Slow Roasted Leg of Lamb

By: Cassy Joy Garcia

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This Slow Roasted Leg of Lamb is seasoned with classic Greek flavors of oregano, rosemary, lemon juice, white wine, and plenty of garlic, resulting in a perfectly-cooked tender lamb that is perfect for any special occasion!

Slow Roasted Leg of Lamb

Mary Heffernan of 5 Marys Farms recently sent me the MOST special package of cuts from her family's farm! Included, was a bone-in lamb leg. I hadn't cooked lamb before and wanted to make sure that my recipe was well-researched, thought-out, and deserving of such a special cut of meat. After our research, I settled on a Greek-style, slow-roasted leg of lamb. The end product was nothing short of totally epic, y'all.

Here's how it starts: pierce your leg of lamb so that you can slide 20 pieces of garlic (10 cloves, cut in half length-wise) inside. Roast at high heat for a bit, then lower heat for about 3 hours. A mixture of white wine, lemon juice, broth, and fresh herbs are added in at strategic times. This method yielded the MOST DELICIOUS lamb I have ever, ever enjoyed.

For more about 5 Marys Farms, click HERE to listen to the podcast episode where I interviewed Mary herself! They're an incredible family doing some incredible work.

Slow Roasted Leg of Lamb

Ingredients

The ingredient list is fairly simple here. Here's what you'll need: 

  • Bone-in Lamb Leg Roast – to start, you’ll need to grab 1 (5-6 pound) bone-in lamb leg roast. 
  • Garlic Cloves – 10 cloves garlic (sliced in half) really infuses such a delicious flavor into the lamb.
  • Olive Oil – 2 tablespoons of olive oil helps to brown the outside of the lamb just a tad.
  • Sea Salt + Pepper – to season the lamb roast, you’ll need 1 tablespoon of sea salt + a ½ teaspoon of pepper.
  • Fresh Herbs – 4 sprigs of fresh rosemary, 4 sprigs of fresh oregano, and 4 sprigs of fresh thyme add the most delicious, herby flavor here.
  • Lemon Juice – a ½ cup (8 tablespoons) of lemon juice adds a touch of acidity and brightness. We recommend going with fresh lemon juice, so you’ll need about 4 whole lemon’s-worth of juice.
  • White Wine – you’ll also want to grab 1 cup of white wine. If you’d prefer to omit the wine, simply swap in an additional ½ cup of lemon juice and ½ cup of chicken broth in its place.
  • Chicken Broth – lastly, you’ll need 1 cup of chicken broth!
Slow Roasted Leg of Lamb

How to Make Slow Roasted Leg of Lamb

This slow roasted leg of lamb recipe is really simple but makes for a dinner that is sure to impress. Here's how you'll pull it off:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°F.
  2. Prepare the lamb roast – make 20 slits in the skin of the lamb roast, insert the garlic clove halves into the slits, then rub the leg with the olive oil, and liberally season it with salt and pepper.
  3. Bake – place the roast in a large, heavy-bottomed pot with a lid and bake uncovered at 450°F for 30 minutes, fat-side up.
  4. Add the rest of the ingredients and bake – add the thyme, rosemary, oregano, lemon juice, wine, and broth, then cover and bake at 350°F for 3 hours. Check toward the end to make sure that the liquids haven't all dried up. If they have, add more broth as needed.
  5. Remove lid and bake – remove the lid, and bake for additional 30 minutes at 350°F or until the top of the lamb roast is browned. If liquid has dried, add more broth.
  6. Serve – serve with additional lemons, skim pan juices for the sauce (skimming off fat) and season to taste with additional salt, pepper, and lemon juice.
Slow Roasted Leg of Lamb

FAQs

How do you cook lamb so it’s tender?

We prefer to do a combination of covered and uncovered baking so that the outside of the lamb can get nice and browned while the inside stays super tender and juicy.

What is the best temperature to cook a leg of lamb?

We start our lamb at 450°F to help it brown, then lower the temperature to 350°F after about 30 minutes to help it get more tender.

How long should you cook a leg of lamb?

We do a combination of covered and uncovered cooking here – about an hour total (30 minutes at the beginning and 30 minutes at the end) of uncovered cooking time and 3 hours of covered cooking time.

Can I make leg of lamb in a slow cooker?

Sure! I would recommend searing it for 3-4 minutes per side over medium-high heat in a heavy-bottomed pan first, then transferring to the slow cooker. The lamb would take 4-6 hours on high or 8 hours on low in the slow cooker. 

What to Serve with Roasted Lamb

This slow-roasted leg of lamb is absolutely delicious alongside either mashed or roasted potatoes or this creamy mushroom risotto. Add a simple green salad and you’ve got a complete, really delicious meal!

