Super Herby Lamb and Wild Rice Soup

This lamb and wild rice soup is piquant and refreshing, thanks to the addition of fresh herbs, seranno chilies, and lots of lime.

Why this recipe works:

  • Adding in the herb/garlic/chili mixture at the very end maintains the freshness of the ingredients.
  • Cooking and storing the rice separately keeps it from getting soggy.
  • Cumin and smoked paprika add warmth and contrast to the fresh herbs and lime.

Super Herby Lamb and Wild Rice Soup

Course: SoupsDifficulty: Easy




  • Oil

  • 1 pound lamb stew meat, cut into 1-2 inch chunks

  • 1 onion, finely diced

  • 3 ribs celery, diced

  • 1 large carrot, peeled and diced

  • ½ tbsp cumin seeds

  • ½ tbsp smoked paprika

  • ¾ cup white wine or dry vermouth

  • 5 cups beef or chicken stock, homemade preferred

  • ¾ cup wild rice

  • 2.5 oz mixed herbs: mint, parsley, and cilantro (about 2 cups once very finely chopped).

  • Juice and zest of 3 limes

  • 1 tsp cumin

  • 1-2 serrano chilies, minced (seeds removed for milder soup)

  • 2 cloves garlic


  • Pat the stew meat dry and season generously with salt. Heat a large dutch oven over high heat. Add enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan. Working in batches, brown the lamb on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Remove from the pot and set aside.
  • Reduce the heat to medium and add the onions. Saute until starting to brown, 2-3 minutes. Add the carrots and celery and saute for 1 minute.
  • Add the spices and saute, stirring regularly, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  • Return the lamb to the pot and stir to coat in the spice/vegetable mixture.
  • Add the wine and let simmer for a minute or so, then add the broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a low simmer, cover, and let cook until the lamb is fall-apart tender, about 1.5 hours or longer.
  • While the lamb stews, cook your wild rice according to the package instructions. Ideally, the rice should still have quite a bite to it, so undercook it slightly if needed. Season and set aside.
  • Finely chop all of the herbs, you want about 2 cups once chopped. Place the herbs in a bowl along with the cumin, lime juice and zest, and minced chilies. Use a microplane to grate the garlic into the bowl. Toss to combine, then set aside.
  • When the lamb is tender, taste for seasoning, and add salt and freshly ground black pepper as needed.
  • Remove from heat, then add the herb mixture and stir to combine. Taste, and adjust seasoning as needed.
  • If you plan to serve all of the stew at once, you can add the rice directly to the pot. If not, spoon about ⅓ cup of rice into each bowl and top with the soup. Store the rice separately to ensure it doesn’t get too soggy.
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