Reverse Seared Leg of Lamb

Jump to Recipe

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

Tender, juicy, garlic and herb crusted boneless leg of lamb is slow-roasted, then reverse seared to get a perfect crispy crunch.

A juicy Leg of Lamb delicately placed on a wooden cutting board.

Slow Roasted Leg of Lamb

This leg of lamb is melt in your mouth delicious, easy to nail the perfect medium rare, and loaded with herb and garlic flavor.

Cooking the lamb leg low and slow – then giving a brief resting period followed by a super hot sear in the oven gives us the most incredible results – you’ll never make leg of lamb another way, again!

A reverse seared leg of lamb on a cutting board.

How to Reverse Sear Leg of Lamb

To make this recipe, we will use the following ingredients:

  • Avocado or Olive Oil (2 tablespoons): The oil is used for searing the lamb before roasting. It helps create a flavorful crust on the outside of the meat and prevents it from sticking to the pan.
  • Garlic (1 head): Half of the garlic is minced and used to season the lamb, infusing it with a rich garlic flavor.
  • Coarse Salt (2 teaspoons): The coarse salt is used to season the lamb. It not only enhances the lamb’s natural flavor but also helps create a flavorful crust during the searing process.
  • Lightly Dried Italian Herbs Blend (1 tablespoon): The Italian herbs blend is a mixture of dried herbs such as oregano, thyme, basil, rosemary, and marjoram. It adds a delightful blend of herbal flavors to the lamb, enhancing its overall taste and aroma.
  • The other half of the garlic cloves is cut in half and inserted into small incisions made in the lamb. This adds a milder garlic essence to the meat as it roasts.

Once you’ve gathered your ingredients, we will use the following process:

  1. Prepare the Lamb: Preheat your oven to 275°F (135°C).
  2. Season the Lamb: In a small bowl, combine the minced garlic, coarse salt, and Italian herbs blend. Rub the garlic and herb mixture all over the lamb, making sure to get it into the incisions you made. This will infuse the lamb with flavor as it cooks.
  3. Sear the Lamb: Heat the avocado or olive oil in a large ovenproof skillet or roasting pan over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the lamb to the skillet. Sear the lamb on all sides until it develops a golden-brown crust, about 2-3 minutes per side.
  4. Roast the Lamb: After searing, remove the lamb from the skillet and place it on a rack set inside a roasting pan.
  5. Rest and Carve: Once the lamb reaches your desired doneness, remove it from the oven and let it rest for 15-20 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute and keeps the meat moist. Place the leg of lamb on a clean work surface. Use a sharp knife to make small incisions all over the lamb, about 1 inch apart.
  6. Optional Gravy: If desired, you can make a simple gravy using the pan drippings. Place the roasting pan with the drippings on the stovetop over medium heat. Add a little flour and whisk until it thickens into a gravy.
  7. Serve: Serve the reverse-seared leg of lamb slices with your choice of side dishes, such as roasted vegetables, mashed potatoes, or a fresh salad. Carve the lamb into slices and serve.
A Reverse Seared Leg of Lamb with herbs on a wooden cutting board.

Tips and Tricks to Perfect Slow Roasted Boneless Leg of Lamb

Choose a Quality Cut: Start with a high-quality leg of lamb. Look for meat that is well-marbled and has a nice layer of fat, which will help keep it moist and flavorful during slow roasting.

Marinating: Consider marinating the lamb overnight in your choice of herbs, spices, and seasonings. This allows the flavors to penetrate the meat deeply. Your mentioned avocado or olive oil, minced garlic, coarse salt, and Italian herbs blend make an excellent marinade.

Preheat the Oven: Ensure your oven is preheated to the correct temperature before placing the lamb inside. Slow roasting is typically done at a lower temperature, around 275°F (135°C) to 325°F (163°C), depending on your desired level of doneness.

Use a Meat Thermometer: Invest in a reliable meat thermometer to monitor the internal temperature of the lamb. This ensures you achieve the desired doneness without overcooking.

Searing the Lamb: Searing the lamb in a hot pan with oil before slow roasting can enhance the flavor and create a beautiful crust on the meat’s surface.

Resting Period: Allow the cooked lamb to rest for at least 15-20 minutes before carving. This rest period helps redistribute the juices within the meat, resulting in tender and juicy slices.

