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This garlic-crusted Prime Rib Recipe is juicy, melt-in-your-mouth tender, and full of flavor. It is the star of the table for any holiday meal or special occasion dinner. This delicious Prime Rib is simply seasoned and cooked to tender perfection.

Below you will see easy step-by-step instructions showing you how to trim, tie, and perfectly cook a standing rib roast. Although you can get the roast already cut and tied for you at your local grocery store or butcher to make this even easier.

Still- everyone needs a tried and true go-to recipe for Prime Rib Roast in their recipe box!

Prime rib on a plate with fresh green beans and mashed potatoes with au jus being drizzled over the meat.

This classic roast is elegant, oh-so-tasty, and one of my favorite holiday meals! It’s perfect for impressing guests for Christmas dinner, New Year’s Eve, Easter, or really any special occasion.

The center comes out rosy pink (unless you want it cooked another way) and the outside is crusted with salt, pepper, and garlic! Sheer perfection!

People often think cooking Prime Rib is difficult but really that is far from the truth. Although I understand the hesitation, this cut of meat is expensive (it’s like an investment), you are usually preparing it for guests or a crowd (no pressure, right), and you really don’t want to mess it up!

So let’s talk about Prime Rib and how to be successful in making one each and every time. It’s really a breeze, y’all!

What is Prime Rib?

A “Prime Rib Roast” is also known as a rib roast or “standing rib roast“. You can find it in both bone-in and boneless options. So what cut of meat is a prime rib? It is a cut that is taken from the back of the upper ribs (rib primal) of the cow. It’s the same cut where ribeye steaks come from and gives you a rich, beefy flavor. The cut has generous marbling giving you that tender buttery texture we love.

Ingredient Notes

  • Standing Rib Roast / Prime Rib: The shining star of the table. An amazingly tender cut of beef!
  • Salt & Pepper: Simple seasonings as there is some much flavoring in the roast. I like kosher salt and of course black pepper.
  • Fresh Cloves of Garlic: I prefer to roughly mince the garlic with a knife, rather than use a press or the pre-minced garlic you buy. You are starting the roast at a high temperature and if it is too finely minced you may tend to burn the garlic.
Ingredients needed to make the best prime rib recipe.

Variations and Substitutions

  • Herb-Crusted Prime Rib: If you prefer herbs go ahead and add them when you rub in the salt, pepper, and garlic. You can also use about 3 tablespoons of olive oil or softened butter and stir in the spices and herbs and coat the roast with the herb mixture.
  • Spice Rub: I stick to the basics but if you have a favorite steak seasoning blend it could also be used on a prime rib or standing rib roasts.

How To Cook Prime Rib or Standing Rib Roast

Be sure to see the recipe card below for exact ingredients and full recipe instructions!

Step 1 | Salt Roast & Let it Come to Room Temperature

Remove your prime rib from the refrigerator at least 3 hours before cooking. Season it on all sides with salt about 2 teaspoons (or to taste) and cover it loosely with plastic wrap as it comes to room temperature. Prime rib roast will cook better and more evenly when it’s at room temperature.

If using a boneless roast, I suggest you place a roasting rack inside the pan.

Step 2 | Prepare the Oven

When you are ready to cook the prime rib, lower/adjust your oven rack so the meat will cook in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 500°F (or the highest temperature your oven will reach if it won’t go up to 500°F).

Step 3 | How to Pre-Cut & Tie Rib Bone in Rib

If needed, I wanted to share instructions on how to do this. (This is usually done by the butcher): 

Pre-cutting away the bones is definitely optional but does make it easier to carve the roast. You will remove the bones and then re-attach them with kitchen string to keep all of the buttery flavor and juiciness of this beautiful cut of beef.

Bones being cut away from prime rib roast.

Using a sharp knife, carefully cut away the bones by running your knife just above the rib bones. Fold or place the roast back down over the bones.

Tie standing rib roast to rbones.

Then tightly wrap with kitchen string around the bones in about 1-inch intervals then secure the tying tightly. 

Remember a butcher can cut this away and tie it for you (usually free of charge). During the holiday seasons, you will often find them already prepped like this in your grocery stores.

This allows the roast to cook standing on the rib bones (a lot of flavor in those bones). Again, making it much easier to carve the roast after cooking.

Step 4 | Pat Dry, Season, & Prep Prime Rib:

Pat the roast with paper towels. Adding a little salt while it comes to room temperature will draw a little moisture out.

