When lamb chops are on the menu, the last thing you want is to overcook them. Well-done lamb chops are notoriously dry and stringy, which is why they’re often served medium rare.
This means you need to be extra careful when reheating the meat. The key is to lock in the moisture while bringing the chops back up to an enticing temperature. Here’s our ultimate guide on how to reheat lamb chops.
How To Reheat Lamb Chops
It’s best to reheat lamb chops slowly in an oven heated to 350 degrees. If you cover the pan with foil and add a bit of liquid, they should remain tender and moist. Other options for reheating include the grill and stove top. The microwave is a possibility, but as it yields uneven results, we prefer to use it only when we have no other choice.
Is Reheating Lamb Chops a Good Idea?
In a perfect world, you would cook off just as many lamb chops as you needed, with no leftovers. Unlike pulled pork and beef brisket, lamb chops are tricky to reheat. What’s more, the results can be disastrous if you don’t do it right.
When overcooked, the meat turns chewy and tough. The flavor might still be excellent, but without that succulent texture, the chops won’t be as much fun to eat. This means you need to be extra careful when reheating them.
That said, if you do wind up with leftover lamb chops, it is possible to warm them back up without destroying the texture. That’s why we’ve put together this guide.
How To Reheat Lamb Chops
No matter which method you’re using, your goal is to keep the lamb chops from becoming too dry. As long as you can pull that off, the technique doesn’t really matter—although there is one that we’ll use only use as a last resort.
In the Oven
This is a useful and effective method because it gives you so much control over the temperature. Of all the techniques we’ve listed here, the oven is preferable, because it allows the chops to retain a great deal of moisture during the process.
Another benefit to using the oven is that you can reheat as few or as many as you’d like. The oven should be large enough to hold 10 to 15 lamb chops if necessary.
We will point out, though, that it takes a bit longer than most of the other methods. Remember to allow yourself plenty of time if you want to reheat lamb chops in the oven.
To start, preheat the oven to 350 degrees, selecting the “BAKE” option if applicable. While it’s heating up, arrange your lamb chops in the middle of a baking tray and cover them with two sheets of heavy-duty aluminum foil.
After the oven has heated to 350, place the tray inside on a rack positioned in the center. Allow the chops to reheat for about 10 minutes.
Now it’s time to take the tray out of the oven and test the internal temperature of the lamb chops using a meat thermometer. They won’t be ready yet, but this number will give you a general idea of how much longer they need to reheat.
Flip the chops over and cover them with the foil again, then put the tray back in the oven. Reheat for another 10 minutes.
Keep checking the temperature and turning the chops every 5 to 10 minutes until they’ve achieved an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. The total process should take 20 to 40 minutes, depending on how many chops you’re reheating.
Often, I’ll add a few tablespoons of chicken stock or dry sherry to the pan at the outset to ensure that the chops stay nice and moist. Adding a sprig or two of fresh herbs is a good idea, too, as it will help them retain flavor.
On the Grill
Preheat the grill to 400 degrees, or medium to medium-high. Let the grates heat up while you take the lamb chops out of the refrigerator. It helps if they’ve had a few minutes to warm to room temperature.
Set the chops on the cooking grate, taking care not to crowd the surface. The meat will heat more evenly if the pieces are spaced out.
Close the lid and sear the chops for 2 to 3 minutes, then turn them over and allow them to heat for 2 to 3 minutes more, again with the grill closed. Once they’ve achieved a good sear on both sides, remove them to a plate and serve immediately.
You’ll need to be careful not to allow the grill temperature to go above 400 degrees. The goal is to sear it lightly on each side without drying it out.
On the Stove Top
This is another quick method that yields decent results. It’s similar to reheating the chops on the grill, but they’ll retain a bit more moisture due to the juices being left behind in the pan.
To begin, heat a large skillet (or skillets, if necessary) over medium heat. Add a small amount of butter or olive oil to the pan and allow it to heat up for a minute or two, swirling to coat the surface.
Set the lamb chops on the hot skillet, making sure not to place them too close together. Heat for 2 to 3 minutes per side, depending on how thick they are.
The lamb chops are ready to serve when they’ve heated to an internal temp of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
It’s easy to flavor the leftover chops when you use this method. Add a few sprigs of fresh herbs or cloves of garlic, depending on how you seasoned the lamb to begin with. I also enjoy experimenting with flavored olive oils whenever possible.
In the Microwave
While this is undoubtedly the quickest and most convenient technique, we prefer to use the microwave only when there are no other options available. It’s too easy for the meat to dry out, for one thing, and the chops don’t heat as evenly as we’d like.
If you do decide to go this route, arrange the chops in a single layer on a microwave-safe plate. Drizzle a couple of tablespoons of stock, broth, cooking juices, or sherry over the meat.
Add the plate to the microwave and heat the chops on high for 30 seconds per chop if you’re reheating 1 to 3 of them, or 2 minutes total for 4 or more. Check the temp and continue to nuke the chops for 10 seconds at a time, if necessary, until heated through.
Can You Reheat Lamb More Than Once?
Reheating lamb twice or more is safe to do, but we don’t recommend it. Every time you do it, the meat will lose moisture.
Try to limit the number of reheating cycles to 2. You’re bound to notice a steep decline in terms of texture the second time around.
Can You Reheat Frozen Lamb?
Yes. In fact, it’s preferable to freeze your leftovers if you don’t think you’ll have time to finish them within 3 to 4 days. Once you’ve defrosted the meat, you can reheat it using any of the methods listed above.
It’s a good idea to defrost the leftovers before attempting to reheat them. Otherwise, they’ll go from frozen to hot within a very short period of time, which can lead to textural inconsistencies.
The Bottom Line
Whenever time allows, plan on using the oven to reheat lamb chops. They’ll heat through evenly, and covering the pan with foil will lock in the moisture and flavor.
Best of luck, and happy grilling!
Hi there! I’m Darren Wayland, your BBQHost. My love of great barbecue inspired me to curate this site as a resource for all my like-minded fellow pitmasters out there. When I’m not researching and learning all I can about the latest tips and techniques, you can find me at the grill—that is, if you can spot me at all through the clouds of sweet-smelling smoke. And since you asked, yes, that probably is barbecue sauce on my face. Welcome to the party!