Slow Cooked Spiced Pulled Lamb Shoulder

I think I’ve fallen for my slow cooker 

Slow Cooked Spiced Pulled Lamb

Slow Cooked Spiced Pulled Lamb Shoulder

Never in my 10 years of working life have I been able to come home to a roasted joint of meat which I have cooked myself and subsequently devoured by 7pm. On a Monday.  A crappy dreary January Monday.

I excitedly left my house at 8.30am this morning, wondering what on earth would greet me on my return this evening.  Would the raw marinated lamb roast into as much of a thing of beauty as I hoped?  Would it even cook at all – Would my slow cooker turn itself off by some horrible power-cut accident?  My track record of uselessness at household things leaves me to believe these panics are not far fetched.

At 6.30pm I was greeted with this:

Lamb Shoulder in Slow Cooker

Lamb Shoulder in Slow Cooker


Monday has turned into a pretty good day.

I loosely based my spice rub on the Lamb Shawarma recipe in Ottoleghi’s Jerusalem Cookbook (you know it’s my current favourite!)  I left my meat soaking into the marinade for a full 24 hours, so this is a bit of a plan in advance dish.  It is however ridiculously easy – a total cooking novice could pull (and show) this off.

I’m storming my way through my foodie resolutions. Pulled Lamb. Done.

Ingredients (serves 3-4)

  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • ½ tablespoon paprika
  • ½ tablespoon Sumac
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tablespoon grated ginger
  • Pinch ground ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ tablespoon Maldon Sea Salt
  • A good dose of ground black pepper
  • Squeeze lemon juice
  • 2.5 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ lamb shoulder (mine approx 900g)
  • 1 onion, diced into quarters
  • 100mls / ½ cup of water
  • Fresh parsley to dress


  • Combine the ingredients from the cumin to the black pepper above in a bowl.  Add the lemon and olive oil to form a paste.
  • Slit the lamb with a sharp knife in multiple place and rub the paste in all over ensuring it gets into the slits.  Cover and place in the fridge for the spices to seep in – preferably at least overnight.
  • 6-10 hours prior to dinner time place the lamb in the slow cooker with the fat side on the top.  Scatter the onions on top and pour in the water.  Add the lid and cook on low for 10 hours (or an alternative setting depending on what time you want to eat.  High for 4-6 hours, medium for 6-8 and low  for 10-12)
  • When the lamb is done remove from the cooker.  Since the meat is so tender the bones will just slice ride out and it may be difficult to use tongs!   Remove the bones (stopping to suck out the bone marrow if you dare), and leave on a board to rest for around 10 mins.  When you’re ready to eat shred the lamb with a fork and scatter fresh parsley on top, with the onions on the side.
Pulled Lamb

Pulled Lamb

You can use the cooking juices as a gravy if you wish (you could reduce and monté some butter in if you dare – a cooking school trick I learnt), or keep for a future cooking adventure.

I served mine with a carrot and fennel coleslaw, dressed in tahini, garlic and argan oil (amongst other things.) A simple side recipe I wasn’t intending on blogging but if you want the recipe let me know.

Pulled Lamb with coleslaw and greens

Pulled Lamb with coleslaw and green salad

Other serving suggestions include:

Notes:  My slow cooker is by Morphy Richards and is 6.5ltr capacity

16 thoughts on “Slow Cooked Spiced Pulled Lamb Shoulder

  1. Ren Behan (@RenBehan)

    That looks really wonderful! The perfect thing to come home to and I bet the smells coming from the kitchen were amazing! I have Jerusalem, and will be cooking more from it, too but I’ll try your version. Day 6 of The Whole 30! Paleo all the way!

    1. Ceri @CucinaCeri Post author

      Thanks Ren. It was a nice surprise when I walked through the front door. Mine just used less spices than their recipe – simply because I didn’t have the recipe on me when I was shopping. I went armed with a pulled pork recipe and then there was no suitable pork! Glad to here Whole 30 Paleo is going well! 30 days will soon be up!

  2. Rebecca chan

    Looks delicious! I want a slow cooker! Found one on tesco online for £10! I’ve been raving about your slow cooker antics that someone at work bought in his book! He also brought me tons of Jerusalem artichokes… Any ideas on what to do with them?

    1. Ceri @CucinaCeri Post author

      Get a large 6.5ltr one – then you can fit whole joints of meat in and make stews that go on for days. Thanks sweetie. I might feed you pulled pork one day soon as my next experiment…. I’ve never cooked Jerusalem Artichokes – like weird little potatoes aren’t they?

  3. Pingback: Slow Cooker Mexican Pulled Pork | Cucina Ceri

      1. Alicia

        I went for cumin, fennel, star anise, cinnamon, ginger and a bit of paprika, but not as much as Jerusalem says as it looked a bit excessive! Annoyingly I’d run out of sumac, I think that would have done very good things.

    1. suziwombat

      Great recipe, Ceri. Thanks. Made it for dinner tonight using the pressure cooker. I marinated the meat this morning so it was really yummy.

      1. Ceri @CucinaCeri Post author

        Great to hear Suzi – glad you enjoyed the recipe. I’m very intrigued about pressure cookers but know for an absolute fact my kitchen is too small for another appliance!

  4. Pingback: Slow Cooker Anchovy Lamb Shoulder | Cucina Ceri

  5. Pingback: 14 April 2013 « Befouled Weakly News

  6. suziwombat

    I live in Sydney. I would recommend the slow cooker over the pressure cooker but it’s too expensive these days to run the slow cooker over here due to the long cooking time. My pressure cooker has a low pressure cooking option so I used that for about half hour before hitting the high pressure button for the home run! The flavour was awesome and authentic. I’m looking forward to check out your other recipes!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s