Print

Slow Roasted Leg of Lamb

  • Author: Amber Goulden
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 4 hours 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours 45 minutes
  • Yield: 68 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1, 5-6 pound, bone-in lamb leg roast
  • 10 cloves garlic, sliced in half
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 4 sprigs fresh oregano
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1 cup chicken broth

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 F.
  2. Make 20 slits in the skin of the lamb roast and insert garlic clove halves. Rub the leg with the olive oil, then liberally season with salt and pepper.
  3. Place the roast in a large, heavy-bottomed pot with a lid and bake uncovered at 450 F for 30 minutes, fat-side up.
  4. Add thyme, rosemary, oregano, lemon juice, wine, and broth, cover, and bake at 350 F for 3 hours. Check toward the end to make sure that the liquids haven't all dried up. If it has, add more broth as needed.
  5. Remove cover, bake for additional 30 minutes at 350 F, or until top is browned. If liquid is dried, add more broth.
  6. Serve with additional lemons, skim liquids for the sauce (skimming off fat) and season to taste with additional salt, pepper, and lemon juice.

Notes

This leg of lamb is slow roasted with classic Greek flavors of oregano, rosemary, lemon juice, white wine, and plenty of garlic, resulting in a perfectly-cooked tender lamb that is perfect for any special occasion!

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Recipe rating

  1. Marijke says:

    How much did your leg of lamb weigh?

  2. cakespy says:

    oh my god, this looks PERFECT. I love lamb.

  3. Albert Bevia says:

    This roasted leg of lamb sounds absolutely delicious, I love all the fresh herbs that you used in this recipe…impressive

  4. Jennifer says:

    It looks like this was a boneless leg, is that right?

  5. Crystal Roulston says:

    I have made this recipe every week for the last 6 weeks. Cannot get enough of it! The only difference is after browning it in the oven I pop it in the slow-cooker. I have also used lamb shoulder which is super tender and delicious. I love the zest that the lemon brings. Thanks for the recipe.

    1. Jessica says:

      How long did you give it in the slow cooker?

  6. Fran Potter says:

    One of the best recipes I’ve tried on pinterest.

  7. Jim says:

    Your directions say to use a heavy pot with a cover but to cook uncovered. but down further it says to uncover, so I’m assuming we are to cover in the beginning, correct?

  8. Emily says:

    Could you use a boneless lamb here? Also, do you think dry herbs would work at all? Thank you!

    1. Brandi Schilhab says:

      Yes to both, Emily! Enjoy!!

  9. Monique O says:

    Super tasty & easy to make!

    1. Brandi Schilhab says:

      So glad you enjoyed this, Monique!

  10. Diane says:

    I have a 3 pound leg of lamb with bone in. How long should I cook. Lower bone section removed.

    1. Brandi Schilhab says:

      I’d cook it for 2-2.5 hours (rather than 3), until the internal temperature reaches 130°F for medium doneness. Enjoy!

  11. Barbara says:

    So I got everything ready and found I don’t have white wine, will just chicken broth be ok?

    1. Brandi Schilhab says:

      Yes, totally fine, Barbara!

  12. Danny Togo says:

    Hi there,
    Just wanted to say thank you for this recipe! It is a taste sensation and is now the only way I do lamb! Thanks again

    1. Brandi Schilhab says:

      Wahoo! So glad you love it, Danny!

  13. Diane says:

    Made it with leg of lamb fir my neighbour and she loved it! Today I am making it with a lamb shoulder – hope it will be as tender and tasty as my prior attempt!

    1. Brandi Schilhab says:

      Wahoo! So glad it was a hit!

  14. Mary says:

    Is right side up fat side up?

    1. Brandi Schilhab says:

      Yes, that’s correct! I’ll make that more clear in the instructions now!

  15. K.C. Werthmann says:

    If my lamb is only 2.56 lbs, should I just decrease cooking time?

  16. Angela says:

    Hi,
    This recipes sounds delicious. I’m trying to figure out if the lamb leg will fit in my Dutch oven. About how long is the leg and what size pan/pot did you use? Thank you,
    Angela

    1. Brandi Schilhab says:

      Cassy uses a 6-quart dutch oven for this recipe, Angela! The length of the leg depends on where you get it from/what your butcher has, but they’re typically somewhere around 9 inches long.

  17. Patty says:

    Looks like a great recipe. Can it be used with a boneless lamb roast?

  18. Patty says:

    Looks like a great recipe. Can it be used with a boneless lamb roast? Can I use Herbes De Provence in place of fresh herbs?

    1. Brandi Schilhab says:

      Yes to both, Patty! Enjoy!!

  19. Alex says:

    Followed the recipe to a tee and my lamb is literally rock hard and dry. Do not follow this recipe it does not work. I wasted $52 and my Easter meal was ruined.

    1. Brandi Schilhab says:

      Oh no, Alex. We’re so sorry it didn’t work out. This recipe has been tested many times, so I’m not sure what went wrong. Again, we are so sorry that this was your experience!

  20. Elaine says:

    I have used this recipe several times and is now the only way I cook a leg of lamb . It turns out just as you explain and is enjoyed by everyone i have served it to. Thanks for a truly great Greek method.

    1. Brandi Schilhab says:

      That’s amazing, Elaine. Thank you so much for sharing this with us. We’re so glad you love it!