HOW TO COOK THE BEST LAMB CHOPSLamb chops have a uniquely rich and savory flavor, and though they’re fancy enough for any grand dinner party, they also add variety to weeknight meals.
SERVES: 4 Makes 8 chops
PREP TIME: 8 minutes
COOK TIME: 12 minutes
- 8 lamb loin or rib chops
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves, and 1 large sprig
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon Red Hot Chilli Powder
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 small shallot, finely chopped
- 1 large garlic clove, smashed
- ½ cup dry white wine or low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon
- Take out the lamb chops from the refrigerator and massage the chopped thyme, ½ teaspoon of salt, and red chili powder into the meat. Keep the lamb chops at room temperature for 5 minutes.
- Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Add the lamb chops and cook until a rich, brown crust forms on the bottom, 4 to 6 minutes (if you're using thicker lamb chops, cooking them could take up to 10 minutes).
- Flip the lamb chops and continue to cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat registers 145°F, 4 to 6 minutes more.
- Transfer the lamb chops to a plate and cover them with aluminum foil. Remove all except about 2 tablespoons of the rendered fat.
- Reduce the heat to medium. Add the garlic, thyme, and shallot to the pan and cook until the shallot softens and begins to brown for about a minute.
- Deglaze with the wine or broth and lemon juice, scraping any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
- Cook until reduced by half, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the lemon, the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt, and 2 tablespoons butter.
- Cook until the butter melts and the sauce thickens slightly, for about 1 minute.
- Taste and season with more salt and pepper if needed.
- Pour the sauce over the lamb chops and serve immediately.
Tips for storing lamb chops
- Cook ahead of time – Lamb chops can be seasoned with salt, pepper, thyme, and lemon zest up to 1 hour in advance and refrigerated.
- Storage: You can easily refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Lamb can be traditionally roasted but tastes best when it is pot-roasted, slow-roasted, or braised with liquid until the meat literally falls apart. Lamb Shoulder can also be diced for stewing or cut into shoulder chops.
Lamb chops and steaks should ideally be cooked over a high heat quickly, and they can be quickly roasted too, depending on how thick the meat is.
Cooking temperature is the most critical aspect of cooking lamb chops. Undercooking even tender lamb chops can make them unpleasantly chewy, and overcooking will lead to tough and dried meat. Ideally, lamb rib chops should be cooked to about 130°F, while loin chops are better cooked at 135°F or even 140°F.
Both grilling and frying are excellent methods of cooking lamb chops. You can grill or fry seasoned lamb chops with a little butter and olive oil, on high heat for a few minutes on each side.
Marinating. This is the simple and best way to make tougher meats such as goat, mutton, or lamb tender. Marinating lamb meat gives it a delightful flavor.
Spices that pair well with lamb include:
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