Lambert, who turned 27 Wednesday, walked away with four awards including album of the year for Revolution and female vocalist of the year. She also won song of the year and music video of the year, both for "The House That Built Me." Lambert's fiancé, Blake Shelton, took home male vocalist of the year.
Entertainer of the year went to a teary-eyed Brad Paisley, who co-hosted the ceremony with Carrie Underwood for the third year in a row. During their opening monologue, the two were quick to acknowledge the attention surrounding Academy Award winner Paltrow, whose performance was the most anticipated of the evening.
"Gwyneth, I've always wanted to ask you something: Can you get me two Coldplay tickets?" Paisley teased the woman also known as Mrs. Chris Martin. "Can you make it four?" Underwood added, before complimenting Paltrow on her bravery. "It takes a lot to come to our town and sing on our stage."
There to sing the title track from Country Strong, her upcoming film in which she plays a fallen country music star, Paltrow exceeded expectations and received a standing ovation for her strong vocal and guitar performance with industry veteran Vince Gill.
Other notable performances included Underwood and Paisley's opening number with Keith Urban, Jason Aldean's duet with Kelly Clarkson, and Reba McEntire, who also received a standing ovation for her rendition of the Beyoncé hit "If I Were a Boy."
A complete list of winners:
Entertainer of the Year: Brad Paisley
Female Vocalist: Miranda Lambert
Male Vocalist: Blake Shelton
New Artist: Zac Brown Band
Vocal Group: Lady Antebellum
Vocal Duo: Sugarland
Song: "The House That Built Me" (Miranda Lambert)
Single: "Need You Now" (Lady Antebellum)
Music Video: "The House That Built Me" (Miranda Lambert)