Goats and lamb are both types of red meat and can easily be confused by consumers. The confusion is understandable since, in some countries, they can be used interchangeably in recipes.
Goat and lamb don’t taste the same. The goat has a sweeter, stronger “gamey” flavor and is slightly tougher due to its lower fat content. Lamb, on the other hand, has a more subtle but unique and grassy taste. However, the flavor profile will depend on the pre-slaughter conditions of both animals and how they were prepared and cooked after.
This article will provide you with everything you need to know about goat meat, how it compares to lamb in terms of nutritional value and health benefits, what parts of the goat meat can be eaten, how to cook goat meat, and answers to interesting questions!
Does Goat Meat Taste Like Lamb?
Goat meat does not taste like lamb. A goat has a sweeter, bolder “gamey” taste compared to lamb, which has a more subtle but unique, grassy flavor.
However, both flavor profiles will depend on the animals’ pre-slaughter conditions, such as how they were raised, their age before being slaughtered, nutrition, as well as how they were prepared after slaughtering, and how they were cooked.
Goat Meat Nutritional Value
Goat meat is generally considered a healthier alternative to other types of red meat, including lamb, pork, and beef. It has lesser amounts of fat, saturated fat, and fatty acids, making it lean and reducing one’s risk of obesity.
Moreover, goat meat has lower cholesterol levels and lower fat content, which decreases the risk of cardiovascular diseases. It’s a good source of protein, which is essential for the development and maintenance of muscles and bones.
Below is the nutritional value of goat meat based on the composition of its nutrients, minerals, and vitamins:
|Total fat (g)||10.3|
Lamb Meat Nutritional Value
Due to the amount of vitamins and minerals present, lamb meat is a primary source of dietary protein in a lot of countries. Like goat meat, it’s also lean as it contains lesser amounts of fat and calories. However, it has more cholesterol compared to a goat.
Eating 3 ounces of lamb meat will cover about 43% of an adult’s daily recommended amount of protein and 7% of the daily recommended amount of calories. Grass-fed lamb contains less fat and more protein than grain-fed lamb and is, therefore, the healthier option for consumption.
Below is the nutritional value of lamb meat based on the composition of its nutrients, minerals, and vitamins:
|Total fat (g)||61.6|
Does Goat Taste Better Than Lamb?
It depends on your preferences. Some would gravitate toward the sweet taste and tenderness of goat meat, while others may prefer the stronger flavor and firmer texture of lamb meat.
Is Goat Meat More Nutritional Than Lamb Meat?
Goat meat is commonly accepted as the healthier red meat compared to lamb meat. Unprocessed goat meat will provide far healthier benefits since it has less salt and preservatives compared to processed meat, according to researchers.
What Are the Benefits of Eating Goat Meat?
Here’s a breakdown of the nutrient composition of goat meat, specifically those that have the highest amounts and aside from protein, and what their associated health benefits are:
- Potassium. Goat meat contains 53% of the recommended average intake of potassium for adult women and 41% for adult men. It helps maintain regular levels of fluid in cells, aids in activating nerve and cell functions, and supports muscle contraction and blood pressure regulation.
- Phosphorus. Goat meat contains 97.5% of the recommended dietary allowance of phosphorus for adults. This mineral is essential for energy production, acid-base homeostasis regulation, and bone mineralization and serves as a building block of genes.
- Sodium. Although too much sodium can lead to cardiovascular diseases and stroke, humans still need 500 milligrams of sodium everyday for vital functions such as maintaining the balance of water and minerals in the body. Goat meat consists of 58.4% of the required intake of sodium.
- Vitamin B-2 (Choline). Also an essential nutrient, choline helps muscle contraction, plays a role in cognition, and aids in activating bodily responses to pain. The liver also produces this vitamin, however, it’s not enough. Goat meat contains 85% of the daily adequate intake needed for choline.
- Vitamin B-9 (Folate). This vitamin is usually added to food or sold as a supplement in the form of folic acid. It helps the formation of DNA and RNA and plays a role in metabolizing protein. Goat meat contains 17% of the recommended dietary allowance for folate.
Which Part of Goat Meat Is Tasty?
Similar to other red meat, consumers can purchase and cook pre-cut goat meat or ask local butchers to cut a goat carcass into different cuts.
Here are some common goat meat cuts:
- Hindshank. Slices into drumsticks or shanks, and are ideal for roasting, braising, or incorporating in stews.
- Ribs. Usually cut into cutlets or racks and are best for frying or grilling.
- Leg. Can have the bone in or be boneless and cut into steaks. It’s perfect for frying or grilling.
- Loins. Either trimmed into tenderloins or chops and can be fried or grilled.
How to Cook Goat Meat?
Generally, ground goat meat should be cooked at 160°F, while roasts, chops, and steaks should achieve a minimum internal temperature of 145°F accurately measured with a food thermometer. Cuts that are less tender should be stewed or braised.
Here’s how to roast goat meat:
Step 1: Mix stuffing ingredients, such as butter, bread crumbs, seasoning mix, herbs, egg, and other ingredients of your preference, in a mixing bowl.
Step 2: Create a pocket in your chosen goat cut by separating the meat from its bones. Then, place the stuffing inside loosely.
Step 3: Roll the meat cut and tie tightly with string.
Step 4: Cook at 350°F for 45 minutes per pound on a rack in a roasting pan. Coat with your choice of seasonings, such as a classic salt and pepper.
Is Goat Meat a Red Meat?
Goat meat is considered red meat along with lamb, mutton, beef, pork, veal, and horse meat. Meat is mainly categorized into red (obtained) from mammals) or white meat (obtained from poultry). All red meat contains 9 essential and indispensable amino acids for humans.
What Is the Difference Between Goat and Mutton?
Mutton is meat obtained from adult sheep and has a similar, strong “gamey” taste as goat but is generally tougher since it comes with more muscles, connective tissues, and fat. On the other hand, goat is more tender and has a sweeter flavor.
Is Goat Meat More Expensive Than Beef?
Goat meat is generally more expensive than beef, and even pork, as raising goats is more difficult since they have more nutritional needs, and the yield per goat carcass is lower compared to other animals that produce red meat.
Average goat retail prices for July 2022 range from $15.06 to $18.28, depending on the part being sold. In the same month, the average beef retail prices range from $2.41 to $28.84, depending on the part.
Related: Why Is Goat Meat So Expensive? | The Ultimate Guide
What Country Consumes the Most Goat Meat?
China is the world’s largest consumer of goat meat, with a total of 2.4 million tonnes of volume from 2007 to 2019, according to this report. It comprises 61% of the total world consumption and has seen a steady average annual growth increase of 1.9% from the same time period.
Related: How to Trim Goat Hooves | Easy-to-Follow Steps!
Can I Eat Goat Meat Everyday?
You cannot eat goat meat everyday. According to research, eating more than 3 and a half servings of red meat a week, assuming each serving is equal to 3 ounces, can increase the risk of premature death, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and cancer—even more so when you consume processed meat.
With that, once or twice a week is enough, with only 1 serving for each. This must be counterbalanced by eating healthy food such as fruits, vegetables, and if available, seafood.
Goat meat is sweeter and has a strong “gamey” flavor compared to lamb meat. It’s also the healthier option, as it has lower fat and cholesterol content and more protein. Some common goat meat cuts are the loins, ribs, hindshank, and legs—all of which can be cooked in a variety of ways such as grilling, incorporating in a stew, roasting, braising, and frying.