* This is a sponsored post for USA Rice *
This slow cooked lamb is cooked to perfection and literally melts in your mouth. Smothered in harissa and lemon juice, it is bursting with flavour and served with an incredible USA Wild Rice salad with mango. Take salads to the next level and give this a try. Perfect for feeding the family, or having lots of delicious leftovers for easy weekday lunches.
If you fancy something a little different for your Sunday roast, then this slow cooker lamb with USA Wild Rice salad is it! All that delicious flavour from a slow cooked leg of lamb that is cooked low and slow, but served with a light and flavour packed rice based salad. It's herby and zesty, with a little kick of heat. This proves that salads don't have to be boring!
This recipe does require some patience, as it takes 3 hours to cook in the oven. However, it is totally worth the wait. Lamb should be cooked low and slow, and it just falls off the bone and is deliciously tender. This is something special for when you have a little more time.
Why you will love it
- A new way to enjoy lamb
- A delicious twist on a salad
- A great way to enjoy USA Wild Rice
- Perfect for feeding the family
- Makes great leftovers
- Easy to adapt with different salad items
- Lamb - The best lamb to use for this recipe is a whole leg of lamb. It's nice and lean, gives perfectly tender lamb, and it's great for feeding the whole family or making lots of leftovers.
- Oil - We used olive oil for this, as we find it's best for making a marinade.
- Salt and pepper - Sea salt and black pepper help to perfectly season the lamb.
- Harissa - This North African hot red chilli paste can usually be found in a small jar next to the ready made pastes/lazy chilli garlics or in a tube in the world food aisle. The main ingredient is roasted red peppers and that is mixed with chillies, garlic, herbs and spices with a little rose and some oil, so it does have a little bit of a kick to it. It is easy to make your own Harissa Paste.
- Lemon - This really lightens up the marinade for the lamb. Make sure you use a juicy lemon.
- USA Wild Rice and USA Long Grain Rice - filling and low in fat, this is the star of the salad that accompanies the lamb. We have talked more about this below.
- Onions - We have used red onion and it gives some nice added crunch to the rice salad.
- Chilli - This dish has a nice kick of spice from the sliced red chilli. If you don't like spicy food, then you could leave it out, or you could take the seeds out of the chilli to make it less spicy.
- Lime - The zesty lime mixed with the mango gives this dish a real tropical flavour. Just make sure you choose a juicy lime.
- Mango - This adds so much freshness to the salad, however you need to make sure that you are using a fresh and juicy mango. We have more tips on choosing the perfect mango in our FAQs at the bottom.
- Fresh herbs - We have used fresh coriander and mint for a delicious balance of flavour. You could use fresh parsley if you don't like coriander though.
- Greek yogurt - You want thick and authentic Greek yoghurt, as you need to be able to spread it across the plate. Don't use a runny Greek yogurt, as you just won't get the same result.
A full ingredients list with measurements is in the recipe card below.
Step by step
One: Drizzle the lamb with 1tbsp of the oil and season. Cook in a hot pan until browned all over.
Two: Mix together the harissa, remaining oil and lemon juice.
Three: Spread the harissa mix all over the lamb and roast for 3 hours at 160°C/325°F/Gas 3.
Four: Cook the USA Wild rice and USA long grain rice together for 20-25 minutes. You can buy it already mixed in the supermarket.
Five: Mix together the onion, chilli and and lime juice.
Six: Add the cooked rice to the onion and chilli and then add the mango. Mix well.
Seven: When the lamb is cooked, remove from the oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Shred with a sharp knife.
Eight: Serve the lamb and rice salad topped with the chopped herbs and the Greek yogurt on the side.
What lamb to use
We have used a whole slow cooked leg of lamb, as this is a great recipe for feeding the whole family, or having lots of leftovers. The leg is the most versatile of all lamb cuts. It is lean enough to serve pink (if that is your preference) and it has enough fat on it to remain succulent when well-cooked.
You could use a shoulder of lamb instead, however we find these are more fatty. This would also change the cooking time too.
Lamb is such a strong flavour, that a little bit goes a long way making it a great value meat - especially when it comes to a salad where it is the star of the show.
The USA Rice Federation have teamed up with Peter Sidwell, chef, TV presenter, and author of 5 cookbooks, who has built and set up a new food innovation and media centre in the heart of the Lake District. Specialising in recipe creation, food photography and video.
Peter has developed 3 recipes using USA Wild rice as the core ingredient - including this slow roasted lamb with wild rice salad. You can view the recipe videos and download them from the USA Rice website.
USA Wild Rice salad
Whilst the harissa and lemon slow roasted lamb give this dish a lot of flavour, we need to give a lot of love to the salad. It is light, fresh and filling and really simple to make too.
USA Wild Rice mixed with ripe and juicy fresh mango, zesty lime juice, red chillies and fresh coriander and mint makes a light and flavour packed salad that pairs perfectly with the slow roasted lamb.
