Skip to Content

Rhubarb Shrub

Sharing is caring!

You've got to try this rhubarb shrub recipe! Whether you use it in a cocktail or non-alcoholic drinks, it's a wonderful fruit syrup that you can use in lots of drinks and a great way to add a little zing!

I'll also show you how to make my favorite rhubarb shrub cocktail using gin and ginger beer.

Making a shrub takes a few days, but it's super easy and lasts a long time. It requires very little hands-on time and results in a tasty, non-alcoholic rhubarb syrup.

An overhead shot of a rhubarb shrub cocktail.
Jump to:

What's a Shrub?

A shrub combines fresh fruit, sugar, and vinegar that marinates for a few days and results in a sugary, vinegar-based syrup. Shrubs are often used in cocktails, so a shrub might refer to a cocktail or a soft drink (mocktail).

Shrubs can be made with all kinds of different fruits. Berries and stone fruits are often used, but a rhubarb drinking shrub is truly special! Shrubs are great when paired with club soda/soda water, ginger beer, mineral water, or lemonade. When mixing them into a cocktail, they pair well with gin, dry vermouth, sherry, and vodka.

The word shrub comes from the Arabic word sharab, which means 'to drink'.

ingredients for a rhubarb shrub on a cutting board.

Ingredients for a Rhubarb Shrub

To make this rhubarb shrub syrup you'll only need a few things. For shrubs, I always do 1 pound fruit, 1 cup sugar, and 1 cup vinegar.

  • One Pound of Fresh Rhubarb - You'll need at least one pound of rhubarb. You'll want to cut this into smaller pieces, about ¼ inch pieces is perfect.
  • One Cup of Sugar - You'll need 1 cup of granulated white sugar. You could use another type of sweetener, but granulated sugar dissolves easily.
  • One Cup of Vinegar - You'll need 1 cup of vinegar. I used white vinegar but apple cider vinegar also works well in shrubs (it will change the color though).

How to Make Rhubarb Shrub

First you'll combine the sugar and rhubarb in a large bowl. Then, cover and place the bowl in the refrigerator for 12 hours. Stir the mixture, then return to the refrigerator for another 12 hours. 

Chopped rhubarb in a glass bowl, tossed with sugar.

Next, stir in the vinegar and return to the refrigerator. 

Allow the mix sit in the refrigerator for another 12 to 36 hours. 

A closeup of rhubarb in sugar and vinegar.

Strain the mixture using a fine mesh strainer. Discard the fruit pieces and keep the fruit-based syrup. Transfer syrup to an airtight container, like a mason jar. 

Use this fruity syrup to make your favorite drink, and store the remaining syrup in the refrigerator for up to 6 months.

Ingredients for a rhubarb shrub on a marble backdrop.

More Cocktail Recipes to Try

If you like fruit cocktails, make sure to check out some of our other favorites.

More Rhubarb Recipes to Try

Rhubarb is a wonderful (and pretty) spring and summer vegetable that acts like a fruit when it's baked or used with sugar. Here are some of our favorite ways to use it.

  • Rhubarb Blueberry Galette - a gorgeous galette recipe with ripe rhubarb and blueberries
  • Rhubarb Crisp - a zesty and sweet crisp with a nutty topping. Try this crisp with a few scoops of vanilla ice cream for a delicious dessert!
Two glasses of rhubarb shrub cocktail.

Questions & Tips for Making Shrubs

Can you make a shrub with frozen fruit? Yes, you can absolutely make a shrub with frozen fruit. Let it defrost a little before adding the sugar.

Does a shrub have to be refrigerated? Technically, no, once you've added the vinegar, it should no longer need to be refrigerated. However, we still recommend it, just to be safe!

How long do shrubs last? Shrubs can last for up to 6 months in the refrigerator if you're not using them often. If you pull it in and out of the refrigerator and use it often, try to use it within 6 to 8 weeks.

Can you add fresh herbs to a shrub? Yes, you can add herbs like mint and basil to a fruit shrub. Add them at the beginning with the fruit and sugar.

Can I use different kinds of vinegar? White wine vinegar, red wine vinegar, or raw apple cider vinegar will work in this shrub, but the red vinegar will alter the color a bit. 

This is the perfect recipe for the next time rhubarb season comes around, or when you're ready to use up that frozen rhubarb you've been storing. Keep this cocktail mixer in your refrigerator, and the next time you're craving a special cocktail or mocktail, make a shrub drink!

If you try this recipe, let us know! Connect with us on Instagram and share your photos or leave us a rating.

Yield: about 1 ¼ cups of shrub syrup

Rhubarb Shrub

An overhead shot of a rhubarb shrub cocktail.

This fruity rhubarb shrub can be used in cocktails, lemonades, or soft drinks.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 2 days
Total Time 2 days 10 minutes


Shrub Syrup Ingredients

  • 1 pound rhubarb, diced
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup white vinegar

Cocktail Ingredients

  • 2 ounces gin
  • ¼ cup ginger beer


  1. Shrub Syrup - combine the sugar and rhubarb in a large bowl, stir to combine. Cover and place in a refrigerator for 24 hours. Stir halfway through. Add the vinegar and stir, then allow to sit in the refrigerator for another 12 to 36 hours. Strain and store in the refrigerator for up to 6 months.
  2. Cocktail Recipe - combine 1-ounce rhubarb shrub syrup with 2 ounces gin and ¼ cup of ginger beer. Serve over ice.


Shrub syrup will keep in the refrigerator for up to 6 months.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 223Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 3mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 1gSugar: 21gProtein: 0g

Skip to Recipe