What Does Lamb Taste Like? A Detailed Answer

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If you are new to the world of non-vegetarian food, chances are you might have been told by at least some of your fellow meat-eaters to try the lamb. Although it is not as famous as chicken, pork, or fish, some cuisines still feature lamb as a major ingredient. Did that make you think, ‘what does lamb taste like?’ Let us talk about that today.


Lamb, the young one of a sheep, has a robust, earthy, gamey flavor and an intense aroma. It has a tender, meaty texture considering the animal’s young age. The important note to make here is that every type of lamb cut has a unique and incomparable flavor. 

Lamb is basically a sheep that is less than a year old. Lamb meat cuts are a flavorful addition to your wholesome, healthy diet. Be it in steaks or chops; lamb meats are now a popular tasty treat to meat lovers. If you are wondering about its taste, hop on to a reading journey in which you I tell you all about lamb, its taste, uses, meat cuts and health benefits.

What Is Lamb Meat?

Lamb is the young one of a sheep and ages less than a year. The meat from the sheep (also called lamb) in the first year is called lamb itself, while the meat from the second year is called hogget. Meat that comes from an older sheep is generally known as mutton. (So, lamb and mutton are not the same for sure!)

Milk-fed lamb, young lamb, spring lamb, sucker lambs, yearling lamb, saltbush mutton, salt marsh lamb, and saltgrass lamb are the names given to lambs in various months under the age of one. 

The preference for lamb meat cuts varies based on the region. Americans prefer shoulder roast, rack, and loin chops, while scrag-end, middle neck, and loin are the meat cuts favored in the UK and Canada.

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What Does Lamb Taste Like? 


What is special about lamb is that many adjectives describe its flavor profile. Most of the descriptions include smoky, earthy, gamey, and meaty. Let me tell you what makes the taste of lamb unique and flavorful.

Lamb has a strong, earthy, and gamey flavor due to the presence of branched-chain fatty acids in the fat of lamb. Lamb has a firm texture, and its flesh is much softer than beef. The diet of the lamb, its age, and the region play an important role in determining the taste of the lamb. 

Grass-fed lamb has a stronger flavor than grain-fed lamb. Also, grass-fed lamb has much more concentration of branched-chain fatty acids, which contributes to its rich flavor.

Does Lamb Have A Good Taste?

Lamb indeed has good taste. Lamb being the tender meat of a young sheep makes it unique and flavorful with a pleasant smoky taste as well. It is deemed one of the best meat cuts for the very same reason. Also, the presence of fatty acids in the lamb meat is another reason you wish to relish lamb often!

Why Does Lamb Have A Weird Taste?

There are many reasons why your lamb doesn’t taste as you wanted it to. It could be primarily because the lamb is old – it might have been butchered after six months, or you might probably be tasting mutton, the older sheep among the lot. Also, since lamb consumes sheep, you might experience a unique odor and taste. But don’t worry! There are ways by which you can mask the smell using marinades or seasoning agents. 

Is Lamb Tastier Than Chicken?

Lamb is mostly tastier than chicken, but ultimately everything boils down to what suits your taste buds! Some deem mutton to be tastier than chicken since chicken is flavorless. That is because the spices easily get into mutton, making them mouth-watering while they remain on the surface in the case of chicken. 

Does Lamb Taste Like Gamey?

The grassy, pastoral flavors are what you mean by gamey flavor. Lamb has a gamey flavor due to two major reasons. Firstly, you experience a gamey flavor while tasting lamb if the lamb is pasture-fed. 

Secondly, being pasture-fed also contributes to the high concentration of indoles, a type of chemical compound present in fat tissues. You can profoundly notice the gamey flavor and odor in lamb fed with grass rather than grains.

Does Lamb Taste Better Than Beef?

Lamb tastes better than beef. When cooked right with appropriate seasonings, lamb is indeed more flavorful than beef. The presence of branched-chain fatty acids also contributes to the unique earthy flavor of lamb, which is better than beef. The only thing to be worried about is that lamb takes a lot of time to cook, and the results might be unsatisfactory if not cooked properly.

Does Lamb Taste Better Than Pork?

Whether you like lamb or pork is a matter of taste preferences. That said, lamb and pork can’t even be compared to each other regarding their flavor profiles. Lamb is more flavorful on its own than pork which is devoid of basic flavor and takes on the taste of the seasonings used. Also, lamb has a soft texture when compared to pork. 

