Beer-Braised Lamb Shanks with Pearl Onions and Raisins Recipe


For the Lamb Shanks:

  • 4 lamb shanks
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 2 cups beef or lamb broth
  • 1 cup dark beer (such as stout or porter)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • 2 sprigs of fresh thyme

For the Pearl Onions:

  • 1 cup pearl onions, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat your oven to 325°F (160°C).
  2. Season the lamb shanks generously with salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in a large oven-safe Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add the lamb shanks and sear on all sides until nicely browned. Remove the lamb shanks from the pot and set aside.
  3. Add chopped onion, minced garlic, diced carrots, and diced celery in the same pot. Cook until the vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the raisins, beef or lamb broth, dark beer, bay leaves, rosemary, and thyme to the pot. Bring to a simmer, then return the lamb shanks to the pot. Cover with a lid or aluminum foil.
  5. Transfer the pot to the preheated oven and braise for 2 to 2 1/2 hours, or until the lamb shanks are fork-tender and easily pull away from the bone.
  6. While the lamb shanks are cooking, prepare the pearl onions. In a separate saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add pearl onions and sauté for about 5 minutes, until lightly golden.
  7. Sprinkle sugar over the pearl onions and cook for another 2-3 minutes, until the sugar caramelizes and coats the onions. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
  8. Once the lamb shanks are done, carefully remove them from the pot and set them aside. Strain the braising liquid into a separate saucepan, discarding the solids. Skim off any excess fat from the braising liquid.
  9. Bring the braising liquid to a boil and cook for 5-7 minutes or until it thickens and reduces slightly. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

Serve the lamb shanks over mashed potatoes or creamy polenta, topped with pearl onions and a drizzle of the reduced braising liquid. Enjoy your delicious beer-braised lamb shanks with pearl onions and raisins!

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