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Lamb Shanks Recipe: A Delicious and Tender Dish for Lamb Lovers

Lamb Shanks

In this article, we will explore the delightful world of lamb shanks and provide you with a step-by-step recipe to create a mouthwatering and tender dish. Lamb shanks are known for their rich flavors and succulent meat that falls off the bone. Whether you are a seasoned cook or a beginner in the kitchen, this recipe will guide you in preparing a satisfying meal that will impress your family and friends.



Lamb has been a popular source of protein for centuries, and lamb shanks have been enjoyed as a delicious cut of meat for just as long. The history of lamb shanks can be traced back to ancient times when sheep were domesticated and bred for their meat and wool.

Lamb shanks were particularly valued due to their unique flavor and tenderness. In many cultures, lamb shanks were considered a delicacy and reserved for special occasions and feasts. The slow cooking method was often used to transform the tough and sinewy shanks into a melt-in-your-mouth dish.

Different regions around the world have their own variations of lamb shank recipes. For example, in Mediterranean cuisine, lamb shanks are often seasoned with aromatic herbs, spices, and slow-cooked in a tomato-based sauce. In Middle Eastern cuisine, lamb shanks are frequently marinated in a blend of spices and slow-cooked until the meat is tender and flavorful.

In recent years, lamb shanks have gained popularity in modern culinary trends. Their robust flavor and versatility make them a favorite among chefs and home cooks alike. The slow cooking process allows the flavors to develop, resulting in a dish that is rich, tender, and full of depth.


Preparation15 minutes
Marinating1 hour
Searing10 minutes
Braising2 hours
Resting10 minutes
Total3 hours 35 minutes

Note: The above times are approximate and may vary depending on your cooking equipment and preferences. It’s important to monitor the lamb shanks throughout the cooking process to ensure they are cooked to your desired tenderness.


Lamb shanks2
Olive oil2 tablespoons
Onion1 medium-sized
Garlic cloves4
Tomato paste2 tablespoons
Red wine1 cup
Beef or vegetable broth2 cups
Fresh rosemary2 sprigs
Fresh thyme2 sprigs
SaltTo taste
Black pepperTo taste

Note: The quantities mentioned are approximate and can be adjusted according to personal preference. Feel free to add or modify ingredients based on your taste and dietary restrictions.


1. Preparing the Lamb Shanks

  • Pat the lamb shanks dry with paper towels and season them generously with salt and black pepper.

2. Searing the Lamb Shanks

  • Heat olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
  • Add the lamb shanks to the pot and sear them until browned on all sides, about 2 minutes per side.
  • Remove the lamb shanks from the pot and set them aside.

3. Sauteing the Aromatics

  • In the same pot, add the chopped onion, carrots, and garlic cloves.
  • Cook over medium heat until the vegetables are softened and lightly browned, about 5 minutes.

4. Braising the Lamb Shanks

  • Return the lamb shanks to the pot with the sauteed vegetables.
  • Add tomato paste and stir to coat the ingredients.
  • Pour in red wine and simmer for a few minutes to allow the alcohol to evaporate.
  • Add beef or vegetable broth, fresh rosemary, and fresh thyme to the pot.
  • Bring the liquid to a simmer.

5. Slow Cooking the Lamb Shanks

  • Cover the pot with a lid and reduce the heat to low.
  • Let the lamb shanks simmer gently for about 2 hours or until the meat is tender and easily falls off the bone.
  • Occasionally check and stir the lamb shanks to ensure even cooking and prevent sticking.

6. Resting and Serving

  • Once the lamb shanks are cooked, remove them from the pot and let them rest for about 10 minutes.
  • Skim off any excess fat from the braising liquid.
  • Serve the lamb shanks with the braising liquid and the cooked vegetables.
  • Optionally, garnish with fresh herbs for an extra touch of freshness.

Enjoy the tender and flavorful lamb shanks with your favorite side dishes!

Equipment Required

Nutrition Information

Serving Size1 lamb shank
Total Fat25g
Saturated Fat10g

Note: The nutrition information provided is an estimate and may vary based on the specific ingredients used and any modifications made to the recipe.


  • Choosing Lamb Shanks: Look for lamb shanks with a deep red color and marbling. This indicates good quality and tenderness.
  • Marinating: For an extra layer of flavor, marinate the lamb shanks in a mixture of herbs, spices, and olive oil for a few hours or overnight before cooking.
  • Slow Cooker Option: If you prefer, you can transfer the seared lamb shanks and sauteed vegetables to a slow cooker. Cook on low heat for 6-8 hours or until the meat is tender.
  • Adding Vegetables: Feel free to add other vegetables such as potatoes, celery, or parsnips to the pot for added flavor and texture.
  • Spice it Up: Customize the flavor profile by adding spices like cumin, paprika, or coriander to the braising liquid.

