Gluten-Free Rhubarb Pear & Ginger Crisp with Polenta Topping

Ohhh, David Lebovitz.  You have changed my life with your idea of polenta in a crisp topping so that the crisp stays crisp!

And Meghan, thank you for showing me that coconut oil tastes even better than butter (*gasp*, yes, I said it!) atop fresh fruit.


Crisps are such an easy dessert!  You cut up your favourite fruit, top it with a crispy topping, and let it bake away while you’re having dinner.  So perfect for entertaining!  And the secret formula?  About 6 cups of fruit covered with 2 cups of topping is the way I like to play it.  So now you can go make your own crisps in whatever seasonal fruit combos you’ve got around.  One of my fall favourites?  Apples & mixed berries.  But now it’s Spring and we get to use the best of local Spring produce: Rhubarb!

This crisp highlights so many of my favourite foods: the rhubarb/ginger combination (like in my Gluten-Free Rhubarb Ginger Muffins), Québécois maple syrup from my dear friend Louise, and polenta and oats!  You need not say more, this is a dessert of My Favourite Things… (raindrops on roses, and whiskers on kittens aside).


Gluten-Free Rhubarb, Pear & Ginger Crisp with Polenta Topping

Inspired by David Lebovitz and Meghan Telpner, Serves 6

Fruit Base

  • 3 cups rhubarb, chopped
  • 3 pears, sliced
  • 1″ nub of fresh ginger, microplaned
  • 1/4 c. maple syrup

Crispy Topping

  • 1/4 c. coconut oil
  • 1/4 c. maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 c. oats
  • 1/2 c. uncooked polenta, corn meal, or “corn grits” (the coarser ground the better, I keep these on hand)
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • a pinch of grated fresh ginger (I swipe it from the fruit)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract or paste

Preheat oven to 350F.

Combine fruit, ginger, and maple syrup in a baking dish (I use a 9″ square dish as it’s what I’ve got).

In a separate bowl, combine crispy topping, and mix until the coconut oil and maple syrup is incorporated throughout the dry ingredients.  Cover fruit in baking dish with crispy topping.  This is best done with your fingers, don’t worry about all the little lumps throughout the topping.

Bake at 350F for 30-45 minutes, until the top is golden brown, and the fruit is cooked through (you can check the doneness of the fruit by piercing it with a paring knife).

Let cool and enjoy.  Some people might like a scoop of vanilla ice cream, or an extra drizzle of maple syrup.  We have discovered the seemingly-odd combination of old cheddar & this crisp… you may want to try it too!


Other Recipes You May Adore Tasting:

Submitted to Amy’s Slightly Indulgent Tuesday.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Dessert, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Vegetarian


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7 Comments on “Gluten-Free Rhubarb Pear & Ginger Crisp with Polenta Topping”

  1. June 13, 2010 at 8:44 am #

    Thanks for this great dessert Lindsay – I just had the leftovers – avec cheese – and yes! the crumble was crispy! 🙂

  2. June 13, 2010 at 4:31 pm #

    I’ll bring the tea. What time should I be there for treats 😉

  3. fran
    June 13, 2010 at 5:31 pm #

    have been making Rhubarb Crisp a lot recently with it being in season, but I will try your way..

    great to know about the new crispy crumble!

  4. June 20, 2010 at 4:29 am #

    MMMMMMM,..what a delightful gluten free dessert!!

    Yum,..I am going to try coconut oil,..I was just wondering if its taste is fab! Now, I know!

    Another grand recipe of yours to try!


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