Slow-cooked lamb shanks in red wine sauce

As the weather is starting to cool down there is no better time for a lamb shank dinner with this recipe from Good Food Guide with red wine sauce. Don't forget the glass of red for yourself too. This dish is perfect for a mid-week meal that the whole family will love.

At a glance


Pair With


  • 5 x 300-350g lamb shanks
  • 1½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, separated (plus more as required)
  • 750ml merlot or cabernet sauvignon wine (yes, a whole bottle!)
  • 800g can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 500ml (2 cups) low-sodium chicken stock (or veal stock)
  • 3 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 2 dried bay leaves


  1. Preheat oven to 180C (conventional and fan-forced).
  2. Sprinkle lamb shanks all over with salt and pepper.
  3. Heat half the oil in a large, heavy-based pot over high heat. Add 3 lamb shanks and brown aggressively all over – this is key for flavour, so don’t rush this step.
  4. Remove shanks. Add remaining tablespoon of oil, then brown remaining shanks. Set aside.
  5. Add remaining ingredients to the pot. Stir, then bring to simmer.
  6. Add lamb shanks, arranging them so the meat is submerged as best you can – it’s fine if a bit is above the liquid line, they will shrink as they cook and you can rearrange them midway through.
  7. Cover with lid and transfer to oven for 2 hours.
  8. After 2 hours, remove lid and check meat using 2 forks – it should be pretty tender. Bake uncovered for a further 30 minutes.
  9. Remove lamb shanks, cover and keep warm.
  10. Meanwhile, strain sauce into a bowl, pressing out liquid from the tomato and herbs. It should be a thin, syrupy consistency. If it’s too watery, pour it back into the pot and simmer rapidly on medium-high stove to reduce – it won’t take long.
  11. To serve, place individual lamb shanks on creamy mashed potato (or polenta or cauliflower puree), drizzle with sauce and sprinkle with thyme or parsley, if using.