Perfect Prime Rib Recipe

Perfect Prime Rib Recipe – This prime rib recipe results in the best prime rib every time. Perfect for the holidays or special occasions. With step by step tips!

This prime rib recipe results in the perfect prime rib every time. Perfect for the holidays or special occasions. With step by step tips! //

Prime rib is one of those dishes that takes center stage no matter when you serve it. Rightfully so, too. Also referred to as standing rib roast, it is beautiful served throughout the holiday season, at parties, or for special occasions. Luckily, it couldn’t be much easier to prepare!

I have a few tips for making your prime rib absolutely perfect every single time.

Perfect Prime Rib Recipe

Prime Rib Recipe from

How to Cook the Best Prime Rib

How Do You Make Perfect Prime Rib


How to Buy Prime Rib

I prefer to buy a bone-in prime rib as the bones serve as a natural rack for the meat when baking, insulate the meat while cooking and allows for an even more tender prime rib.

A quick way to determine the size of the prime rib that you need to purchase is generally, you will have two servings per bone, depending on the thickness you plan to serve your prime rib. If serving as the main entree, generally a thicker cut is desired, if as part of a buffet, thinly carved pieces are usually fine.

Salt It for the Juiciest Prime Rib

About four to five days before you plan to cook your prime rib, you’ll want to salt it. The salt when left on the meat for an extended period (from about an hour to days), seeps into the meat and provides for better seasoned, juicy meat. This is a dry brining method for your prime rib.

If for some reason you aren’t able to salt it that far in advance, do so at least an hour prior to roasting. Anything shorter than an hour will work against you and result in a tougher exterior to your meat.

Wrap and Refrigerate to Lock in Flavors

Once you’ve salted your prime rib, wrap it tightly with plastic wrap. Then store in the refrigerator until an hour prior to cooking.



Bring to Room Temperature

Remove your prime rib from the refrigerator an hour prior to cooking, unwrap, and place, bone side down, on a roasting pan fitted with a roasting rack, and allow to reach room temperature. At this point, add any additional seasonings you want to use. I like to serve it pepper encrusted for extra flair.

Roast Your Prime Rib

Preheat your oven to 450º F for about 30 minutes. Then roast at 450º F for 15 minutes and then reduce to 325º until it reaches the desired internal temperature, usually about 11 – 12 minutes per pound.

Note that you’ll need to use an internal meat thermometer for prime rib cooked to the exact temperature you desire. Allow for carryover cooking, meaning you’ll want to remove from the oven about 2-4 degrees less than the temperature you desire. We prefer ours rare, at 120º F, so we remove from the oven at 118º F and tent with foil.

Allow to Rest Again Before Slicing

Allow it to rest about 20 minutes. This allows for the most tender juicy prime rib! Then move to the carving board for slicing.



Slice Your Prime Rib

At this point, you can remove the bones for serving and then slice as you serve or leave the bone in if serving very generous portions.

Serve Your Prime Rib at the Perfect Temperature

If your guests prefer a more well-done slice of beef, I normally have a rimmed roasting pan standing by to place the beef on and return to the oven for a few minutes to cook it to their desired temperature. That way, everyone is able to have their own version of perfect prime rib!

Save any Leftovers to Preserve Tenderness

If you have any remaining, (and that’s a major if!) you can easily save it for later serving. It is amazing with biscuits and a mustard or horsey sauce as an appetizer! You’ll be glad that you sliced your prime rib as you served it so that the meat is easier to reheat without losing any of the tenderness and juiciness you took such care to get!

My prime rib recipe is the centerpiece of my Make-Ahead Christmas Dinner Menu that I think you’ll love as well! 🙂

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5 from 1 vote

Perfect Prime Rib Recipe

Perfect Prime Rib Recipe - This prime rib recipe results in the perfect prime rib every time. With step by step tips for the best prime rib recipe!
Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time2 hrs
Resting Time20 mins
Total Time3 hrs
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: how to cook prime rib, perfect prime rib, prime rib, prime rib recipe, prime rib roast, prime rib roast recipe, the best prime rib
Calories: 340kcal
Author: Robyn Stone | Add a Pinch


  • 1 (3 - 4 bone) bone-in prime rib, about (10 - 10.5 pounds)
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper


  • Salt prime rib from one hour to up to five days prior to cooking and serving your prime rib. Once salted, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate until an hour prior to cooking.
  • An hour prior to cooking, remove prime rib from refrigerator, unwrap and place, bone side down, on a roasting pan fitted with a roasting rack and allow to reach room temperature. At this point add pepper or other seasonings, if using.
  • Preheat oven to 450º F. Then, roast your prime rib for 15 minutes and reduce to 325º F until your prime rib reaches the desired internal temperature, usually 11 - 12 minutes per pound, about 1 hour and 10 minutes. Using an internal meat thermometer, remove your prime rib from the oven about 2 - 4 degrees less than the desired serving final temperature you desire. The temperature of the prime rib will continue to rise due to carryover cooking. Tent prime rib with foil and allow to rest for 20 minutes.
  • Place on a carving board for slicing and serve.


