The perfect Mediterranean summer feast: Garlic-herb marinated grilled lamb with mint pesto…Plus, favorite Mediterranean sides and salads to serve along!

I am honored to partner with the American Lamb Board to bring you this post!

Grilled Lamb served with grilled zucchini and tomatoes

We’re hanging out in the Eastern Mediterranean today where I get my love of lamb from…and where, before there was chicken, lamb had been the meat of choice.

I’ve talked quite a bit about lamb already.  From Easter roasted leg of lamb and braised lamb shanks, to my “fancy” date-night dinner, Lamb Rack with Herb Pistachio Crust. (Off record, my mother would never defile lamb rack with a green crust. Her loss!)

And there is, of course, summer favorites like kofta kabobs and lamb chops!

Grilled Lamb served with a vegetable salad and roasted potatoes

I use sustainably-raised American lamb, which is generally more meaty and sweeter in flavor than imported lamb. It’s also fresher, having traveled up to 10,000 fewer miles and about 30 days less than imported lamb!

This time it’s a big Mediterranean summer feast with grilled lamb leg!

Tips for Grilled Lamb Leg

It seemed a bit outside my comfort zone, but this grilled lamb leg recipe is fairly simple. The secret is in using leg of lamb that’s been de-boned and then butterflied.

Mediterranean Grilled Lamb topped with Mint Pesto and served with grilled vegetables

You can start with a packaged American-raised boneless leg of lamb, but just ask your butcher to trim and “butterfly” it for you. What he will essentially do is open the lamb up and cut down through sinew and any chunky parts, to give an even thickness. The result is a beautifully flat hunk of lamb, perfect for grilling!

To ensure tender, succulent grilled lamb, I did two more things. Using my meat tenderizer or mallet, I quickly pounded down the lamb leg. Then, the lamb leg took on a flavor-packed Mediterranean marinade with garlic, fresh herbs, and a few favorite spices.

If you have the time, marinate overnight, otherwise for two hours or so in the fridge.

Plated Lamb served with grilled tomatoes and zucchini

What to Serve with Grilled Lamb

Two sauces I love to serve with this grilled lamb, mint pesto and Greek Tzatziki sauce. Then, simply grilled vegetables like zucchini, tomato and sweet onions. Before grilling, season the veggies to your liking and toss in good extra virgin olive oil.

Turn it into a Summer Feast!

Wanna go the extra mile and turn this grilled lamb meal into a feast? Here are a few ideas:

Mediterranean Three Bean Salad; Tabouli Salad; Traditional Greek Salad or simple 3-Ingredient Mediterranean Salad.

Greek PotatoesEasy Roasted EggplantRoasted Sweet Potato Fries.

Baba GanoushRoasted Red Pepper Hummus; or easy Mediterranean Farmer’s Market Hummus. And, of course, some warm pita bread!

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Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Recipe with Mint Pesto | The Mediterranean Dish. Garlic-herb marinated leg of lamb, tenderized and grilled to perfection! Plus mint pesto or Greek Tzatziki sauce and favorite Mediterranean summer sides and salads! See it on

Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Leg with Mint Pesto

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4.9 from 14 reviews


The perfect Mediterranean summer feast: Garlic-herb marinated grilled lamb with mint pesto…Plus, favorite Mediterranean sides and salads to serve along!



Mint Pesto

  • 2 tbsp toasted pine nuts
  • 1 cup packed mint leaves
  • 1/4 cup Private Reserve extra virgin olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 small garlic clove, peeled
  • 1 small shallot, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp honey
  • 1/8 tsp salt, more if needed


  1. Make the marinade. In the bowl of a food processor, add the parsley, mint, onion garlic, spices, lemon juice and olive oil. Run processor until you have a smooth green marinade.
  2. Pound lamb. Place the lamb leg on a large cutting board, cover with heavy plastic wrap. Using the smooth side of a meat tenderizer or mallet like this one, pound lamb and make sure to even out any pieces that are too thick. But remember, the goal is NOT to achieve paper-thin lamb.
  3. Pat the lamb leg dry and sprinkle generously with salt on both sides. Place lamb in a large freezer bag and spread the marinade all over it. Zip the bag closed and work the marinade into the lamb to make sure every part of the lamb is well coated.  Refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight.
  4. Remove lamb from fridge and let sit in room temperature for 20 minutes. (To make the lamb easier to turn on the grill you can insert a couple of metal skewers through the lamb, crosswise)
  5. Heat an outdoor gas grill on high on all burners (this is just for the start).
  6. Place lamb, fat-side down, on the hot grill. Sear 2 minutes or so, then turn over and sear on the other side for 2 minutes. Lower the heat to low (temperature between 300 and 350 degrees F). Cover and grill for 15 minutes or so, flipping once midway through, until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the lamb reads 130 degrees F  (for medium-rare). [Read note #1]
  7. Remove from grill onto a cutting board. Cover with foil and let rest about 5 minutes. If using skewers, remove them, and cut across the grain and place on a serving platter.
  8. To make the mint pesto (during downtime as the lamb is grilling or resting), simply add all the ingredients into the bowl of a clean food processor or blender. Blend until smooth. Top the grilled lamb with some of the pesto and transfer the rest of the pesto to a small serving bowl.
  9. You can also serve this grilled lamb with a side of  this homemade Greek tzatziki sauce. Be sure to see suggestions for salads and sides up in the post under “what to serve with grilled lamb.” Enjoy!


