What Is Mutton?

Mutton is a dish that is very popular in Europe, but what is the difference between that and lamb? Well, mutton is just a slightly more aged version of lamb, a more robust meat that can withstand much higher temperatures of cooking.

What Is Mutton

Mutton is also far more fragrant than lamb and is great for longer cooking in a slow cooker. You can add plenty of herbs and spices, which will ultimately influence the final flavor of the meat itself.

It has a gamey taste to it, although the differences between mutton and lamb are very subtle.

So, what is mutton? How does it differ from lamb? What is the nutritional content of lamb? What does mutton taste like? What is the best way of cooking mutton? Well, we have all the information that you need about this wonderful and sumptuous meat.

What Is The Difference Between Mutton And Lamb?

Mutton is simply a more aged version of lamb. Lamb is taken from a sheep that is under 1 year old, whereas mutton is taken from a sheep aged between 1 and 3 years old. The difference in taste between these two creatures is subtle, but you can notice it.

Because an adult sheep has far more nutrients in its body, then the resulting meat will be a lot more gamey. Lamb is generally more tender and takes less time to cook.

Most people prefer mutton to put in curries, as it can withstand high temperatures over a longer period without degrading or coming apart. Lamb is more expensive than mutton, although it is generally more widely available in supermarkets.

How Is Mutton Used?

Because of the bolder flavor, mutton is often used in stews and curries where the cooking temperatures are higher and the cooking times longer.

This is also used by a lot of Hindus and Muslims, as it conforms to their dietary obligations. You can cut mutton into chunks to be placed on skewers, which is a great addition to any barbecue. You can also pick up ground mutton, which is great for use in chilis.

A lot of fine dining establishments now use mutton, as it is experiencing a resurgence across large swathes of Europe. This animal will be killed in the same way as lamb, which means that there are different cuts of mutton available, including bacon and steak.

How Best To Cook Mutton?

Mutton is a very tough and sinewy meat, so it takes a lot longer to cook than more tender meats like lamb and pork. You’ll need to boil or bake it for a long period so that all the proteins, collagen, and connective muscle tissue break down.

You can also braise mutton, as it will help to retain a lot of the moisture. One of the most popular methods of cooking mutton is slowly in a pressure cooker or slow cooker over the course of a few hours.

You can cook mutton in a stew or a curry over a period of a few hours. Ground mutton is a great option for putting in Shepherd’s Pie. This meat tends to dry out, especially when you are using it for burgers, so make sure that you are adding moisture regularly or keeping it in an enclosed cooker.

How Does Mutton Taste?

What Is Mutton

Mutton has a very distinctive taste, often described as being more earthy and acidic than meats such as lamb. If the sheep that the meat was taken from was grazed during the springtime, then it would have a much smoother flavor.

If a sheep is older and grazed throughout the year, then the flavor will be a lot stronger. This means that you won’t have to add that much extra seasoning. The more mature the mutton is, the longer it will take to cook properly.

Where Can You Get Mutton?

Mutton is hard to come by in your standard supermarket. You’ll probably have to go to a farmer’s market to get mutton. The plus side of doing this is that it will be more organic than any meat that you would get in the supermarket.

You can also get this meat from Asian and Indian food markets, as mutton is more popular in these cultures. You can also order mutton vacuum-packed online.

What Is the Best Way To Store Mutton?

Mutton should be stored in much the same way as meats like pork and lamb. You should wrap it tightly and place it in the freezer or refrigerator. This will avoid bacteria gathering and spoiling your meat. You should always try and store it in an airtight container.

Mutton will usually keep for about a week in the refrigerator and for a few months in the freezer. The longer that you keep mutton in the freezer, the more flavor and texture it will lose. Make sure to defrost mutton properly before you cook it.

What Dishes Can You Use For Mutton?

There are many traditional Indian and Asian dishes that use mutton as a core ingredient. Here are just a few recipe ideas:

  • Smoked Mutton Chops – This requires your mutton to be smoked over the fire for a few hours. It is rubbed with spices, which will infuse the meat with flavors such as garlic, onion, and rosemary.
  • Mutton Korma – This is a mild Indian dish with plenty of creamy herbs and spices. It contains yogurt, garlic, and ginger as well as mutton, which tenderizes nicely on long heat.
  • Mutton stew – This requires a relatively short cooking time for mutton of around 2 hours. This has a blend of meat flavors, as it contains chicken stock. It also contains sweet onions and green beans.


Mutton is not a popular meat, but it can be used in a variety of ways. If you are thinking of cooking an aromatic curry or stew, then try it with mutton instead of lamb or pork. Mutton is also less expensive meat than lamb, so great for anyone on a budget.

Mark Williams
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