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And just like that, I finally mastered a roasted rack of lamb.

Roasted Rack of Lamb with Basil Goat Cheese Sauce | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Whoop. Whoop.

For whatever reason, I have feared cooking a whole rack of lamb for the longest time. Before this recipe I’d cooked up a grand total of four racks of lamb, and only one with success. I don’t know if I was buying bad meat or what, but my lamb just never turned out all that awesome. When we had a billion and one people in town over Christmas (hey, hey Gerard and Payne families…all of you dear friends…and even the “randoms” who stopped in), we all got to chatting and everyone decided it was very wrong that I did not have a recipe for roasted lamb on the site. I guess they all really love them some lamb… and so they went on to convince me to make them lamb tacos (with all the fixings), which I must say were really freaking delicious.

I decided right then and there that I would make you guys a roasted rack of lamb as the centerpiece of your Easter menu. And you guys, this is not just any rack of lamb, it’s one that I LOVE! <–obviously, or I wouldn’t be sharing it. DUH.

Roasted Rack of Lamb with Basil Goat Cheese Sauce | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Roasted Rack of Lamb with Basil Goat Cheese Sauce | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

After talking with all my people, aka Lyndsie, it was decided that the lamb needed to be simple. Simple so that the tender meat could really shine, and so that I could serve it up with a sauce…because you guys know I love a good sauce.

SO…the lamb is seasoned very simply with a few very important ingredients, garlic, oregano, cumin, lemon, crushed red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. The key is to really let the seasonings sit on the lamb for a bit before it roasts. I’ve been doing thirty minutes on the counter, but overnight is best,,,if you can plan ahead a bit (I try, but in the end, something comes up and ahhh, the overnight thing just doesn’t happen). Then all you need to do is roast, so simple, so good. I think before I was just putting too much on the lamb and it overpowered everything. Just another example of how simple can be so awesome.

Another key here is to roast the lamb at a higher temp so that you can get a nice crust on the outside, while leaving the inside perfectly cooked. I went for medium-rare, but if you prefer your lamb more well done, just tack on a few minutes to the cooking time.

But okok, while the lamb is great on its own, you know me, I had to add a topping of sorts. I thought about this for a while, going back and forth between a white sauce, an olive oil based sauce, even a salsa, but something creamy just seemed to fit best here. Enter the goat cheese sauce! Oh my gosh, this sauce is incredible. Basically whipped goat cheese with a touch of honey and fresh basil <–all my favs.  I absolutely love this sauce and how well the flavors pair with the simple roasted lamb. The honey adds a really nice warmth, while the basil keeps the sauce bright and fresh. The combo together is perfect on the tender lamb, and while I used basil, you could also use mint.

Roasted Rack of Lamb with Basil Goat Cheese Sauce | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Roasted Rack of Lamb with Basil Goat Cheese Sauce | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

I have to say, I’m pretty happy with the fact that I now have a go-to lamb recipe. YES!

This roast feels so perfect for spring in general, but would of course be amazing for Easter. Ok, and just about any other time of the year too!

Now that I have the rack of lamb pretty much perfected, maybe it’s about time I show you guys those lamb tacos? Cinco de Mayo is coming up, so my thoughts are tacos all the way. Yay? Nah?

In the meantime, I’ll just be over here, roasting up racks of lamb and covering them in goat cheese sauce, because this recipe is that good. I know for sure I’ll be making this lamb at least once more…not all of the family will be here for Easter, but most of them will be, and this lamb will certainly be on the menu!

ps. speaking of goat cheese, we have so much goat milk it’s not even funny. I have yet to make homemade goat cheese and I feel as though this needs to happen ASAP. Has anyone ever made goat cheese?

Roasted Rack of Lamb with Basil Goat Cheese Sauce | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Roasted Rack of Lamb with Basil Honey Goat Cheese Sauce.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories Per Serving: 488 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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Ingredients

  • 2 (2-3 pound) frenched rack of lamb
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced or grated
  • 1/4 cup fresh oregano
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 pound carrots, halved if large

Honey Goat Cheese Sauce

  • 6 ounces creamy goat cheesy, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup crème fraîche or plain greek yogurt, at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil or mint
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • kosher salt and pepper

Instructions

  • 1. On a large, rimmed baking sheet, season the racks generously with salt and pepper. 
    2. In a food processor, combine the olive oil, garlic, oregano, cumin seeds, lemon zest, and crushed red pepper flakes. Pulse until combined. Rub the mixture evenly over both racks. Arrange the carrots around the lamb. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour or cover and place in the fridge overnight. 
    3. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. 
    4. Roast the lamb for for 15 minutes, then flip and roast another 10 minutes for medium-rare. Remove and let stand 10 minutes before slicing
    5. Meanwhile, make the sauce. In blender, combine the goat cheese, crème fraîche, honey, and basil until smooth. Stir in the lemons zest and season to taste with salt and pepper. 
    6. Slice the lamb in between the bones and serve with the goat cheese sauce. 