Carving Techniques: When carving the lamb, slice against the grain for tender and easy-to-eat pieces.

Accompaniments: Serve the slow-roasted leg of lamb with complementary sides like roasted vegetables, mashed potatoes, or a fresh mint sauce.

Basting: Consider basting the lamb with its own juices or a flavorful sauce during the slow-roasting process to keep it moist and add extra flavor.

Use a Roasting Rack: Placing the lamb on a roasting rack in the roasting pan elevates it, allowing air to circulate evenly around the meat for even cooking.

Tenting with Foil: If the lamb’s surface browns too quickly during roasting, tent it with aluminum foil to prevent over-browning while the inside continues to cook.

Time and Temperature: Slow-roasting times can vary based on the size of the lamb and your desired level of doneness. It’s essential to refer to a meat thermometer to ensure it’s cooked to your preference.

Rest in a Warm Place: After removing the lamb from the oven, keep it in a warm place while it rests. You can wrap it in foil to help retain its temperature.

FAQs

What’s the ideal internal temperature for slow-roasted lamb?

Rare: 120-125°F (49-52°C)
Medium Rare: 130-135°F (54-57°C)
Medium: 140-145°F (60-63°C)
Medium Well: 150-155°F (66-68°C)
Well Done: 160°F (71°C) and above

Should I sear the lamb before slow roasting?

Searing the lamb before slow roasting is optional but recommended. It can enhance flavor and create a nice crust on the meat’s surface. However, it’s not strictly necessary.

What are some popular marinades or rubs for slow-roasted leg of lamb?

Popular seasonings include garlic, rosemary, thyme, oregano, lemon zest, and olive oil. You can customize your marinade or rub based on your flavor preferences.

How long should I rest the lamb after roasting?

Allow the lamb to rest for at least 15-20 minutes after roasting. This helps the juices redistribute and keeps the meat moist.

What sides pair well with slow-roasted leg of lamb?

Common side dishes include roasted vegetables, mashed potatoes, mint sauce, couscous, or a fresh salad.

Can I slow roast lamb on a barbecue or smoker?

Yes, you can slow roast lamb on a barbecue or smoker with indirect heat. It can infuse a delicious smoky flavor into the meat.

How do I prevent the lamb from overcooking?

Use a meat thermometer to monitor the internal temperature. Remove the lamb from the oven when it reaches your desired level of doneness, and let it rest.

Can I freeze leftover slow-roasted lamb?

Yes, you can freeze leftover lamb for future use. Ensure it’s properly wrapped and sealed to maintain its quality.

What are some gravy or sauce options for lamb?

You can make a simple pan gravy using the drippings, stock, and a roux. Mint sauce, red wine reduction, or a yogurt-based sauce are also popular choices.

Reverse Seared leg of lamb slices on a wooden cutting board.

What to Serve With Reverse Seared Leg of Lamb

Roasted Vegetables: Roasted carrots, potatoes, asparagus, or Brussels sprouts pair wonderfully with lamb. Season them with herbs like rosemary, thyme, and garlic for added flavor.

Mashed Potatoes: Creamy mashed potatoes provide a comforting and satisfying accompaniment to lamb. You can make garlic mashed potatoes or add a hint of horseradish for extra zing.

Mint Sauce: Classic mint sauce or mint jelly is a traditional condiment for lamb. Its bright and refreshing flavor contrasts nicely with the richness of the meat.

Couscous: Fluffy couscous, seasoned with herbs and spices, is a light and versatile side that complements the lamb’s flavors.

Tabbouleh: This fresh and zesty Middle Eastern salad made with bulgur wheat, tomatoes, cucumbers, and herbs is a delightful option to balance the richness of the lamb.

Greek Salad: A Greek salad with feta cheese, olives, tomatoes, and cucumber in a tangy dressing provides a refreshing contrast to the lamb.

Yogurt Sauce: A creamy yogurt-based sauce with garlic, lemon juice, and herbs adds a cooling and flavorful element to your lamb dish.

Gravy: A simple lamb gravy made from the pan drippings can elevate the flavors and moisten the meat further.

Rice Pilaf: A fragrant rice pilaf with sautéed onions, herbs, and broth is a versatile and flavorful side dish.

