Roasted Bone-In Lamb Leg with Rosemary and Lemon

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  • 1 bone-in leg of lamb (5 to 7 pounds), at room temperature
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 sprigs fresh rosemary, needles finely chopped
  • 2 lemons, zested and 1 juiced


Preheat the broiler.

Rub the leg of lamb all over with olive oil, about 3 tablespoons. Sprinkle the whole leg generously with salt and pepper. Wrap some foil around the tip of the bone, to prevent it from burning.

Place the lamb in a roasting pan fitted with a rack. Place the roasting pan in the oven and broil each side until golden brown, about 5 minutes on each side.

Remove the lamb from the oven and turn the oven to 325 degrees F. Loosely tent foil over the top of the whole lamb.

Return the lamb to the oven and cook to desired doneness, about 1 ½ hours for medium rare, or an internal temperature of 135 degrees F.

Rest the lamb for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing.

Nutritional Facts


Calories Per Serving607

Folate equivalent (total)57µg14%

Riboflavin (B2)0.6mg37.9%

Roasted Bone-In Lamb Leg with Rosemary and Lemon - Recipes

In the old days, braised lamb shoulder was considered a festive cut of meat. Leg of lamb was forbidden unless the sciatic nerve was removed. Today, most of us look upon leg of lamb as a festive cut, and the fattier, tougher shoulder has been relegated to stews. If you are not keeping strictly kosher, use a bone-in leg of lamb. A 5-to-6 pound bone-in leg will feed 6 people nicely. The amount of garlic and rosemary is up to you. Rosemary is a powerhouse of an herb and a little goes a long way, so be judicious. It is nice if you have a little lamb broth for pan juices to spoon over the roast meat. It can be thickened with a puree of roasted or braised garlic. Potatoes can be roasted in the pan along with the Preheat an oven to 375 degrees F. Make shallow slits all over the lamb and insert the garlic slivers and rosemary leaves into the slits.

In a bowl, stir together the lemon juice, olive oil, chopped garlic, and the 1 tablespoon chopped rosemary to use for basting the meat as it roasts.

Sprinkle the lamb with salt and pepper and place in a roasting pan. Roast, basting occasionally with the oil-lemon mixture, 1 to 1 1/4 hours, or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 120 degrees F.

While the lamb is roasting, make the sauce: In a saucepan boil the lamb broth until reduced to 1 1/4 cups, then season with a little garlic, chopped rosemary, and black pepper. Alternatively, thicken the reduced broth with the pureed garlic.

Remove the lamb from the oven and let sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Slice and serve on a warmed platter. Spoon the sauce over the top.

To use a boned leg of lamb, 4 to 4 1/2, pounds, combine about 2 tablespoons minced garlic, 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves, grated zest of 1 lemon, and an ample amount of freshly ground pepper. Rub this mixture on the inside of the lamb leg, roll up the leg, and tie securely with kitchen string. Make slits in the outside of the rolled leg and insert garlic slices and rosemary leaves into it as directed for the bone-in leg. Roast as directed, let rest for 10 to 15 minutes, snip the strings, slice, and serve on a warmed platter. Spoon the sauce of reduced lamb broth over the top.

Rosemary and Lemon Crown Roast of American Lamb

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (400, if using convection). Lay the racks on a cutting board with the bones pointing toward you, positioned so that it looks like one continuous rack. Face the fat cap UP. Where the two racks meet, tie the center bones together using one end of the twine. Now stand the racks up, bones pointing upward. Form the racks into a circle and string the butchers twine across the center of the circle to tie the opposite two bones together. Wrap the remaining length of twine, without cutting it, around the eye of the lamb meat 3 times, tightly. Now, the two racks should resemble a crown. Place the crown into a cast iron pan. Season the roast generously with kosher salt and pepper. Add the rosemary, sliced lemon, and shallots to the pan.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the lemon vinaigrette. Using 1/4 of the dressing, bathe the lamb. Place the pan into your hot oven 60-75 minutes. You’ll roast the lamb until the internal temp reaches 145 degrees F.

While the lamb roasts, bring the sweet potatoes and 2-3 quarts of salted water to a boil. Boil until tender, roughly 30 minutes. In a saucepan, melt the butter and roast the spices in it. Add the cooked sweet potatoes, cream, and Parmesan, then smash the potatoes.

Once the lamb is cooked to your desired temperature, remove from the oven to rest 5-10 minutes. Arrange the salad greens on a platter and dress with the vinaigrette. To serve the lamb, cut the butchers twine off the roast and slice the roast into chops. Serve with the salad and spicy sweet potatoes. Use the leftover vinaigrette as a dipping sauce.

