Rhubarb and Caramelized Onion Focaccia

This rhubarb and caramelized onion focaccia recipe came about by accident, an incredibly fortunate and tasty accident!  rhubarb and onion focaccia

I was on a quest to find something savory to make with rhubarb. I was open to anything and eyed everything wondering “how would rhubarb pair with that?” Some dishes never made it to the testing stage – rhubarb mac ‘n cheese – I don’t think so!  Some ideas I tested but ruled out right away – rhubarb with quinoa was not great. Some I tested and placed in the hopper for future tweaking – they may make it to the blog in the future.

It was while I was making a batch of Rosemary focaccia and shortly after having discovered caramelized onions on pizza, that I started to put together the idea for this recipe. Google confirmed that people have been putting together caramelized onions and rhubarb for all sorts of creations – chutney, sauce to top steaks, pork or lamb and even caramelized onion and rhubarb jam. With renewed confidence, I assembled my first rhubarb and caramelized onion focaccia.

rhubarb focaccia

That first test batch was actually on top of my original rosemary focaccia bread – look carefully and you can see the rosemary. It was good, but I realized I could simplify the focaccia and still have an awesome product.rhubarb and onion focaccia l

Several tests later and you have the recipe seen here, a recipe I shared with the Manitoba Canola Growers, so you’ll see it on their CanolaEatWell site as well.

Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Rhubarb and Caramelized Onion Focaccia

Rhubarb and caramelized onions on top of focaccia bread with creamy goat cheese, fresh sage and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. A pretty awesome way to enjoy rhubarb.
Cook : 20 mins


Focaccia Bread

  • 3 to 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/4 tsp 1 pkg instant rise yeast
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 1/4 cup warm water
  • 3 Tbsp canola oil divided


  • 3-4 stalks rhubarb
  • 2 Tbsp canola oil
  • 2 red onions sliced thinly
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  • 3 oz crumbled goat cheese
  • 5-8 leaves fresh sage optional


Focaccia Bread

  • Combine 3 cups of flour, yeast, salt and onion powder. Mix well.
  • Form well in flour. Add water and 2 Tbsp (30 mL) canola oil.
  • Stir until ingredients are combined and becomes difficult to continue to stir with a spoon.
  • Turn dough onto lightly floured surface and knead for 6 – 7 minutes. Add more flour as needed to prevent stickiness.
  • Shape dough into ball and place in oiled bowl turning to coat all sides with 1/2 Tbsp oil.
  • Cover loosely with clean towel and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Using remaining oil, generously oil a 9 x 13” (23 x 33 cm) jelly pan.
  • Roll and stretch out dough to fit pan.
  • Use fingers to poke dimples into dough to bottom of pan.
  • Cover with clean towel and let rest 40 to 60 minutes.


  • Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).
  • Wash and slice rhubarb in 1/2” (1.5 cm) diagonal pieces. Set aside.
  • In large saucepan over medium heat, heat canola oil.
  • Add onions and garlic. Reduce heat to medium low, cover and cook onions and garlic for 15 minutes, stirring frequently. Onions should be tender, translucent and starting to brown with some red color still intact.
  • Add rhubarb, honey, salt and pepper to onions. Continue to cook until rhubarb is tender but not mushy, about 8 – 10 minutes.
  • Spread onion and rhubarb mix evenly on focaccia bread. Top with goat cheese and halved sage leaves if using.
  • Bake at to 400°F (200°C) for 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and serve warm.


Makes 18-24 pieces
Tried this recipe?Mention @GetGettyS or tag #GetGettyS

Here are some photos throughout the process:

Slicing the rhubarb – 1/2 inch diagonal or there abouts.

sliced rhubarb for focaccia

Ingredients ready, focaccia dimpled and ready for final rising.
raw focaccia ingredientsCaramelizing the red onions – okay not full blown caramelizing which may take a full 30-40 minutes, but you get the idea. caramelized onions for focaccia

Assembling the focaccia, reminds me of plums don’t you think?

raw assembled focaccia

And finally out of the oven.

finished focaccia

I really hope you take the time to make this focaccia. Yes, I know it does take time and there are a couple of steps – but while they take time, they’re pretty easy steps. The end result is pretty amazing. Highly recommend eating it while warm with the drizzle of balsamic vinegar.

When you make it, let me know what you and your guests thought. It’s definitely something you want to make when people are over because it tastes best the same day, makes a big batch and deserves to be shared with good people in your life.

Sign up to get articles by Getty delivered to your inbox. You’ll get recipes, practical tips and great food information like this. Getty is a Professional Home Economist,  speaker and writer putting good food on tables and agendas.  She is the author of Manitoba’s best-selling Prairie Fruit Cookbook, Founder of Fruit Share, a mom and veggie gardener.

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  1. Oh, this looks great! We have fresh rhubarb in the garden just now, ready for harvesting and I was (google) searching for a savoury recipe! Thanks so much for developing this recipe, Getty. I look forward to making it for some friends this week! (I have also been planning to try your chia seed preserve recipe, which I found a few weeks ago.)

    1. Glad you found a couple of recipes to try!

      Let me know how they work out for you.


      1. Hi Getty,

        Thanks again for your site and all these great recipes and information! I tried both the focaccia and your Rhubarb Streusel Cake this past week! I definitely like SWEET rhubarb, as the savoury tasted a little too “foreign” to me.

        I was very pleased to find your Rhubarb Streusel Cake though, because I have always wanted to try a yeasted cake recipe! This is a rave review! It was easy to make, and I liked it because it was not too sweet, with the base kind of a “cross” (for me between a cake (60%) and a bread (40%). It was very satisfying with the rhubarb and streusel topping. I look forward to trying it with many other fruit variations.

        I halved the recipe because I only had a 13*9 pan. Wasn’t sure if it would be OK or not, (thought the base looked way too thin when it was first put in the pan), but it turned out just the right height after it had risen during baking. I was also concerned it would taste “yeasty” but it didn’t, at all.

        Thanks again for a wonderful recipe which I think will become a staple. Also loved your story behind it! Heartwarming (which made it taste even better.)

        1. Thanks for the thorough review and comments. Glad you enjoyed the Streusel Cake. The focaccia is definitely something different, but good for you for giving it a shot.
          All the best,


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