Sprinkle on salt, pepper, and minced garlic on top. I use ½ tablespoon each of salt and pepper and 6 cloves of garlic on a 7-pound roast. You can adjust it according to your taste and the size of the roast.

Prime rib being seasoning on the side with salt, pepper, and roughly mined garlic.

Being sure to cover all the sides of the roast.

A side picture of a seasoning raw prime rib roast in a cast iron skillet.

Place bone-in roast with the bone side down (fat side up) inside a roasting pan or a cast iron pan.

 If using a boneless roast, don’t forget to place it on a roasting rack inside the pan.

Step 5 | Roast the Prime Rib

A seasoned standing rib roast bone side down in a large cast iron pan.

You can use any pan that can withstand high temperatures (500°F) and one that will fit the size roast you have. Just be sure there is room around the roast for air to circulate.

A cooked prime rib in a pan.

First, bake prime rib at high heat. Then reduce the oven temperature (no need to remove the roast) and continue baking until the desired doneness is reached:

Prime Rib Cooking Time and Temperatures

How long you cook the prime rib will depend on how rare you prefer your meat.

Using an oven-safe (leave-in) meat thermometer will ensure the most accurate cooking. You can also test it with an instant-read thermometer if that is all you have on hand. BUT I highly suggest investing in an oven-safe one. They are fairly inexpensive and will insure your best-desired results.

Also, I like to keep an eye on the roast and check on the temperature. Just take a look at the thermometer a few times during the cook to be sure to not overcook this glorious cut of beef.

COOKING TIME for Prime Rib

Start by cooking the prime rib in a pre-heated 500°F oven for 15 minutes and then lower your oven temperature to 325° and continue baking for:

  • 10-12 minutes per pound for rare
  • 13-14 minutes per pound for medium-rare
  • 14-15 minutes for medium
  • 16-17 for medium-well

THERMOMETER TEMPERATURE REGISTERS

  • 115-120°F for rare – bright red in the middle
  • 125-130°F for medium rare – warm red in the middle with slight pink around the edges
  • 135-140°F for medium-warm pink through
  • 145-150°F for medium well – slightly pink at the center
  • 160°F for well done – little to no pink throughout. The meat will be on the dryer side.

REMEMBER: As the prime rib roast rests, the internal temperature will rise 5 to 10 degrees

Internal temperature should reach at least 125F to ensure it’s safe to eat.

Step 5 | Let it Rest, Carve, and Serve

Once out of the oven, let the roast sit for 30 minutes before serving. If you don’t let the roast rest you will lose all those delicious juices and the meat can become somewhat chewy.

A perfectly cooked prime rib resting on a cutting board.

Cut away the kitchen strings that were securing the ribs to the roast. Then remove the bones.

A sliced standing rib roast on a wood cutting board.

Next, carve by slicing against the grain at about ½ to ¾ inch thickness (or desired thickness). Some restaurants will serve a 1-inch thick slice, but I prefer a slightly thinner slice.

Tips

  • Use a meat thermometer: Using a meat thermometer is essential to ensure it cooks to your perfect doneness. Keep in mind not all ovens will cook the same.
  • Let it sit out before cooking: All roasts or cuts will cook a little differently, to begin with. Having the meat at room temperature will help it cook more evenly. Be sure to plan for this in your meal prep time.
  • Don’t overcook: The meat will continue to cook once it’s taken out of the oven (you will see the thermometer will continue to rise 5-10 degrees) so remove it from the oven 5-10 degrees before it reaches your optimal temperature. Keep in mind the shape of the roast can also factor in on cook time. This again is why I suggest a thermometer.
  • Cut the meat across the grain: You will be looking at the grain or lines in the beef and slicing them perpendicular to them. Cutting along the grain will make the meat chewier and tougher to eat.
  • Carve one slice of roast per guest and leave the rest of the roast intact until needed more servings. This helps retain its flavorful juices and will keep the roast warmer.

Recipe FAQ’s

How many people does a prime rib roast serve?

A full rack of prime beef is a 7-rib roast, this will serve about 14 to 16 people.

Most butchers will say that each rib will typically feed about 2 people, I tend to agree. I like to serve a generous portion or count on some leftovers. But you can stretch it a little further than that (more like 3 people), especially if you are serving several sides, appetizers, and desserts.