  • Grilling time will vary depending depending on how thick, and exactly how many pounds the lamb is. Mine was 1-2 inches thick and weighed about 3.25 pounds. Also, I used an efficient Weber grill. You’ll notice also that my lamb is not medium-rare, I went a few extra minutes for my children’s sake.
  • Recommended for this recipe Our all-natural allspice; sumac spice; coriander; and cardamom. SAVE! Try our Ultimate Mediterranean Spice Bundle, or create your own 6-pack or 3-pack of all-natural and organic spices!
  • Recommended for this recipe our Private Reserve Extra Virgin Olive Oil, from organically grown and processed Koreneiki olives.
  • Visit our store to browse our spices, olive oils and bundles!
  • Prep Time: 20 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Grilled
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean

Try these delicious recipes:

Greek Boneless Leg of Lamb (Slow Cooker or Braised)

Shallot Garlic Mushroom Recipe

Homemade Pizza with Three Cheeses, Steak and Figs

Chunky Vegan Lentil Soup Recipe

Batata Harra: Middle Eastern Skillet Potatoes

Easy Mediterranean Shrimp Pizza on Flatbread


American Lamb is a flavorful, nutrient-rich food and an excellent source of Vitamin B12, niacin, zinc and selenium. See lamb nutrition facts.  And here is more on how lamb is raised in the United States. Buy local and support local shepherds! Be sure to participate in the giveaway below. 


Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Recipe with Mint Pesto | The Mediterranean Dish. Garlic-herb marinated leg of lamb, tenderized and grilled to perfection! Plus mint pesto or Greek Tzatziki sauce and favorite Mediterranean summer sides and salads! See it on

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I’m Suzy; born and bred right on the shores of the Mediterranean. I’m all about easy, healthy recipes with big Mediterranean flavors. Three values guide my cooking: eat with the seasons; use whole foods; and above all, share! So happy you’re here…
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  1. Kimmy Ripley says:

    This would be super duper to win for a backyard party! We just bought our first pool and we are looking forward to entertaining.

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      I smell pool party BBQ! Good luck with the drawing!

  2. nickie says:

    I have never cooked Lamb but I’d love to! I think my family would love this.

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Oh, it’s time to join lamb lovers, Nickie!

  3. Carlos At Spoonabilities says:

    The lamb looks beautiful on this recipe. Lamb is one of my favorite meats. Thank you for the idea of using tenderizer or mallet. I haven’t done this way. I will try the next time. Have a great weekend!

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Yay for lamb lovers!

  4. DealinDiva says:

    I would cook this for my boyfriend, we both love, love, love lamb. We enjoy it with mint jelly, so good!

  5. Annette says:

    I’m a huge fan of lamb and would cook this for my parents.

  6. jackie m says:

    I have not had lamb but a few times. Until recently it was difficult to get and when your could get it it was outrageously expensive. But I do like it.

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Glad you stopped in, Jackie! Good luck with the drawing.

  7. Lori M says:

    I have never cooked lamb before but I do love to eat it!

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Hope you’ll get to try this recipe.

  8. Abby says:

    I would grill this lamb feast for my husband and sons. We all love lamb and I have marinated and grilled boneless leg of lamb before.

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Yay for a lamb loving family!

  9. Larry Dow says:

    I’m not the cook in the family, but do know how to eat. This looks amazing. I have only ever had lamb stew and would be very interested in trying new and different ways to enjoy it.

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Oh, there are so many ways to cook and enjoy lamb. Glad you stopped in Larry!

  10. LaDonna Fager says:

    I have never cooked lamb, but this sounds delicious. Your recipes that I have tried have all been “keepers” in our house.

  11. Jean says:

    I am rating this a 5. I love lamb. I’ve grown up eating lamb, with mint jelly on the side. The recipe I learned how to use included a rub of salt, black pepper, and garlic that my mother used. I’ve never heard of a butterflied leg of lamb. The only lamb I’ve seen has been a leg of lamb or lamb that has been deboned and put together with a “net” to hold it together. So, it will be interesting on getting a leg of lamb, and having the bone taken out then having the 2 sides of meat cut or butterflied to lay flat…?????……Also, I love marinades….well. Now who would this for???? My family !!!! During a weekend, and having fresh grilled veggies and a delicious dessert at the end. During dinner, we would have a retsina (sp) wine, you know, the one that tastes a little like pine tar :)….it is a delicious wine for lamb.

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Thank you so much, Jean! I think you would really enjoy this one with your wine choice!

  12. Heather says:

    My husband — we adore lamb, but only have it maybe once or twice a year due to its relatively high price in our area. Maybe we should look at farms for our next home!

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      That’s awesome, Heather!

  13. Tim says:

    I have only had lamb once before, and it was in a gyro. I think we would cook this for a Sunday diiner for the family after church.

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      There are so many more ways to enjoy lamb, Tim! This would be great for Sunday dinner!!!

  14. Brianna says:

    I’ve never heard of grilling a boneless leg of lamb before, but I must say it sounds delicious! My mint plant is going crazy, so thanks for the Mint Pesto recipe! If I wont I think we’d have a big cookout celebrating the start of summer!!

  15. Maral says:

    I grew up on lamb and still enjoy it regularly with my family and little ones! It’s power packed with nutrition and this recipe looks like another fun twist on one of my favorite meats. Thank you!

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      You’re so right, it is power packed with nutrition, Maral! Thanks so much for stopping in.

  16. jennifer cervantes says:

    Id cook this for my family. We have had lamb before it is just hard to find where we live currently so we don’t cook it a lot.