This classic bone-in Prime Rib recipe will show you how to cook a beef roast to perfection! Tender and juicy prime rib is the quintessential special occasion recipe, and the flavorful, garlicky crust and the rich au jus sauce take it over the top!
Prime Rib, or a standing rib roast, is the ultimate centerpiece for a Holiday feast. In this recipe, its rich flavors are elevated with a classic rub of garlic, thyme, and rosemary, creating a tender crust that’s irresistible. To complete the dish, a simple au jus offers a perfect dip, enhancing each juicy slice of this delicious cut. It’s a tasty combination that promises to wow your guests with every bite.
What Is Prime Rib?
Prime Rib is a classic roast beef usually cooked with bone-in and served with a pan-sauce made from its natural juices. Prime rib is distinguished by its excellent marbling, which contributes to the cut’s tenderness, juiciness, and rich flavor when cooked. In many Western cultures, particularly in the United States and Canada, a roast such as prime rib is a traditional choice for holiday feasts, especially Christmas.
Prime Rib Ingredients
This high-quality cut of meat requires just a basic seasoning of salt and pepper. However, we will enhance it with a handful of garlic cloves and some fresh herbs to create a flavorful crust.
- Standing Rib Roast (3 to 4 ribs)
- Kosher salt & pepper to season the meat.
- Olive oil will help to create a paste with the herbs and garlic for the rub
- Fresh rosemary leaves to blend with the oil and other seasonings.
- Fresh thyme leaves will add a slightly minty and lemony taste to the herb rub.
- Garlic cloves for the herb rub to infuse the meat with a rich, aromatic garlic flavor.
- Worcestershire sauce adds a tangy depth to the au jus (the savory sauce served with the meat).
- Red wine will be used to deglaze the pan and form the base of the sauce.
- Beef broth for the au jus sauce.
What Size Prime Rib Do I Need?
A commonly accepted guideline is to estimate about 2 people for every rib. I personally think that one rib is enough for 3 people, especially when served with side dishes. Below is a more practical suggestion based on serving sizes:
- 3 bone-in rib roast feeds between 6 to 7 people.
- 4 bone-in rib roast feeds between 8 to 10 people.
- 7 bone-in rib roast feeds between 12 to 14 people.
How To Cook Prime Rib
- Room Temp: First, you should let the beef sit at room temperature for 1 to 2 hours before roasting.
- Season: To make the rub, add olive oil, rosemary, thyme, and garlic to a blender and process until well combined. Then, pat dry the roast with paper towels, season it with salt and pepper, and then rub in the prepared garlic mixture.
- Roast: Pop it in a 450˚F oven, uncovered, and cook for 30 minutes; then, lower the heat to 350˚F and continue to cook until done. When done, transfer the roast to a cutting board and let it rest for 20 minutes before carving.
- Meanwhile, make the Au Jus: Strain the juices from the roasting pan through a mesh sieve into a measuring cup, discarding the solids. Return the strained juices to the roasting pan and place it over medium heat on the stovetop. Whisk in Worcestershire sauce and red wine, scraping up the browned bits for extra flavor, and bring to a boil for 2 minutes. Mix in the beef broth and continue to cook for 5 minutes until the sauce is slightly reduced and heated through.
- Serve the prime rib with the prepared au jus on the side for drizzling or dipping.
How Long To Cook Prime Rib
The rule of thumb is to cook the roast for 15 to 20 minutes per pound, however, start looking at the thermometer around the 50-minute mark after you’ve lowered the heat. Cooking time depends on the size of the meat. My recommendation is to remove it from the oven when the internal temperature registers at 115˚F to 120˚F, at the most. The roast will continue to cook while it cools.
- For Rare, remove from oven when internal temperature reaches 110˚F.
- For Medium-Rare, remove from oven when internal temperature reaches 115˚F.
- For Medium, remove from oven when internal temperature reaches 120˚F.
- For Medium-Well, remove from oven when internal temperature reaches 130˚F.
