Grilled Rack of Lamb with Garlic-Herb Vinaigrette Skip to content
Grilled Rack of Lamb with Garlic-Herb Vinaigrette

Grilled Rack of Lamb with Garlic-Herb Vinaigrette

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Prepare marinade: Place all marinade ingredients into a medium-sized bowl and stir to combine. Reserve half the quantity to be served with the cooked lamb.
  2. Season lamb: Place lamb on a platter or stainless baking sheet and rub with salt and pepper mix. Brush with remaining marinade, leaving some to brush the lamb on the grill. Cover lamb and leave for 30 minutes to come to room temperature.
  3. Prepare grill: Clean grill then rub grill with extra-virgin olive oil. Heat left side of barbecue to moderate-high heat, 450°F.
  4. Cook the lamb: Place the racks onto the hot side of the grill, meat-side down. Close lid and sear for 3 minutes. Turn and move racks over to the indirect side of the grill and cover the bones with foil. Insert probe meat thermometer, if using. Brush with remaining marinade, close lid and cook to desired doneness, about 13-15 minutes more. (See story for doneness guide; 130°F (135°F after resting) for medium-rare to medium.)
  5. Remove from grill and leave to rest uncovered for 5 minutes. To serve, cut into individual or two-chops portions. Serve warm with the remaining vinaigrette.
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Grilled Rack of Lamb with Garlic-Herb Vinaigrette

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Racks of lamb rubbed with a blend of smoked salt and black pepper, brushed with a garlic and herb vinaigrette, then grilled to perfection…

  • clock icon
    60 MIN
  • 6 SERVINGS
Grilled Rack of Lamb with Garlic-Herb Vinaigrette

A favourite summer meal, try our GRILLED RACK OF LAMB WITH GARLIC-HERB VINAIGRETTE.

We’re confident this stellar rack of lamb recipe will end up on your we-make-this-a-lot list for good reason. Here’s why:

  • Straightforward and easy-to-follow recipe.
  • Using a meat thermometer ensures the lamb is cooked to perfection each and every time.
  • The meat is amazingly tender and juicy.
  • The garlic-herb vinaigrette elevates the flavour of the dish from simple to amazing.

Because grilling is such an important part of summer weekends, especially in cottage country, this recipe for GRILLED RACK OF LAMB is in good company. Make sure to click this GRILL COLLECTIONS tab for a full selection of our most popular ideas for the barbecue. You’ll see our GRILLED RIBEYE STEAKS, JUMBO SHRIMP, BARBECUED SALMON, BEER CAN CHICKEN, and even vegetable dishes like our GRILLED VEGETABLE MEDLEY and Mexican street corn, ELOTE.

Before I go through a few key considerations for this recipe, a friendly reminder; don’t forget to PIN it to a favourite grilling or main course board. We’d also love it if you’d SHARE this post with friends. The way we see it, everyone should be able to prepare and enjoy a superior meal such as this.

Here is our step-by-step guide on how to prepare a GRILLED RACK OF LAMB WITH GARLIC-HERB VINAIGRETTE:

Ingredients for Grilled Rack of Lamb
Pulling these ingredients together for the grilled rack of lamb recipe is easy!

INGREDIENTS

The ingredients for this grilled meat recipe are all easy to gather. The vinaigrette is crafted with things that are likely already in your fridge and pantry. The fresh rosemary and thyme in our version came from my garden, but they can be purchased along with the racks of lamb at your favourite grocers or market.

The racks of lamb seasoned with smoked salt and black peppercorns.
Rubbing the racks of lamb with smoked salt and pepper flavours the meat perfectly.

RACK OF LAMB

Rack of lamb is a glorious cut of meat comprised of anywhere from six to nine ribs per rack. The cut has the tender eye muscle attached to the ribs, and despite there being no tenderloin, the meat is melt-in-your-mouth. Our recipe has been crafted to serve 6 guests, so I prepared 2 1-½ pound racks of lamb. I had my butcher French them, where they cut the meat from between the tips of the bones to make them more prominent. The butcher also trimmed away quite a bit of fat as well as the silver skin and tough membrane, AKA fell. This ensures the finished lamb is tender and easy to cut through.

SEASONING

Seasoning the racks of lamb with a very basic blend of smoked salt and black peppercorns enhances the flavouring of the meat without overpowering it. We rubbed the mix directly onto the meat before adding the vinaigrette. Just an FYI, this recipe provided the perfect opportunity for us to test a specialty salt and pepper mix that we’ve been working on. We’ll be offering it for purchase in the coming months. Stay tuned!

Garlic-herb vinaigrette
Serve this flavourful sauce on the side and let guests help themselves.

GARLIC-HERB VINAIGRETTE

Although we’re calling it a vinaigrette, this flavour-forward sauce also acts as a marinade. It’s easy to prepare; simply whisk everything together and you’re ready to go. One thing to point out: make sure to hold back about half the quantity of vinaigrette to serve with the finished dish. Spooning it on the tender, juicy lamb chops is a memorable moment in the recipe, for sure. Perhaps I shouldn’t sound so surprised; magic moments like this seem to happen whenever fresh herbs mix and mingle with Dijon mustard, lemon juice, garlic cloves, and red wine vinegar.

The racks of lamb brushed with garlic-herb vinaigrette
Brush the racks of lamb with the garlic-herb vinaigrette about 30 minutes before you intend to grill them.

MARINATE

After reserving half the quantity of the vinaigrette, the remaining is brushed onto the seasoned racks. Brush the sauce over all of the meat, then simply cover and leave it to marinate for about 30 minutes.

