Braised Lamb Shanks – fall-off-the-bone tender lamb shanks braised in a rich, deeply flavored red wine sauce. A restaurant-quality family dinner at a fraction of the cost you’d pay at expensive restaurants. Hearty, delicious, and very satisfying!
How’s your current situation at home? I hope you still have some wine to get you through the coming days and also some of it to add flavor for today’s mighty delicious family weeknight meal.
Making delicious meaty dinner is my kind of jam. I just love all sorts of meat! But when I saw these lamb shanks on sale weeks before the quarantine, I snagged some thinking I could totally make something delicious out of it. And I did!
This Braised Lamb Shank recipe is the closest thing you can get from those at the restaurants except that they aren’t that expensive. It’s the perfect Sunday afternoon dinner, Easter main dish or even on regular nights. This the kind of dish where you just pop it in the oven while enjoying a glass of your favorite wine!
What is Lamb Shank?
A lamb shank is one of those inexpensive cuts of meat that begs to be slowly cooked for fall-off-the-bone tender meat. It comes from the leg part of the lamb; just between the hoof and the knee. Since it’s one of the most worked up muscles, these shanks are rather tough yet the most flavorful when they’re cooked.
How To Cook Lamb Shanks?
This lamb shank recipe is easier than you think it is. You don’t need to be an experienced cook to make the most out of it. Very straightforward, flavorful and hearty meal ready to WOW your family or guests.
- Sear the shanks over the stovetop.
- Make the sauce by sauteing the veggies then deglazing it with red wine and beef broth. Then put all the shanks back into the pan.
- Braise the shanks for 2-3 hours in the oven.
That’s it! The waiting game could probably be the hardest part of cooking these lamb shanks.
Lamb Cooking Time
Working on a tough cut of meat means browning it first on a stovetop before anything else. This is also to create a wonderful base of flavor just like what I did with this Brown Stew Chicken and Jamaican Oxtail Stew.
But the real deal is when you braised the lamb meat in the oven for about 2-3 hours in a succulent, deeply-flavored red wine sauce.
Slow cooking and braising the lamb for hours and hours ensures for soft succulent meat brimming with flavors in every inch of it.
What Wine is Best for Braising?
Inspired by this classic French Coq au Vin recipe, I went with a dry red wine such as Burgundy for that amazing complex flavors. But if you can’t find a Burgundy wine, you can opt for wines made with Pinot Noir grapes. Last resort would be replacing the wine, with the same amount of beef broth.
What To Serve with Braised Lamb Shanks?
For this lamb shank recipe, I love it paired with creamy starchy side dishes. I love it with plain warm white rice or any of the following below.
- Roast Garlic Mash Potatoes
- Grits Recipe
- Cornmeal Coco (a Caribbean-style Polenta)
- Cheese Grits
- Scalloped Potatoes
More Braised Meat Recipes
How To Make Braised Lamb Shanks
Preheat oven at 350 F. Season shanks with salt and pepper. Set aside. In a large cast-iron or dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Sear the shanks in the hot oil, turning to brown all sides. Remove and set aside.
Add onion, carrot, and celery to the same pan and cook, stirring frequently until onions are wilted and lightly browned. Stir in garlic, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf and tomato paste and continue cooking for about a minute or 2. Pour in wine.
Then stock. followed by Worcestershire sauce and bouillon powder. Lightly season with salt and pepper. Remember you can adjust salt as you go halfway through cooking. Return lamb shanks back to the pot, bring to a boil, then cover with lid and place in the oven.
Allow to braise slowly for 2-3 hours until the lamb is soft and succulent. Check on the lamb shanks once or twice adding more stock, if needed. Turn oven off, remove and serve.
Braised Lamb Shanks
- 4 lamb shanks , fat trimmed off
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons (28ml) cooking oil
- 1 large onion , diced
- 1 large carrot , peeled and diced
- 2 large celery stalk , chopped (about ½ cup)
- 1 tablespoon (8g) minced garlic
- 3 teaspoons (2.4g) minced thyme
- 2 teaspoons (2.24g) minced rosemary
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tablespoons (32g) tomato paste
- 1 cup (235ml) dry red wine , substitute with extra beef broth
- 2 -3 cups (500ml-750ml) beef broth or water
- 1 tablespoon (17g) Worcestershire sauce
- 1-2 teaspoons (2g-4g) beef bouillon powder (optional)
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven at 350 F. Season shanks with salt and pepper. Set aside.
- In a large cast iron or dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Sear the shanks in the hot oil, turning to brown all sides. Remove and set aside.
- Add onion, carrot, and celery to the same pan and cook, stirring frequently until onions are wilted and lightly browned.
- Stir in garlic, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf and tomato paste and continue cooking for about a minute or 2.
- Pour in wine and stock, followed by worcestershire sauce and bouillon powder. Lightly season with salt and pepper. Remember you can adjust salt as you go halfway through cooking.
- Return lamb shanks back to the pot, bring to a boil, then cover with lid and place in the oven. Allow to braise slowly for 2-3 hours until the lamb is soft and succulent. Check on the lamb shanks once or twice adding more stock, if needed.
- Turn oven off, remove and serve.
Tips & Notes:
- You may sub red wine with the same amount of beef broth.
- Cooked lamb shanks will last in the fridge for 3-5 days in an airtight container. Or freeze any leftover for 2-3 months.
- Please keep in mind that nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on products used.
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