Rosemary Crusted Lamb Chops

In this recipe we are working with lamb rib chops, with two ribs per chop. This yields a thicker piece of meat than if we had single rib chops, and is more forgiving with cooking time if you like your lamb rare or medium rare.

If you have single rib chops, which are thinner pieces, you'll have to pay closer attention, and sear quickly, to not overcook the chops.

Note that 1 pound of lamb rib chops is about 4 double-rib chops, which serves 2 to 3 people. You can also use lamb loin chops in lieu of rib chops for this recipe.

Lamb chops are best eaten on the rare side. Error on less cooking time than you would expect, that way you can always cook them further if you want them more well done.

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 10 minutes
  • Marinating time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 2 to 3


  • 1 pound lamb chops (lamb rib chops are what are pictured here)
  • 2 Tbsp minced fresh rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 4 Tbsp olive oil, divided


Before you start, decide if you want your lamb chops rare or medium. If you want your lamb chops rare in the center, you can cook them entirely on the stovetop.

If you want them a bit more cooked, and you have double rib chops (2 ribs per piece of meat, each piece of meat about 1/4 of a pound), you will want to finish them in the oven, at 400°F for a few minutes.

Or you can cover the pan and remove from the heat and just let sit for a few minutes.

1 Marinate the lamb chops with rosemary, salt, pepper, garlic, olive oil: In a small bowl, mix the rosemary, salt, pepper, garlic, and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil together. Coat the lamb chops with the mixture, massaging it into the meat with your fingers. If you are working with double rib chops, cover and let stand at room temperature for 30 to 45 minutes.

If you are working with single rib chops, and you want the result to be rare, let the chops sit in the rub in the refrigerator, do not let come to room temp or the thin ribs will easily overcook when you sear them in the next step.

Lamb Lollipops Ready To Cook Added Seasoning to Lamb Chops

2 Sear the lamb chops: Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in an oven-proof sauté pan over high heat. When the oil is shimmering hot, sear the lamb chops on all sides, about 2 to 3 minutes per side.

(If you are working with single rib chops, sear only on two sides, and only a minute or so on each side if you want the result to be rare or medium rare.)

Searing Lamb Chops in Pan how to cook lamb chops in oil

3 Test for doneness, if you want more well done, finish in oven, otherwise tent with foil and let rest: At this point, if you want your lamb chops rare, they are likely cooked enough. Remove them from the pan, cover them with foil and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

If you would like your chops more cooked, you can put them in a 400°F oven for 3 to 5 minutes, or keep them in the hot pan, remove from heat, and cover the pan for a few minutes.

Then remove from the pan to a plate or cutting board, cover with foil and let rest 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

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  • Wojtek

    Making them second time already from your recipe! It’s amazing.


  • David

    I made these tonight. I used single rib chops. The seasoning was nice, very tasty. But the chops came out undercooked. To be fair, I didn’t put the in the oven afterwards, but I essentially followed the directions as written. But the chops came out almost raw. I didn’t want to cook them more because they might have burned. I’ll have to consider on what changes to make next time I try this.

  • Karen MacQueen

    Elise, this recipe is perfect! I used the Costco loin chops, followed the recipe exactly. My 100 year old mother, who hasn’t had much appetite lately, loved her chop (served with mashed potatoes and Mark Bittman’s simple eggplant Parmesan) — I put the lamb into a hot oven at the end, to accommodate her preference for medium instead of rare — so delicious. My new favorite way to cook chops.

  • Allie

    This is my go-to for a special birthday/anniversary treat. I’ve stopped ordering lamb chops in restaurants because they are never as good as when I make these. The butchers near where I live generally sell single rib chops, so I follow Elise’s instructions and marinate them in the fridge. I’ve never had a problem with them overcooking (and I like mine rare). Thank you for sharing such a delicious recipe!

  • Kelly Burgess

    These are the most fabulous lamb chops ever! I brown them in the skillet, but I like all meat really well done, so I finish them in the oven. Top with a drizzle of British mint sauce (Cross & Blackwell), and it’s like a piece of heaven!

  • Marlene

    Made these tonight and doubled the recipe exactly because we had guests. I would not change a thing. Perfect! Two people wanted medium so I left them in the covered skillet longer. I give this recipe the BEST rating. I’ve had lamb many times but never attempted it at home. Now I’ll do it for guests whenever possible (too expensive for a no-guest dinner). Delicious, moist, perfectly spiced.


