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If you’ve ever been intimidated by cooking prime rib, my guide for how to cook prime rib is here for you! Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced chef to prime rib recipes, try out my tips, tricks, and recipes for 5-star restaurant-grade prime rib. Trust me- it’s so much easier than it seems.
- Cooking Prime Rib
- Prime Rib Recipe Tools
- Boneless or Bone-In Prime Rib
- Prepping Prime Rib Roast
- Prime Rib Temp
- How to Make Prime Rib
- Slow-Roasted Prime Rib
- Smoking Prime Rib
- Grilling Prime Rib
- Cooking Prime Rib Sous Vide
- Cooking Prime Rib Tips
- FAQ for How to Cook Prime Rib
- What to Serve with Prime Rib
- 📌 Pin it for later!
- 📋 Recipe
- Perfect Prime Rib
- 💬 Reviews
Cooking Prime Rib
Bringing home prime rib is intimidating. Prime grade beef is one of the most expensive and luxurious cuts of beef you can get, so the pressure is on to make sure you cook it just right. If you’re not experienced with how to prepare prime rib, it can be difficult to know where to start. I know, I’ve been there!
That’s where this guide comes in! I’m just obsessed with prime rib. It’s my favorite centerpiece for Christmas dinner every year, and I love serving it for big celebrations, too. I promise you, it’s so much easier than it sounds!
Ready to serve a dinner no one will forget? Scroll on to find all my tips and tricks for prime rib cooking! Plus, I’ll share my slow-roasted prime rib recipe, which is hands-down the best way to cook prime rib for beginners.
Prime Rib Recipe Tools
If you want to cook the perfect prime rib, you need an Instant Read Meat Thermometer to check the internal temperature. You cannot tell the doneness of a prime rib by sight alone, and the last thing you want to do is overcook the meat. If you don’t have one and don’t have time to order one, you can find them at your local grocery store.
I also recommend you pick up a proper carving knife for slicing prime rib. It makes all the difference and will make the roast easier to serve.
Boneless or Bone-In Prime Rib
There are two main ways to buy a prime rib beef roast: boneless or bone-in. The bone-in cut, also often known as a standing rib roast, tends to be heavier and harder to carve, but the bones infuse it with tons of flavor. Boneless benefits from being very easy to serve!
Which you choose is up to you! Both will cook up similarly, and you can even buy boneless roasts with the ribs tied back on to the meat to preserve the appearance without the inconvenience. Both cuts will be delicious.
Prepping Prime Rib Roast
Prepping a prime rib to get it ready to cook is one of the most important steps of cooking prime rib. Don’t skip these steps!
- Salt the prime rib the night before and set it in the fridge, uncovered. If you have enough time, you can also try dry-aging it at home.
- Set the prime rib out on the counter to come to room temperature at least two hours before cooking. This is vital!
- Use a good, flavorful dry rub, or try out a butter rub. This will add tons of flavor and help a crust form. Add this right before cooking the meat, but make sure the salt is added the night before, as recommended above.
Prime Rib Temp
The most important part of any prime rib roast recipe is cooking prime rib to the right temperature! It’s critical to always check with a meat thermometer. Remove the meat from the heat within 5 degrees of the target temperature and let it rest; it will reach the desired temperature as it sits.
|Desired Degree of Doneness
|Temperature to Take off the Heat
|Rare Prime Rib
|120°F (rest to 125°F)
|Medium-Rare Prime Rib
|130°F (rest to 135°F)
|Medium Prime Rib
|140°F (rest to 145°F)
|Medium-Well Prime Rib
|145°F (rest to 150°F)
|Well-Done Prime Rib
|155°F (rest to 160°F)
How to Make Prime Rib
Roasting prime rib is the classic way to cook prime rib for a reason! This method is easy, reliable, and lets you easily adjust the cook time so the prime rib can be cooked just right.
Slow-Roasted Prime Rib
One of my very favorite ways to cook prime rib is slow-roasting. This method renders the fat into juicy perfection, forms a perfect crust, and leaves the interior tender and succulent. Scroll to the bottom of the page for the recipe!
