If you are looking for an easy way to make a leg of lamb, try the Instant Pot! Instead of roasting lamb in the oven, you can cook it in a pressure cooker in just an hour or two. Studded with garlic and coated in fresh rosemary, this tasty lamb dinner will be a breeze. A naturally low carb dinner that’s perfect for the holidays!
You might also like these lamb recipes using the air fryer, smoker, etc.
I don’t think I’ve ever cooked an Easter dinner. However if I did, it would be a leg of lamb. Lamb is perfect for special occasions to me and I always the flavor combination of herbs and lots of garlic. So today I practiced an Easter dinner with this easy garlic & rosemary leg of lamb in the Instant Pot.
It was sooo easy, tender and delicious! Even my father in law said it melted in his mouth. That is easily the nicest compliment he’s ever given me. And it only took about 2 hours from start to finish.
If you want to make lamb in a slow cooker.
If you want to make this recipe in the slow cooker, check out my slow cooker lamb recipe. All you would do differently is brown the roast in a large skillet and then place in the slow cooker. No need to add water but cook it on low all day long. The rest should be the same.
The size and cut of lamb roast I used.
Below is the roast I bought at Aldi. It was roughly a 4 pound boneless leg of lamb roast. This easily served 6 people.
Many people also like to use a lamb shoulder to roast. This cut of meat would also work because of the pressure cooker makes it very tender. The lamb shoulder tends to have more marbling then the leg of lamb which has a layer of fat on the outside. Check out Jamie Oliver’s post on the different cuts of lamb to learn more.
The other recipe ingredients I used.
To season the roast I used cloves of garlic cut into slivers, fresh rosemary, olive oil, salt and black pepper. If you prefer you could use fresh thyme and for both herbs you can also use dried. Remember 1 tablespoon fresh herbs equals 1 teaspoon of dried.
The vegetables I added were potatoes, carrots and onions. They are pretty sturdy veggies and you can use whatever your favorites are but remember pressure cooking will really get them soft. Root vegetables work the best.
How to make a leg of lamb in the Instant Pot.
Step 1: Prepare the roast by making little slits all over the lamb and stuff it with garlic slivers. Next, finely mince the rosemary and mix it with salt and pepper. Rub a little olive oil over the meat and rub the seasonings into it. Place in a big baggie and refrigerate until ready to cook.
I like to prepare roasts like this the night before and refrigerate over night for maximum flavor. However you can do it in the morning if you wish as it only takes a few minutes of prep time and then cook it in the afternoon.
Step 2: Now we are ready for the pressure cooker. First you want to sear the roast by using the saute mode and adjusting the heat to high. When the pot is nice and hot, add a little oil and then sear both sides of the roast for about 4-5 minutes. Hit the cancel button.
Step 3: Take out the lamb and add the water. You could also use chicken broth or beef broth for the liquid. Use it to scrape up the brown bits. Then add the roast back into pot. Secure the lid and push the pressure valve to the lock position. Hit the manual button for 50 minutes and do a quick pressure release when it’s done.
Step 4: Take off the lid and add the vegetables on top. I used potatoes, carrots and onions. Secure the pressure cooker lid again and manually cook for 10 more minutes to cook the vegetables and finish the lamb.
NOTE: You could add the vegetables in the beginning after you brown the roast. However they will get a bit mushy. If you do it this way, make sure to cut your vegetables into bigger chunks and cook everything for 60 minutes and use a natural release of pressure.
Step 5: When it’s done, let the pressure come down naturally. This complete meal will take about 2 hours all together so you can plan accordingly. You could use the broth from the roast and make gravy or a sauce. Since I used the roasted veggies I didn’t feel a need to do this.
Store leftovers in an airtight container. Please scroll down to view the printable recipe card.
If you want to brown the roast more.
You can brown this lamb leg two ways. Place it in a 450°F oven for 10 minutes or you can brown it under the broiler. However you don’t need to do either. The meat should be nice and tender and delicious right out of the Instant Pot!
Regardless of any of these methods, please make sure you let it rest for about 10 minutes before carving.
Notes about the recipe.
- If you want more of a chewy lamb you might want to cook this for about 50 minutes total. I prefer it more tender so 60 minutes worked for me.
- You can use dried rosemary if you wish. Just make sure to crush it a bit to release the flavor and only use 1 -2 teaspoons.