Pros & Cons

✔️ Tender and flavorful meat❌ Long cooking time
✔️ Rich and robust flavors❌ Requires patience and attention
✔️ Versatile and customizable❌ May require special ingredients
✔️ Impressive and satisfying dish❌ Potential for high fat content
✔️ Leftovers can be used in various❌ Requires proper handling and


In conclusion, the lamb shanks recipe is a delightful and rewarding dish that promises to impress your taste buds and satisfy your cravings. The tender and flavorful meat, accompanied by rich and robust flavors, creates a culinary experience that is sure to leave a lasting impression on your palate.

While the recipe requires some time and patience due to the long cooking process, the end result is well worth the wait. The slow braising method ensures that the meat becomes incredibly tender, allowing it to effortlessly fall off the bone. The versatility of the recipe allows you to customize it to your liking, adding your favorite herbs, spices, and vegetables to enhance the flavors.

It’s important to note that while the lamb shanks recipe offers a delicious and indulgent experience, it is essential to handle and store the ingredients properly, especially when it comes to managing the fat content. Additionally, some special ingredients might be required, depending on your pantry, but the investment is well worth the exceptional flavors that await.

By trying out this recipe, you have the opportunity to create an impressive and satisfying dish that will leave your guests in awe. The leftovers can also be repurposed into various other meals, providing you with even more culinary delights.

So, don’t hesitate to embark on this culinary adventure and treat yourself to the exquisite taste of lamb shanks. Get your ingredients ready, follow the step-by-step instructions, and enjoy the tender, succulent meat that melts in your mouth. It’s time to unleash your inner chef and indulge in the flavors that this lamb shanks recipe has to offer.


  • 🐑 Fact 1: Lamb Shanks – A Medieval Delicacy
    • Did you know that lamb shanks have been enjoyed since medieval times? This delectable cut of meat has stood the test of time and continues to be a favorite today.
  • 🌍 Fact 2: Lamb Shanks Across Cultures
    • Lamb shanks are not limited to any particular cuisine. They are featured in various culinary traditions, including Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, and Asian cuisines, each offering their unique flavors and cooking techniques.
  • 🕰️ Fact 3: The Art of Slow Cooking
    • The slow cooking method used for lamb shanks is not just about tenderness; it’s an art form. Slow cooking allows the flavors to develop and meld together, resulting in a dish that is rich, flavorful, and worth the wait.
  • 🍷 Fact 4: Wine and Dine with Lamb Shanks
    • Lamb shanks and red wine make a perfect pairing. The deep, rich flavors of the meat complement the robust and complex notes of red wine, enhancing the overall dining experience.
  • 🍽️ Fact 5: Leftover Lamb Shanks Make for Creative Meals
    • Don’t let leftovers go to waste! Shredded leftover lamb shanks can be used in various creative dishes such as lamb tacos, sandwiches, or even added to pasta for an extra burst of flavor.


Can I use lamb shoulder instead of lamb shanks?

While lamb shanks are the ideal choice for this recipe due to their tenderness and flavor, you can substitute lamb shoulder if needed. Keep in mind that the cooking time may vary, and the shoulder cut may require longer braising to achieve the desired tenderness.

Can I prepare lamb shanks in a pressure cooker?

Yes, you can use a pressure cooker to prepare lamb shanks. Follow the same steps for searing and sauteing before transferring everything to the pressure cooker. Cook on high pressure for approximately 40-50 minutes, or according to your pressure cooker’s instructions.

What can I use instead of red wine?

If you prefer not to use red wine, you can substitute it with an equal amount of beef or vegetable broth, or even grape juice mixed with a splash of vinegar to add a hint of acidity.

Can I make this recipe ahead of time?

Yes, you can make the lamb shanks ahead of time. Once cooked, allow them to cool and store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat gently on the stovetop or in the oven before serving.

Can I freeze leftover lamb shanks?

Absolutely! You can freeze leftover lamb shanks for future enjoyment. Ensure they are completely cooled, then store them in a freezer-safe container or bag for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and reheat as desired.

How do I skim off excess fat from the braising liquid?

To remove excess fat from the braising liquid, you can use a fat separator or skim it off with a spoon. Alternatively, refrigerate the liquid until the fat solidifies on top, then remove it with a spoon before reheating.

Can I use dried herbs instead of fresh ones?

Yes, you can use dried herbs if fresh ones are not available. However, keep in mind that dried herbs are more concentrated in flavor, so use about half the amount indicated for fresh herbs in the recipe.

Can I add more vegetables to the recipe?

Absolutely! Feel free to add additional vegetables such as potatoes, celery, or bell peppers to the pot for added flavor and variety. Adjust the cooking time accordingly to ensure all the vegetables are cooked to your desired tenderness.

How do I know when the lamb shanks are done cooking?

The lamb shanks are done when the meat is tender and easily pulls away from the bone. You can check by gently inserting a fork or knife into the meat. If it easily goes through and the meat falls off the bone, they are ready.

Can I use the leftover braising liquid as a sauce?

Yes, the braising liquid can be used as a flavorful sauce. Strain the liquid to remove any solids, then simmer it in a saucepan until it thickens slightly. Adjust the seasoning if needed and drizzle it over the lamb shanks when serving.