Spicy Asian-Style Lamb Ribs

Lambs ribs are flavorful and fun to eat, but this Asian style lamb ribs recipe brings it to another level flavoring the riblets with fish sauce-a traditional Thai seasoning. Lamb or goat ribs are a breeze to cook, just like pork ribs, all you need to know is two words: “low and slow”. Serve these savory, glazed ribs with something bright, like a fresh salad to cut through the rich, luxurious taste. Our picture below is a great idea: a Thai flavored salad of fresh lettuce with shiso, basil, parsley, cucumbers and toasted peanuts.

Asian style lamb ribs served with salad, peanut dressing and shiso leaves.
To make a complete meal, serve with a Thai-style salad. Pictured is a build-your-own version with parsley, basil, shiso, cucumbers and toasted peanuts. Photo by Ben Spangler.

After the ribs are cooked, Chef Ben shares another secret to making finger-licking ribs: glazing the ribs by reducing the flavorful braising liquid and tossing the ribs in it at the last minute. Glazing is a great cooking technique we also feature with our grass-fed lamb shanks in our video here.

How to Make Asian Style Lamb Ribs

You’ll need fish sauce, palm sugar, lemongrass, tumeric root, Thai chili, garlic, and shallot.

Asian style lamb rib ingredients: sugar, salt, garlic, ginger, fish sauce, thai chilies, tumeric.
Asian style lamb rib ingredients: sugar, salt, garlic, ginger, fish sauce, thai chilies, tumeric.

Cook the lamb ribs to remove fat, then add the braising ingredients and cook until tender.

Lamb Riblets slow cooking in fish sauce with onions and lemongrass.
Lamb Riblets slow cooking in fish sauce with onions and lemongrass.

Once the ribs are tender, reduce the pan juices to a glaze and serve them.

Asian style lamb riblets in sauce ready to eat.
Glazed with their juices and ready to eat.

This recipe is by chef Ben Spangler. Hailing from Minnesota, Ben draws from his Midwestern roots to create dishes that are unpretentious and delicious. Ben has competed on national television for the Food Network and appeared on local Minneapolis food networks. He is currently executive chef at Mercy in Minneapolis.

Chef Ben Spangler.

Looking to buy lamb or goat online? Shepherd Song Farm: Grass to table. We raise lambs & goats traditionally, humanely and sustainably. 100% Grass Fed, Pasture Raised, Never Confined, no Hormones, Grains or Animal Byproducts. Born, raised and processed in the U.S.A. Good for you and good for the environment.


Related Goat and Lamb Recipes

Goat Larb

Sichuan Sausage (Chinese Style) 

How to Cook Lamb or Goat Ribs

Riblets in Sauce Ready for Plating
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Spicy Asian-Style Lamb Ribs

Aromatic Thai-Style Lamb Riblets
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time2 hours 20 minutes
Total Time2 hours 40 minutes
Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: Thai
Keyword: Lamb ribs, Thai ribs
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 700kcal
Cost: 20


  • 1 large soup pot


  • 3 lbs Lamb Riblets
  • 16 oz   Palm sugar or substitute brown sugar
  • Water or stock as needed to cover the ribs during cooking
  • 2.5 oz  Lemongrass cut into 3 inch batons
  • 10 ea  Thai chili or substitute serrano peppers
  • 5 ea  Garlic cloves whole
  • 2 oz  Turmeric root unpeeled, sliced into 1/4 inch coins
  • 8- 16 oz  Fish sauce such as Red Boat
  • 1 oz   Grapeseed oil or another flavorless oil


Render the fat from the ribs

  • In a dutch oven heat oil on medium and begin to render/cook the lamb ribs, fat cap side down until the fat cap on each rib has reduced by half, about 20 minutes on low heat. Take your time, and if the pan threatens to dry out, add a little water or stock.
  • Remove ribs and pour off all fat except a few tablespoons.
  • Sweat the onions and garlic on low heat for a few minutes until fragrant, then add the chili’s, and lemongrass.
  • Add fish sauce, turmeric and sugar.
  • Allow sugar to dissolve, stirring occasionally.


  • Add water to the pot with the ribs until 75% covered.
  • Put lid on container and place on middle rack in oven  at 300°F for 2 hours. When done, the rib bones should be barely able to be removed from the rib meat. You want to be careful not to overcook, as the bones should stay in place when you serve the ribs.
  • Remove the pot from oven and allow to cool to room temperature, covered. When cool, chill completely, then use a large spoon to remove the fat that solidifies on the top, it will break off pieces.

Glazing The Ribs & Serving

  • After chilling and removing the fat (can be done up to 2 days ahead of time) place the pot back on stove, covred, and slowly bring to a simmer.
  • When ribs are warmed through remove from pot and set aside. Keep the ribs warm, covered in a warm oven works. Strain the sauce and discard all the aromatic vegetables and chilis, then return the sauce to the pan.
  • Reduce the sauce slowly on medium heat until thick and sticky. Be careful that it does not get tacky or it will burn.
  • When the sauce is to your liking, toss the lamb ribs in the sauce to coat. Serve with a green salad or fresh, lightly cooked or steamed vegetables.


Either lamb or goat ribs can be used for this recipe. 


Serving: 6ribs | Calories: 700kcal | Carbohydrates: 82g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 166mg | Sodium: 350mg | Potassium: 917mg | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 14IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 93mg | Iron: 5mg