Smoking Prime Rib
Smoking prime rib is a method I’ve tried only recently, and let me tell you- I’m hooked! This method is similar to slow-roasting, but infuses the meat with incredible smoky flavor that enhances the natural earthiness of beef.
Grilling Prime Rib
Isn’t every meat better when grilled? Grilling prime rib can be a little fussier if you’re not used to grilling, but with my recipe, it’ll come out crispy, juicy, and full of flavor. This is the perfect recipe for an outdoor celebration!
Cooking Prime Rib Sous Vide
If you have access to a sous vide machine, you need to try sous vide prime rib. Flawlessly cooked and with a delicious crust, this is the easiest, most reliable cooking method for prime rib.
Cooking Prime Rib Tips
- Always use a meat thermometer! The only way to truly know how long to cook prime rib is by using a meat thermometer to check. This will ensure perfectly cooked rib roast!
- Let the meat rest after taking it off the heat. Rib roast should rest for 10-15 minutes before slicing. This will allow the meat to finish cooking and soak in juices.
- Slice against the grain. This results in the most tender slices of beef!
- Serve it with sauce. I recommend horseradish sauce, a simple au jus, or a flavorful red wine reduction.
FAQ for How to Cook Prime Rib
A good rule of thumb is to assume each person will eat one pound of prime rib. If you’re buying bone-in, buy it by the bone; each bone will serve two people, so for a dinner for six, buy a three-bone rib roast.
There is no one best cooking method for prime rib! Each method will result in delicious, flavorful meat and has a host of pros and cons. But no matter how you cook it, it needs to be cooked just to temperature and never over-cooked. I recommend slow roasting prime rib in the oven for the easiest and most beginner-friendly recipe!
The secret to restaurant-style prime rib is cooking the meat super slow at low temperatures. I recommend cooking prime rib at no higher than 200 degrees F. This cooks the meat very slowly, turning the fat into butter and rendering the proteins juicy and soft.
Yes! Trust me. If you’re skeptical, you can cook prime rib. It is so much easier than it might seem at first, especially following my simple step-by-step recipes. Try my slow roasted prime rib if you’re a total beginner; it’s very easy to get right.
What to Serve with Prime Rib
- Yorkshire Pudding
- Au Gratin Potatoes
- Honey Sriracha Brussels Sprouts
- Or check out my guide of 50+ incredible sides for prime rib!
Got leftovers? Try out my delicious Creamy Penne Pasta with Prime Rib. It’s so good, you’ll be craving it too!
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Perfect Prime Rib
See our Cooking Conversions Chart for help converting measurements!
- Salt the roast all over with 1 Tbsp. kosher salt the day before you plan on cooking it and refrigerate overnight, uncovered.1 Tbsp. Kosher salt
- When ready to roast, preheat the oven to 200°F. Place prime rib roast on rack in roasting pan.
- Rub the roast all over with 2 Tbsp. olive oil and 1-2 tsp. freshly cracked black pepper.8 lb. Prime Rib Roast, 2 Tbsp. Olive oil, 2 tsp. black pepper
- Place roasting pan in preheated oven until the center of the roast reads 120°F for medium-rare.
- This takes about 4 hours, but time will vary depending on the size of the roast. Use an instant-read thermometer or meat probe and cook to 5 degrees below your desired degree of doneness.
- Remove roast from oven and tent with foil to rest for at least 20 minutes. Turn oven temp up to 500°F.
- Once the oven reaches 500°F, remove the foil and put the roast back in the oven.
- Cook until the outside is nicely browned and crisp, about 10-15 minutes. Transfer roast to a cutting board and rest the roast at least 15 minutes before serving.
- It is always best to use a meat thermometer to make sure your Prime Rib is done perfectly to your liking.
- The night before roasting the prime rib, unwrap the beef and set it in the refrigerator. Keep it uncovered on the sheet pan with a rack. This allows the surface moisture to evaporate and will guarantee a beautiful brown crust when you sear it.
- Three hours before roasting, take the beef out and place it on a sheet pan (to catch any juices) and keep it at room temperature. This step is key to an evenly roasted prime rib recipe.
- Make sure you let the prime rib rest for at least 15-20 minutes before carving