  • 1 (5 to 6 pound) boneless leg of lamb (should come tied up, if not, have the butcher tie it for roasting)
  • 2 lemons (juiced)
  • 6 cloves garlic (crushed)
  • 1/4 cup fresh rosemary (chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt (as needed)

Combine all the ingredients, except for the olive oil and salt, in a large bowl.

Rub the leg of lamb thoroughly with the marinade until coated. You may even push some herbs and garlic into any cracks and crevices.

Place the lamb in a plastic bag, and marinade in the refrigerator overnight, or for at least 6 hours.

Remove the lamb from the fridge, and let sit out for 45 minutes to come up to room temperature.

Remove the lamb from the marinade and place on a rack in a large roasting pan. Rub with the olive oil, and season very generously with the salt. Keep the side with the most fat facing up.

Roast for 15 minutes in the hot oven to begin browning the surface.

Then reduce the oven to 315 F. and roast for approximately 10 minutes per pound (for a 5 to 6 pound leg this will be about an hour).

The best method for checking the doneness is using a digital meat thermometer and removing the lamb when the internal temp reaches 135 F. This will give you a nice pink and juicy roast. Let the lamb rest for at least 20 minutes before slicing. It's best sliced thin, against the grain of the meat.

    1. Place lamb, fat side up, in large roasting pan. Sprinkle with salt. Mix oil, minced rosemary, lemon peel and garlic in bowl. Rub over lamb.
    2. Preheat oven to 350°F. Roast lamb until thermometer inserted into thickest part registers 130°F for medium-rare, basting occasionally with pan juices, about 1hours. Transfer to platter. Tent loosely with foil let stand for 15 minutes.
    3. Spoon off fat from drippings in roasting pan add 1/4 cup water to pan. Place on burner over medium heat. Add any lamb juices from platter. Bring to boil, scraping up browned bits on bottom of pan. Season with salt. Keep warm.
    4. Cut lamb into thin slices arrange on platter. Pour pan juices over. Garnish with rosemary sprigs.

    Amazing! My husband added a teaspoon of champignon foud and a teaspoon of sherry to the rub and it made a huge difference (more depth to the flavor), truly the best lamb we have ever had! At our dinner party everyone was raving and asking for the recipe!

    This was really good, but I too had to look elsewhere on line for roasting times. I had a 3.5 lb boneless leg. Roasted btwn 325 and 350 for about an hour and 20 min. More done than Iɽ like, but my guests were happier. My 80-something mother had three helpings.

    Grisby again. The problem with this recipe is that the ingredient list neglects to specify wether or not the (weight of) lamb was bone-in. Any joint of meat will cook differently OFF the bone, or if it is boned and tied, etc. Shame on the editor for not catching that one. I'm sure it confused many cooks when the meat came out of the oven "blue".

    This recipe is very nice, but I grew up with Roast Lamb on many Sundays, and I prefer a more traditional approach. Forget the lemon and go for a thick blanket of dijon with garlic and rosemary spears piercing the skin. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm! :) As well as flavour this helps to keep in the moisture and keep it tender. Enjoy!

    I made this with lamb chops instead. It was pretty good. The lamb came out really tender, with a mild flavor. I like meats with a little more kick to em. I might add extra garlic and rosemary next time.

    this recipe produced the most flavorful lamb i have ever tasted---although i did make some changes. last time i used a simple rub, i felt the flavor didn't permeate the meat enough so this time i made a paste. i combined 7 cloves of garlic, 3 tbls rosemary, just a hint of cumin, the lemon zest and as much olive oil as was needed to my small bullet blender, until it came out to a thick green paste, which i then spread all over the salted lamb. i let this sit over night, and the next day, i scraped off the excess paste, leaving just a little on, and transfered to a roasting pan. i then sprinkled the lamb with more oil and lemon juice. it was delicious. superb. i used a syrah with the pan juices to make an exquisite sauce and even my father--who HATES lamb--had seconds. i had a 7 lb leg for 10 people, and there were NO leftovers. as for the cooking time, i simply did the "20 mins per pound" i found in The Cooks Bible, and it worked well. served with chive and garlic mashed potatoes, roasted asparagus, and french lentils for a truley memorable easter dinner.

    Brought to a multi-cultural crowd at a church supper. Success! The only change from the recipe was that I marinated it overnight. Thanks to a previous reviewer for her cooking times. Twenty minutes per pound, from room temperature, was perfect.

