Homemade Lamb Rillettes

A rustic pate made with confit, rillettes are a classic French Recipe. It’s a sort of rustic pate or spread that goes well with anything, and is a very traditional recipe to make with confit. In this post I’ll walk you through how to make homemade rillettes, and what to do with them.
Lamb or goat rillettes recipe

What are Rillettes?

Rillettes are meat that’s been cooked confit style in it’s own fat, pulled apart and mixed with herbs and seasonings to make a sort of rough pate perfect for spreading on a baguette. Traditionally most people will know pork rillettes and their cousin rillons which are made from pork belly or pork shoulder, but many different animals can be used. Duck confit and goose confit are great too, if you have access to them. Chicken confit can be made from the legs.

How to Serve Rillettes

Rillettes are the perfect addition to a charcuterie board, and they can be frozen until you need them, or kept in the fridge. They’re also great for picnics and potlucks as they travel well, and can be left out at room temperature for some time. Serve them with a warm baguette, spicy mustard and pickles, and a glass of champagne if you have some.
Chef Alan Bergo
Chef Alan Bergo, The Forager Chef

This recipe is by James Beard Award-winning Chef Alan Bergo. He’s a chef from Minnesota and author of The Forager Chef’s Book of Flora. Learn more about Chef Alan at foragerchef.com. 

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.

More French Recipes for Lamb

French Lamb Stew with Mushrooms and Red Wine 

Lamb Confit 

Pan Fried Goat Chops with Herb Butter

Lamb or goat rillettes recipe

Homemade Lamb Rillettes

A rustic pate made from confit that's easy to make at home. Perfect for spreading on a baguette.
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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 10 minutes
Course Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine French
Servings 10 servings
Calories 174 kcal


  • 1 Stand Mixer with paddle attachment
  • 1 Pint mason jar for storing


  • 1 lb confit like lamb shoulder or pork shoulder
  • 1/4 cup finely diced shallots
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/4 cup melted butter or duck fat


  • Pull the meat from the bone, then discard the bones and any connective tissue.
  • Meanwhile, cook the shallots in the vinegar until the pan is dry.
  • Transfer the meat to the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, add the thyme and shallots, then slowly work the meat, slowly drizzling in the fat until it's completely absorbed.
  • Taste the mixture, it should be well seasoned, but if you think it could use a little more of something, add it.
  • The rillettes should be smooth and spreadable, but they will firm up when chilled. They'll last in the fridge for 3-4 days in the fridge, but can be stored for months if they're packed into a container and covered with a layer of lard to act as a seal, such as in a mason jar. Serve at room temperature with crusty bread, mustard and pickles, or as part of a charcuterie plate.


For the best results, make sure the rillettes are at room temperature so the fat is spreadable.


Serving: 2ozCalories: 174kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 8gFat: 15gSaturated Fat: 8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 45mgSodium: 64mgPotassium: 126mgFiber: 0.2gSugar: 0.5gVitamin A: 142IUVitamin C: 0.5mgCalcium: 11mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Confit, Lamb Neck, Rillettes
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