Lamb Main Dishes Recipes

Lamb Shanks with Ginger and Figs (Pressure Cooker, AIP)

lamb shanks with figs and ginger

This recipe for braised lamb shanks is nutrient dense, paleo autoimmune protocol (AIP) friendly, delicious and comforting, easy to prepare, and even budget conscious! And with the use of a pressure cooker, what would typically be an all day dish is something you can make after a long day at work. What more could you ask for?

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Lamb – It (should be) what’s for dinner!

Lamb is an excellent source of B vitamins (vitamin B12, thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, vitamin B6, and pantothenic acid), zinc, phosphorous, selenium, magnesium, potassium, and copper. Plus, if it is grass fed (as most lamb is), it’s beneficial omega 3 fatty acid content is nearly as good as that of fish.

So, we know that lamb is worth including into your diet from time to time, even though it is generally more expensive than other meats. I picked these organic grass fed lamb shanks up at our local grocery store in large part because they were only $6.99 a pound, which is still more than I like spending on meat but a bit cheaper than the ground lamb or boneless leg of lamb and much, much cheaper than the rack of lamb or lamb chops sitting next to it in the refrigerator case.

But then I got them home and had no idea what to do with them, until I started paging through a new addition to my cookbook collection, The Great Big Pressure Cooker Book by Bruce Weinstein & Mark Scarbrough.

Written with directions for both stovetop and electric pressure cookers, this massive tome has 500 recipes for everything from breakfast to dessert, including two for lamb shanks. This recipe is my AIP-friendly adaptation of one of those, which I created and tested in my favorite kitchen appliance – the Instant Pot.

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Notes for healing diets

Paleo Lamb Shanks Recipe

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Lamb Shanks with Ginger and Figs (Pressure Cooker, AIP)

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5 from 2 reviews

  • Author: Jaime Hartman
  • Total Time: 1 hour 50 mins
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


This is an easy, delicious, and budget friendly way to prepare lamb. AIP-friendly too if you serve it with cauli-rice!


  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 4 12-ounce lamb shanks
  • 1 large onion, sliced thinly pole-to-pole
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons coconut aminos
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • 23 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 1/2 cups bone broth
  • 10 dried figs, stems cut off and halved lengthwise


  1. Turn Instant Pot on and press “saute” button (or set a 6 quart stovetop pressure cooker over medium heat). When hot, add 1 tablespoon coconut oil.
  2. Place two of the lamb shanks in the pot and brown on all sides, turning occasionally. Transfer to a plate or bowl. Repeat with remaining tablespoon coconut oil and lamb shanks.
  3. Add onion and ginger to empty pot and cook, stirring often, until softened (about 3 minutes).
  4. Stir in the coconut aminos, vinegar, fish sauce, and garlic. Stir in the broth and figs, scraping up any browned bits. Return the shanks and any accumulated juices to the pressure cooker. Make sure the meaty portion of each shank is at least partially submerged in the liquid. Lock lid in place.
  5. If using Instant Pot or other electric pressure cooker, set the machine to cook at high pressure for 1 hour. OR If using stovetop pressure cooker, raise heat to high and bring the pot to high pressure, then reduce the heat as much as possible while maintaining the pressure and cook for 40 minutes.
  6. If using Instant Pot, turn off the machine, do not allow it to go into keep-warm setting, and let its pressure return to normal naturally for 20-30 minutes. OR If using stovetop pressure cooker, remove the pot from heat and allow its pressure to fall to normal naturally for about 20 minutes.
  7. Unlock and open the cooker. Transfer the shanks to a serving platter. Skim the surface fat from the sauce in the cooker and discard. Ladle the sauce over the shanks.
  8. Serve with white rice or cauli-rice.
  • Prep Time: 20 mins
  • Cook Time: 90 mins
  • Category: Entree


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Shared on Paleo AIP Recipe Roundtable.

24 replies on “Lamb Shanks with Ginger and Figs (Pressure Cooker, AIP)”

[…] Click here for the recipe. Ingredients: coconut oil, lamb shanks, onion, fresh ginger, coconut aminos, apple cider vinegar, fish sauce, garlic, bone broth, and dried figs […]

Hi! Just curious, if I were to make this without a pressure cooker/instant pot…what would the process look like?

Hi Jaime! I made this today and it was fantastic. I subbed raisins for figs and dried ginger for fresh, since that’s what I had on hand. I just wanted to thank you for posting an easy, delicious meal. My family loved it too. I’ll make it again.

[…] Stew from The Paleo Mom Lamb Shanks with Ginger and Figs from Gutsy by Nature Rosemary “Curried” Lamb Stew from Lichen Paleo Loving […]

Made this tonight using my Instant Pot for the first time. It was sensational. I used a cheaper cut of lamb (shoulder), and mixed dried fruit (apricots, figs) because it’s what I had on hand and it was great. Thanks for the recipe! I’ll definitely be making this again.

Hi there! If i wanted to double the recipe, or even 1.5 the recipe, would i need to adjust the cook time?


Thanks for asking! No, you don’t need to adjust the time at all. That’s one of the great things about pressure cooker recipes – the time “under pressure” is the same, no matter how much is in the pot. However, a larger amount will take longer to get up to pressure, so if you have made the recipe once with the regular amount, don’t be surprised if it takes longer before time starts counting down when you try it with a larger amount.

Thank-you for this recipe. I’m still in the first few weeks of AIP and cooking with the Instant Pot is great to cook large quantities. This recipe was absolutely delicious ! Perfect timing. Great ingredients and loved the result !

Hi! This looks great. I would love to try it but don’t think I tolerate coconut well. Do you have any suggestions on what to replace it with? Maybe more fish sauce?

Also – where it says “do not let Instant pot go into keep warm mode” – do you just mean to let it natural release? I’m pretty sure my instant pot says “keep warm” when it’s in natural release mode 🙂


I looooove this recipe. I’ve been making it about once a month this winter and have been sharing it with a few non-AIP friends who could use some low-inflammatory recipes without the stress of focusing on what to eliminate. It feels fancy while being very easy.

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