Cumin Grilled Lamb Sirloin Chops

Cumin Grilled Lamb Sirloin Chops

The American Lamb Board sent me some fresh lamb sirloin chops to play with, which was fun as they are a nice tender cut that’s relatively new to butcher shops. I think lamb is an under-used meat in the US; people tend to go for beef instead. But lamb of today is perhaps much milder than the lamb you may remember from your youth. At least, it is to me. The first time I had lamb was at an elderly cousin’s Easter dinner and he served a leg of lamb, cooked rare, and the whole dinner I could not stop thinking of Dr. Seuss’s “roast beast”, nor could I eat the thick oval slice that sat on my plate in a pool of pink.

These days, I’ve found a new appreciation for lamb as it’s gotten easier to find in regular grocery stores, thanks to more American lamb growers. Ground lamb makes a traditional Shepherd’s Pie or non-traditional burger patty (try a lamb cheeseburger with feta and see what I mean). Lamb stew meat in delicious curries and lamb chops on the grill. For these lamb sirloin chops, I was inspired by some lamb kebabs we had at Mr. Chen’s Noodle House about a year ago — tiny chunks of salty lamb, crusted in cumin seed and chili flakes, skewered and grilled, crispy in their own fat. I imagine you could dice some lamb chops and do kebabs like that, too, but there is something wonderfully dramatic about serving each guest his or her own fat chop.

Check the temperature to ensure your preferred doneness

Check the temperature to ensure your preferred doneness

Lamb sirloin chops are boneless, typically weighing between a third and a half pound each. While they are a fairly lean cut, they still benefit from any sort of tangy condiment. I rubbed them with a cumin-red pepper mix then grilled outdoors until seared and medium-well. If you prefer your steaks a little more rare, reduce the grilling time by 2 minutes on the first side. The salad served with them is sour and herby with the earthy bitterness of cilantro marrying well with the toasted cumin seed on the lamb chops. In the winter when tomatoes and cucumbers are not in season, try making the same salad with thinly shredded cabbage (about two cups) and one large orange, peeled and coarsely chopped.

lamb sirloin chops


If you can’t find lamb sirloin chops, regular bone-in lamb chops can also be cooked this way. I heard through the grapevine, too, that Central Market groceries (in Texas) will be doing a “Celebration of Lamb” in July with lots of different cuts you may not have seen before and coupons for several dollars off the pound. So that might be an inexpensive way to experiment with lamb if it’s new to you.

Grilled Lamb Sirloin Chops Recipe


Cumin Grilled Lamb Sirloin Chops

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5 from 4 reviews

  • Author: Hilah Johnson
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x


  • 1 1/2 pounds lamb sirloin steaks
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cumin seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • Tomato Salad:
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1 medium cucumber, peeled and diced
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped


  1. Trim the excess fat from the outside of the steaks (this will help prevent flare-ups on the grill). Crush or coarsely grind the cumin seeds and mix with red pepper and salt. Sprinkle each side of each sirloin chop evenly and pat the mixture in so it sticks. Refrigerate 1-3 hours.
  2. Combine tomato, cucumber, lemon juice, oil and salt and let sit while you cook the chops:
  3. Preheat a grill to very hot (450-500ºF). Place chops on the grill and cook uncovered 7 minutes. Turn and cook another 5-7 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 155ºF for medium and 160ºF for medium-well.
  4. Add herbs to tomato salad, stir, and serve with chops.


  • Calories: 400
  • Fat: 20
  • Carbohydrates: 5
  • Protein: 49

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And here’s a handy diagram to help you when buying cuts of lamb:

Lamb butchery demo


  1. Kevin on June 19, 2014 at 11:53 am

    Hi Hilah!

    I see you mention coconut going into the salad in the directions, but it’s not in the ingredients list. Are you talking about shredded coconut?

    • Hilah on June 20, 2014 at 8:02 am

      Oopsy doopsy! No coconut in this recipe; I must have been thinking about something else. Like coconut ice cream, probably. 🙂 Sorry for the confusion, Kevin. Thanks for bringing it to my attention!

  2. Gary Lum on June 19, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    YUM They look delicious Hilah 🙂

    • Hilah on June 20, 2014 at 8:01 am

      Thanks, Gary! Hope you try them!

  3. Mok on June 21, 2014 at 12:45 am

    There’s no video on how to make it?

    • Hilah on June 21, 2014 at 7:58 am

      There isn’t for this one. I’ll be doing some grilling videos this summer, though.

  4. Mok on June 21, 2014 at 9:51 am

    Btw, if u have the time, can u make chicken congee? I need to make it for somebody

  5. Ron on July 15, 2015 at 3:52 pm

    Love Lamb, great recipe, served it to non lamb lovers ! and they loved it !!

    • Hilah on July 15, 2015 at 4:10 pm

      That’s the best compliment to get, Ron! 🙂

  6. Bill Horn on July 29, 2016 at 9:36 am

    We have been BBQ’ing Lamb since we were first married, but I have to say, never with Cumin. Something new! Cream De Menth, yes, Garlic and pepper, yes. I, at one time, was a cook at the JJ Crosetti Spring Lamb BBQ held as a fund raiser for the American Cancer Society.

    • Hilah on July 29, 2016 at 10:34 am

      Creme de menthe! How fantastic. 🙂 I’ll have to try that some day. Thanks, Bill.

  7. Z Del on December 7, 2017 at 10:43 am

    I love the sound of cumin with red pepper flakes! Can I bake it in the oven instead of grilling? If so what temperature do you recommend? Also how long?

    • Hilah on December 7, 2017 at 2:24 pm

      Hey Z, I would cook them on the stove before I’d try the oven. Heat a heavy skillet over high until it’s pretty hot and cook the steaks for about 5 mins on each side depending on how well-done you want them

  8. estelle on March 27, 2018 at 6:17 pm

    can I broil lamb sirloin chops like I broil regular lamb chops and since there is no bone in the lamb sirloin does it cook for a longer or shorter time then lamb with the bone……

    • Hilah on March 27, 2018 at 6:53 pm

      Hi Estelle,
      You can broil them for sure. I don’t know about the time difference, though. They are larger than bone-in lamb chops so I would guess they’d need a little longer.

  9. Shon on September 29, 2022 at 5:06 pm

    FYI… 155 degrees is overcooked

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