Pita Bread: Warm pita bread or flatbreads can be served alongside lamb, allowing you to create your own delicious lamb wraps with fresh vegetables and sauces.

Fruit Chutney: A sweet and tangy fruit chutney, such as apricot or cranberry, can provide a delightful contrast to the savory lamb.

Wine: Pair your lamb with a suitable red wine, such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot, or a white wine like Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc, depending on your preference.

Try these other recipes:

A reverse seared leg of lamb with herbs on a wooden cutting board.

Reverse Seared Leg of Lamb Recipe

If you love this easy recipe please click the stars below to give it a five star rating and leave a comment! Pease also help me share on facebook and pinterest!

Follow on Instagram

Follow

Click here to view the web story for this recipe!

Reverse seared leg of lamb.

CONNECT WITH SWEET C’S!
Be sure to follow me on social media and get in on all the fun!

Only have 30 minutes to get dinner on the table? Sign up for my 30 minute dinner plans direct to your inbox!
Find and shop my favorite products in my Amazon storefront here!

Want to save this recipe?
Just enter your email and get it sent to your inbox! Plus you’ll get new recipes from us every week – and be sure to tag @sweetcsdesigns on social media – I love to see your creations!
Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.
Name
A seared leg of lamb roast is sitting on a wooden cutting board.

Reverse Seared Leg of Lamb

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 3 seconds
Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes 3 seconds

Reverse-seared leg of lamb is a culinary delight, offering a succulently tender interior and a beautifully caramelized crust, achieved by slow-roasting at a low temperature followed by a high-heat sear for a perfect finish.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons avocado or olive oil
  • 1 leg of lamb (approximately 4-5 pounds)
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1 tablespoon lightly dried Italian herbs blend
  • 1 head garlic, 1/2 cloves minced, 1/2 cloves cut in half

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 275°F (135°C).
  2. Place the leg of lamb on a clean work surface. Use a sharp knife to make small incisions all over the lamb, about 1 inch apart.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the minced garlic, coarse salt, and Italian herbs blend. Rub the garlic and herb mixture all over the lamb, making sure to get it into the incisions you made. This will infuse the lamb with flavor as it cooks.
  4. Heat the avocado or olive oil in a large ovenproof skillet or roasting pan over medium-high heat.
    Once the oil is hot, add the lamb to the skillet. Sear the lamb on all sides until it develops a golden-brown crust, about 2-3 minutes per side.
  5. After searing, remove the lamb from the skillet and place it on a rack set inside a roasting pan.
  6. Insert the halved garlic cloves into some of the incisions you made earlier.
  7. Roast the lamb in the preheated oven for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours, or until it reaches your desired level of doneness. Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature:
    130°F (54°C) for medium-rare
    140°F (60°C) for medium
    150°F (66°C) for medium-well
  8. Once the lamb reaches your desired doneness, remove it from the oven and let it rest for 15-20 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute and keeps the meat moist.
    Carve the lamb into slices and serve.
  9. If desired, you can make a simple gravy using the pan drippings. Place the roasting pan with the drippings on the stovetop over medium heat. Add a little flour and whisk until it thickens into a gravy.
  10. Serve the reverse-seared leg of lamb slices with your choice of side dishes, such as roasted vegetables, mashed potatoes, or a fresh salad.
Nutrition Information
Yield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 107Total Fat 8gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 5gCholesterol 20mgSodium 1076mgCarbohydrates 4gFiber 1gSugar 0gProtein 6g

Nutrition is automatically calculated by Nutritionix - please verify all nutrition information independently and consult with a doctor or nutritionist for any and all medical and diet advice.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

About Courtney

Courtney loves to share great wine, good food, and loves to explore far flung places- all while masting an everyday elegant and easy style at lifestyle blog Sweet C’s Designs. Sweet C's devoted to finding the best food and drinks you'll want to make or find, around the world!

You May Also Like

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

2 Comments

  1. I’ve always loved lamb, but never made a leg of lamb before. Anxious to try. Thanks for a recipe that’s making me hungry.

    1. If you haven’t made lamb before I recommend you use an internal probe thermometer that will alert you when it has reached the right internal temperature. It’s a great way to make sure you get a perfect result even the first time! I use this one.