Follow this step-by-step prime rib recipe and you will be enjoying a perfectly cooked prime rib in no time.
This really is the best prime rib recipe. It’s adaptable depending on your preference of meat and weight and you can use this recipe for bone-in or boneless prime rib.
I even include an infographic guide that will show you how many pounds or ribs you will need for your number of guests along with the associated cook times.
Now let’s get into making this delicious prime rib recipe.
My Ultimate How to Make Prime Rib Guide:
You want to start prepping the meat at least 10 hours before cooking. I could recommend 24-48 hours to get the best results.
First let’s answer some common questions.
What is prime rib?
Prime rib is the largest and best cut of beef from the upper back rib section. This cut of meat is extremely tender and juicy.
It is a little pricy so plan accordingly.
What part of the prime rib is the best?
Different rib section produce different cuts of meat with varying amounts of fat.
If you ask your butcher for 2-3 ribs (this will feed around 6 people) you will likely get a portion from the loin end. This end is much leaner, but still very tender.
If you ask for ribs from the chuck end you will get a much fattier piece of meat. This is recommended for a large rib roast of 6-9 ribs.
Bone-In Vs Boneless:
A rule of thumb is bone in equals more flavor and more juiciness. I recommend bone in for these reasons.
It is really up to you though!
How much boneless prime rib do I need per person?
An easy rule of thumb is there will be around 2 servings for every pound of boneless prime rib meat. So if you are serving 6 people, you would want to buy a 3 pound boneless prime rib.
How much bone in prime rib do I need per person?
For bone in prime rib, I tend to go by the number of ribs rather than the weight. I like to account for 2 servings for every rib or 2 people for every rib bone. So if you are serving 6 guests you can buy a 3-4 rib roast and be good.
Now for the cooking process. You are probably asking yourself…
What’s the best way to cook prime rib?
There are many different methods to cooking prime rib. Here is my go to guide to make the best prime rib. Follow these directions and you won’t go wrong.
My Step-by-Step Easy Prime Rib Recipe
Step 1: (drying out the meat)
Drying out the meat is an important step. By drying out the fat and meat you will be able to create a crispy crust or “bark.”
This outer layer is the best part in my opinion because its flavorful, salty, tender and caramelized. You should dry out the meat for at least 10 hours, but up to 48 hours uncovered in your refrigerator.
Step 2: (salting)
Salt plays a large role in flavor. Salt will draw out some moisture in the meat in the beginning, which will concentrate the meat flavor and act as a quick age.
It also acts as a dry brine which can make your meat juicier in the long run. And let’s just face it meat without salt is just not as good! Salt is a must and I recommend a good kosher salt for this recipe. You will season the meat with salt and pepper along with fresh herbs in this step.
Step 3: (slow roasting)
Slow roasting will ensure that your meat will be tender and juicy. It is important with this method that you follow the internal temperature guide to ensure correct doneness.
Let your meat sit out at room temperature for 30 minutes before cooking. Place the roast on a roasting rack in a roasting pan so that it has air circulating all around the surface area. Top with butter and roast following the prime rib guide above.
You will want to use a meat thermometer to check for doneness and adjust cooking time as necessary. Measuring the internal temp will give you a perfect prime rib every time as opposed to just going strictly off cooking time. Many ovens are different so they can yield different cook times.
Step 4: (resting your meat)
Resting your meat is exactly what it sounds like – give your meat a rest by letting it sit outside the oven, lightly tented with foil for at least 20 minutes before you cut into it.
This will help the meat to retain more juices. If you were to cut the meat right away all those delicious juices would be on your cutting board instead of your meat.
Step 5: (the reverse searing method)
The reverse searing method is simply the roll of browning or searing the meat at the end of the cooking process instead of the beginning.
This method will ensure that you have a nice evenly pink interior and a crusty caramelized exterior. The role of browning at the end instead of the beginning helps the meat to cook more evenly without overcooking.
Some people sear the meat in a cast iron skillet with some olive oil after it is cooked. I actually like to do it in the oven.
Turn your oven to 500 degrees and place the meat back in the oven, uncovered. Cook for 7-10 minutes to create a beautiful brown caramelized crust.
Then remove the meat and slice.
Prime Rib Temperature Doneness:
The temperature reading should always be taken from the center of the meat. You want to make sure to use an instant read thermometer not a leave-in thermometer since they can give you inaccurate readings.
Make sure the thermometer is in the center of the meat, being careful not to hit the bone.
Rare: 120-125 F
Medium Rare: 130-135 F
Medium: 135-140 F
What to serve with this recipe:
This complete menu is the perfect way to serve prime rib. It’s festive and fun and makes for a delicious well rounded dinner.
How to make the best prime rib recipe (step by step):
The Best Prime Rib Recipe:
- 5 Rib, Bone In Prime Rib
- 2 Tablespoons Kosher Salt
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons Fresh Thyme, Chopped Fine
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons Fresh Rosemary, Chopped Fine
- 1 Teaspoon Fresh Cracked Pepper
- 1/2 Cup Butter
- 1 tablespoon horseradish
- 1 cup sour cream
1. 24-48 hours in advance combine the salt, thyme, rosemary and pepper into a small bowl. Place the prime rib on a wire rack on top of a cookie sheet and coat the meat on all sides with the salt mixture. Place in the fridge, uncovered for a minimum of 8 hours and up to 48 hours.
2. When you are ready to make the prime rib, leave it out at room temperature for 1 hour.
3. Preheat the oven to 225 degrees F.
4. Place the rib on a v-rack in a roasting pan and then top with sliced butter.
5. Cook the prime rib until the internal temperature reaches 120 F (will take around 3 hours for this size roast or 18 minutes per pound).
6. Remove the roast from the oven and tent with foil. Allow to rest for at least 30 minutes.
7. 30 minutes before serving turn the oven to 500 degrees F.
8. 15 minutes before serving remove the foil and place the roast back in the oven for 7-10 minutes to brown to crust. (Make sure the roast is in the middle to lower racks to prevent burning.
9. Let rest for 10 minutes and then carve.
10. To make the horseradish cream sauce combine the horseradish and the sour cream.
11. Serve with horseradish cream sauce.
Start taking the internal temperature around 2.5 hours. Don't forget that the temperature will rise another 5 degrees after you take it out of the oven and let rest. So make sure to take it out in when it reaches 5 degrees below your desired doneness.
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