Serving: 3ounces | Calories: 340kcal | Protein: 19g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 55mg | Potassium: 258mg

Robyn xo

Perfect Prime Rib Recipe - This prime rib recipe results in the perfect prime rib every time. Perfect for the holidays or special occasions. With step by step tips! //


From the Add a Pinch recipe archives. Originally published 2014.

77 comments on “Perfect Prime Rib Recipe”

  1. When roasting the prime rib do you do it with the lid on or off?

    • I roast it without a lid. I do move my oven rack down below the middle so that the top of the roast is not too close to the top of the oven. If you notice that it is getting too dark on the top as it roasts while still not being cooked through inside, you could tent it with foil as it finishes up.

  2. Great post, so full of good tips!

  3. Should I pre salt my prime rib if I’m going to rotissie it, rather than roast it?

  4. Been making prime rib for several years now. You have give good direction for a potentially daunting meat to roast! Linda

  5. How much do you salt the mea? Just curious.

  6. A trick I learned years ago working in restaurants, was if you need to cook up a serving of prime rib, hold it over a kettle of hot Au Jus or seasoned beef broth and ladle the hot liquid over the beef letting the excess run back into the kettle. After a few applications, the beef will cook up without drying out. But I try to talk people out of well-down prime rib. What a waste!

  7. I had a 5lb rib roast, and I followed your recipe. The roast sat out for 2 hours, and I followed your directions. I used my VERY expensive Therma Pen , and I’m done. I roast a 10 lb. standing rib every Christmas Eve, and I sweat bullets that it will turn out delicious. I’m done! It is FABULOUS!


  8. Excellent, thanks for putting this tutorial together, it really helps.

  9. that was a good question that Susan P asked. How much salt do you use, and do you rinse it off?

    • Hi Aisie,
      I’ve updated the recipe based on requests for it to serve 6 – 8 people (about a 10 – 10.5 pound bone-in roast). For that amount, I use about 1 tablespoon of Kosher salt. I do not rinse it off, it forms a crust on the prime rib. I hope you enjoy it!

  10. Fantastic recipe….THANKS for all the great tips! Pinned.

  11. Can you explain “pepper encrusted or coffee encrusted”?

    • I’m so sorry I missed your question earlier, Dianne. For my pepper encrusted, I mix together 1 1/2 tablespoons of crushed peppercorns, 3 cloves minced garlic, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil and press onto my prime rib and then bake as directed. I hope you enjoy it! xo

      • Thank you I was a little concerned about the higher temp in the beginning but that seals in the juices. Makes sense!

  12. When I cook my rib roast I cook it in a rotisserie that is enclosed and has oven settings. Would you cook it at the same temps; 450 and 325?

    • Hi Virginia,
      I would. We’ve even used our smoker and always use the same temps for our prime rib. The method of temperatures and cooking time per pound work for me everytime. I hope you enjoy it!

  13. Robyn,
    I love prime rib and you have so many great tips.

  14. Can you put on grill ?

    • Hi Sara,
      You can! We have used our smoker at times following the same temperatures and cooking times per pound with really good success! We love it! I hope you do!

  15. I’m am looking forward to serving this prime rib. At present my taste bubs are jumping and have not started Thank you.

  16. Hi Robyn!
    I recently discovered your website and I am thrilled! I picked up my prime rib yesterday and I am going to get started on this recipe today for my Christmas dinner. I CAN’T WAIT!!!

    I searched your website for a popover recipe but the dutch baby was it. Do you know of or have any suggestions? Maybe not a popover but what else might work for our dinner instead?


  17. Hi Robyn! I am looking forward to trying your recipe. I brought a 6 pound prime rib and used corse sea salt to salt it . is this ok ok do I need to wash it off and use kosher. Thanks

  18. I cook prime rib often and never have good luck with the timing. It always takes longer. Tonight I am cooking a 6 1/4 pound one. How long would you think it would take? Thank you.

  19. thanks for this recipe and carryover cooking reminder, very helpful!

  20. I made this last Christmas and it was a major hit! Thank you so much for the tips and the recipe. I seriously cannot wait for Christmas this year because I’ll definitely make this again.

  21. Can you go into detail regarding salting the meat 5 days prior to cooking? I have been making prime rib for years now every Christmas and I usually just rub the roast with an herb butter + kosher salt 2-3 hours before cooking. Do you think I should salt and add the herb better 5 days before or just salt and add the herb butter like I usually do. Thanks so much!

  22. Why salt 5 days ahead?

  23. Can you please give a recipe for preparing it as pepper encrusted? Thanks!

  24. I would be worried about leaving the meat in the fridge for 5 days… that safe?

    • Hi Jan,
      You’ll want to make sure that you purchase a prime rib with a sell by date from your butcher that would cover that date and then some. I hope you enjoy it! xo

  25. I’ve been making prime rib for our family Christmas Eve dinner for several years. Each year I try to get the latest and greatest recipe. This one sounds like a winner so I’m choosing add a pinch’s recipe for this year. Thank you!

