Main dish

New Zealand Grass-fed Lamb Chili Verde

This slow cooked lamb chili verde is made with New Zealand Grass-fed lamb shoulder and tastes amazing! Easy recipe for dinner!

To recipe
lamb Chile verde in a bowl with rice
Recipe insights & TIPS

Tender bites of New Zealand grass-fed lamb shoulder cooked low and slow with spices, chiles and dark beer will make this lamb chili verde your new favorite comfort food

lamb Chile verde in a bowl with rice

No matter how you prefer to cook lamb, its versatile cuts give so many options. You can opt for some quick grilled BBQ lamb chops or delicious Birria-style tacos with slow cooked lamb shank or shoulder. For my chili verde, I went with slow cooked lamb shoulder and it turned out fantastic!

Chunks of New Zealand grass-fed lamb shoulder are seared in a pot and then deglazed with a dark IPA beer. A mix of spices, onions and chiles are added and then everything is slow cooked in the oven for two hours. This makes the lamb tender and allows the spices to penetrate the meat.

Not all lamb is grass-fed but New Zealand lamb is, and the benefits are obvious. Lower in sodium and packed with zinc, vitamin E and high levels of protein, grass-fed lamb delivers on more than just taste. New Zealand farmers allow their livestock to graze on open pastures every day, resulting in high-quality and flavorful meat. Plus, New Zealand lamb and beef is sourced from family farms, not huge factories.

lamb Chile verde in a bowl

What is chili verde?

Chili verde is usually made with pork and can be served on its own or with a scoop of rice to help soak up the delicious sauce. Using lamb shoulder does require a longer cook time, but the end results are well worth it.

How long does it take to cook lamb shoulder?

This is not a recipe with shortcuts. My lamb chili verde takes two hours to become fork tender in the oven.  A low and slow approach results in tender, melt-in-your mouth New Zealand grass-fed lamb that’s easy to prepare and super tasty.

How do I serve my lamb chili verde?

I like to eat this dish with rice and lots of fresh chopped cilantro! You can also add tortilla chips and lime wedges on the side, and if desired, a cold beer.

You can find New Zealand grass-fed lamb near you using this handy where to buy page. I got mine at Whole Foods Market.

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Delicious chunks of slow-cooked lamb in a green chili sauce

Main dish
120 minutes
Total TIME:
140 minutes
20 minutes


  • 3 ½ – 4 pounds New Zealand grass-fed lamb shoulder
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup IPA beer
  • 1 cup chicken or beef broth
  • 1 medium onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 2 7 oz cans whole chiles, drained and roughly chopped
  • 1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tsp cornstarch (optional)
  • 1 tsp water (optional)
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Jasmine or long grain rice, prepared per package instructions

Ingredient Swaps


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil until hot.
  3. Trim any excess fat from the lamb shoulder and cut into 1-inch cubes.
  4. Toss the lamb in the flour.
  5. Add the lamb in stages to the hot oil and quickly sear to brown. Transfer the seared lamb to a plate.
  6. Add the beer and deglaze the pot by scraping all of the bits from the bottom.
  7. Transfer the lamb back into the pot.
  8. Add the broth and stir.
  9. Add the onion and spices and stir well.
  10. Add the chopped chiles and black beans.
  11. Place a lid on the pot and cook in the oven for two hours.
  12. After two hours, stir the lamb. If you prefer a thicker sauce, dissolve the cornstarch in the water and add to the lamb, stirring well.
  13. Serve with rice and fresh cilantro.
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