Does Lamb Taste Like Liver?

Lamb meat doesn’t taste the same as the liver. The livers of beef, chicken, and pork are comparable in their flavor profiles. Lamb meat has a unique, more complex flavor that is nowhere similar in taste to that of the liver. Both lamb meat and liver have iron in them.

However, you can experience the taste of liver if you buy a lamb meat cut that has already been cut. To avoid such an experience, always opt for freshly cut lamb meat.

Types Of Lamb Cuts And Their Tastes

Types of Lamb Cuts

As with the case of any other edible meat, different lamb cuts are unique in flavor and texture. The following are the types of edible lamb cuts:

Lamb CutFlavor and Texture
Lamb ShoulderRich flavor, tender texture
Lamb RibGamey flavor, soft texture
Lamb BreastMeaty flavor, crunchy texture
Lamb NeckRich meaty flavor, tender texture
Lamb ShanksRich gamey flavor, dense texture
Lamb LoinRich meaty flavor, tender texture
Lamb SirloinStrong gamey flavor, soft texture
Lamb FlankGamey flavor, coarse texture
Lamb LegLamby flavor, tender texture

How To Cook Lamb The Perfect Way

Slices of Lamb

Here are the some of the top tips that you can follow to cook your lamb perfectly. Follow them for a delicious portion of lamb for you.

  • The first step in cooking lamb the perfect way is to choose the right cut of lamb meat. If lean roast lamb is what you are looking for, go for lamb leg. 
  • Use the appropriate seasonings, which can vary depending on the recipe. For instance, Moroccan lamb uses strong spices and dried fruits for marination. Rosemary, thyme, and capers are used in the British seasoning of lamb.
  • Both slow-cooking and quick cooking methods can be used to cook lamb perfectly. 
  • Slow-cooking methods work best for lamb shoulder, leg, shanks, neck, and breast. That is because these cuts have high meat content and a tough texture. 
  • Tender meat cuts can be cooked using quick cooking methods. Lamb chops, rack of lamb, lamb cutlets, lamb noisettes, loin of lamb, and leg of lamb can be cooked through quick cooking. 

Best Lamb Recipes You Can Try

Lamb meat is one of the most flavorful meats that is unmissable. Here are some of the best lamb recipes that you can try: 

  • Lamb curry
  • Spinach-and-Artichoke Crown Roast of Lamb
  • Moroccan Lamb Tagine
  • Braised Lamb Shank
  • Lamb Ragu
  • Lamb Meatballs
  • Ethiopian Spiced Lamb Stew
  • Lemon-Garlic Lamb Kabobs
  • Lamb Shawarma
  • Mediterranean Lamb Bowls

What Are The Health Benefits of Lamb?

Apart from the taste of lamb, the fuss about eating lamb has much to do with its health benefits. 

  • Lamb is a good source of high-quality protein, vitamins, and minerals such as Vitamin B12, selenium, zinc, niacin, phosphorus, and iron. 
  • Lamb meat also contains many helpful bioactive compounds and antioxidants. 
  • Consumption of lamb helps maintain muscles, improve performance, and prevent the risk of anemia.

Nutritional Content Of Lamb

In a 100-gm serving of lamb, the following values are observed:

Fat10 g
Sodium66 mg
Carbohydrates0 g
Protein27 g
Saturated fat3.7 g
Iron2.4 g
Zinc4 mg
Vitamin B122.16 mcg

Final Word

I hope the article did you good in widening your knowledge of lamb and what it tastes like. Various types of lamb meat cuts with the ways of cooking them should help you relish its flavor to the maximum. Lamb also has potential health benefits if moderately consumed. Try out some lamb recipes, and let me know if you enjoyed the taste. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What does lamb taste similar to?

Lamb tastes similar to young goat. 

What tastes better beef or lamb?

Lamb has a much better taste than beef but requires a longer time to cook.

How do you mask the taste of lamb?

You can mask the taste of lamb with the help of seasoning agents. Cinnamon, allspice, ginger, cloves,rosemary, sage, black pepper and thyme are the seasoning agents which can be used according to the nature of the dishes (sweet or savory).

Does lamb taste like chicken?

Lamb does not taste like chicken since it has a profound gamey flavor.

What is the tastiest part of lamb?

Loin chops are the tastiest part of lamb.

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