Red Wine-Braised Lamb Shanks

Cooking the lamb shanks low and slow makes this tough cut of meat meltingly tender. Paired with a rich red-wine gravy, it's a real winner. Short ribs or oxtails are also good candidates for this treatment. The recipe makes a generous amount of sauce, so if there is any left over, toss it with pasta or use it as the base of a chili or stew.

Red Wine-Braised Lamb Shanks
Photo: Victor Protasio
Active Time:
1 hr
Total Time:
3 hrs 30 mins


  • 8 (12 ounce) lamb shanks, trimmed (see Tip)

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

  • 1 teaspoon ground pepper, divided

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 ½ large onions, diced

  • 3 medium carrots, chopped

  • 2 stalks celery, chopped

  • 10 cloves garlic, minced

  • cup all-purpose flour

  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste

  • 2 cups dry red wine, such as pinot noir

  • 3 cups low-sodium beef broth

  • 1 (24 ounce) jar tomato puree

  • 4 bay leaves

  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary

  • 1 ½ tablespoons red-wine vinegar

  • Chopped fresh parsley for garnish


  1. Position rack in lowest third of oven; preheat to 350°F. Place a roasting pan next to the stove.

  2. Pat lamb shanks dry. Season with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add 3 shanks and cook, turning, until browned on all sides, about 7 minutes. Transfer to the roasting pan. Repeat in 2 more batches with the remaining shanks.

  3. Reduce heat to medium and add onions, carrots and celery to the pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add flour and tomato paste and cook until browned, 3 to 5 minutes.

  4. Increase heat to medium-high and add wine. Cook, scraping up any browned bits, until the liquid is reduced by half, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in broth, tomato puree, bay leaves, rosemary and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer.

  5. Pour the tomato mixture over the shanks in the roasting pan. Cover with foil and transfer to the oven. Bake until the meat is very tender and falling off the bone, 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Transfer the shanks to a serving dish and cover to keep warm.

  6. Carefully place the roasting pan over two burners on the stovetop. Skim off any fat and discard the bay leaves and rosemary. Simmer the sauce over medium heat until thickened, about 4 minutes. Stir in vinegar. Serve the shanks with the sauce and garnish with parsley, if desired.

To make ahead

Refrigerate for up to 2 days.


Look for small lamb shanks, about 12 ounces each or 6 pounds total. If you can only get larger ones, remove the cooked meat from the bones and divide it among your guests.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

431 Calories
14g Fat
14g Carbs
54g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Serving Size 5 oz. lamb & 2/3 cup sauce
Calories 431
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 14g 5%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 54g 108%
Total Fat 14g 18%
Saturated Fat 5g 25%
Cholesterol 156mg 52%
Vitamin A 2930IU 59%
Sodium 499mg 22%
Potassium 1064mg 23%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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