How to tell when your lamb is done

Whether you’re using a meat thermometer or a finger, here’s the scoop on how to tell your lamb is done and ready.

How do you like your lamb?

Rare, medium rare, medium well… the colour, juiciness and internal temperature of your cooked lamb determine its doneness. Cooking lamb to perfection begins with working out the correct cooking time and remembering two simple things: 

- Lamb carries on cooking while resting so remove it from heat around 3–6°C before your goal temperature.

- Rest is best! After cooking, leave your lamb alone – this helps those delicious juices to return to the meat. Find out more about resting lamb here.



Once you’ve started using a meat thermometer, you’ll never look back. Thermometers ensure you serve up the best lamb, every single time. Here’s the big tip: measure at the centre of your lamb cut. We recommend the following temperatures:

  • Rare 60°C
  • Medium rare 60–65°C
  • Medium 65–70°C 
  • Medium well done 70°C 
  • Well done 75°C



If you’re out enjoying our national pastime on one of Australia’s thousands of public barbies, chances are you won’t have a meat thermometer in your back pocket. All is not lost. As the end of the cooking time draws near, press the outside centre of your lamb lightly with tongs or a clean fingertip to judge its degree of doneness. As a rough guide:

  • Very soft = rare – bright red, raw centre
  • Soft = medium rare – pink inside with a red centre 
  • Springy = medium – pink throughout
  • Firmer = well-done range – mostly brown inside
  • Hard as a rock = shoe leather. Uh-oh. You must have been busy chatting...



Find lamb recipes

Resting lamb