How to Cook a Whole Leg of Lamb

Updated February 21, 2017

Leg of lamb is taken from a sheep in its first year, when the meat is at its most tender state. The cut consists of the entire hind quarter taken from one side of the lamb. Leg of lamb is pricey and must be prepared carefully to avoid ruining the meat. Lamb meat has a pleasant, earthy flavour that you can accentuate with common seasonings.

Make shallow cuts all over the fat of the leg of lamb using the tip of a sharp knife. The cuts should be no deeper than 1/8-inch and no longer than 1/2-inch.

Coat a roasting pan with an even layer of cooking spray and place the lamb into the pan.

Combine the garlic paste, salt, rosemary and pepper in a small bowl. Stir the seasonings with your fingers and rub over the exterior of the meat. Leave the leg of lamb to stand at room temperature for one hour.

Preheat an oven to 177 degrees Celsius.

Place the meat thermometer into the thickest part of the meat, without touching the bone. Bake the lamb in the preheated oven until the thermometer reads 54.4 degrees Celsius. This should take approximately one and one half hours.

Remove the meat from the oven and let stand for 25 minutes. The internal temperature will rise to approximately 60 degrees Celsius.

Pour the dry red wine into the roasting pan. Slice the lamb and serve with the red wine drizzled over the top.


Refrigerate leftover lamb, sliced, in freezer bags.

Things You'll Need

  • One 3.18kg. tied leg of lamb
  • Sharp knife
  • Roasting pan
  • Cooking spray
  • 5 tbsp garlic paste
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • Small bowl
  • Oven-safe meat thermometer
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
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