These Leg of Lamb Recipes Make a Perfectly Delicious Spring Meal
The hearty and flavorful leg of lamb is a cut of meat that deserves a spot in your recipe arsenal. With its tender texture and rich taste, lamb is a versatile ingredient that pairs perfectly with a wide variety of vegetables and seasonings.
A leg of lamb is a popular choice for springtime meals and Easter celebrations, and you can do a lot with it, such as roasting, grilling, and braising, but also stews and casseroles.
Cold lamb is an excellent ingredient for sandwiches and other quick meals as well, so don’t worry about a leg of lamb being too much for the family. Prepare one for your Sunday dinner, and use the leftovers over the following days in sandwiches, salads, and such.
From classic herb-roasted leg of lamb to bold Middle Eastern-inspired dishes, there’s a recipe out there for everyone. We selected some amazing ones to get you started, so make sure you add leg of lamb to your shopping list this spring.
1. Boneless Leg of Lamb Stuffed with Prunes & Chestnuts
You’ll need to ask the butcher to remove the bone from for this recipe – or maybe you can find boneless leg of lamb at your supermarket. The reason why it’s important to have a boneless leg is because you will be stuffing it with a delicious mixture of prunes and chestnuts.
You should also marinate the meat overnight in a marinade that contains olive oil, lemon juice, and herbs such as oregano, rosemary, and mint.
Once you completed these essential steps, all that’s left is to roast the leg of lamb to your desired level of doneness. This Greek-inspired recipe pairs very well with rice pilaf or couscous, and with tzatziki.
2. Braised Lamb Shanks with Creamy Polenta
This Italian recipe is both comforting and refined – and, on top of that, it’s easy to make.
Once you’ve browned the lamb shanks and veggies with some red wine for extra flavor, you simply add everything to a braising pan and pop it in the oven, covered with foil, to braise slowly for about three hours. When the lamb is almost done, start the polenta, so that it’s nice and hot by the time you take the lamb out of the oven.
3. Easy Braised Leg of Lamb
One pot dishes are the best, and this one is no exception – perfect for special occasions, but also easy enough to make so that you’re able to put it together on a weekday afternoon. Mediterranean aromatics including rosemary, garlic and thyme, plus tomatoes, carrots, wine, and broth, infuse the meat with flavor and create a delicious sauce.
4. Cinnamon Lamb Stew
Sweet and spicy cinnamon pairs nicely with lamb, while the tomatoes and red wine add acidity and depth to the dish. Don’t skip the meat browning step, as it’s probably the most important one, taste-wise. This hearty stew is excellent with couscous or brown rice.
5. Greek Style Roasted Lamb
The leg of lamb is cooked whole in this recipe, so it’s really important that you marinate it properly (for at least a few hours or up to two days). Another crucial step is to bring the meat back to room temperature before popping it in the oven, and to use a roasting pan with a rack.
A garlic butter-herb-mustard rub will help create a delicious crust and keep the meat juicy and tender. Total roasting time is approx 2 hours and 15 minutes. You can also add potatoes to the pan and make it into a full meal.
6. Grilled Leg of Lamb with Goat’s Cheese and Herb Salad
This leg of lamb recipe truly spells spring – the lamb is deboned, butterflied and marinated, then is cooked rapidly at high temperature, in the oven, using the braise burner. A fresh and fragrant salad of herbs, arugula, and goat’s cheese is the perfect accompaniment for the juicy and tender meat.
7. Harissa Roasted Leg of American Lamb
Harrisa paste, garlic, shallots, preserved lemon, yogurt and various herbs and spices are used for the marinade – just make sure you score all the sides of the leg to allow flavors to infuse the meat. Lather the marinade generously on the leg of lamb, and roast it in the oven, alongside your favorite veggies.
When the internal temperature at the thickest end of the leg reaches 130-135 degrees F, the roast is done.
8. Herb-and-Honey-Mustard-Crusted Leg of Lamb
Crusty on the outside and juicy on the inside, this leg of lamb recipe is a showstopper. The sweet, spicy and fragrant marinade that contains Dijon mustard, lavender honey and herbs is used both on the inside and outside of the meat, making it extra flavorful. And don’t worry if you don’t have Dijon mustard in your pantry as you can try these Dijon mustard substitutes instead.
