Balsamic Fig Lamb Lollipops are tender, juicy, and full of sweet balsamic flavor that balances so well with the natural savory notes at play! Serve these incredible cuts of meat as an appetizer or entree, either way you really can’t go wrong. These “lollipops” are quite the show-stoppers!

Cooked lamb is placed on a white plate with leafy greens and figs.

Balsamic Fig Lamb Lollipops

Want to impress, but not make the traditional lobster or steak dishes you usually gravitate towards? Lamb is just the thing! For dinner parties, I also fall into the usual lobster/steak dinner trap.

However, I’ve been switching up my choice of protein lately with dishes like these balsamic fig lamb lollipops, and I’m so glad I did! This is the recipe I now turn to when I need to impress and satisfy my dinner party guests.

If you’re worried about the sweetness of the figs overpowering the other ingredients listed, don’t worry! The figs add a delightful touch of natural sweetness for sure, but they’re more delicate compared to the other ingredients. Bold balsamic, savory beef stock and tangy dijon mustard are just a few of the other ingredients that create an unbelievably in-depth flavor profile for the lamb.

My method of cooking lamb rib chops is also what makes them so delicious, too! They’re also extremely tender, juicy, and make for the best bite each time.

By just searing the meat for a few minutes on both sides, it’s ensured that they’re fully cooked while not being tough or browned through the middle. Also, the outside of the meat gets wonderfully browned before being tossed in the most delicious balsamic fig sauce!

Lamb, figs, and herbs are cooking in a large metal pan.

How to Make Them

Season. Season the chops on both sides with the kosher salt.

Heat. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over high heat.

Sear. When the oil is shimmering, add the lamb chops and cook, searing for about 2-3 minutes on both sides.

Keep warm. Transfer the chops to a platter and keep warm.

Cook the figs. Turn the heat to medium. Add the figs to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes until softened.

Stir. Stir in the balsamic vinegar and beef stock scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to loosen the brown bits.

Whisk. Turn the heat to low and whisk in the fig jam, dijon and thyme.  Cook for 1-2 minutes until the sauce is slightly thickened.

Coat. Return the chops to the pan and turn to coat.

Enjoy! Serve the chops with the sauce.

Fully cooked meat, figs, and fresh herbs are in a saucy pan.

Why are they called lollipops?

In reality, this specific cut of meat is called lamb rib chops… But isn’t saying “lollipop” way more fun?! This incredibly tender cut of meat gets it’s nickname strictly from the appearance. This is one of my favorite bone-in slices of meat to serve for the name alone, and because it’s so tasty!

What if I can’t find fresh figs?

If you can’t get your hands on any fresh figs, don’t despair. You can substitute the figs in this recipe for reconstituted dried figs! Those may be more prevalent at stores like Whole Foods or Fresh Market. Either way, the fig flavor will be prevalent with fresh or dried figs, especially with the tasty addition of fig jam.

Are lamb lollipops different than scottadito?

Nope! “Scottadito” is just the Italian name for this cut of lamb, which is why you may have seen this dish listed with that title at a restaurant before. “Scottadito” means “scorches the finger” in Italian, and that’s likely because you’ll want to dig in and risk burning your fingers, even when the meat is too hot. They’re just that good!

A lamb lollipop has been cut, revealing a pink center.

Treat your dinner guests to a night of fine dining with these lamb entrees!

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Fully cooked meat, figs, and fresh herbs are in a saucy pan.

Get the Recipe: Balsamic Fig Lamb Lollipops

Quick, simple and impressive Balsamic Fig Lamb Lollipops are easy to make in under 30 minutes. Tender, juicy lamb chops in a sticky, sweet sauce that's simply irresistable.
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Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds lamb rib chops, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup fresh figs, or reconstituted dried figs
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup beef stock
  • 1/4 cup fig jam
  • 1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh chopped thyme

Equipment

  • skillet

Instructions 

  • Season the chops on both sides with the kosher salt.
  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over high heat.
  • When the oil is shimmering, add the lamb chops and cook, searing for about 2-3 minutes on both sides.
  • Transfer the chops to a platter and keep warm.
  • Turn the heat to medium. Add the figs to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes until softened.
  • Stir in the balsamic vinegar and beef stock scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to loosen the brown bits.
  • Turn the heat to low and whisk in the jam, dijon and thyme. Cook for 1-2 minutes until the sauce is slightly thickened.
  • Return the chops to the pan and turn to coat.
  • Serve the chops with the sauce.

Notes

Lamb Lollipops can be served hot or room temperature.  Best if enjoyed the same day they’re prepared.
Calories: 375kcal, Carbohydrates: 21g, Protein: 35g, Fat: 16g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6g, Cholesterol: 112mg, Sodium: 1357mg, Potassium: 657mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 17g, Vitamin A: 96IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 48mg, Iron: 3mg