Weekend at the Cottage Symbol
  • How to Roast a Leg Of Lamb
  • How to Roast a Leg Of Lamb
  • How to Roast a Leg Of Lamb
  • How to Roast a Leg Of Lamb
  • How to Roast a Leg Of Lamb
  • How to Roast a Leg Of Lamb
  • How to Roast a Leg Of Lamb
  • How to Roast a Leg Of Lamb
  • How to Roast a Leg Of Lamb

How to Roast a Leg Of Lamb

Food | March 20, 2018 | Nik Manojlovich
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
  • 85 Minutes
  • 6-8
  • Moderate

This recipe produces a juicy, tender ROASTED LEG OF LAMB that meat lovers always rave about. Serve it with your favourite sides and a choice bottle of red, and suddenly dinner becomes a VERY special occasion!

Ever wonder HOW TO ROAST LEG OF LAMB? Here’s your answer! If just the thought of preparing lamb makes you nervous, this recipe is about to change all that. Follow these tried and tested tips and I guarantee you’ll enjoy a roast like no other. Tender, juicy and delicious, this recipe truly is a keeper.

We begin this journey with a shout out to my preferred team at DI LISO’S FINE MEATS, located in Toronto’s St. Lawrence Market. I’ve been shopping there for years and appreciate the quality of their offerings and the guidance they’ve imparted to me over the years.

There’s something to be said about developing a trusting relationship with the people who provide us with choice ingredients. These professionals will get to know your tastes and will always deliver products that meet your high expectations. Purchasing meats through a butcher such as DI LISO’S also allows me to order things in advance, and I like being able to have items trimmed and prepared to my exact specifications.

When visiting DI LISO’S just cut to the chase and tell them, Nik sent me. My friends John, Jamie, David and Ernesto and the other fine folks who work there will treat you like gold, which is how it should be!

That said, here’s HOW TO ROAST LEG OF LAMB:

SIZE – This may sound crazy, or at least that’s the look the butcher always gives me, but purchase a leg of lamb, bone-in, that weights exactly 4 pounds. Doing so will allow you to roast leg of lamb to the cooking times as indicated, knowing the lamb will be done to perfection without worry.

ORIGIN – Everyone knows I’m a big proponent of buying local, and I think some of the tastiest lamb I’ve ever had comes from Ontario. When going to make this recipe, look for lamb that is naturally raised and never given antibiotics or hormones. You will taste the difference.

START TEMPERATURE – Always allow your leg of lamb to come to room temperature before roasting. Doing so helps ensure a tender roast.

RUB or MARINADE – Every time I make this recipe I think “So basically you’re slathering a buttered-up Caesar salad dressing onto this piece of meat?” It’s true, yet there’s something about the way everything melts onto and into the lamb that makes it so delicious. Feel free to increase the quantities of garlic or Dijon for more robust flavours, but promise me you’ll prepare the marinade with the anchovies. You will be amazed!

BASTING – I always suggest removing the roast from the oven and basting it on top of the stove or range, keeping the oven door closed while you do. It’s important that the internal temperature of the oven doesn’t fluctuate during the roast time.

RESTING – It’s really important to allow the finished roast leg of lamb rest uncovered for 15 minutes before carving. The rest period is an ideal time to finish your side dishes – perhaps something wonderful like our GARLIC MASHED POTATOES, our SPICED LIME GINGER CARROTS, a CREAMY COLESLAW, or our POTATO AND JERUSALEM ARTICHOKE GRATIN. Add a stellar bottle of red and prepare to sit back and enjoy a truly phenomenal meal.

Finally, the definitive guide on HOW TO ROAST LEG OF LAMB that delivers on the promise of a tender, juicy and delicious main. It’s time to start planning your next dinner party!



Ingredients & Amounts

  • 1 leg of lamb, bone in, exactly 4 pounds, or as close as possible
  • 2 tablespoons of capers
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard
  • 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary leaves
  • 6 tablespoons of butter, unsalted
  • 12 anchovy fillets
  • 1 cup of red wine
  • juice of a lemon
  • 1 teaspoon each of salt and pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Using a sharp knife, make incisions, about 1 to 2 inches deep, into the flesh of the lamb.
  2. Place anchovies, capers, garlic, Dijon, butter, rosemary and salt into food processor with blade attachment. Pulse until ingredients become a well-blended paste.
  3. Slowly smear paste over the entire leg of lamb. Also insert it into the incisions, using your finger to push in the paste. Sprinkle with black pepper and transfer to roasting pan. Pour lemon juice and red wine into pan and transfer to oven.
  4. Roast for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350°F and cook for an additional hour basting the lamb with pan juices every 10 minutes. Cook a bit longer for more well-done meat.
  5. Remove from oven and allow roast to rest uncovered for 15 minutes before carving.
  6. NB - To determine doneness, insert an instant-read thermometer into the thickest part of the meat without touching the bone. If it registers 130°F, remove from the oven and allow to rest until internal temperature rises to about 140°F for medium-rare. Allow to roast longer for medium and well-done.

The following items helped us create this post and video.

Just click on the below links to purchase them through Amazon.com and add them to your collection. Happy shopping!

Listen on MUSIC

Listening to great music is an important part of every Weekend at the Cottage! How could I not listen to Beethoven: Symphony No. 6, Op. 68 “Pastoral” – Schubert: Symphony No. 5, D. 485 – Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra & Karl Böhm while preparing this recipe? Visit iTunes to add these beautiful pieces of music to your collection.

Nik Manojlovich

Nik is the creator, host and brains behind Weekend at the Cottage. He loves sharing his wisdom and experience about the things that interest him most.



Related Posts


Enter your e-mail below and you’ll receive access to our monthly newsletters, member contests, exclusive-to-email photos and behind-the-scenes fun! Best of all, it’s FREE! We’d be so happy if you’d join our growing online community!

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.