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Tasty and Delightful Slow Braised Lamb Shoulder

Prepare your taste buds for a culinary adventure with Slow Braised Lamb Shoulder, a dish that takes comfort food to a whole new level. This is a dish I usually like to prepare especially during Ramadan, Eid or when I have special guests coming over. This impressive and mouthwatering recipe involves slow-cooking a tender lamb shoulder until it reaches a state of absolute succulence and tenderness. As the lamb cooks low and slow, it absorbs a symphony of flavours from aromatic herbs, spices, and a rich braising liquid, resulting in a melt-in-your-mouth experience that will leave you craving more.

The star of this dish is the lamb shoulder, a cut known for its marbling and rich flavour. Slow braising allows the lamb’s connective tissues to break down, resulting in meat that is incredibly tender and juicy. Each bite of the lamb shoulder is a testament to the magic of slow cooking, as it falls apart effortlessly and envelops your palate with its indulgent taste.

The beauty of slow braising lies in the depth of flavours that develop over time. The lamb shoulder is generously seasoned with a blend of herbs and spices. These ingredients infuse the meat with their aromatic profiles, enhancing the natural flavours of the lamb and creating a savoury symphony.

The result of this slow braising process is a beautifully caramelised and deeply flavoured lamb shoulder that is perfect for special occasions or a comforting family meal. Once the lamb is cooked to perfection, I like to serve it with Arabic spiced rice.  I always make extra for leftovers to enjoy as hearty yet humble pulled lamb sandwiches or to make a rich and comforting lamb ragu. For those seeking a unique twist, I highly recommend trying ouzi parcels, braised lamb is mixed Arabic spiced rice stuffing into individual portion puff pastry parcels. The rich and flavourful juices from the lamb can be used as a luscious sauce to drizzle over the meat and its accompaniments, elevating the dish to new heights of indulgence.

So, roll up your sleeves, embrace the art of slow cooking, and allow yourself to savour the incredible flavours of Slow Braised Lamb Shoulder. With each tender morsel, you’ll discover a symphony of tastes that will transport you to a world of comfort and culinary delight.

Basic Ingredients for Slow Braised Lamb Shoulder

Lamb Shoulder:

Lamb Shoulder: Lamb’s shoulder is the star ingredient of this dish. It offers rich and flavorful meat that becomes incredibly tender and succulent when slow-braised. The marbling in the lamb shoulder adds moisture and enhances the overall taste of the dish.

Herbs and Spices: Aromatic herbs and spices like rosemary, thyme, garlic, and black pepper are used to season the lamb shoulder. They infuse the meat with their delightful flavours, complementing the natural richness of the lamb.

Braising Liquid: The braising liquid adds moisture and depth of flavour to the lamb shoulder. Common options include red wine, beef or lamb stock, or tomato-based sauces. The braising liquid helps tenderize the meat and creates a delicious sauce that can be served with the lamb.

alternative ingredients

Meat: If lamb shoulder is not available, you can use other cuts of lamb suitable for slow cooking, such as lamb shanks or lamb leg. Alternatively, you can try this recipe with beef, such as beef chuck or brisket, for a different flavour profile.

Herbs and Spices: Feel free to experiment with different herbs and spices based on your preferences. Some alternatives to consider include oregano, sage, cumin, or paprika.

Preparation Tips for Slow Braised Lamb Shoulder

  • Before braising, sear the lamb shoulder on all sides in a hot pan. This step helps to develop a rich and flavorful crust, sealing in the juices and adding depth to the final dish.
  • For an extra layer of flavour, marinate the lamb shoulder with the herbs, spices, and braising liquid for a few hours or overnight before cooking. This allows the flavours to penetrate the meat more deeply.

Serving Tips for Slow Braised Lamb Shoulder

  • Once the lamb shoulder is tender and cooked, you can choose to shred the meat or slice it into portions. Serve the lamb with the flavorful sauce created during the braising process.
  • Pair the slow-braised lamb shoulder with side dishes such as roasted vegetables, mashed potatoes, couscous, or a fresh salad. These accompaniments complement the richness of the lamb and add a variety of textures and flavours to the meal.

storage tips

Refrigeration: If you have leftovers, let the lamb shoulder cool and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It can be kept for up to 3-4 days.

Freezing: Lamb shoulder can also be frozen for longer-term storage. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or place it in a freezer-safe container, and it will keep well for up to 3 months. Thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

Reheating Tips for Slow Braised Lamb Shoulder

  • To reheat the slow-braised lamb shoulder, place it in a covered baking dish and heat it in the oven at a low temperature until warmed through. Alternatively, you can gently reheat it on the stovetop in a covered pan over low heat, adding a bit of additional liquid if needed.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to create a delicious and tender slow-braised lamb shoulder. Whether you’re hosting a special gathering or simply enjoying a comforting family meal, this dish is sure to impress with its rich flavours and melt-in-your-mouth texture.

Slow Braised Lamb Shoulder

5 from 1 vote
Servings: 8 people
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours


  • 2 kg lamb shoulder
  • 2 tsp black pepper powder
  • 2 tsp white pepper powder
  • 2 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 3 tsp 7-spice powder
  • 2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tbsp orange zest
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 large onions, quartered
  • 2 carrots, cut into large chunks
  • 2 celery stalks, cut into large chunks
  • 1 orange, cut into slices
  • 2 garlic bulbs
  • 6 fresh thyme sprigs, finely chopped
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 4 cups hot water/chicken stock
  • 2 tsp salt


  • Pat dry the lamb and season with salt. In a small bowl, combine the black pepper powder, white pepper powder, cinnamon powder, 7-spice powder, turmeric powder, orange zest and olive oil to make a smooth marinade paste, and generously rub it all over the lamb. Allow to rest for minimum 30 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 180 °C.
  • In a large cast iron pot, add a couple tablespoons of vegetable oil.  Heat on medium fire and brown the lamb on all sides.
  • Remove the lamb and reserve on the side. In a large pot, add onions, carrots, celery, garlic bulbs, orange slices, thyme sprigs and bay leaves. Add the lamb and cover with chicken stock and water, and season with salt.
  • On the stove top, bring the liquid to a boil. Cover the pot with the lid and place in the oven pan, and braise for 4 hours.
  • Serve with Arabic Spiced Rice.

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Recipe Rating


  • Zeina

    5 stars
    So good

    • Zahra Abdalla

      Thank you xx

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