Mutton has a slightly "gamey" flavor, is there a way to prep it before cooking which reduces this "gamey" flavour?

  • Is it mutton or lamb? They are not the same. Jul 26, 2010 at 3:10

4 Answers 4


The flavor will vary greatly depending on the cut of meat and the preparation.

  • Different cuts (eg: chops and legs) taste very differently from one another (legs and tougher meat taste more gamey)
  • Ground lamb has almost no gamey flavor
  • Well done meat will taste less gamey than medium (Edit: regarding "done-ness" this how it tastes to me. Since answering, I've discussed this with someone else who says the opposite is their experience)
  • Cooking with a lot of vegetables or a flavorful starch will by contrast cut down on the strong flavor more than a bland starch. A bland starch will result in highlighting the strong gamey taste
  1. Most of the gamey-ness comes from the fat. Unlike the pork or beef fat, mutton fat has a strong odor and is considered to be inedible by most people. You want to trim off as much of it as possible. http://chestofbooks.com/health/nutrition/Medicinal-Meals/Mutton-Fat.html

  2. It also depends on whether the goat was grain-fed or grass-fed. The latter, although more natural, tend to produce meat that has a strong smell.

  3. As for cooking mutton, I've found the only satisfactory way of getting rid of the smell is to make a curry out of it. There are many good Indian mutton curry recipes on the web.

  • 4
    I'm pretty sure mutton is meat from a sheep, not from a goat.
    – nohat
    Aug 5, 2010 at 19:29
  • 1
    Mutton is another name for goat meat in certain regions of the world. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goat_meat Mutton is also used for sheep.
    – Gilead
    Aug 6, 2010 at 1:18
  • According to your Wikipedia link, mutton is a colloquial term for (adult) sheep meat in those areas, but is noted to technically refer to just sheep. Apr 4, 2012 at 20:37
  • 3
    While true that the flavor comes from the fat, which depends on the animal's diet, I don't think "most people" consider mutton fat to be inedible; this attitude is probably limited to Americans or people used to the bland taste of grain fed animals. In support of this, your own link at "chestofbooks.com" describes ways of preparing mutton fat and makes no mention of trimming it off.
    – J. Win.
    Apr 5, 2012 at 23:59

Are you talking about lamb in general or mutton?

Mutton does have a strong flavour - this can be reduced by removing the pink skin and trimming off superfluous fat.

You can also complement the flavour by adding things like garlic, olive oil, mint, wine, rosemary and thyme, pepper, dry mustard and curry powder.


The best way to reduce the gamey flavor of mutton is to use lamb instead of mutton. In most parts of the world, lamb is meat from a sheep that is less than 1-2 years old. Mutton is meat from an adult sheep.

Lamb meat tends to be more tender and less gamey than meat from an older sheep.

  • Doesn't answer the Q as asked. But this does answer the OP concern of getting rid of the gamey flavor. Signed.. Jerry Seinfeld salad ain't got nothing on this mutton
    – Paulb
    May 28, 2016 at 19:37

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.