Lollipop Lamb Chops are one of our favorite meats to prepare on the grill. The char from the grill and the simple citrus, garlic and mint marinade make these lamb lollipops incredibly flavorful. They can be an impressive appetizer or a scrumptious main course when served alongside Grilled Eggplant, Italian Green Bean Salad with Potatoes or Tomato and Cucumber Salad.
Our family has been making these Grilled Lollipop Lamb Chops, for years. This Mediterranean style marinade is our favorite way to season lamb. It is simple, tasty, and really compliments the flavor of this tender cut of meat.
This recipe is actually how my father grilled lamb loin chops years ago. He made a marinade of lemon, mint, oregano and garlic, then he would use a few branches of mint leaves to brush it on the chops while they were cooking. The lamb chops were incredibly tasty, moist, and tender.
We are a family of true lamb lovers and we cook it all different ways. We especially like simple, juicy Mediterranean Lamb Burgers.
What cut of meat is a lollipop lamb chop?
Lollipop lamb chops are single rib chops off of a rack of lamb. They are called “lollipops” because they resemble a lollipop with the round nub of tender meat on the top and the long bone on the bottom that you can use as a handle to to hold the chop.
What is the best way to prepare lamb rib chops?
Because lamb chops are much smaller than thicker chops such as those from beef or pork, they will cook much faster. Typically, it is best to season them and sear them over high heat. I find that cooking them in a cast iron skillet or a hot grill is the best way to draw out the most flavor from this cut of meat while giving it a good sear to hold in the juices.
Simple ingredients you will need:
Whole Rack of Lamb: A rack of lamb usually comes with 8 rib chops on it. To make the lollipops cut between the rib bones with a sharp knife to make single chops.
Lemon juice: I like the flavor of fresh squeezed lemons in this dish.
Mint, Parsley, and Oregano: In this recipe we always use fresh Mint and parsley and dried Oregano. If you want to swap out dried herbs for the fresh herbs, just make sure to cut the amount you use in half.
Garlic: Two to three cloves gives a nice flavor but if you love garlic go ahead and use a little more, it won’t hurt!
Olive Oil, kosher salt, and black pepper.
How you make these lamb chops
This is as easy as one, two, three!
- Combine all the ingredients, except the lamb in a small bowl.
- Pat the lamb dry with a paper towel. Lay the lamb chops out in a glass or plastic dish and pour the marinade on top. Let the chops marinade in the refrigerator for at least two hours and up to 4 hours.
- Grill for 2-3 minutes per side for rare or 5 minutes per side for medium. Watch the chops carefully while cooking as they may flare up.
- Don’t forget to let the lamb rest for a few minutes so that the juices have time to redistribute. Then go ahead and enjoy your finger licking good lamb chops!
What to serve with Lollipop Lamb Chops:
Lamb is really very versatile and it can be enjoyed any time of year. It is perfect for a summer barbecue paired with a citrusy Sicilian Fennel and Orange Salad or a refreshing Watermelon, Tomato Salad with Balsamic and Feta. These lambchops are also delicious when served with Easy to Make Rosemary Sweet Potatoes or Simple Italian Scalloped Potatoes for a dinner worthy of a special occasion.
For me, medium-rare lamb chops are ideal. But everyone needs to cook it to their liking. Use a digital meat thermometer or an instant read thermometer for best results. Below is a guide to help you cook the lamb to your desired doneness:
Medium Rare: 125°
Medium Well: 145°
Well done: 150°
Let the lamb rest for 5 minutes or so when you take it off the grill. Keep in mind that meat will continue to cook once you remove if from the heat. You can count on the final temperature to be about 5° higher after the resting period. For the best flavor, I would not recommend going above 150° or the lamb may be dry.
If you are serving these little gems as an appetizer, two individual chops per person is the ideal number. If this is going to be a main dish, three or four chops per person would be a nice portion.
Grilled Lollipop Lamb Chops – Mediterranean Style
- 2 lbs Rack of Lamb
- ½ cup Olive oil
- ¼ cup Lemon juice
- 2-3 cloves Garlic minced
- 1 tsp Oregano dried
- 2 tbsp Mint leaves fresh, chopped
- 2 tbsp Parsley fresh, chopped
- 1 tsp salt
- ¼ tsp Black pepper ground
- Cut the rack of lamb into individual ribs by slicing between the ribs with a sharp knife. Place the ribs in a glass 2 inch deep dish.
- Combine the rest of the ingredients in a medium bowl and mix well. Pour the mixture over the lamb chops making sure to coat them on both sides. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours and up to 4 hours.
- Set your grill heat to medium high and cook the ribs about 5 minutes per side for medium doneness or to desired temperature using a meat thermometer. Allow the chops to rest for 5 minutes before serving.
Medium Rare: 125°
Medium Well: 145°
Well done: 150°