Orange-Tequila Lamb Shanks


The tequila sauce in this lamb shanks recipe gives the dish Mexican flavor, while jalapeno peppers add heat. Make this recipe for your next Mexican dinner night to impress everyone at your table.

Orange-Tequila Lamb Shanks
Photo: Carson Downing
Prep Time:
40 mins
Bake Time:
2 hrs
Total Time:
2 hrs 40 mins
4 lamb shanks, 4 cups polenta, + 3 cups sauce


  • 2 oranges

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

  • 4 meaty lamb shanks (3 to 4 lb.)

  • 1 large onion, sliced and separated into rings

  • 1 fresh jalapeño chile pepper, seeded and finely chopped*

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • cup tequila

  • 1 ½ cup chicken broth

  • 1 cup chopped tomato

  • ½ cup fruity red wine, such as Pinot Noir

  • 1 ½ teaspoon snipped fresh rosemary

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • Hot cooked polenta, rice, or pasta


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Remove 1 tsp. zest and squeeze 1/2 cup juice from oranges; set aside. In a 4-qt. ovengoing Dutch oven heat oil over medium-high heat. Add lamb shanks and cook until browned on all sides. Remove from Dutch oven.

  2. For sauce, add onion, jalapeño pepper, and garlic to drippings in Dutch oven. Cook 5 minutes or until onion is tender, stirring occasionally. Carefully add tequila. Cook 4 minutes or until nearly evaporated, stirring to scrape up any crusty brown bits.

  3. Stir in orange zest and juice and next five ingredients (through salt). Bring to boiling. Return lamb shanks to Dutch oven. Cover and transfer to oven. Bake 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until meat is tender.

  4. Serve lamb shanks with polenta. Skim fat from sauce; discard. Spoon sauce over shanks and polenta. If desired, sprinkle with additional orange zest and rosemary.


Chile peppers contain oils that can irritate your skin and eyes. Wear plastic or rubber gloves when working with them.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

579 Calories
12g Fat
45g Carbs
54g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 579
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 12g 15%
Saturated Fat 3g 15%
Cholesterol 150mg 50%
Sodium 762mg 33%
Total Carbohydrate 45g 16%
Total Sugars 6g
Protein 54g
Vitamin C 30.2mg 151%
Calcium 40mg 3%
Iron 6.6mg 37%
Potassium 987mg 21%
Folate, total 60.5mcg
Vitamin B-12 4.6mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.4mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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