It makes a delicious alternative to a rhubarb crumble and you don’t have to make any custard.

Top view of a baked pudding with a spoonful taken out. Fresh sticks of rhubarb are next to the dish.

If you haven’t made a self saucing pudding before and this recipe goes against how you might usually bake, don’t worry. Sprinkling sugar and custard powder over a batter and pouring hot milk on the top looks and sounds rather strange but be patient, it works. I’ve included a few tips to help you make the best rhubarb and custard pudding.

If your tastebuds are not keen on rhubarb or there is a rhubarb shortage – seasonal or otherwise – this recipe also works well with apples or blackberry and apple.

A dessert bowl with a portion of pudding with a silver spoon on a wooden table.

What Do I Need ?

This recipe is perfect for when you’ve got plenty of rhubarb growing. The rest of the ingredients are pantry and fridge staples.

Sponge Batter Ingredients

  • Plain flour or all purpose flour
  • Baking powder
  • Caster sugar or superfine sugar if you’re in the US.
  • Butter – I used salted butter but you can use unsalted, just add half a teaspoon of salt to the mix.
  • Milk – I used full fat milk.
  • Vanilla extract
  • Eggs – I used medium eggs. If you’re in the US use large eggs (egg size categories vary from country to country)

Custard Sauce Ingredients

  • Custard powder – I used Bird’s Original Custard Powder
  • Caster sugar
  • Milk
  • Butter
Pudding in a baking dish with a bowl at the side and a portion being served.

How To Make Rhubarb Pudding

Firstly, melt the butter for the batter mix and leave to one side.


Arrange the sliced rhubarb over the base of a large well greased baking dish (I used a shallow 2 litre / 8 cup dish). Sprinkle with sugar.
Bring your milk and butter for the custard sauce to boiling point before you start the batter mix.


To make the batter mix, sift all the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
Whisk the milk, vanilla extract and beaten eggs into the cooled melted butter. Pour onto the dry ingredients and briefly whisk until smooth.
Pour the batter evenly over the rhubarb.

To make the custard sprinkle the custard powder and caster sugar over the batter.

Slowly pour the hot milk and butter over the back of a tablespoon onto your pudding.


Bake in the oven for approximately 35 to 40 minutes until the batter is set.

Tips For The Best Self Saucing Pudding

  • Baking dish – Use a 2 litre (8 cup) capacity baking dish that has been well greased with butter. This helps prevent the pudding from burning or catching.
  • The key to a perfect pudding is to handle with care and don’t over mix.
  • Making the custard – to ensure even distribution of the custard and caster sugar, sieve them together in a bowl and mix before sprinkling over the top of the pudding batter.
  • Pouring the hot liquid over the back of a spoon as close to the pudding as you can will prevent the liquid from falling too heavily and help keep a light sponge.
  • Don’t over bake – it’s important not to over bake the pudding as you don’t want the custard to dry out and disappear! Once the top of the rhubarb pudding is cooked to the touch, it’s ready.
  • Let your pudding stand and set for at least 5 minutes before serving as this allows the sauce to thicken up.

How To Serve

Self Saucing Rhubarb and Custard Pudding is best served freshly baked. It’s an all in one pudding so you can take it the table just as it is and serve.

A baked pudding on the table being served with a large spoon.
Self Saucing Rhubarb & Custard Pudding

How To Store And Reheat

If you do have any leftovers – you can keep it in the fridge for up to three days. I wouldn’t recommend reheating in the oven as the custard will dry out. Pop a serving in a bowl and microwave for about 20 seconds.

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A Pinterest Pin with two images and title. Top image is of a bowl of pudding and the bottom image is of the pudding in a large baking dish with sticks of rhubarb by its side.
 
A light airy vanilla sponge blanketing a layer of rhubarb in its own pool of custard, complete with Kitchen Sheds Tips to the perfect self saucing pud!

Self Saucing Rhubarb & Custard Pudding

A light airy vanilla sponge blanketing a layer of rhubarb in a pool of custard, complete with tips to the perfect Self Saucing Rhubarb & Custard Pudding!
5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate Save Recipe
Course: Pudding/Dessert
Cuisine: British
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 343kcal
Author: Sarah James

Equipment

  • 2 litre (8 cup) shallow baking dish

Ingredients


Rhubarb Sponge:

  • 750 g rhubarb trimmed and cut into 1 cm slices
  • 2 tbs caster sugar
  • 250 g plain flour
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 110 g caster sugar
  • 75 g salted butter
  • 150 ml milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs beaten


Custard Sauce:

  • 3 tbs custard powder
  • 150 g caster sugar
  • 300 ml milk
  • 25 g butter

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 180℃ / 160℃ fan / 350℉ / Gas Mark 4
  • Make sure your dish is well greased with softened butter to prevent the pudding from catching or burning.
  • Melt the butter for the batter mix and leave to one side.
  • Arrange the sliced rhubarb evenly over the base of your pudding dish and sprinkle with sugar.
  • Bring your milk and butter for the custard sauce to boiling point and leave to one side.

Sponge Batter

  • Sift all the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
  • Add the milk, vanilla extract and beaten eggs into the cooled melted butter and whisk to combine.
  • Pour onto the dry ingredients and briefly whisk until smooth.
  • Pour the batter evenly over the rhubarb.

Custard Sauce

  • Sift the custard powder and caster sugar together before sprinkling over the batter.
  • Slowly pour the hot milk and butter over the back of a tablespoon onto your pudding.
  • Bake in the oven for approximately 35 to 40 minutes until the batter is set.
  • Let your pudding stand and set for at least 5 minutes before serving as this allows the sauce to thicken up.

Notes

  1. Baking dish – Use a 2 litre (8 cup) capacity baking dish that has been well greased with butter. This helps prevent the pudding from burning or catching.
  2. The key to a perfect pudding is to handle with care and don’t over mix.
  3. To ensure even distribution of the custard and caster sugar, sieve them together in a bowl and mix before sprinkling over the top of the pudding batter.
  4. Pouring the hot liquid over the back of a spoon as close to the pudding as you can will prevent the liquid from falling too heavily and help keep a light sponge.
  5. Don’t over bake – it’s important not to over bake the pudding as you don’t want the custard to dry out and disappear! Once the top of the rhubarb pudding is cooked to the touch, it’s ready.
  6. If you do have any leftovers – you can keep it in the fridge for up to three days. I wouldn’t recommend reheating in the oven as the custard will dry out. Pop a serving in a bowl and microwave for about 20 seconds.
  7. Nutrition information is approximate and meant as a guideline only.
Nutrition Facts
Self Saucing Rhubarb & Custard Pudding
Amount per Serving
Calories
 
343
Calories from Fat 126
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
14
g
22
%
Saturated Fat
 
8
g
50
%
Cholesterol
 
108
mg
36
%
Sodium
 
316
mg
14
%
Potassium
 
435
mg
12
%
Carbohydrates
 
71
g
24
%
Fiber
 
3
g
13
%
Sugar
 
40
g
44
%
Protein
 
8
g
16
%
Vitamin A
 
600
IU
12
%
Vitamin C
 
8
mg
10
%
Calcium
 
262
mg
26
%
Iron
 
2
mg
11
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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63 thoughts on “Self Saucing Rhubarb & Custard Pudding”

  • Is it possible to use well drained tin rhubarb please as fresh isn’t always easy to get hold of and I have no garden or outdoor space to grow it x

    • Using well drained tinned rhubarb might end up too soft and be more of a syrup as the pudding is baked for 40 minutes.

  • Really looking forward to cooking this with a group of kids in a half term workshop next week. Was looking for the perfect seasonal recipe and here it is!

  • This looks utterly delicious and certainly one that I will be trying. I love rhubarb and have a big patch in our garden, this looks creamy enough to appeal to the kids.

  • I absolutely love rhubarb desserts and pairing it with a custard is perfect! Sounds like a wonderful dessert, perfect for springtime!

  • 5 stars
    So you actually grow Rhubarbs? That is so cool, I do love a good dessert and this one surely does it for me. Thanks for sharing Sarah!

  • Wow, this takes me back to school dinners -the desserts were pretty good. I remember having something similar with gooseberries, it’s the same tart/sweet combination.

