Bone-In Salt-Cured Leg of Lamb with Garlic & Rosemary

The herb-and-garlic-spiked dry brine (aka salt cure) enhances the flavor of the lamb and makes for a juicy roast. (Note: Diamond Crystal brand kosher salt is less potent than Morton, which is why we offer quantities for both.)
Bone-In Salt-Cured Leg of Lamb with Garlic & Rosemary

Recipe by Bruce Aidells 

  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • 8Servings


  • 1/4 cup Diamond Crystal kosher salt or 3 tbsp. Morton kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary
  • 2 tbsp. finely chopped garlic
  • 1 bone-in leg of lamb (6 to 8 lbs.), fat trimmed if needed
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil


1. Twenty-four to 36 hours before cooking, combine the salt, rosemary, garlic and 1 tbsp. pepper in a small bowl. Place the lamb, fat side up, on a work surface. Using a sharp knife, score the fat in a 1-inch diamond pattern (do not cut into the meat). Generously coat the top and sides of the lamb with the salt mixture, working it into the cuts. Wrap in plastic wrap, place on a rimmed baking sheet and refrigerate.

2. Unwrap the lamb; wash off  the salt mixture. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes to 1 hour. Pat the lamb dry, place in a roasting pan, fat side up, and rub with the oil.

3. Position a rack in the center of the oven; preheat to 425°. Roast the lamb until the fat starts to brown in spots, about 15 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350° and continue to roast the lamb 1 hour more. Continue roasting until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the lamb (not touching bone) registers 125° for medium-rare, about 20 minutes more. Transfer the lamb to a cutting board. Tent the lamb loosely with foil and let rest 15 to 20 minutes before carving.