This Prime Rib Recipe with Garlic Herb Butter is the perfect holiday meal that will “wow” friends and guests. It’s easy to make with a few simple tips.
For special occasions like Christmas, it’s fun to serve the best. That’s when we cook this prime rib roast recipe.
We know that cooking prime rib may seem intimidating, especially since its an expensive cut of meat and you don’t want to ruin it. However, this easy prime rib recipe uses pantry ingredients and is really simple. Anyone can be successful with this recipe and a few cooking tips!
Another reason this recipe is near-and-dear to us is because it’s the first recipe we ever tried from one of the short, mesmerizing Tasty food video. Although we’ve made the recipe exactly as they’ve indicated, in the recipe below, you’ll see we modify the cooking process to guarantee the meat is cooked to our desired doneness. However, just as their video suggests, the recipe is very easy to make and your guests will give you rave accolades. Here’s the video that capitvated us:
In this post, we’ve included the original recipe video, but also some of our own photos. Since we’ve made this several times, you’ll notice different roasting pans being used — don’t let that confuse you!
Before we get to the recipe, let’s cover some basics about Prime Rib
What is a Prime Rib Roast?
Prime Rib Roast is a cut of meat also known as the Prime Rib, Ribeye Roast, Holiday Roast, Rib Roast, or Standing Rib Roast. It’s the king of roasts due to its size and marbling. It can be found with both boneless and bone-in options.
What Section of Beef Does the Rib Come From?
Prime Rib comes from the primal rib section of beef. The prime rib comes from the best part of the animal’s rib, between rib bones seven and 11. This area has a very thick cap of marble. This section of beef is known for its beefy flavor that everyone loves. It’s well-marbled throughout the meat, which is why it’s so rich, juice and tender.
The rib primal contains several other popular cuts of beef too — rib steak, ribeye steak, and prime rib roast (also known as standing rib roast or rib roast). This rib primal is the smallest primal section and it is most often cut into steaks.
How Much Prime Rib Roast to Buy?
The general rule of thumb is 1 pound of prime rib per person. A bone-in standing rib roast will feed about 2 people per bone.
Another thing to consider is how many side dishes you plan to serve. If you’re making this prime rib roast for the holidays, and have lots of other food, you could plan on ½ – ¾ pound prime rib per person.
Bone-in or Boneless Prime Rib Roast?
You can buy prime rib as bone-in or boneless prime rib roast. We’ve cooked both, and can’t really tell a difference. At our house, we typically lean toward boneless prime rib.
If you buy bone-in, the butcher can cut the bone off and tie it to the roast for you. This way, you can cook the bones with the meat, but you can easily remove them before carving the roast.
If you cook a boneless prime rib, you will need to cook it on a rack (like this one).
Is Prime Rib Prime Grade Beef?
As you know, the USDA grades beef in three major categories — Prime, Choice and Select. Don’t let the name “Prime Rib” confuse you. Just because the label says “Prime Rib” doesn’t mean your getting USDA Prime beef, it refers to the cut of beef, not the quality. Prime Rib can come in Prime or Choice cuts. Learn more about meat grades here.
If you want to make sure you have USDA Prime beef, be sure to ask about the grading of the beef before you purchase. Typically, grocery stores only carry Choice Prime Rib, so if you want Prime graded beef, plan to order ahead and go to a butcher shop.
How Long to Cook Prime Rib?
Cooking times for prime rib depends on how rare (or well-done) you want your meat. When we cook it, our end goal is to get a delicious crust on the outside with a pink medium-rare on the inside.
Start by cooking your prime rib at 500°F for 15 minutes and then lower the oven temperature to 325° F and cook until your desired temperature. Keep in mind that all ovens are different, but typically, this means you will cook for 10-12 min per pound for rare prime rib, or 13-14 min per pound for medium rare prime rib, or 14-15 min per pound for medium well prime rib.
Please note, our cooking process in the recipe is slightly different than the Tasty video recommends. We’ve made it exactly as they’ve indicated before, but with our method and a thermometer, we’re sure to always get our desired doneness.
Tips for the Perfect Prime Rib with Garlic Butter
- Prepare meat: Remove the beef roast from refrigerator about 1-2 hours before cooking. Sprinkle it with salt all over and let it sit, loosely wrapped in plastic wrap or butcher paper. Roasts should be brought close to room temperature before they go into the oven to ensure more even cooking.
- Prepare rub: Combine the kosher salt, black pepper, fresh thyme, rosemary, and minced garlic cloves in a small bowl. Pat the roast with paper towels so that it’s dry. Then, spoon seasoning over prime rib and rub it all over the outside of the roast. Place a bone-in roast with the bones down, in a cast iron, roasting, or other oven safe pan. Place a boneless rib roast on top of a rack, and then in your pan. Be sure it is fat side up.
- Don’t overcook! Use a meat thermometer! The most important piece of advice we can give you when cooking a prime rib roast is to use a good meat thermometer! You will have to go by the temperature, not the time when cooking this roast because the time will depend on many variables, like the size of the prime rib and your oven.