And, if you don’t finish the lamb in one sitting, don’t worry – sandwiches with thinly sliced meat will be delicious the next day.
9. Herbed Leg of Lamb with Olive Butter and Roasted Tomatoes
A dressing made of shallots, garlic, herbs, Dijon mustard, olive oil and butter is used to coat the butterflied leg of lamb on all sides. The meat is then rolled up and refrigerated overnight – so you can imagine how amazing the finished dish will taste.
Once the lamb is roasted and rested, all you have to do is quickly roast some cherry tomatoes that serve as a sweet and tangy garnish, alongside some olive butter.
10. Instant Pot Leg of Lamb
Instant pots are very popular right now, and the truth is that they can be quite useful. For this recipe, you brown the meat and the veggies, then use the pressure cooker setting of the instant pot for melt in your mouth tender lamb.
Don’t despair if you don’t own an instant pot: you can do pretty much the same thing using a Dutch oven on the stove top. It might take a little bit longer to cook, but the results will be just as delicious.
11. Madhur Jaffrey’s Spiced Yogurt Leg of Lamb
Bursting with flavors, Madhur Jaffrey’s leg of lamb recipe contains garlic, ginger, cumin, coriander, and garam masala, among other spices. The meat is marinated in yogurt and spices, than roasted on a thickly sliced layer of onions. It’s amazing with some naan to help you scoop up the sauce.
12. Pear-Marinated Roast Leg of Lamb
This surprising and sophisticated recipe combines pears and lamb, and it’s inspired by Corey Lee, a famous San Francisco chef. It’s the recipe to make for a dinner party, as it’s very impressive yet pretty easy to make. The meat is rested overnight in olive oil infused with herbs and an Asian pear – the next day, you simply have to brown and roast it.
Serve with a spring salad and your favorite potato dish.
13. Red Wine Garlic Roasted Leg of Lamb
Brined with red wine and herbs, and roasted with extra garlic, this leg of lamb recipe will satisfy even picky eaters. Keeping the leg of lamb in the brine for 24 hours ensures extra juicy and tender meat.
The garlic is then stuffed in incisions made all the way to the bone, which means that you get to enjoy the garlicky taste in every bite.
14. Roast Leg of American Lamb with Potatoes & Lemon
American lamb is known to be less gamey compared to lamb from other parts of the world, but don’t worry of you can’t find American lamb at your local market – this recipe is just as good with any leg of lamb. The important thing is to season the meat properly, stuff it with garlic cloves, and rest it overnight.
Then, you simply roast it on a layer of Yukon potatoes slathered in spices, lemon slices, shallots, and olive oil – a nice, satisfying meal.
15. Roasted Boneless Leg of Lamb with a Red Wine Sauce
Rub the boneless butterflied lamb with a mixture of herbs, lemon zest, and garlic – make sure you cut some of the fat from the inside, but keep the layer of fat on the outside. This will keep the meat juicy and moist. Tie the roast back together using kitchen twine, and refrigerate it for at least a few hours before roasting it.
The red wine sauce, made with lamb dripping and fresh herbs, is the cherry on top.
16. Rosemary and Apricot-Stuffed Leg of Lamb
The marinated meat is stuffed with a mixture or breadcrumbs, apricots, shallots, walnuts, and herbs, resulting in a rich and nutty roast, with sweet hints and fresh and tangy notes from the white wine used in the marinade. Serve with potatoes, greens and gravy.
17. Saffron and Cinnamon Lamb Leg Ragu
This rich, luxurious lamb recipe bets on warm spices like cinnamon and saffron. The meat is cooked slowly in a dressing made with sweet wine, onion, garlic and herbs, until the meat falls off the bone. The sauce is then reduced and returned to the shredded meat.
You can serve it with polenta or with other side dishes such as risotto, couscous, or even pasta.
18. Savoury Lamb Chop Casserole
An oven baked casserole that’s perfect in any season, warmed by aromatics and sweet tomatoes – start the dish on the stove top, by browning the meat and frying the veggies, and finish it off in the oven. It’s done when the meat falls off the bone.
You can serve it with mashed potatoes, french fries, rice, or other such side dishes.
