Herb Crusted Rack of Lamb Recipe

Herb Crusted Rack of American Lamb with Huckleberry

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There is nothing as impressive as serving up a rack of lamb, and there is nothing that is quite as simple to get right if you have a good recipe. This rack of lamb recipe is extremely simple and tastes as good as something made by a professional chef. Except for this recipe, you’ll get all the credit.

The combination of the herbs and breadcrumbs make for a delicious crust. Everyone’s going to think that you’re a genius in the kitchen. Only you will know that prep time was only ten minutes.

The whole dish takes less than an hour from start to finish. So, if you have last-minute guests over, and want to wow them, this is perfect. Pull it out during the holidays when you’re having an elegant soiree, or when you want something easy to do.  

Is a Rack of Lamb Economical?

It’s not the cheapest cut of meat, but you can get away with serving everyone smaller portions if you want to save some money. The little bit extra that you’ll pay will pay off in spades when you taste the meat.

It’s one of the tastiest cuts of lamb, and it’s also pretty difficult to mess it up. It could even become one of your favorite staples when you need to feed your family and don’t feel like slaving over a hot stove for hours. It’s certainly a lot more nutritious than takeout. It’s faster too if you factor in the time it will take to either get in your car and buy the takeout or wait for it to be delivered.

As a bonus, your dogs are sure to be good boys if they’ve got a nice bit of bone coming to them. We know that it’s not always the best idea to feed them cooked bones – raw is definitely better for them, but once in a while, it’s not going to hurt them.

The rib meat has a bit more fat than loin chops and less meat. The upside is that the flavor is outstanding.  It’s also a great excuse to use up those leftover bits of stale bread. Just whizz them up in the food processor until fine. Toast them for a few minutes to dry them out. No one will ever know the difference.

Can I Change Up the Seasoning?

That’s the beautiful part here; the meat’s going to do most of the work. We like the balance of flavors in this dish. The delicate flavor of the dill is a perfect accompaniment to the robust flavor of the meat.

If you like things a bit spicier, you could also add in a quarter teaspoon of chili powder or cayenne pepper. We wouldn’t go overboard here because too much spice will obliterate the subtle flavoring of the dill.

What to Serve as a Side?

What you serve as a side is completely up to you. We like this with mashed potatoes, carrots, and brussels sprouts, but you can pair it with whatever sides you like. Pair it with a Waldorf salad to keep things a little lighter. Glazed carrots or butter-drenched green beans make an elegant side for the dish.

What Wine Would Go Well with This Meal?

If you’re having a soiree, you’ll want to get a good bottle of wine or two to serve with the meal. Cabernet is a classic choice that should always go down well. If you want something a little more special, though, you’ll get lots of props for serving a Bordeaux-style Zinfandel instead.

This is a sweeter wine with a more delicate flavor than the cabernet, so it’s a good match for the flavoring used on the meat.  

How Much Meat Do I Buy?

That’s going to depend on who you’re feeding. A standard rack consists of eight ribs, so work from there. One to two rib chops per person should be plenty. If you have guests who prefer bigger portions, you can make extra sides to accommodate them.

What to Do with the Leftovers

The chances are good that there are not going to be any leftovers. It’s much easier to apportion a rack of lamb more accurately. Unlike a roast, the rack of lamb comes with a natural built-in cutting guide.

Besides which, this is definitely a dish that tastes better freshly made. You can use leftovers in sandwiches or wraps, but this is not really a cold cut. That’s not to say that it’s not nummy as cold meat, just that it’s better warm.

We wouldn’t reheat the leftovers simply because that might lead to them being overdone. A rack of lamb is not as forgiving as a stew would be in this respect. Still, you can keep leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to three days.  We don’t recommend freezing leftovers at all.

How Do I Know That it’s Cooked Through?

The secret for getting lamb dishes right is to stop guessing. Check the internal temperature of the meat to make sure that it’s done to your liking. Try to aim for the thickest part of the meat and be careful not to hit the bone (the bone will read hotter than the meat).

Medium-rare at 145° F is a good bet. If you prefer it well-done, wait until the internal temperature cranks up to around 170°F. You’ll need to let the meat rest for at least ten minutes, as this allows the internal temperature to rise a bit more and finish off cooking the process.

Tips and Tricks

  • Monitor the meat carefully. There’s not a lot of wiggle room here, and it’s easy to overcook the lamb, especially if you’re aiming for medium-rare. The meat doesn’t need to cook for long because it’s naturally tender.
  • The uncooked rack will be good in the freezer for three months, so why not buy a couple and keep one on standby for when you need a tasty option in a hurry. They’ll defrost pretty quickly, so they’re a great option.
  • The rack should be the star of the show. You don’t really need to do a lot to make the meal special. If you like, check out YouTube and get some ideas on how to plate the meat attractively.
  • As always, the meat should be allowed to come to room temperature before going into the oven. You can coat it just before it’s due to go into the oven. There is no need to let the meat “marinate” here.
  • Get the ribs to the plate as soon as possible after they’ve had a chance to rest. These are best served warm.  

All that’s left now is to eat and enjoy—rich, flavorful, and nutrient-dense lamb that doesn’t cost you an arm and a leg. It doesn’t get any better than this.

herb-crusted racks of American lamb on serving platter
herb-crusted racks of American lamb on serving platter

Herb-Crusted Rack of Lamb Recipe


This easy and delicious rack of lamb recipe produces an outstanding meal with just a few ingredients.

  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yields: 4 servings


¾ cup finely chopped fresh parsley

1 medium onion, finely chopped

1 tbsp fresh dill, chopped, or 1 teaspoon dried dill weed

¼ cup fine dry breadcrumbs

2 tsp fresh oregano leaves, chopped, or 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1 tsp salt

¼ tsp pepper

2 American Lamb racks (8 ribs each), trimmed


1Preheat the oven to 375ºF. In a large bowl combine the parsley, onion, dill, breadcrumbs, oregano, salt, and pepper and mix well.

2Pat the mixture on the outside of the lamb racks. Place the lamb on a broiler rack, bone-side down, in a shallow roasting pan. Roast the lamb for 30 to 35 minutes or to desired degree of doneness: 145ºF for medium-rare, 160ºF for medium or 170ºF for well. Cover the lamb and let stand for 10 minutes. (The internal temperature will rise approximately 10 degrees.)

3Slice the lamb and serve.

Recipe and image provided by the American Lamb Board


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