Goat vs Lamb: Which is Better?(3 Big Differences)


Goat meat has gained popularity in recent years, with some calling it a healthier alternative to lamb. But meat is not a comparable alternative. In today’s article we will show you the main differences between goat and lamb, how to prepare them and when to use them.

Differences between goat and lamb meat

The main difference between goat and lamb lies in their fat content. Goat has less fat(3g per 100g) than lamb, making it a leaner cut of meat. This makes goat meat taste tougher and is ideal for slow cooking methods such as braising, roasting or smoking.

Differences between goat and lamb.

These are the three main differences between goat and lamb that make the two meats completely different.

Nutritional value

Goat meat is generally considered healthier than lamb. Compared to sheep meat, goat meat has less cholesterol, fatty acids and calories.

In fact, it has less cholesterol than other meats like beef, pork, and even chicken.

Ha, even chicken.

However, the nutrient content of the goat does not end there. It’s also incredibly high in protein and contains even more iron than beef.

Overall, this makes goat a leaner cut of meat than lamb.


per 100gZegeLamb
totally fat3g21 grams
protein27 grams25g
cholesterol75 milligrams97 milligrams
to promote3.7 milligrams1.9 milligrams
Which: USDA


Most cuts of lamb contain more fat than goat meat. This is evident from the visible marbling seen on the surface of the lamb.

Marbling is the white flecks and greasy spots you see on the surface of red meat. They are mainly found in the muscles of beef, lamb and goat meat and are also known as intramuscular fat.

raw lamb with meat-muscle marbling
Lamb with distinct marbling along the surface of the meat muscle

The marbling in the meat tends to melt as it cooks, and this processed fat can help add more flavor to the meat as it cooks.


Goat’s lower fat content makes it harder to chew than mutton, but the flavor differences go well beyond texture.

Goat has a slightly sweeter flavor than lamb and may even have a stronger flavor. I tend to find that in general this IS dependent on how it WILL be prepared. If you grill it, that sweet flavor should settle into the meat, but if you grill it, it might lose some of it and become tougher.

About goat meat

Goat meat is red meat that has a slight marbling on its surface and its color varies from a very light pink to an intense and bright red.

This marbling in the meat makes it perfect for low and slow cooking and smoking. Slow cooking melts the fat in the marble, adding flavor and juice to the meat.

Most of this meat comes from young goats to keep it as tender and as possible. This makes it ideal for grilling on the grill and has a really fine taste.

When it comes from an unneutered goat, the meat tends to be tougher and firmer and has a more pronounced aroma and flavor.

About lamb

Lamb is a red meat that varies from light pink to bright red. The meat is usually from first-year sheep(hence “lamb”). If you see lamb with a darker color, this is usually a sign that the animal was older.

The younger lamb is more tender, which makes it more desirable. That means it’s more expensive than aged lamb. Beware of getting ripped off if they sell you darker meat!

How to cook goat meat

Goat meat doesn’t have a lot of fat or marbling, which means it’s likely to become tough when cooked at high temperatures.

how to cook goat meat

It is much more suitable for slow and low cooking. This keeps moisture in while the collagen in the meat is melted.

For this reason, goat is often served in curries or stews, as the slow cooking tends to bring out the best in the meat.

If you plan to grill it, I highly recommend marinating or even salting it beforehand. This will prevent it from drying out too quickly.

How to cook lamb

Lamb has a higher fat content than goat( source ), so it will withstand grilling at higher temperatures than goat.

A word of caution though. The flavor of fat in lamb tends to be sharper and deeper in flavor. If this isn’t your thing, I recommend skimming off some fat before cooking.

how to cook lamb

The lamb is fantastically grilled or grilled and also roasted.

Different cuts of lamb have different fat contents, but if you can get a cut with lots of marble, then it’s perfect for slow cooking or roasting. For example, if you can get a fatty cut like lamb shoulder, try smoking it on a grill.

Lamb chops are pricey, but their fat content makes them worth the money. They can be grilled or smoked and are best finished with a charred skin and pink interior. Check out our Smoked Lamb Chops recipe to see just how amazing they can be.

Leg of lamb, on the other hand, is lean and contains much less fat. This makes them more suitable for slow frying or grilling. They must be marinated or salted before hand.

Check out our recipe for Grilled Leg of Lamb with Herb Butter.

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