Learn how to cook lamb shoulder in the oven; this is an easy recipe for oven-slow-cooked lamb. You will only need the meat, salt, and pepper.
Learn how to cook lamb shoulder in the oven; this is the easiest method of roasting a shoulder of lamb.
This is a one-ingredient recipe, not counting the salt and pepper, which guarantees perfect results and gives you the freedom of choosing any kind of sides you can think of to go with the slow-cooked lamb shoulder.
This lamb recipe is so simple! Just the meat, salt, and pepper, the oven, and about 3 hours of cooking time. Fall-off-the-bone meat, tender and delicate, so delicious you will probably crave this roasted shoulder of lamb again by the end of the week. Minimal effort for exquisite results!
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Prepare the lamb shoulder for roasting
- First of all, remove the meat from the fridge about one hour before cooking so that it can reach room temperature.
- Trim all excess fat, I do trim a lot of it, and I also remove the thick layer of skin on top if it's still there.
- Remove the silver skin pieces on the underside. Use a small sharp knife to do that.
- Rub the meat well with fine sea salt or Kosher salt and ground black pepper. Alternatively, you can use our Lamb Seasoning.
How to cook a lamb shoulder in the oven?
- Prepare the shoulder as instructed above.
- Rub with salt and pepper.
- Roast in the oven as indicated below.
- Rest for 15-20 minutes before carving.
Cooking times for lamb shoulder
- My shoulder of lamb weighed about 4 lbs/ 1,7kg this time. But you really don't have to be precise here; anything from 3.5 - 4.5 lbs/1,5 -2 kg will do, and the cooking time will not change.
- For a piece larger than 4.5 lbs/2 kg, add a bit of extra roasting time, about 30 minutes for any extra 2 lbs/ 1kg.
- Slow-cooking meat in the oven is forgiving; more or fewer grams here and there will not matter much, and the meat will be meltingly soft at the end of the cooking process, a real joy to eat.
- Roast the lamb shoulder for 15 minutes at a high temperature – 475 degrees Fahrenheit/ 240 degrees Celsius – in the preheated oven.
- Lower the heat to 350 degrees Fahrenheit/180 degrees Celsius. Continue slowly cooking the shoulder of lamb for 3 hours.
- Foil: If, during the last hour of the cooking time, you notice that the skin threatens to get too dark, cover the roast loosely with a piece of aluminum foil. I didn't have to do that, but it really depends on your oven, I suppose; just check to be on the safe side.
- Remove the aluminum foil again during the last 10-15 minutes of the cooking time to allow the skin to become crispy and achieve the desired color.
- At the end of the cooking time, the thin layer of fat on the upper side should be crispy and of a rich golden brown color, and the meat should be incredibly tender and juicy.
You can prepare the shoulder in the evening: trim everything and season the meat. Cover and refrigerate. Once ready to cook, transfer the meat to the roasting tin.
Refrigerate leftovers for 2-3 days.
Freeze them in freezer bags or airtight containers for about 2 months. Defrost in the fridge and reheat before serving.
Preheat the oven to 350°F/ 180°C. Drizzle the sliced meat with stock or cooking liquid and cover the baking dish with foil. Reheat for at least 15 minutes, and check if the meat is heated through. If not, continue reheating, checking every 5 minutes or so.
How to serve?
- As you can see in the pictures, I served the roasted shoulder of lamb with these amazing and Garlic Smashed Potatoes and French-Style Green Beans. I often pair roasted lamb with green beans; they are my favorite vegetables when it comes to lamb.
- If you serve the lamb with plain potatoes (meaning no garlic), you could make these amazing Romanian Garlic Green Beans.
- Why not try this classic yet healthier Dairy-Free Green Bean Casserole?
- As for potatoes, the smashed potatoes are amazing, but regular roasted potatoes would be perfect as well. Try these Slow Cooker Roast Potatoes, for instance.
Other great vegetable side dishes:
- Whole Roasted Carrots
- The Best Caramelized Brussels Sprouts
- Green Peas with Butter
- Roasted Potatoes Brussels Sprouts
More lamb recipes
Roasted Lamb Shoulder
- 3.5 to 4.5 lb shoulder of lamb bone-in, 1.5-2 kg, Note
- fine sea salt or Kosher
- freshly ground black pepper
- Bring to room temperature: Take the lamb shoulder out of the fridge one hour before roasting it.
- Preheat the oven to 460°F/ 240°C.
- Prepare lamb: If the thick layer of skin is still on, remove it (it's usually already removed). Remove the silver skin on the underside of the lamb's shoulder using a small sharp knife.
- Season lamb: Place the lamb shoulder in a roasting pan. Sprinkle it generously with salt and pepper, rub the spices into the piece of meat, and place the roasting dish in the oven.
- Roast at high temperature for 15 minutes.
- Reduce the temperature to 360°F/ 180°C and continue slow cooking the shoulder of lamb for 3 hours.
- Cover with foil if required: If, during the last hour of the cooking time, you notice that the shoulder threatens to get too dark, cover the dish loosely with a piece of aluminum foil. It depends on your oven, so check to be safe. Remove the foil during the last 10-15 minutes of the cooking time.
- Rest: Once ready, place the lamb shoulder on a serving platter, cover it loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for about 15-20 minutes before carving.
- If your lamb shoulder is larger than that, you should add about 30 minutes for each extra 2 lbs/ 1 kg.