Also, 1 pound per person is a good rule of thumb to follow especially when using a boneless rib roast. Still keep in mind how many sides you are serving as well. If you have a lot of other dishes, you may go with ¾ pound per person.

Should I use bone-in or boneless Prime Rib?

I really prefer a bone-in prime rib. They are tender and full of buttery flavor when cooked with the bone in. Not to mention you have a built-in cooking rack. Some people feel a little intimated by the thought of cutting the roast with a bone in it. The butcher will typically cut away the bone and then attach it with kitchen string for you for no extra charge. This is the best of both worlds. And during the holidays I find you can find them already ready for you this way and if not just ask for one.

If you are making a boneless one, just look for that nice fat marbling so that your prime rib will be nice and tender.

What Grade of Meat is Prime Rib?

USDA Prime or Choice? The USDA Grading tells you the tenderness and juiciness of the cut of meat you are purchasing. Typically in most grocery stores, you will find a choice cut of meat. While, if you want to really splurge you can as for a Prime Grade, which is given to the best cuts of beef. Just realize there is a significant price difference between the two cuts.

An overhead image of the prime rib half sliced on a cutting board.

What to Serve with Prime Rib?

Looking for a classic holiday Prime Rib Menu everyone is sure to love?

For a potato dish, I have you covered from Creamy Mashed Potatoes, Loaded Mashed Potatoe Casserole, to Au Gratin Potatoes. Of course, you can also do a simple baked potato with this roast.

For veggies, you can keep it simple with steamed green beans or go all out with southern-style green beans.

Round it out with a green salad and rolls and of course, don’t forget dessert! A classic or Biscoff cheesecake or a slice of easy coconut cream pie works nicely. For all you chocolate lovers, try triple chocolate mousse cake or my family’s favorite southern red velvet cake.

A delicious standing rib roast dinner set on a wooden table with a bowl of au jus in the background.

Storage

Storage: Cover with foil or plastic wrap or place in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for 3 days.

Freeze:

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A sliced prime rib garnished with rosemary on a cutting board with a bowl of creamy mashed potatoes in the background.
Recipe
4.82 from 22 votes

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Prime Rib Recipe

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Bring to Room Temperature Before Cooking: 3 hours
Total Time: 5 hours 35 minutes
Servings: 10 servings
Author: Nikki Lee
This garlic-crusted Prime Rib Recipe is juicy, melt-in-your-mouth tender, and full of flavor. It is the star of the table for any holiday meal or special occasion dinner. This delicious Prime Rib is simply seasoned and cooked to tender perfection. Everyone needs a tried and true go-to Prime Rib Recipe!
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Ingredients 

  • 1 7-10 pound Standing Rib Roast / Prime Rib (bone-in), 3 to 7 ribs (estimate about 2 people per rib), bones cut away and tie to roast with kitchen string. I get mine already prepped by the butcher. Instructions are below for how to do this and how to make a boneless one.
  • ½ tablespoon kosher salt plus 2 tablespoons , (or to taste)
  • ½ tablespoon coarse black pepper, (or to taste)
  • 6-8 cloves fresh garlic, roughly minced, (or to taste)

Instructions

  • Salt Roast & Let Come to Room Temp: Remove your prime rib from the refrigerator 3 hours before cooking. Season it on all sides with salt (2 teaspoons or to taste) and cover it loosely with plastic wrap as it comes to room temperature. Prime rib roast will cook better and more evenly when it’s at room temperature.
    If using a boneless roast, place a roasting rack inside the pan.
  • Prep- Oven: When you are ready to cook the prime rib, lower/adjust your oven rack so the meat will cook in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 500°F.
  • Tie Rib Bone in Rib (If not done by butcher): If the ribs are not cut away from the roast go ahead and do so and then tie them to the roast with kitchen string. This allows the roast to cook standing on the rib bones (flavor), while making it easier to carve the roast after cooking.
  • Season & Prep Prime Rib: Pat the roast with paper towels. Spoon seasoning over it, rubbing it on all sides.  Place bone-in roast with the bone side down (fat side up) inside a roasting pan or a cast iron pan (any pan that can withstand 500° temperatures). If using a boneless roast, place it on a roasting rack inside the pan.
  • Brown Roast at High Temperature & Lower Temp to Finish Roasting Prime Rib: Bake prime rib at 500° for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 325° and continue baking until the desired doneness is reached:
    Rare: cook until thermometer reaches 120 degrees F (about 10-12 min/pound)
    Medium rare: Cook until thermometer reaches 130 degrees F (about 13-14 min/pound)
    Medium: Cook until thermometer reaches 140 degrees F (about 14-15 min/pound)
    Medium well: Cook until thermometer reaches 150 degrees F (about 16-17 min/pound)
    Note: The internal temperature will continue to rise 5-10 degrees when it comes out of the oven (while resting), so do not over bake.
  • Let Roast Rest: Remove the prime rib from the oven, transfer to a cutting board, and loosely tent it with foil. Allow it to rest for 30 minutes before carving.
  • Slice & Serve: Cut away the kitchen strings that were securing the ribs to the roast. Remove the bones. Carve by slicing against the grain at about ½ to 3/4 inch thickness (or desired thickness).
    Serve with Au Jus, Gravy, (recipes below) or whipped horseradish, if desired.