- Remember carryover cooking! Always allow for carryover cooking. Watch the thermometer, and when the internal temperature reaches within 10 degrees of the target, it’s time to take it off the heat. The temperature will rise an additional 5-7° degrees as it rests after being removed from the oven.
- Let it rest. Always, always, always allow time for beef to rest. Once it’s cooked, be sure to allow it to rest, tented by aluminum foil for 10-15 minutes before slicing. This will ensure the juices have a chance to settle before cutting into the roast. If you cut the meat too soon, the juices will run out and you will be left with a chewy prime rib roast.
- Serve. Always slice thin, across the grain with slices 1/2-3/4 inch. Cutting the beef this way will break down and shorten the muscle fibers for more tender beef.
#1 Piece of Advice for Cooking Prime Rib Roast
The most important piece of advice we can give you when cooking a prime rib roast is to use a good meat thermometer! You will have to go by the temperature, not the time when cooking this roast because the time will depend on many variables, like the size of the prime rib and your oven.
We use this Chef Alarm by Thermoworks to ensure our prime rib is cooked to perfection. It tells us exactly what the temperature of the meat is without having to open the oven door. If you don’t have an oven-safe thermometer, you can also use a good instant read thermometer.
Check the roast about 1-hour before you think it should be done. For example, with a 10 pound roast, expect 2 hours of total cooking time for rare (15 minutes at 500° and 1 3/4 hours at 325°)
In addition to a thermometer, we’ve also found this chart very helpful.
When Ordering Beef from Your Farm, Do I Get a Prime Rib Roast?
This rib primal is the smallest primal section and it is most often cut into steaks.
If you buy a whole beef from our farm, it can be cut as a rib roast. If you buy a quarter or half beef from us, this section is cut into Rib-Eye steaks.
Prime Rib with Garlic Herb Butter Recipe:
Prime Rib With Garlic Herb Butter
- 5-7 pound prime rib roast boneless or bone-in work for this recipe. We prefer boneless, but that's a personal preference.
- 1 cup butter softened
- 7 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 1 tablespoon pepper
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups beef stock
- Remove your prime rib from the refrigerator 1-2 hours before cooking. Sprinkle it with salt all over and let it sit, loosely wrapped in plastic wrap or butcher paper. Roasts should be brought close to room temperature before they go into the oven to ensure more even cooking.
- Preheat oven to 500°F/260°C.
- Mix together the butter, garlic, herbs, salt, and pepper in a bowl until evenly combined.
- Pat the roast dry with paper towels. Then rub the entire outside of the prime rib with the herb butter mixture. Place roast fat side up in pan. A bone-in roast will have the bones down (the bones act as a rack), and a boneless roast should go on a rack.Insert an ovenproof meat thermometer into the thickest part of the roast, making sure that the thermometer isn't touching a bone.
- Bake prime rib at 500° for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 325° and continue baking until desired doneness: Rare: cook until thermometer reaches 120°F (about 10-12 min/pound)Medium rare: Cook until thermometer reaches 130°F (about 13-14 min/pound)Medium: Cook until thermometer reaches 140°F (about 14-15 min/pound)Medium well – Cook until thermometer reaches 150°FBe sure to go by temperature, not time, as the cooking time will depend on many variables like the size of your prime rib, your oven, how chilled the roast is when it goes in the oven, a flatter roast vs. thinner roast, etc. We can't emphasize this enough, use your meat thermometer and rely on it for the desired doneness!If you have a remote thermometer, it can tell you when the roast has reached the desired doneness. If you don't, check the roast about 1-hour before you think it should be done. For example, with a 10 pound roast, expect 2 hours of total cooking time for rare (15 minutes at 500° and 1 3/4 hours at 325°)
- Once the roast has reached the temperature you want, remove it from the oven and place it on a carving board. Cover it with foil and let it rest for 15 to 30 minutes before carving. The internal temperature of the roast will continue to rise while the roast is resting.
To Make the Gravy
- Remove roast from pan. Pour fat from the roasting pan. Then, pour the drippings from the pan into a saucepan.
- Add the flour, whisking until there are no lumps, then add the beef stock, stirring and bringing the sauce to a boil.
- Remove from heat and strain the sauce into a gravy dish.
- Carve the roast into thick slices, 3/4 inch. Serve with the sauce as gravy.
One More Thing!
Do you want to learn more about beef? Join our weekly e-newsletter where we share farm happenings, recipes and beef availability. Sign-up and get a cheat sheet with 9-must-ask questions before buying beef directly from a farmer. Or, we have an entire ebook about beef that goes through purchasing and preparing beef from a cattle farmers perspective.
Here are a few other links you may like:
- Easy Oven Beef Brisket Recipe
- Garlic Roast Beef
- 10 Best Beef Rubs
- How to choose the best cut of steak (Top 4 cuts)
- What everybody ought to know about beef cuts
- Buying a Cow. How Much Beef Is It?
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. All opinions are our own and we only recommend products that we truly believe in.
We participate in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. See our disclosure policy for more details.