  • Oh wow what an amazing idea! You can’t beat rhubarb & custard – they are a match made in heaven. I love this plan & your clear steps. Thanks so much for joining us at #bloggerclubuk

    • Thanks Becky, rhubarb and custard is my favourite comfort food. Always a pleasure to link up with #BloggerClubUK x

  • OOO I know the hubby will love this! custard is one of his favourites for pudding! Well done on being featured this week and thanks for linking to #YumTum 🙂

  • Yum! I love rhubarb and custard. I have never cooked it this particular way so will be giving this a try :)#YumTum

    • Thanks Sara, I love rhubarb season and you can’t have rhubarb without custard, can you? Let me know how you get on 🙂

  • Be still my beating heart. This pudding is fan-flippin-tastic. I have some rhubarb in the freezer from last year – not only do I absolutely love the look of this pudding, I want to eat it AND my hubby will love me even more than he does already! Making this will be a fantastic treat for my family. Thank you for such a brilliant recipe, as always. Sammie xx

    • Thanks for your lovely comment Sammie, I hope you and your family enjoy my rhubarb and custard pudding xx

  • It looks yummy, but I’ll just have to drool over the pictures because it’s not sugar, dairy and gluten free 😉 #bloggerclubuk

  • To be honest I have never tried Rhubarb, my dad always loved it, but for some reason I was not willing to taste it I will have to try now that I am all grown up because this sounds amazing #BloggerclubUK

    • Thanks for popping by, I hope you do get to try some rhubarb & that you like it. Don’t forget you could always make a blackberry and apple version.

  • Lovely pudding. Is it really 150g sugar to go with the custard powder?. It was very sweet

    • Thanks Maria. It is a lot of sugar, I think we have a rather sweet tooth here at the Kitchen Shed. Self saucing puddings tend to use a lot of sugar in the sauce, I’m going to try it with 100 g sugar & I’ll let you know how I get on.

    • Thanks Helen, we’re finding self saucing puddings are quite addictive. A good job the rhubarb season is about over 🙂

  • Yum! I love rhubarb, I’ve just started this year trying to grow some too. I will definitely be trying this, sounds delicious 🙂

  • Wonderful recipe! I live in a part of the U.S. where it is very hard to grow rhubarb and you can only get it in the store for a couple of weeks every spring. The apples are a great tip!

    Marcey

    • Thanks Marcey, I’ve found it much harder to grow rhubarb here in France but I’m so glad the rhubarb patch has eventually started growing well, I would really miss being able to get hold of rhubarb easily. Hope you enjoy the self saucing apple version. Let me know how you get on 🙂

    • Thanks Angela. If you like rhubarb you’ve got to try this pudding & it’s so easy to make too. A pleasure to link up with #CookBlogShare

  • I’ve never tried a self-saucing pudding but love the sound of this – I’ll be pinning it to hopefully try soon and will let you know if I get chance to make it. I may have to substitute the rhubarb though as my husband doesn’t like it. IT seems a shame as rhubarb and custard is such a good combination.

    • Thanks Corina, looking forward to hearing from you. Apples work really well in the pudding, I have made several self saucing apple & custard puddings. I’m so glad you made this comment as I forgot to mention this in the post.

  • wow this looks stunning – I have yet to try a self saucing pudding so will definitely be following your many tips.Thanks so much for joining in with #Bakeoftheweek New Roundup now open x

    • Thanks Helen, glad you found my Kitchen Shed Tips useful. Always a pleasure to link up with #Bakeoftheweek
      I’ll pop over later to see the roundup x

  • I have to confess I have never tried making a self saucing pudding and I think using Rhubarb and Custard is such a classic British combo that I will have to try. I am just hoping my rhubarb gives out a few more stalks soon as I seem to have gobbled a lot up already.

    Good tip about pouring over the back of the spoon too.

    I am delighted you joined in with #loveseasonalfood. I do hope you call by again soon.

    Thank you

    Clare

    • Thanks Clare, glad you found the Kitchen Shed Tips useful. If you’ve ran out of rhubarb, don’t worry the pudding works well with apple. I’m sure I’ll joining #loveseasonalfood again soon 🙂

  • Hi Sarah, Wow, nice pudding.
    I am celebrating my First Blog Anniversary-http://herbsspicesandtradition.blogspot.ca/2015/05/my-first-blog-anniversary-event.html
    There is a event and a give away. Please join, it is open for everybody.

    • Thanks Elizabeth, it’s a pleasure linking up with #simpleandinseason . Seems like we need comfort food at the minute with the weather we’re having.

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