    I followed the recipe exactly, came out wonderful. Very Impressed.

    I tried this recipe on Easter Sunday using a 7 lb, bone-in leg of lamb &, like "A Cook from Milwaukee, WI on 04/11/04", it took about 2 hours. I only gave the recipe 3 out of 4 forks because although the it was easy & the result was delicious, I used it as a basic guide since I could see immediately that "1 hours" is a typo. So here's what I did: Roast lamb at 20 mins per lb, then let the roast stand on a platter, as the recipe indicates. This made a medium to medium-rare lamb w an internal temp of 150°F aprox. I roasted the lamb at 400°F for 15 mins, then reduced the oven to 350°F for the remainder of the cooking time. This seared the outside & created a nice crust. I used 6 cloves of garlic, since as a Sicilian, I consider 1 clove to be laughable. I didn't bother to reduce the pan juices - it wasn't necessary. I hope my post helps anyone looking for a new take on an already excellent recipe & Happy cooking!

    This was wonderfully easy (I made the rub the night before, and refrigerated the lamb with it on, for added flavor), and really, really good. I'll definitely do this one again. The only part I omitted was the deglazing of the pan. The juices on the platter were perfect without any addition. It took nearly 2 hours for my room temperature, nearly 6 lb. bone-in leg to get to 130, and in retrospect, I could have roasted it a little longer, as I like my lamb a little more well done. At this temp it was still quite pink in the center, but quite good nonetheless.

    Now, now. No name calling. None of us were born knowing how long to cook a leg of lamb. To those wondering about cooking times: A five pound leg of lamb takes approximately 1 1/2 hours to cook. It might help to think of it this way: the starting temperature of the meat (maybe 40 F) and the ending temperature of the meat (about 135 F) for medium rare. You need to raise 5 lbs by 90 degrees F. Figure one minute of cooking time for each degree of temperature, or, the old rule of thumb, 18 minutes per pound. The trouble is, there are so many variables: is the meat whole or butterflied, bone in or not, how cold is your refrigerator or how long has the meat sat at room temperature or how hot your oven. The easiest solution, estimate 18 minutes per pound in a 350 oven and use a meat thermometer. Remember the meat will rise in temperature about 8-10 degrees while it rests. You can fudge a little when you carve separate rare from well done and let folks choose the way the like it best. (Another tip, take a few minutes to make a wee chart of doneness lamb, rare, 135, beef, well done, 150, etc.)

    I'm not the best cook but, this is super easy to do and yields the most delicious results. I double the herb rub for extra flavour. Fantastic and makes really great lamb and mango chutney sandwiches the next day. You won't be sorry.

    The best word I can think of to describe this is luscious. I've made this a couple of times, and the second time I didn't serve it for a meal. Instead, I thin sliced it and used it for those little between-meal treats with some garlic-dill spread (homemade) or some English mustard. That way I got to enjoy it for almost a week!! Incidentally, the cooking times vary so much because the actual accuracy of the oven temps vary. I had mine tested when I bought it, and the oven was off by 60 degrees! If it is taking alot longer to cook than the hour directed, you can buy an inexpensive tester and check your oven temperature accuracy yourself. If it is off, you sure want to know about it!

    This was my first time roasting husband and guest could not stop eating it. I did not have fresh rosemary so I used dried and it was still amazing. I cooked it to 170 degrees which to most standards may have been too much but my meat thermometer doesn't even register as low as 130. Next time I will try cooking it a little less

    Very subtle flavorings contribute to an amazing lamb. Easy beyond belief and so tasty. I would have never guessed that something so simple would be so good. Our house guest ate away the leftovers before we could even get to them!!

    Very very tasty. I used a boneless leg of lamb (about 3-4 pounds) and it took about an hour to cook to 130 degrees. Very simple and very easy!

    Delicious, I served this to a dinner party of 10 who were stunned at how tender this lamb was. A leg this size did need to cook for

    2hours for a delicous pink and juicy center.

    We made this at Easter and it was unbeliveable. We all loved it,including my parents ( which is pretty amazing when you consider they are British and change is hard to accept. ) WE will have this again & again..

    What a great, easy recipe. Made this for a Passover seder and it garnered rave reviews. Followed the recipe pretty closely, adjusting amounts for a slightly larger leg of lamb. All told, took about 15 miutes of prep and minimal cleanup. This will have to go into the repetoire.

    This is incredibly delicious. I did as the previous reader suggested and added extra garlic and marinated overnight. Very tender! The cooking time does not seem accurate thought. My lamb was just under 7 lbs. and took 2 hrs/40 minutes. Worth the wait!

