Lamb loin chops are the filet mignon of lamb. Really. The loin chop looks like a miniature T-bone steak, containing a portion of the loin and tenderloin. The loin chop is the leanest and most tender cut of lamb, ideal for cooking quickly at high temperatures (in a cast iron skillet or grill) for a caramelized outside and juicy pink inside. It’s easily the best way to cook lamb loin chops.
Lamb loin chops with cognac butter is a delicious and immensely flavorful dish with notes of butter, garlic, herbs, and cognac. This recipe comes together rather quickly and is really simple to master with just a few easy steps.
How to Cook Lamb Loin Chops
My loin chops are pan-fried medium-rare using a cast-iron skillet with cognac butter sauce. It’s a delicious, melt-in-your-mouth method for preparing lamb. I think I’d take it over your average grilled NY strip steak. It’s much more flavorful and very tender.
Sear lamb chops for about 4 minutes per side on high heat for medium-rare. Add an additional minute per side for medium, and 2 minutes for medium+. Once the lamb is nearly done, I add cognac, butter, herbs, and garlic and sear for an additional minute so the lamb can soak up the delicious glaze. Watching the frothy butter and cognac sizzle in the pan is a work of art.
Temperature for Lamb
Perfect medium-rare lamb is served at around 130°F. Use a digital thermometer if you’re unsure. I personally like my lamb served around medium-rare/medium. Always take the meat off the cooking surface 5-10 degrees ahead of the desired final temperature as it will continue to heat as it rests.
|Well done||150°F and above|
Note: Searing lamb at high temps in a skillet tends to get smokey. Be prepared to use a vent fan or open a window.
Tips for Cooking Lamb Loin Chops
- Look for loin chops that are at least 1 inch thick. This allows you to generously sear the exterior without overcooking the inside and drying out the meat. Loin chops are phenomenal in the medium-rare range.
- Always take the meat off the cooking surface 5-10 degrees ahead of the desired final temperature as it will continue to heat as it rests.
- Remove lamb from the refrigerator 20-30 minutes prior to cooking so it can come to room temp. This ensures more accurate cooking times.
- Let lamb rest for 10 minutes after cooking and before cutting/serving. Just like steak, this allows the juices to settle and redistribute throughout the meat.
- Cognac butter can be made with cognac or brandy. Don’t waste expensive cognac! You can also omit it entirely and just use butter.
- American lamb tends to be less gamey than Australian lamb due to its diet. Always buy fresh quality cuts that are brownish red with white fat. Avoid dull or grey-looking meat with yellowing fat.
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Lamb loin chops seasoned with fresh rosemary and oregano and seared in a cognac butter sauce in a cast iron skillet.
- 4–6 lamb loin chops
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2–3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 2 sprigs fresh oregano
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1/4 cup cognac or brandy
- salt and pepper to taste
- Remove loin chops from the fridge 20-30 minutes before cooking. Season liberally with salt and pepper.
- In a large skillet, heat the olive oil on high until the skillet is hot. Place the loin chops in the skillet and cook undisturbed for 3-4 minutes. It’s important not to touch or adjust the lamb so the exterior can sear up and form a crust. Flip and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes. Note, this step can be smokey, use a range vent or open a window.
- Add the butter, cognac, garlic, and fresh herbs (sprigs and all) to the skillet. Swirl the pan to mix once the butter has melted. Simmer for an additional 1-2 minutes, occasionally turning the loin chops in order to soak up cognac butter sauce. For medium rare, the lamb is done. Sear for an additional minute for each level of doneness; about 3-4 minutes total minutes for medium.
- Spoon cognac butter over each loin chop before transferring them to a plate. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving.
Cognac butter can be made with cognac or brandy. Don’t waste expensive cognac! You can also omit it entirely and just use butter.
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 356
- Sugar: 0.1g
- Sodium: 129mg
- Fat: 16g
- Saturated Fat: 9.5g
- Carbohydrates: 1.4g
- Fiber: 0.6g
- Protein: 14.6g
- Cholesterol: 75mg
Keywords: Lamb loin chops, lamb chops recipe, how to cook lamb