Food & dining

Recipe: Lamb loin chops come off the grill rosy and juicy, ready for a gremolata garnish

Grilled loin lamb chops with gremolata
Sally Pasley Vargas for The Boston Globe
Grilled loin lamb chops with gremolata

Serves 4

You can’t beat thick lamb loin chops for a special treat, and cooking them on the grill until they’re rosy and juicy is about as unfussy and fast as it gets. They take only several minutes on a side but need to rest for five minutes when they’re done (the temperature rises while they rest). That gives you enough time to make a quick gremolata, the Italian herb garnish of parsley, garlic, and lemon, all chopped together, which is all you need to embellish these prized chops. We’ve added mint leaves to the mix to give it another layer of aromatics.

8lamb loin chops, each about 1½ inches thick (about 2 pounds total)
Salt and pepper, to taste
Vegetable oil (for the grill)
½cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves
½cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
1clove garlic
Grated rind of 2 lemons
Extra fresh mint and parsley leaves (for garnish)

1. Sprinkle the chops generously with salt and let them sit while the grill heats. (If time permits, leave them at room temperature for 30 minutes.)

2. Heat a charcoal grill or turn a gas grill to high. Brush the grill rack clean and oil it.


3. Grill the chops for 3 minutes on a side, or until a meat thermometer registers 125 degrees in the thickest part of the meat for medium rare. (Cook 1 minute longer on a side for medium; 2 minutes longer on a side for well done.) Transfer the chops to a platter and cover loosely with foil. Set in a warm place for 5 minutes. The temperature will rise a few degrees while the chops rest.

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4. Meanwhile, make the gremolata: Chop the mint and parsley leaves together. Chop the garlic and add to the herbs. Sprinkle the herbs with the lemon rind and toss the mixture together with your fingers. Grind pepper over the chops and sprinkle generously with the gremolata. Garnish with extra herbs. Sally Pasley Vargas

Sally Pasley Vargas can be reached at