goat vs lamb

Goat vs Lamb- Is There a Difference?

Both goat and lamb are popular types of meat, depending upon which part of the world you’re in. But there is still some confusion on the goat vs lamb debate!

Are they the same animal? What differences do goats and lambs have and how are they similar?

So, is there in fact a difference between goat and lamb? As it turns out, there are several differences between goat and lamb, but here is the main one. Goat is a leaner tougher meat, and has a more gamey taste, while lamb is more tender (due to the fat content) and juicy.

So, which one should you choose for your next meal? It really depends on what you’re in the mood for!

Read on to learn more about the health benefits, taste, cooking methods, and physical differences and similarities between goat vs lamb!

Are Goat and Lamb the Same?

Many people might say that goat and lamb are the same animals. After all, they both have four legs, a tail, and fur. Goats and lambs are both animals that are used for meat, but there are some physical differences between the two.

Goat and lamb both belong to the Bovidae family and Caprinae subfamily, but it forks off from there.

Goat vs Lamb

Goats are typically called goats throughout their entire lifetime, with the exception of “kid” for those goats 6 months and younger. Lambs are only those sheep that are less than a year old.

Goats tend to be larger than lambs. Unlike the lamb, which has short white, wooly fur, the goat is stocky, hairy, and has horns.

Even if you’ve never heard of actually eating goat meat, you’ve most likely heard of goat being used in dairy products such as cheese and milk. Lamb, on the other hand, is usually used for meat and of course, wool.

GOAT VS LAMBGoatLamb
AgeLifetime<1 Year
AppearanceLarger and Hairy, stocky, with hornsSmaller with White, wooly fur
FurStraight hairs varying in lengthshort, curly wool
HornsOn top of headNo (Sheep can though)
BreedingMeat, milk, cheeseMeat and wool

Goat vs Lamb Meat

Now I bet you’re wondering, which one tastes better, goat or lamb? Are there any taste differences or other differences between the meat?

When it comes to goat and lamb meat, there are more differences than similarities that can be used to tell them apart. But they both have unique qualities that make each one appealing to different people.

  • Goat is naturally a leaner cut of meat with less fat content, while lamb is a more fatty type of meat.
  • Because goat is leaner with less fat, it is best slow-cooked so it remains tenders! Lamb, on the other hand can be grilled, roasted, and many other ways!

Below, we’ll take a look at the nutrition value, taste, and how marbling affect taste and flavor!

Goat vs Lamb Nutritional Value

GOAT VS LAMB100g Goat Meat100g Lamb Meat
Calories143294
Fat3g21g
Cholesterol75mg97mg
Sodium86mg72mg
Potassium405mg310mg
Carbs0g0g
Protein27g25g
Vitamin A0%0%
Vitamin B60%5%
Vitamin B1220%43%
Vitamin C0%0%
Vitamin D0%0%
Calcium1%1%
Iron20%10%
Magnesium0%5%

Goat vs Lamb Marbling

Lamb meat is also going to have more marbling than goat meat. Marbling is the fat that runs through the muscle, and it helps to give the meat flavor and make it more juicy. Goat meat will have some marbling, but it will not be as prevalent as it is in lamb.

Lamb has a higher fat content, thus more marbling. Marbling essentially refers to that “intramuscular fat,” those white marks and flecks you see in cuts of meat. Similar to a ribeye. This marble melts when cooked and give the meat flavor.

The light marbling in goat make slow cooking and smoking the perfect choice. Lamb works really well on the grill

Goat vs Lamb Taste

The taste of each meat depends heavily on the age of the animal. Because lamb is already at a young age, the meat is often more tender than goat. Goats can be slaughtered from a young or old age. The younger, the more tender. In fact, goat meat 9 months or younger is considered “veal” in the goat world. But goat will always naturally be tougher and lamb will be more tender!

The higher fat content in lamb makes it the juicier choice. That’s not to say goat is dry, just not as juicy as lamb!

Finally, goat meat is said to have a more gamey taste than lamb. So, if you already know you like deer meat, goat might be something worth trying if you get the chance!

Which is Best, Goat or Lamb Meat?

How to Cook Goat

Because got contains less fat, it’s best cooked with moisture at lower temperatures and slow-cooked to avoid over toughness.

How to Cook Lamb

Lamb is a naturally fatty type of meat that can be enjoyed grilled, roasted, barbecued, and still be tender!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Goat Meat Called?

The most common types of goat meat are called chevon, cabrito, capretto, and mutton.

  • Chevron goat meat comes from an older goat.
  • Cabrito (Italy) or Capretto (Spain and Portugal) goat meat comes from young goats.
  • Mutton is used to describe goat meat in South Asia and the Caribbean.

Does Goat Meat Taste Good?

That’s a question you’ll have to answer yourself! Everyone has their own unique taste preferences. Goat has a more gamey taste than conventional beef and meat. Some have described it as having a deep earthly flavor. If you have tried deer and like it, chances are you’ll enjoy goat!

What is a Baby Goat Called?

A baby goat is called a kid.

Popular Goat Dishes

  • Curried Goat – A different version of curry made with goat enjoyed by several countries, including Jamaica, Nepal, and Indonesia.
  • Jerk Seasoned Goat – If you like jerk chicken, try jerk goat! It’s usually served with Jamaican spices
  • Mutton Biryani– An Indian curry-like dish served on spiced rice
  • Sate Kambing – Skewered goat meat from Indonesia
  • Sukuti – Goat jerky from Nepal
  • Spaghetti Bolognese and Lasagne – Goat meat is sometimes used in Italy in the meat sauce
  • Seco de Chivo – An Ecuadorian stew served with yellow rice that is often served on special occasions
  • Boodog – A Mongolian roast that uses a whole stuffed goat cooked in its skin

Popular Lamb Dishes

  • Kettle BBQ Roasted Leg of Lamb – The national dish of Australia, often served on special occasions
  • Lamb Satay and Lamb Curry – Very common dishes in Indonesia and various parts of India
  • Bamboo Shoot Curry – made using lamb and found in Minang and Thai cuisine
  • Jingisukan – a very popular dish in Hokkaido, Japan, even though lamb isn’t a staple ingredient in this cuisine. This dish is made from thinly sliced grilled meat served with vegetables and mushrooms.
  • Haggis – A traditional Scottish dish with lamb offal (heart and lungs or other trimmings) stuffed into the lamb’s stomach and boiled
  • Lamb Sweetbread – a lamb’s thymus gland or pancreas, a popular and well-known traditional dish of many cuisines around the world

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