Anything above these temperatures will result in a chewy, tough, and flavorless prime rib. The longer you cook a steak, the muscle fibers get firm and all the juices evaporate.
- Use A Meat Thermometer: A reliable method to ensure your prime rib is cooked to perfection is by using a thermometer. Opt for a leave-in probe thermometer for continuous monitoring or an instant-read thermometer for periodic checks. Keep in mind that individual cuts and oven temperatures vary, so to prevent mishaps with such a pricey cut of beef, investing in a high-quality tool like a Wireless Smart Meat Thermometer may be worthwhile.
- Avoid Overcooking: The prime rib’s internal temperature will rise an additional 5 to 10 degrees after you take it out of the oven due to residual heat. To prevent overcooking, it’s better to remove it slightly earlier. If it’s underdone, you can always return it to the oven for a bit more cooking.
- Importance of Resting: Allowing the meat to rest after roasting is crucial. This pause gives the juices time to redistribute, ensuring your prime rib is juicy and tender.
- Slice against the grain: For a tender and juicy bite, also observe the direction of the muscle fibers and slice across them, not parallel. Slicing perpendicular to the grain shortens the muscle fibers, enhancing tenderness, while slicing parallel can leave you with stringy, chewy bites.
Side Dish Suggestions
- Skillet Cornbread
- Oven Roasted Vegetables
- Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon
- Crispy Smashed Potatoes
- Parmesan Crusted Potatoes
How To Store And Reheat Leftovers
- Store leftovers in an airtight container and keep refrigerated for up to 4 days or freeze for up to 1 month. I advise cutting it up into steaks beforehand so it’s easier to handle and reheat.
- Reheating prime rib in the oven is the best way to go. Preheat oven to 400˚F; place the roast in a roasting pan with about a cup of beef broth, and cook for 15 minutes or until heated through.
More Beef Recipes
- Rosemary Garlic Roast Beef
- Roast Beef Tenderloin
- Slow Cooker Balsamic Pot Roast
- Instant Pot Mississippi Pot Roast
Prime Rib Recipe
- one standing rib roast with 3 to 4 ribs, If hosting a large dinner party, you can also get a standing rib roast with 7 ribs – estimate about 2 to 3 people per rib
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt, or to taste
- 2 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper, or to taste
- ¼ cup olive oil
- fresh rosemary leaves from 2 sprigs
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 6 to 8 cloves garlic
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- ½ cup red wine
- 1 cup reduced sodium beef broth
- Take the roast out of the fridge 1 to 2 hours before cooking.
- Preheat oven to 450˚F.
- Pat dry the roast with paper towels and generously season with salt and pepper. Place the roast in a roasting pan and set aside.
- Add olive oil, rosemary leaves, thyme leaves, and garlic cloves to a food processor or blender; process until chopped up and well combined.
- Rub the prepared garlic mixture all around the roast.
- Position the roast in the roasting pan, bone-side down.
- Cook, uncovered, for 30 minutes.
- Reduce heat down to 350˚F and continue to cook until cooked to the desired doneness.
- Transfer the roast to a cutting board and let it rest for 20 minutes before cutting.
- Take the pan juices and strain them through a mesh sieve into a large measuring cup. Discard the bits in the mesh sieve, and pour the strained liquid back into the roasting pan.
- Place the roasting pan over the stovetop burners and cook over medium heat.
- Whisk in the Worcestershire Sauce and wine; scrape up all the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes.
- Stir in the beef broth and continue to cook for 5 minutes or until slightly reduced and heated through.
- Serve the Prime Rib with Au Jus.
- Cooking Time: Estimate 15 to 20 minutes of cooking time per pound.
- Please use an Instant Read Meat Thermometer to check for doneness. Whatever you do, avoid overcooking this pricey cut of meat. When the internal temperature registers at 115˚F to 120˚F, pull it out and let it rest on a cutting board for at least 20 minutes.
- Cut against the grain: For a tender and juicy bite, observe the direction of the muscle fibers and slice across them, not parallel.
Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.