    This recipe is terrific. I used extra garlic, dried rosemary and the lemon zest adds a wonderful flavor. A big hit! I put on the herbs and oil the night before my party, then preset the oven to cook for 1 1/2 hours to serve at a lunch. I did find it took almost two hours to cook to med-rare for a 7 1/2 lb leg of lamb.

    I made this for my first Easter dinner. it was great. My dad, who loves lamb, said this was the best heɽ ever had. delicious and very very tender. I added some grated orange rind for a different twist. Full of flavor!

    Made it just like the recipe said. Wouldn't change a thing. Loved it.

    It was easy to make and tasted really good.

    I have made this several times for company-eeryone loves it. I use a ⟞-boned' leg. I put the herbs, fresh garlic and slices of fresh oranges and lemons in the meat then roll and tie. I let it marinate at least 24 hrs. w/ a bit of red wine. I also use the herb for a rub on the outside of the roast. The pan juices beg for roasted garlic mashed potatoes! I am making this again tomorrow night for a dinner party.

    Recipe Summary

    • ¼ cup honey
    • 2 tablespoons prepared Dijon-style mustard
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
    • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
    • 3 cloves garlic, minced
    • 5 pounds whole leg of lamb
    • 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt

    In a small bowl, combine the honey, mustard, rosemary, ground black pepper, lemon zest and garlic. Mix well and apply to the lamb. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator overnight.

    Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).

    Place lamb on a rack in a roasting pan and sprinkle with salt to taste.

    Bake at 450 degrees F (230 degrees C) for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) and roast for 55 to 60 more minutes for medium rare. The internal temperature should be at least 145 degrees F (63 degrees C) when taken with a meat thermometer. Let the roast rest for about 10 minutes before carving.

    Whole Roasted Leg of Lamb with Rosemary and Preserved Lemon

    Since this blog is focused on healthy comfort food, it’s very rare that I post full-frontal glamour shots of glistening hunks of red meat sitting in their juices. Some of you herbivores might even find these images offensive and disgusting. Sorry, Meatless Monday.

    Even though I don’t eat meat that often, I find there’s something very empowering in prepping and cooking it. When I was getting ready for Chef Race, I made friends with my local butcher Knickerbocker Meats and they let me come by to witness and participate in (emotionally, not physically, for insurance reasons) the breakdown of a 200 pound pig. I found it fascinating, even if today I couldn’t tell you how they did it if you paid me. It did, however, make me more handsy when it came to this whole pig come October.

    I’ve referenced my New Year’s Eve meal a lot in 2013 in the name of dramatic foreshadowing. Well, folks: today is the day I finally reveal the recipe at the centerpiece of the meal. And boy is it worth the wait.

    Since it was a special occasion, I indulged myself in my desire to take on a big bone-in hunk of meat, big price tag and all. It’s not that leg of lamb is that expensive compared to other cuts – especially lamb chops. But when you’re buying organic and you’re buying 10 pounds of it, these things add up. The price tag only made me want to treat my lamb leg with extra special ingredients and care.

    One of my favorite things about Knickerbocker is all the prepared food they offer. The owner, Mike, fancies himself more of a chef than a butcher and is always experimenting with different things in the back kitchen. One recent staple is the massive glass jar of preserved lemons on the counter. I usually have a few sitting in my fridge from Zamouri spices. But now that I can pick them up fresh, I use them even more in my cooking.

    I bought my NYE lamb fresh from another butcher on Martha’s Vineyard. But I brought with me a few preserved lemons from Knickerbocker and decided to use them as the base for my marinade. Together with heaps of rosemary from my mother’s garden, the preserved lemon crust had the most intoxicating aroma that infused every inch of that lamb leg. You didn’t even need a sauce to go with it.

    I don’t usually pat myself on the back. But in this case, bravo you.

    I made the lamb again for Oscar night so I could retrace my culinary steps and snap some pictures for the site. I can’t think of a better option for the centerpiece of your Easter table. Or if you’re just looking to embrace a little carne, bones and all, this dish is the perfect excuse to do so. Make friends with your butcher and have at it.

    Ingredients For Roast Leg Of Lamb

    • Bone-in leg of lamb
    • Herbs and spices: Kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, fresh rosemary
    • Liquid: Chicken stock (or vegetable stock), and a dry white wine, such as Pinot Blanc
    • Garlic, onions, lemon
    • Extra virgin olive oil

    You can absolutely make a roast boneless leg of lamb, but (1) it will not be nearly as flavorful — the bone adds so much flavor! — and (2) you’ll need to adjust the cook time. As a general rule, meats cooked on the bone take about 1 ½ – 2x as long to cook. There’s also a lower risk of overcooking the meat because, again, that bone keeps it nice and juicy!