19. Slow Cooker Leg Of Lamb
This recipe allows the leg of lamb to cook slowly, at low temperature, until the meat is fork tender. The combination of flavors (rosemary, garlic, lemon, and white wine) give the entire dish a bright, fresh taste. Potatoes are also added to the slow cooker, so you’ll end up with a full meal.
If you really want to try this recipe and you don’t own a slow cooker, use an oven dish with a lid that fits perfectly, to prevent the juices from escaping, and keep the oven on a very low setting.
20. Slow Roasted Boneless Leg of Lamb
The leg of lamb is seasoned with citrus, herbs and garlic, and roasted slowly for four hours in white wine and chicken stock, which keeps the meat juicy and tender. Don’t skip the fragrant gremolata dressing, which adds a zing to the recipe.
The succulent meat pairs perfectly with oven roasted potatoes, or, why not warm up some pita bread and serve with tzatziki.
21. Bulgarian Lamb Leg Baked with Rice
Fall-apart-tender lamb and a delicious rice side dish with a twist – this recipe is a very serious contender for your Easter feast. The meat is cooked in a marinade that contains mint, parsley, spring onion and garlic, and hot peppers.
The rice pilaf dish contains carrots and spinach, and it’s topped with a Greek yogurt and egg mixture that gets golden and bubbly in the oven. But that’s not all, because there’s even more flavor from the celery purée that accompanies the meat and rice.
For more Bulgarian dishes, check out our round-up of the most popular Bulgarian foods.
22. Slow-Cooked Moroccan Leg of Lamb
Turmeric, cumin, coriander, and smoked paprika, and other spices, are used to season the leg of lamb, which is then roasted in the oven for around four hours.
Garnish the meat with some fresh mint and coriander, and serve it with hummus, fresh pita bread, a nice salad, and some yogurt dressing for a veritable Moroccan feast.
23. Slowly Braised Lamb Leg in Red Wine
Lamb is perfect for slow cooking, as the meat retains some bite and structure even after hours in the oven, while still being extremely tender and juicy. In this recipe, a leg of lamb is braised for four hours in a red wine, beef stock and tomato juice, with all sorts of seasoning and veggies. The end result is delicious meat in a hearty, comforting sauce. Mashed potatoes are the ideal side dish.
24. Slow-Roasted Lamb Leg in Tomato Mushroom Sauce
Earthy mushrooms are a great pairing with the grassy, robust flavor of lamb – and the sauce contains many other delicious ingredients, such as garlic, onions, carrots, tomatoes, and white wine, plus herbs and seasoning.
The leg of lamb is braised slowly with all these ingredients, and served with potatoes or other veggies, alongside the amazing sauce that forms while the meat cooks.
25. Spanish-Style Barbecue Leg of Lamb
Chorizo sausage and dry sherry add spiciness and sweet and tangy notes to the lamb. Marinate it for a few hours before cooking, then roast it uncovered, which will help it develop a crunchy and delicious crust. Sweet green veggies, such as peas, are a great side dish for this lamb recipe.
26. Tuscan Style Roast Leg of Lamb
Citrus, garlic and rosemary are the principal flavors in this Tuscan-inspired recipe. The leg of lamb gets slathered in a fragrant paste containing the aforementioned ingredients, plus other seasoning, and is refrigerated for a few hours, or, even better, overnight, then is roasted to medium rare.
27. Ultimate Leg of Lamb Recipe
This recipe requires few ingredients and bets mainly on the meat itself, plenty of garlic and seasoning, and a delicious mint and yogurt dipping sauce that elevates and brightens the fatty meat. Roast the leg of lamb uncovered, to maximize the crunchiness factor, but pay attention to cooking times to avoid drying out the meat.
28. Stuffed Rotisserie Leg Of Lamb with Spinach, Feta & Walnuts
A creative take on the leg of lamb, this recipe uses spinach, feta, and walnuts as a stuffing (plus some other ingredients such as mint, parsley, and lemon zest). The end result is a meat thoroughly infused with flavor, elevated by the salty-nutty stuffing.
The recipe suggests using the rotisserie attachment, but if your oven doesn’t have one, you can braise the meat, turning it a few times during cooking, or you could use the oven fan with both upper and lower heat on.