The Best Cut Of Meat For The Juiciest Lamb Burgers

There is nothing quite like a great lamb burger. Distinctive from beef burgers for their gamey, yet sweet flavor, lamb burgers are in a class all their own. The natural lamb flavors can be elevated by spices like coriander and mint, and when slathered with a generous helping of creamy tzatziki sauce ... well, you get the idea. Naturally, burger fans will want to try making their own, but this can pose a bit of a challenge. 

Ground lamb is not something the everyday grocery store commonly has in stock. Adding to this, lamb has more of a limited season than beef does. At its best, between April and October, fresh ground lamb is one of those luxuries you can allow yourself every once in a while. If your grocery store doesn't stock ground lamb, there are plenty of online retailers you can purchase from. Better still is access to a local butcher or farm. 

Another thing you'll want to know is which cut of lamb is going to make for the best grind. You'll want one that has enough fat to make the ground meat bind together, but is lean enough to be adaptable to flavors. For that, there is no better cut for lamb burgers than the shoulder.

Lamb shoulder makes the best grind

Lamb shoulder is the area of the animal that gets a lot of muscle work. Located between the neck and the ribs, this tougher, upper portion of the lamb's front leg is a great cut for braising and other slow-cooking methods that make the meat tender. Grinding the shoulder meat is another excellent method of making the cut more palatable and workable. Like in sausage making, the grinding serves to tenderize the meat by breaking apart the tougher sinews and muscle fibers that would otherwise be difficult to work around. 

Although leaner cut other parts of the lamb, there is still enough fat found in the shoulder to help bind the patties and develop flavor. Still, be careful not to overwork the meat, as it has the potential to break apart. Once the patty is formed, leave it alone until cooking time. 

Good lamb shoulder should be pink, with firm, white fat that is not too thick. Prepackaged ground lamb shoulder is great, but the absolute best way to ensure freshness and quality of flavor is either to grind it yourself or have a butcher do it for you. Doing this adds an unparalleled level of freshness that will really help give your burgers a great flavor. If cooked right, you're going to have yourself one tender, and juicy lamb burger.