Notes

*Remember COOK TIME will VARY based on roast size and desired doneness. See the above chart.
  • Use a meat thermometer: Using a meat thermometer is essential to ensure it cooks to your perfect doneness. Keep in mind not all ovens will cook the same.
  • Let it sit out before cooking: All roasts or cuts will cook a little differently to begin with. Having the meat at room temperature will help it cook more evenly. Be sure to plan for this in your meal prep time.
  • Don’t overcook: The meat will continue to cook once it’s taken out of the oven (you will see the thermometer will continue to rise 5-10 degrees) so remove it from the oven 5-10 degrees before it reaches your optimal temperature. Keep in mind the shape of the roast can also factor in on cook time. This again is why I suggest a thermometer.
  • Cut the meat across the grain: You will be looking at the grain or lines in the beef and slicing them perpendicular to them. Cutting along the grain will make the meat chewier and tougher to eat.
  • Carve one slice of roast per guest and leave the rest of the roast intact until needed more servings. This helps retain its flavorful juices and will keep the roast warmer.
To Make Au Jus:
  1. Place the roasting pan on the stovetop over medium-high heat. Remove excess fat. Leave about 1 ½ cups of drippings and juices from the roast in the pan. Stir in 2-3 teaspoons Worcestershire (or to taste) sauce with ½ cup red wine, scraping up bits (drippings) from the bottom.
  2. Simmer for about 4 minutes, and reduce to desired consistency.Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
  3. Spoon off any excess fat from the top or pour through a fine mesh sieve if desired and serve. 
 
To Make a Gravy:
  1. Remove the roast from the pan. Remove excess fat. Leave about ¼ cup of drippings and juices from the roast in the pan.
  2. Place the pan on the stovetop (or pour it into a stovetop-safe pan) over medium-high heat. Use a wooden spatula to scrape or loosen the drippings from the bottom of the pan.
  3. When the drippings are bubbly and hot, sprinkle in ¼ cup of all-purpose flour over the fat and drippings.  With a whisk stir to incorporate the flour into the fat drippings. Let the flour cook for 1-2 minutes to slightly brown and cook the flour.
  4. Slowly add in 3-4 cups of milk or beef stock (or a combination) while whisking together, breaking up any lumps that may form. Turn it down to a simmer and slowly cook until thickens. 
  5. Salt and Pepper or add desired herbs to flavor. 
This makes about 2 cups of gravy. This can be easily adjusted for desired serving amounts.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1serving Calories: 950kcal (48%) Carbohydrates: 1g Protein: 43g (86%) Fat: 84g (129%) Saturated Fat: 35g (219%) Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g Monounsaturated Fat: 37g Cholesterol: 192mg (64%) Sodium: 491mg (21%) Potassium: 713mg (20%) Fiber: 0.1g Sugar: 0.02g Vitamin A: 2IU Vitamin C: 1mg (1%) Calcium: 29mg (3%) Iron: 5mg (28%)

Nutritional Disclaimer

Soulfully Made is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is only an estimate. We recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator if you need to verify any information.

©️Soulfully Made

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12 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Love your easy, quick and mouth melting delicious recipe. Juicy and tender, the perfect meal for my loved ones.

  2. 5 stars
    I have family members who love prime rib, and after reading through your post and recipe I feel like I could prepare and cook prime rib for a holiday or other large family gathering. Thanks for all the tips!

  3. 5 stars
    This prime rib looks incredible! I love all the garlic and how easy it is to make. Looking forward to trying this elegant and delicious recipe.