4 Underrated Cuts of Lamb Your Butcher Really Wants You to Try

Make these bone-in cuts the star of your next meal

Not all lamb chops come from the ribs: Butchers use the word “chop” to refer to multiple steaklike cuts, with or without the bone (though lamb chops are typically butchered bone-in), from all over the animal. Get familiar with the four below, then check out our best lamb recipes from around the world.

lamb loin chops
Loin chops Matt Taylor-Gross

Loin Chop

These petite cuts are the lamb equivalent of T-bone steaks. The bone divides the loin and the tenderloin—two of a lamb’s most tender parts. They’re typically less fatty than rib chops but often contain a strip of flavorful marrow running along the cut side of the bone. Loin chops are excellent for grilling or pan-frying.

classic lamb rib chops
Classic rib chops Matt Taylor-Gross

Classic Rib Chop

This chop is the ideal two-for-one cut: It includes the prized three-bite rib-eye, plus plenty of toothsome belly meat to nibble right from the bone. Be sure to trim away some of the extra fat before cooking.

Lamb shoulder chops
Shoulder chops Matt Taylor-Gross

Shoulder Chop

This oft-overlooked cut—which may be taken from the shoulder blade or farther down the leg—is generally thin and wide, with a good deal of connective tissue and fat. It benefits from a marinade, after which its marbled bits mean it cooks to crispy perfection on the grill.

Tomahawk rib chops
Tomahawk rib chops Matt Taylor-Gross

Tomahawk Rib Chop

Rarely seen unless specially ordered from the butcher, this extreme version of the frenched rib chop has all the belly meat trimmed away from the rib, leaving only the dainty rib-eye at one end and a clean, elegant bone. Grill or roast the rack whole for an impressive presentation, or slice and grill single or double chops, which take far less time to get to the perfect medium-rare.