- If you add the vegetables at the beginning, cut the vegetables into big pieces because they will get over cooked.
- Alternatively you can cook the lamb for 50 minutes quick release and then add the vegetables. Manually cook again for 10 minutes and then a natural pressure release. They should come out perfectly.
- If you have any leftover lamb, it would be great for a lamb stew.
Well I can honestly say I will be making this Instant Pot dish again … especially when lamb leg is on sale! This would make a great Sunday meal as it has roasted potatoes and carrots all cooked in one pot. Enjoy! 1 serving (lamb only) is:
776 cals / 48.2g fat / 0.9g carbs / 0.2g fiber / 79.4g protein = 0.7g net carbs
Easy Rosemary & Garlic Instant Pot Leg of Lamb
If you are looking for an easy way to make lamb, try the Instant Pot! Studded with garlic and coated in fresh rosemary, this tasty lamb roast dinner will be a breeze. Great for a holiday gathering or Sunday dinner.
- 4 pounds leg of lamb, boneless
- 4 cloves garlic, slivered
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary or 1 teaspoon dried
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 cup water
- carrots, potatoes, onions (optional)
- Cut little slits in the lamb roast and stuff the garlic slivers in.
- Mix the rosemary, salt and pepper together. Then add a tablespoons of oil all over the lamb and rub the spices in next. Place in a large baggie and refrigerate over night.
- Heat up the Instant Pot by using the saute mode and adjust the heat to high. Once hot, add a tablespoons of oil and brown the roast on both sides. About 4-5 minutes each side. Hit the cancel button.
- Take out the roast and add the water. Scrape up the brown bits then add in the roast back into the pot.
- Secure the lid, turn the pressure valve to the back and manually cook for 50 minutes.
- When done, do a quick pressure release and add the vegetables. Secure the lid and cook for 10 minutes more and let the pressure come down naturally.
- Take out the roast and let rest for 10 minutes before carving.
- NOTE: If you want to, you can set the roast under the broiler to make it browner. Or you can place it in a 450 degrees F oven for 10 minutes. However neither are needed.
- NOTE2: If you want to add the vegetables from the beginning, make sure they are in big chunks because they will get mushy. Add them to the put with the roast and manually cook for 60 minutes. Let the pressure come down naturally. Let the roast rest for 10 minutes before carving.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 6 Servings
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 776
Hi. My roast is only 2 lbs. Does it cook for the same amount of time?
Hi Diane, according to this page from Instant Pot it should take 15 minutes per pound so try 30 minutes.
Hope you like it!
Absolutely delicious especially made so by following the suggestion in comments to deglaze with red wine (I used 1/2 cup wine and 1/2 cup water). I would probably cut 2 minutes off meat cooking time and 1 minute off after vegetable addition as my meat wasn’t really sliceable and veggies were very soft. This is definitely a keeper!
HI Mary, So glad you liked it. Thanks for coming back to comment and share your tips with the other readers. That’s really helpful!
I made this last night using a 5lb semi-boneless leg of lamb. I accidently used all 12 cloves in the lamb itself, then added some additional cloves to before pressure cooking it. It was delicious!
I think that carrots cooked that much time would be way to mushy though. I cooked it for 50 minutes with NPR 10 minutes. After sitting an additional 5-10 minutes on a plate, it still had some pink.
Hi Deb, thanks for sharing your tips. All that garlic certainly sounds delicious to me! For the carrots I try to make them in big chunks but they can be mushy. Again thanks for coming back to share your experience as it helps the other readers.
Thank you so much for this recipe! I made Instant Pot lamb for New Years Lunch and it came out so well! I did add a spice blend and didn’t have rosemary but it was so good! We used the liquid left after cooking to make gravy and it was super tasty. I’m so glad you posted this recipe! Lunch was a triumph 😊
Hi Anu, that makes me so happy! Glad it worked out for you!
What size is the instant pot you used?
I have a 6Qt Instant Pot.
Can you use a bone-in leg of lamb?
Hi Lynn, yes you can use a bone-in leg of lamb. Bone-in may need a few more minutes to cook. Here’s an excellent Instant Pot resource that I found this information from.
Lamb is my absolute Favourite Meat and it has always been oven cooked in a bag. So, just got my new express Crock mutli cooker.
