This Slow Cooked Leg Of Lamb In Red Wine is slowly roasted to perfection in the oven until the tender & succulent meat effortlessly falls off the bone! It’s the ideal centrepiece for any special occasion or Sunday roast. The rich, red wine gravy finishes off the dish beautifully.
When it comes to slow-cooked lamb dishes, the first cuts that may spring to mind are either lamb shoulder or rolled lamb breast, and for good reason! Both are delicious, affordable, and perfect for a slow roast. But if you're looking to splurge a bit, this slow-cooked leg of lamb in red wine is hard to beat!
Leg of lamb comes from the hind leg and is a big, lean, and tender cut. Because it's lean, you can either cook it quickly for a juicy, pink centre or slow-cook it like I did in this recipe, which makes it fall-off-the-bone tender.
❤️ Why You Will Love This Recipe
- ✔️ Allergy Friendly: This leg of lamb cooked in red wine is dairy-free, egg-free & gluten-free. (If you use a gluten-free stock)
- ✔️ Rich Flavour: The slow-cooking process allows the flavours of the red wine, garlic, & herbs to seep deep into the meat.
- ✔️ Perfect For Special Occasions: This lamb dish is perfect for a special occasion, such as a dinner for Thanksgiving, Christmas or a Sunday roast.
- ✔️ Easy to Make: Despite its impressive appearance, this slow-roasted lamb is surprisingly easy to make. Simply stud the lamb with rosemary & garlic, pour in the stock and wine, then pop it in the oven, and let the low and slow cooking process do its magic.
- ✔️ Can Be Made In The Oven Or Slow Cooker: I will show you how to make this dish, both in a traditional oven and a slow cooker.
🥘 Ingredients Needed & Substitutions
✋ Be sure to double check all packaging for allergens. ✋
- Leg of Lamb - This recipe has been tested using a 2.2kg leg of lamb. Try and buy a leg with the bone still in, as this will help to intensify the flavour.
- Garlic - Used to stud the lamb and also to help flavour the red wine gravy. I find the large garlic bulbs have a stronger flavour, so try and grab these ones if you can.
- Rosemary - Fresh is best! Chop into small little trees to stick into the skin of the lamb leg. If you don’t have any fresh rosemary, sprinkle dried rosemary over the outside of the lamb instead.
- Onion - I have used white onion, but if you prefer things a little sweeter, red onion can be used instead.
- Stock - Use lamb stock if you can, but beef stock will work just as well. Carefully check the stock's packaging for ingredients, as some do contain dairy or gluten. Most Knorr stock pots are free from these allergens but always double-check the ingredient list.
- Red Wine - The general rule is to only cook with a wine you would be willing to drink! Merlot works really well with lamb. This recipe doesn’t use a whole bottle, so there is enough for you to enjoy a glass while it is cooking!
- Flour - This is used to help thicken the red wine gravy. You can use a gluten-free flour if you are following a gluten-free diet.
See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.
✏️ How To Make- Step-By-Step Instructions
⬇️ Here you will find an overview of how to make the recipe. For full information on ingredients and quantities please see the recipe card at the bottom of the page ⬇️
Step 1: First, start by chopping the onion into eight wedges. You can leave the skin on, as this will add to the flavour of the gravy. Then make up the lamb stock.
Step 2: Next, coat the lamb generously with olive oil, ( it’s best to use your hands for this bit!!) season well with salt and pepper, and make deep incisions, about 1cm apart, into the fat on the lamb's skin. Chop the garlic cloves into thin slices and insert the garlic slivers and rosemary sprigs into these incisions.
Nestle the chopped onion wedges into the bottom of the roasting tin and place the lamb on top.
Step 3: Pour the lamb stock and red wine into the tin, surrounding the lamb rather than submerging it.
Cover the roasting tin tightly with foil and place it in the preheated oven for around 4 - 4.5 hours, allowing the lamb to slowly roast and absorb the flavours.
Step 4: Remove the foil from the lamb and return the roasting tin to the oven for an additional 30 minutes. This is to crisp up the exterior of the lamb.
Once the lamb is ready, remove it from the oven and transfer it to a plate. Let it rest for 20-30 minutes, giving the juices time to redistribute back into the lamb. This helps to make the lamb more succulent.
Step 5: While the lamb rests, it is time to make the gravy! Transfer the remaining juices from the roasting tin to a large measuring jug and skim off any fat that has risen to the surface.
Sprinkle the flour into the roasting tray and add a small amount of the skimmed fat. Stir with a wooden spoon until a roux forms.
Step 6: Gradually pour the stock back into the roasting tin. Bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring continuously until the gravy thickens. Pour the gravy through a sieve and serve with the roasted lamb.
🤔 Can I Make This In The Slow Cooker?
You sure can! As long as your slow cooker is large enough to fit a whole leg of lamb, this is the perfect dish to cook in a slow cooker.
Following the instructions as per the standard recipe, use the slow cooker ceramic pot instead of a roasting tin.
Cook on the low heat setting for 8 hours or on high for 6 hours. ( I would recommend using the low setting if you can for guaranteed pull-apart lamb).
If you want to brown the outside of the lamb, you can either roast it in the oven for 30 minutes once it has finished cooking in the slow cooker or brown the sides in a large frying pan on the hob.