Roasted Rack of Lamb with Basil Goat Cheese Sauce | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Tomorrow we we’ll be talking sides, and I am excited!

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Comments

  1. Hey Tieghan,

    I’ve already made this recipe once before and it was DIVINE!
    I’m making it this time for my family, although they don’t typically like oregano, can you suggest a replacement for the oregano on the lamb?
    Thanks
    Emma xx

    1. Hey Emma,
      I am delighted that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks so much for making it!! Sure, any herb you like will work here! xTieghan

  2. 5 stars
    So delicious! Your recipes make me feel like a serious chef in the kitchen. For a family of foodies…your recipes always please. My family loves when I cook cause of you!!! Thank you. This lamb was super delicious.

    1. Hey Hasttie,
      Thanks a lot for giving the recipe a try, I am thrilled that the recipe was enjoyed! Have a fantastic weekend! xTieghan

  3. What are your thoughts of prepping and cooking half-way on Thursday and finishing on Saturday for a dinner party? Thanks!!

    1. Hey Kathleen,
      I honestly probably would not recommend that, I fear that the lamb would get dried out. If you need a good recipe to make ahead I am happy to share some suggestions! xTieghan

  4. 5 stars
    I’ve always made rack of lamb brushed with Dijon mustard and topped with a herb panko crust. So I was excited to try:your recipe for rack of lamb and i must say it was delish! The goat cheese sauce was to die for! Love, love, love the goat cheese sauce! How did you come up with putting all those ingredients together? Needed more time to roast the rack of lamb, after 25 minutes was still rare in the center. This is the 2nd recipe I’ve made if yours in the last 36 hours! Can never go wrong with your recipes! Buying your cookbooks tomorrow!

  5. 4 stars
    Made this for Christmas, it was delish, it didn’t get much crust but was cooked beautifully. Not a fan of the carrots but who needs em?

  6. 5 stars
    This is my favorite recipe for rack of lamb! We’ve been making it for a few years now and both my husband and I request it for our birthdays each year! So yummy and EASY! We use basil for the sauce!

  7. 5 stars
    I was so excited to try this recipe because it was so unique compared to many other recipes. Its in the oven now and I can already smell the masterpiece!

  8. Just wondering if Boursin cheese could substitute for the goat cheese as that is what I have in the fridge. Plan on making this tonight

  9. It looks like you’ve roasted it with the goat cheese sauce on it already….but the instructions don’t say to do so. Can you clarify if the goat cheese sauce is applied before or after roasting?

    1. Hi Claire, the goat cheese sauce is served alongside the roasted lamb after it has been roasted. Do not add the sauce to the lamb before roasting. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you! xTieghan

  10. 5 stars
    I made this for Valentine’s day and it was so delicious and easy to make. This was the first time I made lamb too. Thank you again for another amazing recipe!

  11. You put the seasoning on the fat size, cook for 10 min with the fat side up and bones down and then flip it over so the bone side is up? Is there a good reason to flip it over when it’s being cooked in the oven?

    1. HI! You want to flip the meat to get and even browning and even cooking. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe. Thanks so much! xTieghan

  12. 5 stars
    We made this yesterday for Easter and it was beyond delicious!! The lamb was cooked to perfection, medium rare, and the goat cheese spread was as delicious on the lamb as it was on the vegetables!! This must be one of the best lamb dishes we have had yet. It was extremely easy and the flavors melted in our mouths! Thank you for sharing this delicious lamb recipe as it is now our favorite for lamb.

  13. 2 stars
    Dear heavens, trim some of that fat off before you start cooking!! It wasn’t even cooked following your directions! Not good.

    1. Hi Janet! I am so sorry that you had trouble with this recipe. Is there any questions I could help you with? Please let me know! Thanks!

  14. Ok half baked, this looks awesome and I’ll be making it for Easter. BUT!! Lol there are Carrots in the list of ingredients but not mentioned in the body of the recipe. Can’t wait to eat THIS!! Love lamb and goat cheese!!!!

  15. Hi! Would it be possible to use this same recipe for a regular leg of lamb? I’m assuming maybe varying portions of ingredients? Thank You! Huge fan of your blog – ordered your cookbook for Christmas 🙂

    1. HI!! I think that should be fine and I think you can leave the recipe as is, just adjust the cooking times. Please let me know if you have other questions. Hope you love this recipe! Happy Holiday’s ? 🙂

      PS. Hope you LOVE the book!

  16. 5 stars
    Excellent lamb recipe. Easy to make. The goat cheese sauce was a perfect accompaniment. Thanks for sharing.

  17. Love your creative recipes! I made this and I think it’s pushed aside Thomas Keller’s rack of lamb as a favorite for my family. When we’re being cheap, we use the sauce and seasoning on lamb loin chops.
    I will say I followed the cooking times exactly (in two different ovens) and each time I ended up having to sear the lamb at the end to cook it enough to med-rare. It just doesn’t seem to cook through in the oven or get that nice brown crust and I was afraid leaving it in for more time would overcook. This time I’m going to try to sear it quickly before roasting.

