Spring American Lamb Pasta with Peas and Greens

Prep Time

10 min

Cook Time

30 min

Total Time

40 min



Spring Pasta


For the lamb sausage: 

  • 1 pound ground American lamb 
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic 
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon paprika 
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes 
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano 
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

For cooking the sausage and assembling the pasta: 

  • 1 pound Gemelli pasta 
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 1 medium shallot, thinly sliced 
  • 1 cup shelled English peas
  • 3 ounces pea tendrils  
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese, (divided) 


For the American Lamb sausage: 

In a medium mixing bowl add the lamb, salt, pepper, garlic, fennel, paprika, red pepper flakes, oregano and thyme, using your hands to combine the ingredients. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour or up to overnight. 

 For cooking the sausage and assembling the pasta: 

Bring a large pot of water to the boil; add the salt and bring back to the boil. Add the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente, about 10 minutes. Set aside 1 cup of the pasta water then drain and return the pasta to the pot.

Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium heat, add the olive oil and heat through. Add the sausage and cook, using a wooden spoon to break up the sausage, until browned, about 4 minutes. Lower heat to medium-low and continue to cook the sausage slowly at the low heat until its crispy, about an additional 6 to 8 minutes. 

Remove the sausage from the pan, leaving as much oil in the pan as possible and set the sausage aside, returning the pan to heat. Add shallot and peas and sauté until the shallots are tender and opaque, about 5 minutes. Add the pea tendrils and cook until wilted, about 1 minute. Return the sausage to the pan and stir to combine.  

Add the sausage mixture into the pasta and toss to combine, add the butter and stir until melted. Add 1/2 cup of the pasta water and 1/4 cup of the Pecorino Romano cheese continuing to stir until the cheese has melted. 

Divide the pasta into warmed pasta bowls, top with the remaining cheese and serve immediately. 

USDA recommends the following time and temperature parameters

Ground Lamb

Internal temperature of 160°F

All Other Cuts

Internal temperature of 145°F, with a 3 minute rest

thermometer timer illustration
Visit our Lamb Cooking Time & Temperature page for recipe inspiration and tips on preparing the perfect lamb.

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