Smoked lamb chops are a great dish for guests, families, or dinner parties. Depending on the number of guests these could be a fancy appetizer or the main entree for date night with your main squeeze.
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No need to be intimidated by lamb or fear its gamey, smoking actually balances out the flavor and masks any of the gaminess.
How To Smoke Lamb
Smoked lamb is straight-up easy to make, but there are rules to it, i.e. if you want tender, juicy, and flavor for days.
Marinade first! This smoked whole rack is marinated in a garlic-herb based marinade for at least 24 hours. The marinade has the added bonus of taking off that gaminess edge.
Season the lamb chops simply. The marinade will both tenderize and add flavor along with the smoke, so there is no need to get crazy cute with the rub. I used a simple salt and pepper rub to complement the flavors and add texture. Generous amounts of coarse black pepper and kosher salt along are pretty much all you’ll need.
Smoke the whole rack at low temperatures over indirect heat. I cooked at a steady 225 degrees. I highly recommend wood chunks, specifically oak or hickory to pair with lamb.
Use a meat thermometer. It took me about 2 hours to reach the recommended 140-degree internal temperature for medium-rare. I tested for doneness at about the 1 1/2 hour mark and then after another 30 minutes. Lamb ain’t cheap, and you don’t want dry ass lamb so protect your investment and use the thermometer. Fellas, check your ego! In the name of love, don’t let pride keep you from a beautiful thing. My thermometer of choice is the Febflower Candy Thermometer.
Marinate, rub, smoke, and enjoy.
What kind of rack should I buy?
If you didn’t know already, a rack of lamb isn’t just a rack of lamb. There are actually multiple types that you can choose based on your needs. For all there should be 8 chops per rack. You can buy an American Rack (2 pounder), Frenched Rack (meat is moved from the end of the bones, leaving more bone exposed), Crown Roast Rack (two drenched racks tied together in the shape of a crown). Since I was cooking only for two, I used the frenched rack to make my lamb lollipops.
Why Not Grill the Lamb?
True most recipes call for high heat grilling, but I personally find that if you have the time it’s worth it to cook the lamb slowly over smoke. The smoke flavor is more subtle and penetrates the entire rack fully.
What Should I Serve with Smoked Lamb Chops?
Lamb chops pair well with a wide variety of vegetable side dishes. In general, rice, green beans, potatoes all work well. If you want to change it up try with charred okra, roasted carrots, or jollof rice.
What Sauce or Condiment Enhances Smoked Lamb?
Many recipes call for mint-based sauces. Green is spot on, but I use a collard greens salsa verde that’s similar in flavor to a chimichurri sauce.
Making smoked lamb chops
If you make these delicious smoked lamb chops please come back and leave me a comment below with your feedback. Definitely take a photo of the dish and be sure to tag #foodfidelity so that I can see them.
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- Meat Thermometer
- 1 whole American or French rack of lamb
- 2 tbsp of olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic roughly chopped
- 1/2 tbsp Kosher Salt
- 1/2 tbsp Coarse black pepper
- 1 tsp dried parsley
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tbsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tbsp black pepper
For The Marinade
- Combine garlic, olive oil, dried parsley, oregano, salt, and pepper in small bowl
- Rub mixture all over the lamb
For the lamb
- Remove from refrigerator and let reach room temperature.
- Add more salt and pepper
- Clean and oil grill grates using a paper towel soaked in olive oil.
- Pre-heat smoker to 225 degrees
Smoke the lamb
- Add the lamb to the smoker bone side down
- Smoke at 225 degrees for about 2 hours. Check for doneness using a meat thermometer. Stop when temps are between 135-140 degrees.
- Move to cooler part and cook to internal temps reach 145 degrees
- Let rest. Top with choice of sauce