  18. This looks amazing and I’d love to make it, but I’m wondering, could you do this same thing with a fresh pork roast.

    1. I have not tried using a pork roast. The cooking times would be a little different, but yes, I would think it would taste great! Let me know if you have other questions! 🙂

  19. So I’m wondering about grilling the lamb??? A sear on side and then set the rack off the the flame?? Would love to try this for Memorial Day BBQ! Your thoughts

    1. Yes! Grilling will be so delicious! A sear on side and then set the rack off the the flame should be perfect. Let me know if you have questions. Hope you love this! 🙂

  20. I made this for Easter dinner and it was incredible! First time ever making a rack of lamb. Everyone loved it and the sauce was heavenly. Thank you for making our holiday even more special! 🙂

  21. I am playing catch-up so I am a few days late in commenting on this post. I too have been wanting to tackle a roasted rack of lamb, but had not found a recipe that sounded great (as most include a mint sauce which brings back awful childhood memories – but that is a story for another day!). Anyway — Enter this recipe! Hallelujah!! So excited to try this with the heavenly sounding goat cheese sauce!! Thanks for always, always putting out brilliant recipes and gorgeous photos, Tieghan!

    1. Late or not, so happy you like the lamb and are going to try it Leah!
      I really appreciate all the kind words, and hope you love it!

  22. Good job on finally getting lamb down! I’m intimidated by large meat items too, because it’s especially sad when you mess it up! Eventually you learn, though 🙂 Also, my last name, Gigot, means ‘leg of lamb’ in French… sooooo I guess that means I have to make this 😉 Looks so delicious, Tieghan!

    1. Its intimidating making that large of meats!
      Haha, I agree that must mean you have to make it!! So cool!
      Hope you love it Tera!

  23. Well, I’d say you’ve definitely mastered it Tieghan! And that honey goat cheese sauce sounds amazing!

  24. Oh I LOVE when you do meat posts. This rack of lamb looks like it’s falling off the bone!

  25. I had that same fear until I did it and honestly, it wasn’t hard at all! I love how a rack of lamb is a total show stopper of a dish and this one definitely fits the bill!

  26. That Honey Goat Cheese Sauce <3 <3 <3 Maybe it's time I need to master the rack of lamb too!

  27. Fabby Fabby Lamb – just the most special thing to serve for special Spring dinner ….or when you can get that great lamb. So liking your sauce action as well…oooo goat cheese…yah! Typically, make tzatizki sauce and sometime will toss in feta, and definitely fresh dill, if in season. Be fun to try the alternate..nom nom.
    As an aside, my dearly departed Father-in-Law, grilled those small New Zealand lamb chops on the grill (my intro into lamb..) and the condiment of choice was
    Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce..it is amazing on grilled lamb! Do give it a whirl!

    1. I totally agrre such a delicious dish! The tzatizki is always so good!
      The Worcestershire seasoning sounds amazing! I will! Thanks Tammy!

  28. This looks like heaven on a plate!!!!! I just saved this on Pinterest and will be trying!

    xo,
    Jahaila @ Girl Nesting

  29. Love this recipe Tieghan! It does take some practice to get a large joint of meat to cook how you want it to. Looks like the 4 times before this one really paid off! Gorgeous! And pinned… obviously!

  30. Definitely YES on the lamb tacos! I was going to ask for the recipe before I even read you were thinking of doing it. Is it mediterranean-ish with tatziki like souvlaki?

    I have a recipe for goat cheese potatoes that is very high in calories, so this may be a better way to get my goat cheese fix with lamb!

  31. I have never eaten lamb. We have a friend that says she can’t stand mutton. Which I was told mutton and lamb were the same thing. Then I saw or read that there is a difference. So maybe that is why some of yours didn’t taste exactly to your liking.

    1. Mutton is an older sheep. The meat is stronger and tougher. There definitely is a big difference. It’s the same animal, just different ages. Sorta like beef and veal if you think of it that way (but I’d take beef over mutton any day!).

      1. That is bang on Natasha. A lamb is newborn to 1 year, mutton is 1-2 years and a hoggett is anything 2 years and above. Stay away from hoggett. Definitely not for the faint hearted!

    2. Hmm, I am not sure, but I am looking it up now! I mutton is just a different aged lamb, but I am not sure. Hope you have a great weekend!

  32. This looks incredible. We’ve been trying to treat ourselves to a slightly pricier cut of meat once a month and a rack of lamb has been on the list for a while. I think I might have to move it to the top so I can have a go at this recipe this month!

  33. This is a beautiful and mouthwatering roasted rack of lamb. Lamb is my favorite meat!

    1. Its so good, especially when you don’t eat it too often! So happy you like it Carlos, thank you!

        1. Hey Shannon,
          Sure, totally fine to do that! I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan