Mint Sauce

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Homemade mint sauce is one of the most delicious condiments, and so simple to make with just a few ingredients. Excellent with lamb!

Mint sauce in a blue bowl with a silver teaspoon in it

Mint with lamb is one of those must-have pairings, and with good reason. Lamb meat is luscious and rich, with flavor that is balanced with the brightness of mint. Mint jelly is traditional, a sweet jelly with mint flavor and green coloring – but mint sauce with fresh mint as its main ingredient is even better with lamb. Homemade is such a nice touch, and so quick and easy to make, when serving lamb for special occasions.

What is mint sauce made of? 

My mint sauce recipe is easy to make, in just minutes!, with simple ingredients. Classic recipes include lots of fresh spearmint and vinegar. The vinegar can be any of your favorite clear vinegar, such as white wine vinegar or champagne vinegar. Dark balsamic vinegar is not ideal for this preparation, but white balsamic is! This is one of those healthy recipes for its basic ingredient list.

Ingredients for this recipe

1 bunch of mint. A bunch typically is just the right amount to yield about a cup of sauce. Spearmint is the mint of choice for this recipe.

Vinegar. Take your pick: white wine vinegar, sherry vinegar, champagne vinegar, apple cider vinegar.

Sugar. Just a touch of granulated sugar really balances the bracing flavor of the vinegar and softens the whole sauce perfectly.

Salt. A pinch of salt, of course!


Step 1. In a small bowl or little jar, dissolve the sugar in the vinegar.

Step 2. Add the mint and stir well.

Step 3. Steep! Allow this mixture some time for flavors to meld, at least one hour before serving. The longer this sauce has to rest the day you are eating it, the better.

Lamb chops on a white plate with a blue bowl of fresh mint sauce on the side

What to serve with mint sauce

The most popular way to serve it is with lamb of any kind. This means roast lamb, grilled rack of lamb, seared lamb chops. Any marinade you may use for this will taste great with the flavors of a fresh mint sauce on the side. 

Homemade mint sauce is also great with traditional Lebanese lamb dishes like kafta kebabs. It also tastes delicious with roast chicken or most any slow oven roast dinner (pork, roast beef).

Mint Sauce Tips

Chop the mint by hand. Resist the temptation to throw the mint in the blender or food processor, where it is they can become mush so easily. Your sharp knife is all you need to finely chop the mint.

Bunch of mint in a cup on the counter

Be sure the mint is bone dry. One key to chopping any herb easily is to chop them when they are totally dry. Wash the mint in advance and squeeze out excess water, then allow the mint to fully dry. Place the bunch, stem side down, in a glass of water in the refrigerator to keep it fresh and plump. 

Use white vinegar. You will have a beautiful shade of green from the fresh mint. Allow that color to shine through by using light-colored and light-flavored vinegar. Red wine vinegar can work, but dark balsamic does not.

Don’t skip the sugar. There is very little sugar in the recipe and it’s essential to create the right balance of flavor. An alternative is liquid honey (try Kfar honey from Lebanon!).

Can I make it ahead?

This sauce is actually even better made ahead! This is one of those best same day recipes, but up to all day in advance.

Are Mint Sauce and Mint Jelly The Same?

They are different! The sauce is a fresh condiment with fresh mint leaves, typically homemade. Mint jelly is a green, mint-flavored jelly typically purchased.

How long does Mint Sauce keep?

It is best the day it’s made. Leftover mint sauce will keep for two days refrigerated in an airtight container.

Can you use Mint Sauce as a marinade?

It is best as a sauce served alongside lamb as a dipping sauce, not as a marinade.

Why do we eat mint sauce with lamb?

Lamb is a rich meat that is traditionally paired with mint sauce because it balances the richness of the lamb and creates a fresh, bright flavor combo.

More Recipes with Mint

Yogurt sauces put mint to great use, as in Koosa in Yogurt Sauce, Kibbeh in Yogurt Sauce, Kibbeh bi Laban, and Creamy Yogurt Cucumber Salad.

Mint refreshes drinks too! Try Fresh Mint Lemonade or a Fresh Mint Slushie.

Hummus is gorgeous and flavorful with mint in the mix, in my Fresh Mint Hummus recipe.

mint sauce in a blue bowl on a white surface with a spoon
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5 from 1 vote

Mint Sauce Recipe

By Maureen Abood
You will thank me and mother nature once you try the fresh mint sauce! There’s simply not a better pairing for lamb, and once you’ve tried this, there will be no going back to mint jelly, or any other condiment for your lamb! Comes together quickly and easily.
Prep: 1 hour
Servings: 4 servings


  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar, champagne vinegar, or sherry vinegar
  • 1 cup fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt


  • In a small bowl or little jar, dissolve the sugar in the vinegar.
  • Add the mint and stir well, or shake the jar vigorously.
  • Allow the sauce to steep for at least one hour before serving.


Calories: 22kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 0.4g | Fat: 0.1g | Saturated Fat: 0.03g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.003g | Sodium: 150mg | Potassium: 68mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 478IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 28mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Author: Maureen Abood
Prep Time: 1 hour
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 22
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