  • Jj

    Thanks for this lamb chop recipe. You took the time to provide essential details. That made the difference. These were the best ones, I’ve ever made.


  • Wendy

    Just made this again. It is so amazing. So tasty…I am their hero of the house.

  • Jacky

    Followed this recipe exactly…. DELICIOUS!!!! Thank you for such an easy to follow, amazing recipe!

  • Pam

    I’m so glad that most people love lamb. As an Australian living in country Western Australia on a 10 acre hobby farm I have my own ram lambs and hoggets (older lambs) butchered and eat almost no other meat except chicken. Because I breed them and know exactly what they eat. The meat is excellent and as I never make pets of there are no guilty feelings. Good eating to you all.

  • nancy

    This is by far the most delicious lamb chop recipe I’ve ever tasted and it’s so easy! Thanks so much for sharing Elise !!

  • Tina

    This will be tge 4rth time making these. I omit the salt though. But YUMMMMMIE!!!!!
    And my boyfriends 8 year old LOVES them. Hes a hard sell on most foods, but licks the bones on these. Best place to buy the chops…Costco.

    • Kelley Marie

      OH! Hadn’t even thought of Costco when shopping around for lamb chops. I will have to look. Thanks.

      Elise, I made these for the first time tonight and they were heaven!

      • Elise

        Hi Kelley, I’m so glad you liked them!

  • Katie

    All I can say is WOW. I followed the instructions for medium cooking, and they came out medium rare, which is exactly how I like them.

    I have been ordering these at upscale restaurants lately, and I have to say these home cooked ones were more flavorful and I preferred the simple preparation better. They were amazing!! I am planning to make them again for my Mom’s birthday dinner, if not sooner. Thanks for sharing!

  • anne p


    Can i make the same prepartion with beaf steaks? And serve with duchess potato.

    Thanks in advance

    • Elise

      You might try it with medallions of beef tenderloin, filet mignon, which would be tender like lamb.

  • Peter Nilsson

    I am addicted to lamb..this recipe is truly turning me more and more down the path of becoming a lamb junkie ;) Delicious!

  • Sherleen

    HI! if i’m substituting dried rosemary for fresh ones.. how much should i put?

    • Elise

      If your dried rosemary is still pretty strong, I would use one Tbsp. If not, you may need to use more.

  • Vicki

    As an Australian I love lamb especially the Icelandic that Whole Foods gets towards winter. We love the NZ frozen lamb racks from Trader Joes. Cut them up and grilled to rare they are beautiful. Will give this one a try when we are in lamb mode. My rosemary plant lives for lamb!

  • karen

    I just happened to be having rack of lamb last night…I add a little spoonful of dijon to the olive oil mix and a little more garlic. I don’t split them into chops but roast the rack. Thanks for the inspiration..I usually cook them on the grill but roasted them inside and took your idea of searing the full racks on top of the stove in some good olive oil before putting them in the oven. Awesome! Thanks

  • Jayne

    This is beautiful! My mom recently procured a hunk of lamb for roasting. I think I might use the same crusting method. Only, I can’t seem to find rosemary anywhere! Reckon thyme pairs well with lamb?

    • Elise

      Yes thyme would be great too.

      • AnnaP

        Rosemary and lamb is a match made in heaven, though!

    • jay

      I just had a plate of medium well cooked lamb chops and mashed potatos at an upscale resturaunt and suffered food poisoning approx. an hour and a half later. Is it safe to eat medium well chops? By the way they had a slight livery taste to them. I never experienced a taste like that before and I have eaten lamb chops many times. I spent my wedding anniversary in the ER and could not report for duty the following day.

      • Elise

        Once I bought some sushi from Whole Foods, they sort of tasted a little weird and sure enough, within half an hour I got sick. Sounds to me like you got a weird chop. Yes, it is usually safe to eat medium well lamb chops, and rare lamb chops, just like it’s usually safe to eat medium well or rare beef steak. But perhaps they sat out too long after they were cooked, or perhaps they were just bad. Or got contaminated in some other way. My guiding rule is if it tastes off, don’t eat it.