”lace with seasoning in a big baggie and refrigerate until ready to cook OVER NIGHT”
Question: Can you do it immediately after seasoning?
Hi Leslie, I like to season the roast overnight for maximum flavor but no you don’t have to. You can season it and cook it immediately. Hope you like it!
Can you give me the minutes/pound for a stovetop pressure cooker? Thank you!
Hi Rose, I am really not sure. According to this site (https://therationalkitchen.com/5-reasons-to-buy-a-stovetop-pressure-cooker-and-not-an-instant-pot/)
“If you’re adjusting an Instant Pot recipe for a stovetop pressure cooker, you can subtract about 25% of the cooking time needed.
For example, if an Instant Pot recipe calls for a cooking time of 40 minutes, it will take only 30 minutes with a stovetop pressure cooker. Or, if an Instant Pot recipe calls for 60 minutes, you can do it on the stove in only 45 minutes.”
Hope that helps.
This site seems to have a lot of information about all pressure cookers and from what I can gather a stove top cooker will take less time. She has charts on this page. https://www.hippressurecooking.com/pressure-cooking-times/#meat
Older instant pots have a ” manual” button
The newer instant pots actually have a ” pressure cooker” button! So when this recipe says to press the ” manual” button all of us with newer pots should press the ” pressure cook” button!
Thanks so much for commenting this little tip. I’m sure it will be helpful. I’ll need to keep that in mind for future Instant Pot posts.
Would you pressure on high or low?
Hi Ayesha, I always use the Manual button on the Instant Pot and then adjust the time for what I want. I have never used the Pressure button and adjusted the pressure. I would guess that I am cooking on high pressure since it’s a roast. I hope that helps. If you have a Manual button I would use that for this recipe. Good Luck!
I’ve got a 1/2 leg of lamb (1.5lb). How long would I need to cook this for?
HI MissJP, according to the InstantPot website they say it should be 15 minutes per pound. So I’m guessing around 22-23 minutes? Here is the website if that helps. Good luck!
Thank you so much for putting that time table on the reply – VERY helpful!!
You are welcome!
The shoulder roast was fall apart tender and made a tasty dinner with the liquid and vegetables.
Hi Susan, so glad you liked it! I was just thinking about this recipe yesterday.
The perfect solution to avoid mushy veggies is to wrap them (seasoned of course) in individual foil parcels and place them on top of the lamb
Thanks Melanie for your tips!
I forgot, is there a way to cook it so it is MED Rare? 60 Min may make it on the well done side. Just a question. FYI. Making this tonight. Only my second time using the pot. Just got it yesterday. I am one person and like to have left overs. I did pork chops last night. UMMMMM
That’s a tough question Pete. You can always do it for less time and then put it back in if you don’t feel it’s ready. I’ve done that a few times but it will take time to come back to pressure. Maybe try 40 minutes? I’m just guessing though. Sorry I’m not much more help.
What about using some Cabernet to add flavor wen de-glazing the pot? In combination with the garlic and spices, it would add great flavor. Just remember to save some wine for yourself! LOL
Hi Pete, that is a great idea! Let me know how it turns out.
Hi, after cooking in the instant pot, I wanted to cut into chunks then p place on skewers and grill just for a couple minutes. Will the lamb hold its shape or will it be too juicy and fall off the skewer? Looks great!
Hi Remi, I don’t think it will be fall apart tender so I think it could work. Though I have never tried it myself. Good luck!
Hi I like how good this looks but I don’t understand what manually cook means. Please help! Thanks
That means to just press the “manual” button on the Instant Pot for 60 minutes. Hope that helps!
Can I use a frozen leg of lamb?
Hi Shannon I have never tried that but I don’t see why not. I would defrost it overnight if you can but I did read that you can cook a frozen roast in the Instant Pot and the time doesn’t change. They did mention that you should do a natural release at the end which might take some time.
Again I haven’t tried it but I think you can.
Here is the website I found that info from. https://temeculablogs.com/frozen-roast-in-instant-pot/
I’m pinning and making!Love this recipe.easy and simple .i will definitely try it. One of our families favorite dinners! So easy and it tastes delicious! Thanks for a great recipe!
Next time I’m trying mine in the slow cooker. It looks so delicious. And perfect for Easter.