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RIDICULOUSLY GOOD Herbed Slow-Cooked Lamb Shanks

Herbed Slow Cooked Lamb Shanks
First published way back in 2014, this is one of my favourite recipes to make. I hope it becomes one of yours.

November 2020: Please believe me when I say, this lamb shank recipe is a total winner! It’s full of lots of veggies, bone broth and – of course – unctuously good lamb shanks.  

I always shred my shanks – I find the meal goes further that way. And – this one is dinner-party worthy. You’ll have guests asking for the recipe…

Did you know that once upon a time I had what David calls my ‘starter blog’? The most popular post on that blog was  Jamie Oliver and His BEST EVER Pukka Spiced Slow-Cooked Lamb Shanks. Back in 2012, the fact that it contains nightshades and other non-AIP friendly ingredients didn’t phase me. The Autoimmune Protocol wasn’t a thing for me at that time.

It was one of my most favourite recipes.

“Always remember: If you’re alone in the kitchen and you drop the lamb, you can always just pick it up. Who’s going to know?” – Julia Child

Herbed Slow Cooked Lamb Shanks

And, in fairness to Mr Oliver, it is a truly awesome lamb shank recipe. Seriously pukka, even! But, given the chilli and tomatoes that are kind of central to Jamie’s dish, this is one recipe that definitely doesn’t fit the Autoimmune Protocol ‘rules’.

When I first published this post, the temperature had just dipped a little as we headed towards winter. And, as I had a good friend coming for dinner who I happened to know loves lamb shanks, it seemed like the perfect time to amend Jamie’s recipe to meet my AIP needs.

And – I gotta tell you – they were RIDICULOUSLY GOOD!
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This is a great recipe to make over the weekend. I think there’s something quite therapeutic about chopping up all the veggies, and all that long, slow cooking makes the house smell so inviting.

Plus, once the dish is in the oven, there’s not much to do – there are loads of vegetables in the dish, so while I think serving your shanks on a bed of mash is recommended, you don’t really need any more greens unless you’d like the meat to stretch further.

And, as I tend to do with all my braises, I took my meat off the bone. I think it goes further this way. Of course, you can choose to leave your shanks whole if you prefer.

We had our shanks with a celeriac and parsnip mash. YUM!

RIDICULOUSLY GOOD Herbed Slow-Cooked Lamb Shanks
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This recipe is AIP-friendly
Recipe type: The Main Event
Serves: 4 - 6
  • 4-5 large lamb shanks (I managed to squeeze 5 large shanks into my le Creuset)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano or marjoram
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 large carrots, quartered and diced
  • 4 sticks celery, diced
  • 1 large leek, washed and finely sliced
  • 2 large onions,finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 2 tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 100 ml verjuice or white wine
  • 6 anchovy fillets
  • 250 ml bone broth
  • Handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  1. Heat your oven to 180°C/350°F. I start by washing and chopping all my vegetables. Put aside in a large bowl.
  2. Throw chopped rosemary, thyme, dried oregano, cinnamon, and salt into your mortar and pestle. Give it a good bash. Rub the shanks in this mixture, pressing it in well. I find the best way to do this is to place your meat in a large plastic bag. Pour the herb mixture in and give it a good shake, ensuring each shank gets a good covering of the rub.
  3. Heat a thick-bottomed casserole pan, add your fat of choice and – when the fat has melted – brown the meat on all sides in batches and remove from the pan.
  4. Add the carrot, celery, onions, leek and garlic along with the extra chopped rosemary and a pinch of salt and sweat them until softened (about ten minutes).
  5. Add the apple cider vinegar and allow it to reduce to a syrup.
  6. Pour in the verjuice and allow to simmer for a couple of minutes.
  7. Add the anchovies and then add the bone broth. Shake the pan and return the lamb to the casserole. Shimmy the shanks around to get a nice fit.
  8. Bring to the boil, put on the lid and pop in the oven for 2 – 2½ hours to work its magic. Then, remove the lid and cook for a further half an hour.
  9. If you want to take the meat off the bone, now is the time to do so. Carefully remove your shanks from the casserole. Using two forks, gently pull the meat from the bone. It should fall away. Once shredded, the meat can be returned to the casserole. I also take care to ensure I have removed all the marrow from the bones and pop that back into the dish.
  10. Taste for seasoning. Finally, stir in a handful of roughly chopped fresh parsley.
E N J O Y ! 

This recipe features in the Phoenix Helix AIP Recipe Roundtable.

Herbed Slow Cooked Lamb Shanks

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Comments (20)

Mmmm, looks so good! I want someone to make me that. Like a fairy godmother, maybe. And anchovies! Nice touch!

What do you mean, Petra – you are such an amazing cook. You could whip these up in no time (and your AIP-friendly ice cream sandwiches for dessert!) YUM!!!

Another yummy recipe, love, love, love lamb shanks 🙂

This looks luscious! Thanks so much for sharing at the AIP Recipe Roundtable. I hope you’ll join us again.

Hi Eileen – thanks for stopping by. I’m a fan of Phoenix Helix and at week 10 of my AIP experiment. I will stop in again!

Not sure where to find Verjuice. Any suggestions on a substitution?

Hi Vian – apologies for the tardy reply. Just back from a wee holiday.

If verjuice isn’t readily available, white wine is good (if you tolerate it) or you could sub in a couple of tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and make up the difference with water. I promise they’ll taste amazing!

I ended up using lemon juice, but you’re right, they were amazing! Too bad I only get 1 lamb a year and it only has 4 shanks! I actually made this in my Instant Pot pressure cooker. I just let the lemon juice bubble for a bit to reduce, and used less stock since it doesn’t reduce in the pressure cooker the way it would in a braise. Cooked it under pressure for 35 minutes and it was perfect.

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