    Heat oven to 425 degrees. Use a small sharp knife to make about a dozen incisions, each about 2 inches deep, through the fat that covers the top of the meat. Using a mortar and pestle or a blender, blend 2/3 of the anchovies (or 2/3 of the mustard if using), the rosemary leaves and the garlic cloves into a chunky paste. Using your fingers, press paste deeply into incisions.

    Mix remaining anchovies (or mustard) and the butter into a paste. Smear this mixture all over the surface of the roast. Season liberally with black pepper. (Do not add salt the anchovies are salty enough, and so is the mustard.) Place the lamb on a rack in a roasting pan, fat side up, and squeeze the lemon halves over. Pour the wine around the roast into the pan.

    Roast 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 degrees and roast until internal temperature reaches 130 to 135 degrees (for medium-rare), about another 60 to 90 minutes. Baste every 20 minutes or so with the wine and drippings in the pan, adding more wine as needed to keep the liquid from scorching. If possible, for the last 15 minutes of cooking, use convection or a broiler to crisp the fat on the roast.

    Remove pan from the oven, remove rack from the pan, and let the roast rest on the rack for at least 15 to 20 minutes in a warm place, tented with foil. The internal temperature will rise to about 140 to 145 degrees.

    To make sauce from the pan drippings, remove a few tablespoons of fat by tipping the pan and spooning off the top layer. Put the pan over medium heat until the liquid simmers. Taste the simmering liquid and whisk in more wine, 1/4 cup at a time, until the consistency and flavor are right. Do not let the mixture become too thick.

    Carve lamb into 1/2-inch-thick slices and arrange on a platter, decorated with rosemary sprigs. Serve with piping hot gravy.

    Prepare the Leg of Lamb

    Ask your butcher to trim the excess fat off of the lamb. I usually do this myself using a sharp knife. It takes a few minutes. Lamb has lots of fat and I like to leave most of it on.

    Then, I cut many slits all around the leg so that they can hold the garlic slivers. These will soften as the lamb cooks and will flavor the meat.

    Pour the marinade over the lamb and then add the seasonings. This can all be done the day before and the lamb can be refrigerated.

    Allow the meat to sit at room temperature for an hour before roasting.

    This seasoning combination of lemon juice, garlic, oregano, and rosemary add so much flavor. Marinating the day before will make the flavors even more robust. However, seasoning the lamb just before roasting will produce a very flavorful leg of lamb.

    Leg Of Lamb


    Rate or Review

    Reviews (7 reviews)

    This was excellent. My teen daughter nearly licked her plate!
    I failed to prep the leg of lamb the day before so I did it in the morning. Instead of the rosemary sprigs, I followed the advice of an earlier reviewer and made a paste in the food processor with garlic, rosemary, salt, pepper, Dijon, and evoo. I cut the fat cap in a traditional crosshatch and smeared the paste all over it. I added carrots and parsnips in with the potatoes and roasted as directed.
    Served with a green salad and Oregon Pinot Noir. Really easy and worthy of a special occasion.

    I used a 4 Lb semi-boneless leg. Inserted the Garlic slivers. Slathered Dijon Mustard and Olive Oil over the entire leg. Made a Herb rub with Rosemary, Sage ,Oregano, Onion Powder and fresh ground Black Pepper. Coated the entire leg and set in fridge overnight. Sliced potatoes into 1/2" rounds with Olive Oil, fresh Pepper and a handful of fresh Parsley. Roasted the Lamb for about 1 3/4 Hours. The potatoes were infused with the delightful flavors of the rub and Lamb. Wonderful. Enjoyed with French Syrah wine.

    I decided just this morning to make this for dinner tonight. I didn't have "overnight" at my disposal, but the flavors of garlic and rosemary still permeated the meat beautifully. I also didn't have lavender so I substituted Herbs de Provence. This is one delicious lamb recipe. And the potatoes are killer!

    This was so good. the garlic, rosemary, and lavender blended together with the lamb perfectly. I cut off all the fat first, rubbed the lamb with olive oil, and then added the garlic and rosemary. I covered it with additional garlic and rosemary, and fresh lavender. My guests loved it!

Watch the video: Roast Leg of Lamb with Rosemary and Garlic. Food Channel L - A New Recipe Every Day!


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