Butcher's Guide Lamb Cuts


Lamb Ribs are prepared from the ribs, backbone, and in some cases, the rib eye muscle. The meat in lamb ribs is close to the bone, which makes them very flavorful. Lamb ribs are perfect for braising and grilling. As they are mainly bone, they usually take a longer time to cook than most lamb cuts.


Lamb shoulder is primal cut in the foresaddle, which is the front of the animal. The lamb shoulder is often roasted, in which case it is usually boned and rolled; it can be stuffed as well. Lamb shoulder is also sometimes cut into chops, though these chops are not as desirable as the rib or loin chops. Lamb shoulder can also be cooked with moist heat, such as braising.

Short Loin

Short Loin meat is very tender. The loin eye may be removed and cut into medallions or noisettes. Short Loin is prepared from a Loin by the removal of specified ribs parallel to the Forequarter cutting line. Eye of Loin is best cooked using a dry-heat method such as broiling, grilling or roasting.


A lamb's breast, which is worked heavily whenever the animal moves, contains a lot of cartilage and other connective tissues. This makes the breast one of the few lamb primal cuts that need to be cooked low and slow with moist heat. Lamb breast can also be used to make ground lamb.


Lamb Neck chops are considered an old fashioned cut that are full of flavour due to the meat sitting close to the bone. They are suited to being cooked slowly for inexpensive and healthy stews, casseroles or soups. Lamb necks are considered the basis for the traditional Irish Stew. Alternatively, the Greek-Cypriot way is to marinate overnight in olive oil, garlic and lemon zest and juice for grilling.


Lamb Leg is celebrated around the world as one of the most versatile and highly flavoursome cuts suitable for roasting. A lamb leg tends to have a layer of fat on the outside. Prepared from a boneless leg by following its natural seams and trimmed accordingly.


A lamb shank comes from the shin of the lamb and is usually sold with the center bone. It’s prepared from both a forequarter and a leg by a cut through the joint that connects it to usually the leg bone. Lamb shanks are an inexpensive cut of meat begging to be slow cooked in liquid to deliver flavour from the bone and pull-apart tenderness.


The lamb sirloin is sometimes considered part of the leg primal cut, but it can also be prepared separately. In this case, it is frequently cut into chops or steaks and cooked using dry heat.


Lamb flank can be tough unless cooked with moist heat, so braising is best. Lamb flank can also be used for making ground lamb.

Cuts of Beef

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