Why USA Wild Rice? USA Wild rice is a 100% whole grain semi-aquatic grass native to North America. With its strict environmental, food safety and worker laws and regulations, USA Wild rice is a wholesome, safe and high quality product - look out for USA on packs of rice next time you are shopping and give it a try.
It offers a great source of complex carbohydrates and protein providing a slower and more sustained release of energy than simple carbohydrates. Adding USA Wild rice to salads, soups, casseroles or fish dishes gives a great nutty flavour and crunchy texture. It's really versatile!
We have mixed USA Wild Rice with USA long grain rice, so it only takes 20-25 minutes to cook. When cooking USA Wild rice pure, cook the rice in four times the amount of salted water for about 45 to 50 minutes until the water is absorbed.
Look for readily available USA Wild rice-long grain rice mix in your supermarket. To make sure both rice types have the same cooking time, please read cooking instructions on the packaging, cooking time is normally 20-25 minutes.
This salad pretty much has it all. However, we always try to add some extra vegetables to our meals where we can, so here are some of our favourite vegetable side dishes that go perfectly with this lamb salad:
- Slow Cooker Green Beans
- Balsamic and Garlic Roasted Cauliflower
- Broccoli Salad
- Cucumber Dill Salad
- Roasted Lemon Asparagus
- Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
- Grilled Corn with Herb Butter
Lamb is not only a rich source of protein, but it is also a great source of many vitamins and minerals, such as iron, zinc, and vitamin B12.
We used a 2.1kg leg of lamb and we found that was enough to serve 6 people along with the salad.
The best way to tell if a mango is ripe is by the feel of it. Give the mango a gentle squeeze and it should give slightly which means that the flesh inside is nice and soft. It is similar to checking if a peach is ripe.
Don't focus on the colour too much, as different types of mango have different colours when ripe. Whilst you might think that a darker red, rather than green, would mean it is ripe, it doesn't necessarily work that way.
No, there is no need to marinate the lamb first. If you want to, then you could put it in the fridge for an hour once you have added the harissa and lemon.
It is not recommended for people to wash and drain the USA Wild rice; this is not necessary as the product is clean and it only washes away the vitamins and minerals.
The best way to check that lamb is cooked is to use a meat thermometer. The safe internal temperature for cooked lamb is 62°C/145°F. It should be inserted into the thickest part of the meat that's not touching any bone.
The USA Wild rice is ready when two-thirds of the grains have burst open to reveal the creamy white interior.
More lamb recipes
Slow Cooked Lamb
- 2.1 kg (4.66 lb) Leg of lamb
- 1 tablespoon Olive oil - for the lamb
- 1 tablespoon Olive oil - for the sauce
- 2 tablespoon Harissa
- 1 Lemon - juice only
- 120 g (0.75 cups) USA wild rice
- 180 g (1 cups) USA long grain rice
- 2 Red onion - thinly sliced
- 1 Red chilli - finely chopped
- 1 Lime - juice only
- 2 Large mangoes - about 250g/9oz each; peeled and cut into matchsticks
- 15 g (1 cups) Fresh coriander (cilantro) - finely chopped
- 15 g (0.33 cups) Fresh mint - finely chopped
- 4 tablespoon Thick Greek yogurt
- 2 pinch Sea salt and black pepper
- Preheat your oven to 160°C/140°C(fan)/325°F/Gas 3.
- Drizzle 2.1 kg Leg of lamb with 1 tablespoon Olive oil and season with 2 pinch Sea salt and black pepper. Cook in a hot pan until browned all over.
- Mix together 2 tablespoon Harissa, 1 tablespoon Olive oil and the juice of 1 Lemon.
- Spread the harissa mix all over the lamb and roast for 3 hours.
- Cook 120 g USA wild rice and 180 g USA long grain rice together for 20-25 minutes.
- Mix together 2 Red onion, 1 Red chilli and and juice of 1 Lime.
- Add the cooked rice to the onion and chilli and then add matchsticks cut from 2 Large mangoes. Mix well.
- When the lamb is cooked, remove from the oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Shred with a sharp knife.
- Serve the lamb and rice salad topped with 15 g Fresh coriander (cilantro), 15 g Fresh mint and 4 tablespoon Thick Greek yogurt on the side.
- A leg of lamb is really forgiving when it comes to cooking time. Every oven will vary, so if you find the meat isn't quite tender enough, the you can put it back in the oven and it will still be nice and juicy even if it is cooked for 45 minutes to an hour longer.
- The nutritional information for this will not be totally accurate, because there is a lot of fat the comes out when cooking, which is not used.
- You don't even need to carve this lamb. It should be so tender that you should be able to pull the meat off the bone with two forks.
The nutritional information provided is approximate and is calculated using online tools. Information can vary depending on various factors, but we have endeavoured to be as accurate as possible.