Instant Pot Rack of Lamb

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This Instant Pot rack of lamb seasoned with numerous spices and cooked to perfection to make a flavorful and tender cut of meat.

» You might also like this Instant Pot Carnitas Recipe.

Whole cooked rack of lamb

» Check out our Instant Pot Cooking Times Cheat Sheet so you never have to look up times again for your favorite foods you make in the pressure cooker. Print or bookmark it so you always have it handy!

Cooking a rack of lamb can seem difficult, but this Instant Pot recipe makes it easy. Using an Instant Pot cuts down the cook time, and makes sure the meat stays tender and juicy.  

By covering the lamb in sugar and spices, the taste of this lamb brings up notes of smokiness and sweetness. It’s a great balance and combination of flavors. This instant pot rack of lamb will pair with many side dishes for a scrumptious lunch or dinner.

Ingredients You Need

Sliced lamb on a plate
  • Double Rack of Lamb: When buying a rack of lamb, ask for it to be “frenched” which is a style that removes much of the meat and fat along the bone so it looks nicely cleaned up.
  • Cooking Oil: Use any oil you like, but it’s best to use one with a high smoke content. I typically use avocado oil or vegetable oil. You can use olive oil, but it might produce quite a bit of smoke while sautéing.
  • Smoky Paprika: Gives a smoky flavor to the lamb, but it is not spicy. You can also use Spanish paprika if you don’t want to add smokiness. 
  • Brown Sugar: Balances the savory flavors with its sweetness.
  • Salt & Ground Black Pepper: adds flavor and tenderizes the lamb. 
  • Garlic & Onion Powder: using a powdered version gives the lamb a nice flavor and aroma. Don’t replace these with fresh garlic and onion as they will burn.
  • Mild Chili Powder: adds a bit of heat. Make them spicy by using a spicy chili powder.

Equipment information

  • Instant Pot – I use a 6-quart Instant Pot Duo. It will typically fit 2 racks of lamb set together inside the pot. However, you’ll want to check the sizing before you set out to make this. Be sure the rack of lamb you buy fits into your pot. You might need an 8-quart pot for a larger rack or more than one.

How to Make Instant Pot Rack of Lamb

Pat dry the rack of lamb. Mix together the seasonings in a bowl and use it to season the lamb. I use all the seasoning for the lamb. It might seem like a lot, but it’s the perfect amount to give lots of flavor to the meat.

Raw rack of lamb

Press the sauté button on the Instant Pot and allow the pot to heat up. When hot, add the oil and then the lamb, meat side down.

Sauté until browned, about 5 minutes. Since this recipe is for 2 pieces of lamb, you’ll have to take one out to rest and then sauté the other. When the second piece is done, remove it also from the pot and cancel sauté mode.

Raw rack of lamb in the Instant Pot

Pour the water into the pot and deglaze with a whisk to remove any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. You don’t want to skip this step because the browned bits will cause a burn notice if not removed.

Set the lamb racks in the pot with the bones facing up. They’ll be standing up and touching in the middle, to keep them both propped upright. If you’re only cooking one rack, insert the trivet and set the rack on the trivet. This is to keep the meat up out of the water.

cooked rack of lamb in the Instant Pot

Lock on the lid and set the vent to sealing. Press the Pressure Cook (or Manual) button and set the time to 1 minute on high heat. That’s right! All you need is one minute of cook time.

When done, allow it to do a 12-minute natural pressure release. Then release any remaining pressure. Transfer the lamb to a plate and tent it with foil. Let the lamb rest for 5-10 minutes.

Whole cooked rack of lamb

Cut the lamb into single chops and serve with your favorite side dish. I like to serve it over a bed of potatoes and carrots with some delicious gravy, which you can make from the drippings in the pot.

Why Use An Instant Pot?

The Instant Pot is one of the most useful kitchen appliances you can buy, because it drastically cuts down on the cooking time for developing flavors in soups and stews, getting tough cuts of meat tender, and even baking a cheesecake. And there are many accessories that will help you get more out of your Instant Pot.

If you don’t have one yet, check out our guide on which one to buy. Also see our guide to How to Use an Instant Pot for more information.

Questions About the Recipe

Can I use my oven instead?

Yes. If you don’t have an Instant Pot, but still want to make this rack of lamb, you can use the oven. Sear the lamb in a hot skillet, then cover it in the spices. Wrap the bones in aluminum foil, then place the rack of lamb into a preheated oven that is heated at 425°F. Let it bake for about 20 minutes for a medium cut of lamb. Remove it from the oven and rest it for 10 minutes.

What does it mean for a lamb rack to be “frenched”? 

Having a “frenched” rack of lamb may sound fancy, but it is nothing too crazy. It is a couple of lamb chops connected where the rib bones are showing. Most racks of lambs in America are sold frenched, but butchers will gladly help you if need be.

Sliced lamb with gravy

Tips for Making Rack of Lamb

  • Let the lamb get to room temperature before starting to season and cook it. 
  • Experiment with other seasonings like turmeric and curry powder to give the lamb a nice Indian flavor.
  • Cut your rack of lamb in half if the whole rack doesn’t fit in the Instant Pot. Interlock the bones like a tent, so they cook evenly and have enough space in the pot.

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Whole cooked rack of lamb

Instant Pot Rack of Lamb

A rack of lamb seasoned in numerous spices cooked in an instant pot to make a flavorful and tender cut of meat.

Note: Made in a 6-qt Instant Pot

5 from 35 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 6 mins
Pressurize Time 22 mins
Total Time 33 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 8 Servings
Calories 192 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • Rack of lamb frenched (single or double rack)
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 1 tablespoon Spanish paprika
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon mild chili powder
  • 1 cup water

Instructions
 

  • Pat dry the rack of lamb. Mix together the seasonings in a bowl and use it to season the lamb.
  • Press the sauté button on the Instant Pot. When hot, add the oil and the lamb, meat side down.
  • Sauté until browned, about 5 minutes. Remove from the pot and cancel sauté mode.
  • Pour the water into the pot and deglaze to remove any browned bits.
  • Set the lamb racks in the pot, standing up so the bones raise the meat out of the water. (If only cooking 1 rack, insert the trivet and set the rack on the trivet).
  • Lock on the lid and set the vent to sealing. Press the Pressure Cook (or Manual) button and set the time to 1 minute on high heat.
  • When done, allow it to do a 12-minute natural pressure release. Then release any remaining pressure. Transfer the lamb to a plate and tent it with foil. Let the lamb rest for 5-10 minutes.
  • Cut the lamb into chops and serve with your favorite side dish.

Notes

Rack of lamb is either sold in one or two racks, each with 8 ribs.
You can make one or both racks without adjusting the cook time.
You can use your own favorite rub instead of the seasonings we’ve used in the recipe.
Be sure to salt the lamb well for full flavor.

Nutrition

Calories: 192kcalCarbohydrates: 3gProtein: 16gFat: 13gSaturated Fat: 6gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 49mgSodium: 631mgPotassium: 195mgFiber: 1gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 506IUVitamin C: 0.1mgCalcium: 8mgIron: 0.3mg
Keyword Lamb
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Whole cooked rack of lamb

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