Slow cooked leg of lamb on a serving platter with vegetables

Slow cooked leg of lamb

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(83 ratings)

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 7 hrs, 30 mins

More effort

Serves 6

Slow cooked, melt-in-the-mouth meat that needs 7 hours in the oven but little more than 7 minutes work for the chef

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal743
  • fat41g
  • saturates20g
  • carbs14g
  • sugars0g
  • fibre3g
  • protein73g
  • salt1g


  • 1 large leg of lamb, about 3kg/6lb 8oz



    A lamb is a sheep that is under 1 year old; between 1 and 2 years old you will find it sold as…

  • 4 onions, sliced



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 8 garlic cloves, peeled, but left whole
  • 4 carrots, leave whole if small or quarter lengthways



    The carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root…

  • 300ml white wine
  • 300ml stock, use what you have
  • 2 tbsp Armagnac or Madeira, optional, to finish
  • thyme sprigs, to finish


    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…


  1. Heat oven to 120C/fan 100C/gas ½. Put your largest lidded casserole on the hob and brown the seasoned leg of lamb on all sides - do this very thoroughly until it is a good dark brown as it will not brown during the cooking. (If you don't do it now, it will end up beige.) If the lamb sticks, add a drizzle of oil - legs of lamb differ. Allow 10 mins on a high heat and put on the cooker fan to remove the smoke. Pour away any fat that has collected in the bottom of the pan.

  2. Throw in the vegetables, followed by the wine and stock. Season and bring to the boil, then clap on the lid and put in the oven. Bake for 7 hrs, turning twice. After 5 hrs the meat will be cooked and offer no resistance to the knife.

  3. There is no need to rest the meat when cooked in this way, but to finish the sauce, transfer the meat and vegetables to a serving dish. Strain the sauce into a jug and pour or blot away the fat with kitchen paper. Pour the sauce into a pan then boil the liquid hard to reduce by a quarter, by which time it will be rich and flavoursome. Adjust seasoning, add the Armagnac if you wish, and serve alongside the lamb, which should be served with a spoon, a la cuillère as the French call it.

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Comments, questions and tips

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Frantic Flapjack
16th Aug, 2016
A very easy way to cook lamb - after you've wrestled it around trying to brown it! Like Dot Cotton, I didn't have a casserole pot big enough either so did what she did below and it was fine. It's not the most exciting flavour but there is very little work to do with it. I made an onion gravy using the stock from the cooked lamb. I didn't bother with the onion and carrots but I did add a whole garlic bulb, cut in half. Served with mashed potatoes and carrots and other fresh veg.
Dot Cotton
2nd May, 2016
This is by far the nicest way I have ever cooked a leg of lamb! I had leftover red wine gravy from theach day before so I used that as the liquid needed. The meat was so soft I just pulled it apart with a fork & the bone fell out as I was transferring it to the serving plate. The hardest part of the recipe us browning the lamb! I didn't have a casserole pot big enough so I used a roasting tin & put 2 layers of foil to seal it tightly. 5 stars!
10th Jan, 2016
I use this slow cook method with a leg of mutton rather than lamb, mutton has much more flavour and is more conducive to this kind of cooking. I added a glass of vermouth as well as white wine. I deglazed the pan I had browned the meat in with 2tbs of Burgundy red wine vinegar, then melted in some unsalted butter, sweated off another onion, added flour and the liquid from the meat to make a thick onion gravy. Served with creamed potatoes and peas, its fantastic.
8th Nov, 2015
I made this on Friday for a dinner party. There seemed to be a lot of liquid at the end so I used only part of it for gravy and I did not serve the vegetables with the meat as I had done some roast carrots with fennel seeds as one of the veg. Friends who eat out a LOT and go on lots of gourmet cruises said it was the best lamb they'd had in years. I've given it 4 stars only cos I found the gravy was a bit uninteresting. Next time I'd thicken it and put more liquour in. I had saved the veg and the rest of the liquid, so I strained the fat off and liquidised it all and it made the most delicious soup! In fact I feel like cooking it again just to have more of the soup!
11th Sep, 2015
This is my favourite way to cook a joint of lamb. I have used this recipe on a number of occasions and the results are always fantastic. The lamb is so succulent and tender that it falls apart when served which results in shredded meat rather than neat slices. The minimal preparation and the long cooking time mean that this is a very relaxing meal which can be quickly popped in the oven and left to its own devices while you get on with other things. I have on several occasions added the veg at the beginning of the cooking time as specified in the recipe and I liked the results, however some members of my family are not keen such soft vegetables, especially the carrots. I now add the carrots much later in the process so that the results are firmer (for example, last time I cooked this I used whole chantenay carrots, which were quite small, so I added them one hour before the end). I use a jug specifically designed for separating the fat from the cooking liquid as it is easier and more reliable than blotting with kitchen paper. I also make a thicker sauce by making a roux with butter or Flora and flour, then gradually adding the strained fat-separated cooking liquid. I have successfully doubled the ingredients (ie two legs of lamb at once) and used an enormous casserole pot (which only just fits in the oven!) to feed 12 people with left-overs. The cooking time was the same as for a single lamb joint. Highly recommended.
18th Jun, 2015
I cooked this for my husband last night. Wow wow wow. He absolutely loved it! He has asked me to cook this for his parents. He has also made me promise not to tell them how I cooked it. Thank you so much for the recipe....
11th Jun, 2015
My leg of lamb weighs just over 1kg. How long should I cook it for? Should I still cook for seven hours? Please advise as I would like to cook it this weekend. Thanks
catherineiona1973's picture
29th May, 2015
My favourite slow cooked lamb recipe. Great if you have an aga and are feeding big numbers. I have used port when other suggested alcohol not available. Always tastes fantastic
29th Mar, 2015
Cooked tonight. Swapped the Madeira with a sherry - ab fab!
15th Mar, 2015
Absolutely delicious.. Cooked for Sunday dinner..followed recipe and cooked in slow cooker for 7 hours..will be making again in a few weeks for a dinner party for 6..just fell off the bone used half the weight recommended as cooked for 4 but plenty of meat for 5/6 people..a definite favourite


8th Sep, 2013
Do you think I could use this same receipe for beef. It sounds lovely.


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