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Perfect Pairings: 8 BEST Side Dishes for Lamb Shanks

Lamb shanks are a cut of lamb that comes from the lower part of the leg, and it is prepared by braising them with vegetables in a liquid.

Lamb shanks make for wonderfully tasty meals due to their large size, which makes it easy to pop one or two on your plate and enjoy an entire meal in itself.

Lamb shanks have a wonderful flavor and taste to them.

The best thing about cooking lamb shanks is that they don’t necessarily need any special ingredients; you need the right aromatics and vegetables along with some broth or water to cook them in.

You don’t even necessarily have to add garlic, onion, or ginger, for that matter, since their flavors are pretty strong and would mask the flavor of the meat.

You can do several things to make your lamb shanks taste better, such as by adding some really good wine, fresh herbs, or even honey.

You can also add vegetables that may not necessarily be considered traditional but will certainly go well with the dish if cooked properly, such as butternut squash.

Serve lamb shanks with some delicious side dishes like green beans, risotto, mashed potatoes, or sauteed spinach, and you will be pleased with how tasty this meal is.

This article lists the eight best side dishes that would go well with your lamb shanks so they can enjoy a complete meal.

Why Consider Serving Side Dishes for Lamb Shanks?

why consider serving side dishes for lamb shanks

Lamb shanks are an excellent option for dinner tonight since they are relatively easy to cook but still yield tasty results.

However, to give your lamb shanks the full delicious effect, it’s best to serve them alongside side dishes that will help bring out their flavor.

Lamb shanks are typically very flavorful on their own, but they can become even more so when served with other foods.

For example, consider a dish like roasted root vegetables would be a great addition to a lamb shanks meal, as this would allow the flavors of both items to mingle and enhance each other.

Another reason to consider side dishes for lamb shanks is that most main courses tend to be a bit on the dry side.

To counter this, it’s a good idea to serve a dish like vegetables or something with a sauce alongside your lamb shanks.

Sauce allows you to add flavor and moisture back into the meal without overwhelming the meal itself.

Of course, you also need to choose side dishes that will pair well with the flavors of your lamb shanks.

For example, if you’re serving mint jelly with it, make sure not to serve Brussel sprouts as a side dish since they would clash and be unpleasant.

What to Serve with Lamb Shanks? 8 BEST Side Dishes

what to serve with lamb shanks best side dishes

Here are eight side dishes that will go perfectly with lamb shanks:

1 – Garlic Mashed Potatoes

garlic mashed potatoes

Mashed potatoes are a delicious option for dinner in general, but they’re also a great choice to serve with lamb shanks in particular.

This is because mashed potatoes have a creamy texture that helps counterbalance the dryness sometimes associated with cooked meats.

It’s vital that you use real garlic and not the pre-chopped garlic cloves you find in jarred sauces.

Fresh garlic has a sharp flavor that is very strong, so you need to be careful with it when cooking to avoid burning it or making your food taste bitter.

It’s also important that you use real butter rather than margarine or other fake butter-type product.

Real butter adds creaminess and a delicious, earthy flavor to your mashed potatoes that you cannot find anywhere else.

2 – Fried Biscuits

fried biscuits

Fried biscuits are a southern U.


dish that is usually served as an appetizer before the main course.

This fried treat has many variations depending on location, but it’s typically made from saltine crackers coated in egg and then fried.

Serve these side dishes alongside your lamb shanks for a frying, buttery base to the meal that will help cut through any fat present in the meat itself.

Don’t worry about overpowering the natural flavor of your lamb shank with this side dish – since it’s so light; it’ll help enhance it instead of covering up the taste.

3 – Rice Pilaf

rice pilaf

Rice pilaf is an excellent side dish for many dishes, and lamb shanks are no exception.

This rice dish uses a mixture of long grain and wild rice to give the meal a unique texture and flavor profile that will mix well with your other foods.

You should also consider adding spices such as garlic salt or rosemary to the rice when cooking it to add extra flavor to the meal.

This will help balance out any gamey taste that may exist in your lamb shanks, allowing you to experience all of the meat’s flavors instead of just one or two.

4 – Green Beans and Mushrooms

green beans and mushrooms

Green beans and mushrooms are a well-balanced side dish that mixes the earthy taste of mushrooms with the fresh flavor of green beans.

These two ingredients work together in harmony to enhance each other’s flavors while also bringing out the deliciousness of your lamb shanks in turn.

You can add bacon bits or even diced pieces of your lamb shank into this side dish, and it will be just as delicious.

This makes the side dish heartier while also pairing well with the main course, thanks to the natural flavor boost from bacon.

The crispiness of cooked bacon can also add a nice textural element to this side dish that other types of meat cannot provide on their own.

5 – Couscous Salad

couscous salad

Couscous is another type of grain that can be used for this side dish alongside your lamb shanks.

This side adds the flavors of raisins, cranberries, and nuts with other vegetables like carrots or broccoli to make it a more flavorful, unique dish.

Instead of using traditional couscous, you should make the grain yourself at home.

This way, you can control what ingredients are added and how much of each is included.

By making your couscous at home, you’ll be able to pack in tons of delicious flavor instead of just relying on dried-out store-bought couscous that has been sitting around for months.

6 – Glazed Baby Carrots

glazed baby carrots

Glazed carrots are a common side dish in many homes, and they’re also fantastic paired with lamb shanks.

The sweet glaze on these carrots can be used as a dipping sauce for your lamb shank if desired, and the rich flavor of the meat will balance out the sweetness of your carrots nicely.

Instead of using traditional baby carrots, try using different vegetables like parsnips or turnips to give this side dish a unique flavor profile.

This will help keep things interesting while enhancing the overall meal’s taste by adding in additional spices and earthy flavors that can’t be found in your standard carrots.

7 – Green Salad

green salad

A green salad is another incredibly common side dish that goes great with lamb shanks.

This simple salad consists of a mixture of both greens and different types of vegetables like cucumbers, onions, bell peppers, or even tomatoes, depending on the recipe you’re following.

Serve this alongside your main course for a refreshing, crunchy side dish that can be eaten by itself or with your lamb shank.

This keeps things simple while also allowing you to pair your meat with different sides depending on what sounds best at the moment.

8 – Roasted Fingerling Potatoes

roasted fingerling potatoes

Fingerling potatoes are an excellent side dish that is both healthy and flavorful.

Thanks to their smaller size, these potatoes have a natural sweetness and can be paired with various side dishes.

Instead of serving the potatoes alongside your lamb shanks, try mixing them in with your other side dishes instead.

The spiciness from the green beans or mushrooms will add a layer of flavor that your potatoes can absorb and enhance their taste in return.

This will add a fun, fresh element to your meal while introducing new flavors that work well with the rest of your dishes.


Lamb shanks are very hearty and filling meat that can be paired with a variety of side dishes.

Some of the most common side dishes people serve with lamb shanks are green beans, couscous salad, glazed carrots, and roasted fingerling potatoes.

There are many other foods you can serve alongside your main course for a more well-rounded meal.

Try experimenting with different flavors by adding vegetables or meats into your dishes to see what works best for you.

what to serve with lamb shanks

What to Serve with Lamb Shanks? 8 BEST Side Dishes

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Side Dishes
Servings 1 Serving


  • Garlic Mashed Potatoes
  • Fried Biscuits
  • Rice Pilaf
  • Green Beans and Mushrooms
  • Couscous Salad
  • Glazed Baby Carrots
  • Green Salad
  • Roasted Fingerling Potatoes


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  • Organize all required ingredients and prepare a delicious meal in 30 minutes or less!
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