Braised Lamb Shank with Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes

This recipe is a healthier version of a delicious braised short rib on creamy mashed potatoes. All of the elements are still there to make it taste fantastic, but I’ve reduced the amount of fats and calories by opting for leaner meat, adding in cauliflower to the classic mashed potatoes and swapping out cream for chicken stock.

Braised Lamb Shanks with Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes

Braised Lamb Shank with Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes

Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 3 hours
Total time: 3 hours, 30 minutes
Yield: 4 Servings

Braised Lamb Shank with Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes


For the Lamb Shanks

  • 3lbs lamb shanks (2 large or 4 small)

  • 2 tbsp. canola oil

  • ½ a sweet onion, roughly chopped

  • 2 large carrots, chopped

  • 3 celery stalks, chopped

  • 3 cloves garlic

  • 1 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped

  • 1 cup red wine

  • 1 small can tomato paste (5.5oz)

  • 1 large can whole tomatoes (28oz)

  • 1 cup chicken broth

  • Dash Worcestershire

  • Dash hot sauce

  • Sprig of rosemary

  • Sprig of thyme

  • Sprig of parsley

  • 1 bay leaf

For the Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes

  • 1 head of cauliflower, stems removed and cut into florets

  • 2 large russet potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped

  • 1 tbsp. butter (or margarine if dairy free)

  • ¼ cup chicken broth

  • ¼ tsp. onion powder

  • ¼ tsp. garlic powder

  • Salt and pepper to taste


Preheat oven to 350F.

Season the lamb shanks all over with salt and pepper. In a large Dutch oven or an ovenproof pot with a fitted lid, heat 1 tbsp. oil over medium-high heat. Sear the lamb shanks on all sides, until golden brown. Once the lamb has been seared, remove the shanks, drain the oil, and add a fresh tbsp. of oil to the pot. Do not clean the pot in between because all of the wonderful flavors are in the brown bits stuck to the pan. Add in the onions, celery, garlic, and sauté for 3-4 minutes, stirring often.

Deglaze the pan by pouring in the red wine and scraping the brown bits off of the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon. Add in tomato paste, whole canned tomatoes, chicken broth, Worcestershire and hot sauce. The lamb should be fully submerged in cooking liquid. If it is not, add additional chicken broth.

Take the rosemary, thyme, parsley and bay leaf and wrap it in a bundle with cooking twine and place in the liquid.

Bring to a boil on the stovetop, stirring frequently.

Cover the pot and place in the oven, cooking for 2 – 2.5 hours depending on the size of your lamb shanks, removing the lid halfway through cooking time.

While the lamb is cooking it’s time to start on the cauliflower mashed potatoes. Place the potatoes in a large pot filled with salted water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium high and cook until fork tender. When the potatoes have about 10 minutes left until ready, add in the cauliflower florets. Remove the potatoes with a slotted spoon, and keep the water at a boil. Place the cauliflower florets in the boiling water and cook for approximately 10 minutes, until tender. Drain and discard the water. Mash the potatoes and cauliflower in a large bowl with a potato masher. Once you’ve broken them down a bit, add in the butter, chicken stock, onion powder and garlic powder and mash until well combined. Season with salt and pepper and keep them warm.

When the lamb shanks have finished cooking, remove from the oven and place back on the stovetop on medium low. Remove the shanks from the sauce and set aside. Remove the bundle of herbs and throw away. Using an immersion blender, blend the sauce until smooth and season with salt and pepper. Return the shanks to the sauce, and simmer for an additional 15 minutes. If you had to add extra liquid to the sauce because your lamb shanks weren’t submerged, you might need to simmer the sauce for a little longer to thicken it up.

Serve over top of the cauliflower mashed potatoes.

Braised Lamb Shank with Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes