my cousin has just recently brought me two large baskets of rhubarb from her garden, claiming it’s the most nutritious plant I can make into every sweet treat I want, or just plain eat it fresh (except the leaves, of course). So, now that I only tasted the fresh stems that look a bit like celery, I can see myself snacking on them fresh, but even if I cooked them into jam or jello, how right was my cousin about rhubarb nutritional value?
I know that all vitamin C she praised rhubarb for will be lost during cooking, but will any nutrients remain?
your cousin is right about vitamin C content in fresh rhubarb stems, but besides vitamin C, rhubarb stems also contain some zinc, potassium and vitamins K and D. And one important nutrient that won't be destroyed when you cook rhubarb stems is fiber - rhubarb is like most fruit and vegetables vegy good source of dietary fiber.
Of course, you'll get the same dietary benefits related to fiber no matter if you eat rubarb fresh or cooked, it's just a matter of personal preference.
besides vitamin and minerals majortom mentioned, rhubarb - cooked or fresh - contains vitamin A, calcium, small amounts of selenium and manganese... etc. To get most nutritional benefits from cooked rhubarb, instead of sugar you can use natural sweetener like stevia.
That will make all your sweet treats less caloric since stevia literally has 0 calories, compared to white sugar.
Just make sure you remove all the leaves, because they contain toxic substance that can cause food poisoning.
thank you for replying!
Since I've used most of the rhubarb I've got as a snack instead of celery or carrot, I guess i got all the nutrients both of you mention including the vitamin C. Still, it's good to know if I get another batch that cooked rhubarb will not lose too much of it's nutritional values and I'm especially glad it has high fiber content because I've been having problems with constipation for years now.
And since I can't tolerate dairy products quite well anymore, it's good to know I can get calcium from rhubarb.