💡 Tips & Tricks
- ✔️ For even cooking and precise timing, remove the lamb from the fridge 30 minutes prior to cooking to bring it to room temperature.
- ✔️ Pour the stock and wine around the lamb in the tin and not over it.
- ✔️ As this recipe doesn’t call for a whole bottle of wine, pour yourself a nice glass of red with the leftover wine in the bottle while you are cooking!
- ✔️ The general rule with using wine in cooking is to only use wine that you would be willing to drink. This also really helps with my above tip!
- ✔️ To check the lamb is cooked, gently turn over the leg and pull away a small amount of meat on the underside with a fork. If it pulls away easily, the lamb is nice and tender, so is ready.
- ✔️ Pour some of the red wine juices over the lamb once it is cooked for extra succulence.
- ✔️ Allow the lamb to rest, covered for at least 30 minutes after cooking to let the meat juices seep back into the lamb.
🍴 Serving Suggestions
This slow-cooked lamb makes the perfect centrepiece for a Christmas dinner or Sunday roast! Don't forget to drizzle the red wine sauce over everything too as this is what really makes the dish!
A great way to use up any leftovers by making this leftover lamb shepherd's pie.
💬 Recipe FAQs
Yes, you should cover the lamb while it is slow cooking. This will help to trap the heat and moisture and keep the lamb from drying out.
How long will leftover lamb keep in the fridge?
Once cooled, cover the leftover leg of lamb tightly with foil or place in an airtight container. You can store it in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Reheat the pulled-apart meat in a saucepan with the gravy or in the microwave until piping hot.
Can I freeze the leftovers?
Absolutely. Shred the lamb and allow it to cool, then store it in an airtight container in the freezer. It will keep here for up to 2 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight and reheat as above when ready to serve.
What is the best red wine to cook with lamb?
For a bolder flavour, cook lamb with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, or Shiraz. For a lighter flavour, use Pinot Noir or Gamay.
⚡ More Slow Cooked Dishes
Check out these other delicious slow cooked recipes too!
Slow Cooked Leg Of Lamb In Red Wine
For The Lamb
- 2 kg (4.4lb) leg of lamb bone in
- 6 cloves garlic thinly sliced
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 1 medium onion sliced into 8 wedges. (skin on)
- salt & pepper to seaaon
For The Gravy
- 750 ml (3 cups) lamb stock Knorr stock pots are gluten and dairy free
- 500 ml (2 cups) red wine
- 2 tablespoon plain flour use gluten-free flour if required
- Preheat the oven to 160°C / 140˚ Fan (300°F).
To Make The Lamb In The Oven
- Chop the onion into 8 wedges ( leaving the skin on) then make up the stock.
- Rub the lamb all over with olive oil, then season generously with salt and pepper.
- Make deep incisions about 1cm apart into the fat on the skin of the lamb. Chop the garlic into thin slices and insert the garlic slivers and rosemary sprigs into the incisions.
- Place the chopped onion into the bottom of the roasting tin, then place the lamb on top of the onion wedges.
- Pour the lamb stock and red wine into the tin. Pour around the lamb and not over it.
- Cover the roasting tin tightly with foil.
- Roast in the preheated oven for 4 - 4.5 hours, or until the lamb is tender and falling off the bone.
- Remove the foil from the roasting tin & roast for an additional 30 minutes, or until the lamb is golden brown and crispy on the outside.
- Remove the lamb from the oven and let it rest on a plate for 20-30 minutes before carving.
To Make The Lamb In The Slow Cooker
- Follow the preparation instructions as above, using the slow cooker ceramic pot instead of a roasting tin.
- Cook on the low heat setting for 8 hours or on high for 6 hours. ( I would recommend using the low setting if you can for guaranteed pull-apart lamb).
- If you want to brown the outside of the lamb, you can either roast it in the oven for 30 minutes once it has finished cooking in the slow cooker or brown the sides in a large frying pan on the hob.
To Make The Gravy
- Transfer the remaining juices from the roasting pan to a large measuring jug. Using a spoon, carefully skim off any fat that has risen to the surface.
- Sprinkle the flour into the roasting tray. Add a small amount of the skimmed fat, and stir with a wooden spoon until a roux forms.
- Slowly pour the stock back into the roasting tin, and bring to a simmer, stirring until the gravy thickens.
- Pour the gravy through a sieve to remove the onions and serve with the roasted lamb.
- For even cooking and precise timing, remove the lamb from the fridge 30 minutes prior to cooking to bring it to room temperature.
- Pour the stock and wine around the lamb in the tin and not over it.
- As this recipe doesn’t call for a whole bottle of wine, pour yourself a nice glass of red with the leftover wine in the bottle while you are cooking!
- The general rule with using wine in cooking is to only use wine that you would be willing to drink. This also really helps with my above tip!
- To check the lamb is cooked, gently turn over the leg and pull away a small amount of meat on the underside with a fork. If it pulls away easily, the lamb is nice and tender so is ready.
- Pour some of the red wine juices over the lamb once it is cooked for extra succulence.
- Allow the lamb to rest, covered for at least 30 minutes after cooking to let the meat juices seep back into the lamb.