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Easy Paleo Boneless Leg of Lamb Roast for the Holidays or everyday is actually a dinner we enjoy about once every two weeks — year round. It’s wonderful, and everyone loves the variety it offers — a new special dinner, delicious red meat … and basically juicy steaks, but more economical and easier to make.
This recipe works great for everyone, and also works well for grain-free and gluten-free diets, including Paleo, AIP, Keto, Whole30, Low FODMAP and eventually on VAD.
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Ingredients in Easy Baked Leg of Lamb Roast
One of the best things about this Boneless Leg of Lamb recipe is I use dried herbs to make a dry rub. This not only creates a kind of herb and spice crust that knocks your socks off with its great flavor, it’s also easy! Other than the lamb, you probably have everything you need for this recipe in your spice drawer!
When you go to buy the lamb, it’s lovely to also buy fresh thyme, but it’s not absolutely necessary. So if you keep a lamb roast in your freezer, this meal can be pulled off with no trip to the market.
- 2-1/2 pound half boneless leg of lamb, or a full leg of lamb (you choose) — What got me started making boneless leg of lamb all the time was the portion size that’s offered at Trader Joe’s. I can buy one or two half legs of lamb, depending on how many I’m feeding and their appetites. Each half feeds four people. The simple dry rub ingredients are simply doubled, as needed, for a full boneless leg of lamb, and cooking times are noted in the recipe accordingly.
- dried ginger (or black pepper, if preferred, and depending on your diet) — I use dried ginger because it’s spicy and flavorful, but still very gentle for diets like AIP and VAD. But if you love and eat freshly ground black pepper, that’s great to use instead. I give both measurements in the recipe.
- dried rosemary
- dried garlic powder (omit for VAD)
- fresh thyme — As mentioned in this recipe, fresh thyme is perhaps the most under-celebrated fresh herb. It’s wonderful and adds so much. If you can grab it at the store, do; it makes a lovely garnish for both the lamb and any side dishes.
How to make Boneless Leg of Lamb Roast
This dinner is excellent for: just you (making extra means you get to eat great food all week), your family, serving to guests, or an impressive, no-fail holiday dinner.
The 15-minute prep means:
- Roll meat on spice rub.
- Allow meat to come to room temperature a bit, about 1 hour.
- Bake about 1 hour.
- Allow to rest before slicing, 15 minutes.
- Slice and serve!
This recipe is SO easy! 🙂 The active work you need to do to execute this recipe takes just 15 minutes!
Where to buy boneless leg of lamb
One of the best parts of sourcing lamb is that it’s always grass-fed and finished. That’s because lambs won’t tolerate harsh conditions. So unlike cows who will endure feedlots and a bad diet, lambs will fail to thrive.
That’s why in Oregon, all of the grass land bordering I-5 for hundreds of miles is speckled with lambs. They demand green pasture, even from farmers who don’t care about animal welfare — a big win for us, the consumer — because it means we get healthier meat (and we can be happy for the animals, too!).
That being said, you can buy lamb just about anywhere, places like Trader Joe’s sell already tied 2.5 pound roasts of boneless leg of lamb — if you don’t want a huge portion or the expense. You can also look at Costco, your grocery store, or get it from your local butcher. You may prefer to call ahead and make sure your market has the cut.
What to serve with Paleo Boneless Leg of Lamb Roast
Depending on your diet, here are some truly fabulous comfort food side dishes (all Gluten-free) that go great with Boneless Leg of Lamb. I’ve labeled the diets for those who find it helpful:
- Herb-Roasted Cauliflower (Paleo, AIP, Keto, Whole30)
- Smashed Potatoes (Paleo, Whole30, VAD)
- Crispy Roasted Brussels Sprouts (Paleo, AIP, Keto, Whole30)
- Mashed Parsnips (Paleo, AIP, VAD, Whole30)
- Roasted Caramelized Delicata Squash Slices (Paleo, AIP, Whole30)
- Fall and Winter Salad with Roasted Delicata Squash (Paleo, AIP, Whole30)
How to store and reheat leftovers
Cover, seal and refrigerate Boneless Leg of Lamb. Enjoy within 4 to 5 days. Freeze for up to 3 months, pre-sliced. Otherwise, fully defrost in the fridge for 24 hours before slicing.
To reheat, consider how important it is to you to have your meat maintain its medium or rare state. When you reheat pink meat, it will brown. So you may prefer to eat leftover meat cold … BUT, with lamb, there is always the fat to consider, and cold lamb fat is not delicious. One option is to gently heat leftover meat, just enough to melt the fat, then serve at basically room temp.
To reheat, partially or completely, use a low temperature oven, 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Pre-slice meat, and warm gently to desired warmth.
Paleo Boneless Leg of Lamb Roast (Easy!, AIP, Keto, Whole30, Gluten-free)
- roasting pan with rack or other pan if you don't have one (a rack is nice but not essential)
- 2.5* lb half boneless leg of lamb *or 5 lb full leg of lamb -- in which case, double all the seasonings listed below, and see the variation in cooking times -- I prefer to buy leg of lamb already tied, as it makes this recipe ZERO stress, so fast and easy. But, if you buy leg of lamb from a butcher, tying it with kitchen twine at 1-inch intervals helps it maintain its shape while baking. Here's how: Tie twine at 1-inch intervals around the leg of lamb. (Very easy.)
- 1 Tablespoon sea salt for half leg; or 1 teaspoon sea salt per pound for full leg
- 1 Tablespoon dried rosemary ground to a powder
- 1 Tablespoon dried ginger powder or (not for AIP or VAD) if you prefer to use black pepper: ¼ teaspoon pepper per pound
- 1 teaspoon dried garlic powder
- Garnish: 2 Tablespoons fresh thyme chopped, omit for VAD
- Place tied boneless leg of lamb in a roasting pan, fatty side facing up (if there's one side with more fat on it).
- Place sea salt, dried rosemary powder, ground ginger and optional dried garlic powder on a dinner-size plate. Stir to mix evenly. Rub this spice mixture all over the outside of the leg of lamb, top and bottom, or roll meat on and around in the spice mixture on the plate. Let lamb sit at room temperature for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- Toward the last 15 minutes of this time, preheat oven to 400℉.
- Roast lamb in the oven until it reaches 115℉ for Rare, about 45 to 50 minutes for half leg of lamb (70 minutes for full), 125℉ for Medium-Rare, 55 minutes for half leg of lamb (80 minutes for full) or 135℉ for Medium, 60 minutes for half leg of lamb (about 90 minutes for full).
- Cover loosely with a large piece of parchment paper tented over it, and let it rest for 20 minutes before slicing. (During this time, the internal temperature will rise about 10 degrees, and the meat's juices will more evenly distribute.) Transfer to a cutting board.
- To serve, slice the meat against the grain.