This foolproof Greek style roasted leg of lamb with thyme recipe is easy to make and only requires a few ingredients. Lamb is traditionally consumed on Easter Sunday, most commonly in a rotisserie. Nevertheless, this Greek style roasted leg of lamb is an ideal centrepiece for Easter, Sunday roasts or any other special occasion!
Don’t worry if you’ve never cooked a leg of lamb. It’s really easy and fuss-free. You don’t even need a long drawn out ingredient list.
Greek style roasted leg of lamb with thyme ingredients
Leg of lamb: This recipe can be made with either bone-in leg of lamb or boneless. Leg of lamb tastes ‘gamey’ or grassey and is rather juicy and tender. Bone-in leg of lamb tends to be cheaper than boneless lamb. Boneless lamb on the other hand cooks faster than bone-in lamb.
Olive oil: Rub the leg of lamb with a generous amount of extra virgin olive oil and in the baking dish.
Garlic: Roasted garlic has a sweet and milder taste than raw garlic which pairs perfectly with lamb. Make little cuts in the leg of lamb and insert the garlic slivers. Do so all around the meat. There is no need to marinate the meat overnight, however if you want to, you can insert the garlic slivers into the lam the night before. I tend to do so 1-2 hours prior to roasting and it works perfectly fine.
Lemon: Lemon is acidic and tenderises the meat. It can be used in marinades, nevertheless, one requires to be careful with how long the meat marinades for. Squeeze a lemon and drizzle it all over the leg of lamb. Cut a few lemon slices and place them in the baking dish around the lamb.
Seasoning for leg of lamb
Salt and ground black pepper: I like the taste of leg of lamb and so I tend to season with salt and ground black pepper. Salt will also render the meat juicy.
Thyme: Lamb goes very well with mint and so its no surprise that thyme is a perfect condiment. Thyme has an earthy and slightly savoury flavour and goes very well with lemon. It is definitely a flavour boost to lamb.
Vegetables for leg of lamb
Onions and Carrots: Cut an onion and a few carrots and place them in the baking dish with the leg of lamb. Both onions and carrots will taste sweeter when roasted and go very well with the lamb. They are, by far, my preferred vegetables for this roast dinner!
Leg of lamb cooking time and temperature
Bone-in leg of lamb requires around 40-45 minutes per 450g/ 1 lb. Roast the leg of lamb at 200C or 390F. It is better not to rush roasting it and thus not increase the oven temperature any higher. It is also very important to allow the leg of lamb to rest once it’s cooked and before it’s served, so let the leg of lamb rest for around 15 minutes prior to carving.
There is no need to cover the meat with aluminium foil. I personally do not do so, though you can consider covering the meat during roasting. Makes sure you remove the foil around the last 30-40 minutes so that the skin crisps up.
Your lamb is done when it’s internal temperature is 60C or 140F (rare), 65-70C or 149-158F (medium) and 70-75C or 158-167F (well done).
Serve this delicious and juicy Greek style roasted leg of lamb with thyme with a traditional tomato and Feta cheese salad such as Horiatiki or a Politiki salad with cabbage and peppers. This roast dinner goes very well with roasted vegetables such as potatoes and carrots.
Greek roasted leg of lamb with thyme
- 1.5Kg / 3-3.5 lb. bone-in leg of lamb, trimmed of all fat
- 2-3 garlic cloves
- 1 medium onion
- 1 carrot
- 1-2 lemons
- 6-7 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- sea salt (kosher salt)
- ground black pepper
- Start by slicing the onion and the carrot and place them in the baking dish.
- Squize a lemon and drizzle the lemon juice all over the meat. Slice a further lemon and place them in the baking dish.
- Season the leg of lamb with sea salt and ground black pepper. With a sharp knife, pierce the meat and insert your garlic slivers all around the meat. Place your thyme sprigs on the leg of lamb and lastly drizzle with some olive oil.
- Place the leg of lamb on the baking dish and cook for at least 1.5hrs. To be absolutely sure the meat is cooked check with a kitchen thermometer. You may wish to cover the meat with aluminum foil while roasting, though make sure to remove it in the last 30 minutes so that the skin crisps up for that delicious crust.
- Let the meat rest for 15 minutes prior to carving.