The aim of this study was to verify that Caragana korshinskii Kom. (CK) as a component of sheep forage influences lamb digestibility and rumen fermentation by altering the rumen microbial community. Hence, 12 female Tan sheep were allocated into 2 groups: receiving (CK group) or not (control group) 10% of the diet forage fraction with CK. During the 60-day experiment, growth performance, apparent digestibility, rumen volatile fatty acids (VFAs), and nitrogen balance were measured. Meanwhile, the rumen bacterial community diversity and composition were detected by the 16S rRNA sequence. The results indicated that the apparent digestibility of acid detergent fibre (ADF) tended to be higher (0.05 < P < 0.10), and the feed conversion efficiency was improved ( P < 0.05) when CK was offered. Compared to those under alfalfa, the composition and abundance of the rumen microbial community were altered in the CK group, and the phylum Firmicutes, which is involved in promoting fibre digestion, increased in abundance. Moreover, VFAs tended to decrease (0.05 < P < 0.10), and the molar proportion of butyrate declined; similarly, levels of hypoxanthine and xanthine were lower ( P < 0.05) in the sheep fed CK and may have been responsible for the decreased abundance of Fibrobacter spp., which are cellulolytic ruminal bacteria associated with VFA production.