Lamb is an essential—even revered—ingredient all over the globe, probably because it’s not only good when it’s simply grilled, but also when it’s skewered into kebabs, formed into burgers, rolled into spiced meatballs, braised with chiles, and cooked into a ragù with sweet peppers and spooned over spaghetti. And that’s only the start. Find these dishes and more in our best recipes for global lamb inspiration.
At the Marketplace at Emerald Valley in Washington, Pennsylvania, lemon zest and fresh mint go into every lamb burger patty. A tangle of sweet balsamic onions, a hint of chile, and briny feta balance the charred meat and brioche bun. Ground lamb falls on the fattier side; if using a grill, watch out for flare-ups. Lamb Burger with Mint, Feta, and Balsamic Onions
Chunks of lamb shoulder are rubbed with spices and marinated with aromatics before hitting the grill in this easy kebab recipe. Get the recipe for Grilled Marinated Lamb Kebabs
This recipe comes from Sam Smith, Of Tusk in Portland, Oregon. Smith notes: “I like to eat it with a steak knife, keep some texture.” Serve this with lots of bread for soaking up the juices; a simple mixed green salad with champagne vinegar, black pepper, and edible flowers if available; and a super cold rose or white wine. Get the recipe for Braised Lamb Shoulder with Rose, Turnips, and Pistachios »
Get the recipe for Kubdari »
Get the recipe for Herbed Lamb Stew (Sabzi Govurma) »
Grilled Lamb Chops with Tzatziki Sauce
In this classic Greek pairing, dill is used two ways: first in a garlicky marinade for the lamb, and then in a cooling, brightly flavored yogurt sauce. Serve this dish with a simple green salad. Get the recipe for Grilled Lamb Chops with Tzatziki Sauce
Rosemary-Jerk Lamb Chops
Aromatic fresh rosemary sets the umami-rich marinade for these lamb loin chops apart. Get the recipe for Rosemary-Jerk Lamb Chops
Spicy Lamb and Grape Leaf Tarts With Orzo and Feta
These crustless tarts, adapted from Ana Sortun and Maura Kilpatrick’s book Soframiz, are inspired by a yogurt and semolina custard that is traditionally baked inside cooked grape leaves in Greece. The authors say that, even though the grape leaves aren’t rolled and filled cigar-style, the filled tarts are still a version of a dolma, a word that means “stuffed” in Turkish and Greek. “I love this version because the grape leaves get crispy and a little caramelized,” Sortun says. They work equally well in ceramic ramekins, fluted or non-fluted tart pans, muffin tins, or small cast iron baking dishes. Get the recipe for Spicy Lamb and Grape Leaf Tarts With Orzo and Feta »
Turmeric does double duty here: it goes into the lamb meatballs as well as the lemony broth they’re cooked in.
In this traditional warming stew from the Emerald Isle, lamb shoulder is rendered spoon-tender by a simmer and then a long, slow bake with plenty of filling potatoes and aromatic carrots and onions. For bright color and a bit of verdant sweetness, green peas are tossed in toward the end of the cooking. Get the recipe for Irish Stew »
In the Indian city of Hyderabad, this dish is traditionally made using goat, but lamb makes an excellent substitute; including the bones adds an unmatched depth of flavor. While peeled muskmelon and watermelon seeds are usually used to thicken the dish, we’ve substituted pumpkin seeds in our version.
Lebanese Lamb-Stuffed Eggplant (Batenjen Mehchi)
Eggplants are stuffed with a mixture of spiced lamb and rice, then simmered in tomato sauce in a rustic, cinnamon-scented dish from Lebanese author Fouad Kassab’s mother, Isabelle. During the autumn olive harvest, she prepares it with new-season olive oil from the family’s groves. Use smaller-sized eggplants, such as Japanese or fairy-tale eggplants, for this dish. (If you can’t find these varieties, zucchini may be substituted for the eggplant.)