GRILLING

Grilling the racks of lamb is not difficult, but we discovered three key steps to ensure your complete success. First, heat the left side of the grill only; this recipe requires using both a direct and indirect heat source. Second thing is to preheat the grill or barbecue to a medium-high heat of 450°F. This temperature will sear and crisp up the outside of the meat without burning it or causing grill flare-ups. Lastly, rub or brush the grill with a bit of oil beforehand to prevent the lamb from sticking.

The racks of lamb seared with direct heat from the grill
Sear the racks on the hot side of the grill, with the meat side down.

DIRECT HEAT

The first part of the grilling process involves direct heat. The racks of lamb are placed onto the grill meat-side down, bones facing up. Close the lid and leave them to sear for three minutes. Easy!

The racks of lamb roasting over the indirect heat.
Continue to cook the lamb over the indirect heat for about 15 minutes.

INDIRECT HEAT

The second part of this grill recipe involves continuing to cook the racks using indirect heat. Turn them over and place them bone-side down onto the indirectly heated side of the grill. I like to add a run of foil to cover the bones at this point to prevent them from burning. You can also add a bit of flavour by brushing a bit of the reserved vinaigrette on before closing the lid.

With the lid closed and the grill running at a consistent 450°F, cook the lamb for an additional 13-15 minutes. I’ve mentioned this before; don’t be too proud to check! Having a meat thermometer handy to verify the internal temperature of the meat is essential to getting this recipe right. My guests and I enjoy lamb prepared more medium than medium-rare, so the 15-minute mark nailed my goal temperature of 130°F (55°C).

A meat thermometer is inserted in the cooked racks of lamb
Check out our doneness guide down below.

DONENESS

We know that the doneness of meat is a highly personal thing, so cook your racks of lamb to the taste of you and your guests – here’s a doneness guide to assist. I’ve also provided links down below for a few options on meat thermometers, in case you need one.

  • Lamb doneness guide: 
  • Rare: 115°F – 120°F / 46°C – 49°C
  • Medium-rare: 120°F – 125°F / 49°C – 52°C
  • Medium: 130°F – 135°F /  54°C – 57°C
  • Medium-well: 140°F – 145°F / 60°C – 63°C
  • Well done: 150°F – 155°F / 66°C – 68°C
The two racks of lamb resting for 5 minutes.
Give the cooked racks about 5 minutes to rest once you take them off the grill.

REST

Once you’ve reached your desired doneness, remove the racks from the grill and let the lamb rest uncovered for five minutes. This time out gives the meat a moment to relax. It will also continue to cook a little bit more, so don’t be surprised if the internal temperature climbs an additional degree or two.

The lamb is prepared medium.
Cut the rack of lamb into two-chop portions.

CARVE

To serve, we suggest carving the racks on a cutting board using a sharp knife. You can decide whether to cut a portion of one or two chops depending on the size of the rack. I prefer serving a two-chop portion, eyeing the spot where the knife can cut between the meat and bones. Cutting into the meat is like butter, I swear! Transfer the chops onto a serving platter and garnish with leftover fresh herbs.

Grilled Rack of Lamb with Garlic-Herb Vinaigrette served with couscous and grilled carrots.
Serve these grilled lamb chops with your favorite side dishes.

SERVE

Of course we have suggestions on side dishes that pair perfectly with this main course. For this story, we served the garlic-herb vinaigrette on the side along with our EASY SUMMER COUSCOUS SALAD and these addictively good GRILLED CARROTS WITH ZESTY LIME GLAZE – double the recipe! Additional sides you can also try are CLASSIC CAESAR SALAD, EASY BEAN SIDE DISH and our CLASSIC POTATO SALAD. Oh, and don’t forget to offer a nice red wine to go with this; a shiraz or cabernet sauvignon would be awesome.

Cut of the rack of lamb served with the garlic-herb vinaigrette
Portions of the lamb served with a drizzle of the garlic-herb vinaigrette

GRILLED RACK OF LAMB WITH GARLIC-HERB VINAIGRETTE is a meal that is quite simply amazing!

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Grilled Rack of Lamb with Garlic-Herb Vinaigrette

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Grilled Rack of Lamb with Garlic-Herb Vinaigrette

Ingredients

  • 2 racks of lamb (1-1/2 pounds each), Frenched and excess fat trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons smoked sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper mix
  • Vinaigrette marinade:
  • 3 garlic cloves, grated
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions

  1. Prepare marinade: Place all marinade ingredients into a medium-sized bowl and stir to combine. Reserve half the quantity to be served with the cooked lamb.
  2. Season lamb: Place lamb on a platter or stainless baking sheet and rub with salt and pepper mix. Brush with remaining marinade, leaving some to brush the lamb on the grill. Cover lamb and leave for 30 minutes to come to room temperature.
  3. Prepare grill: Clean grill then rub grill with extra-virgin olive oil. Heat left side of barbecue to moderate-high heat, 450°F.
  4. Cook the lamb: Place the racks onto the hot side of the grill, meat-side down. Close lid and sear for 3 minutes. Turn and move racks over to the indirect side of the grill and cover the bones with foil. Insert probe meat thermometer, if using. Brush with remaining marinade, close lid and cook to desired doneness, about 13-15 minutes more. (See story for doneness guide; 130°F (135°F after resting) for medium-rare to medium.)
  5. Remove from grill and leave to rest uncovered for 5 minutes. To serve, cut into individual or two-chops portions. Serve warm with the remaining vinaigrette.

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