    My favorite movie is White Christmas . I watch it every holiday season. Love Bing Crosby’s voice. I get goose bumps every time when he sings.. I’m such a sucker for all the old musicals!

  26. Favorite Christmas movie………without a doubt, hands down, “A Christmas Story”!!

  27. Oh Robyn, your prime rib looks heavenly! Thanks for sharing the recipe!

  28. My favorite Christmas movie is Eloise at Christmastime. My girls and I have watched it every Christmas for years.

  29. A Christmas Story

  30. White Christmas is to me the best Christmas movie! The wonderful finale with the barn doors opening, the tree, the snow and the wonderful red dresses. Such a nostalgic movie! Love it!

  31. My favorite Christmas movie is White Christmas!

  32. My favorite is White Christmas – love the sister act both with the sisters performing it and with the guys doing it! So many funny and poignant touches in it!

  33. White Christmas with Bing Crosby will forever be a favorite! It’s a classic and just makes you feel good . . .

  34. My very favorite is “Christmas Grace” If you haven’t seen it, give it a try!

  35. My favorite Christmas movie is “A Christmas Story”.

  36. This roast beef recipe seems like one to definitely try! I’d love to win the blender and your cookbook for my daughter (one of four!). She recently was involved in an accident and has a concussion. Though a new employee, the company she works for has been very understanding. She cannot work until she can again look at LCD screens. Her ‘on’ time is in the morning, and cannot be to demanding, until she recovers. I’ve been reading to her, and sometimes it’s from cookbooks. It’s inspiring both of us to try making some different dishes. This girl LOVES smoothies, so a blender would be awesome for her! My favorite Christmas movie has to be ‘White Christmas’. My family usually watches it together before Christmas, but the concussed daughter can only listen, not watch the screen. Next year will be better for her!

  37. my favorite Christmas movie is Prancer. Silly I know, but I love it.

  38. Our favorite Christmas movie is Christmas vacation.

  39. I always follow your baking recipes. Because of that, felt confident to try this for our gourmet group’s Christmas party. We had 12 people for dinner last night. We followed the recipe’s directions. Unfortunately, the meat wasn’t near done as we followed the instructions. It took 35 minutes longer for us, and it was barely medium rare. I was disappointed. Will raise the oven temp, if I do it again.

    • Hi Deb,

      So sorry your cooking time took a little longer. I don’t recommend raising the oven temps from that listed in the recipe as it will cook the exterior of the prime rib faster than it cooks the inside.

      How many pounds was your prime rib? I’m thinking since you say it served 12, that you must have had about a 15 – 15.75 pound bone-in prime rib roast. If so, at 11-12 minutes per pound, your roasting time would have needed to be about 204 minutes (including the 15 minutes at higher temp), or 3.4 hours.

      Was your prime rib at room temperature before you placed in the oven? If not, that would extend your cooking time as well.

      I’ve included the information from the post about the cooking times per pound (after allowing to reach room temperature). The keys to great prime rib are really the preparation beforehand, allowing to reach room temperature, preheating the oven to 450 for 30 minutes, then roasting at 450 for 15, reducing the oven temp and roasting for about 11-12 minutes per pound until it reaches desired internal temp and then the resting stage before carving. It can seem a bit much, but each of these steps are so important.

      Preheat your oven to 450º F for about 30 minutes. Then roast your prime rib at 450º F for 15 minutes and then reduce to 325º until it reaches the desired internal temperature, usually about 11 – 12 minutes per pound.

      Note that you’ll need to use an internal meat thermometer for prime rib cooked to the exact temperature you desire. Allow for carryover cooking, meaning you’ll want to remove your prime rib from the oven about 2-4 degrees less than the temperature you desire. We prefer our prime rib rare, at 120º F, so we remove from the oven at 118º F and tent with foil.

      Robyn xo

    • You must get a thermometer for meat! It will make your life much easier and you will not have to guess if it is the right temperature..WE do beef medium rate at 130-135. Always perfect. Good luck.

  40. Do you salt the sides of the prime rib too or just the top

    • Hi Bette,
      It may not be as easy to tell from the photos, but I rub the salt all over the prime rib except for the cut ends. I hope that helps! xo

  41. A little late, but, favorite Christmas movie is “One Magic Christmas”, and/or “Love Actually”….and then there is always “Elf”. Making your Prime Rib recipe tonight for my 97 year old father’s birthday….hoping it is fabulous!

  42. Hey im trying my first-time ever pirme rib but i have a electric stove i need to know how hot and long do i cook my 5lb roast please help😭

  43. Hi Robyn,
    My son wants us to deep fry our Prime Rub this year. We are a bit hesitant, what do yo think?
    Happy Holidays

  44. I have tried cooking a rib roast several times and it always comes out tough, any suggestions?

  45. Can’t wait to try this recipe for Christmas. What can you tell me about the salad in the picture? What yumminess is in it?

  46. This will be my FIRST try at this, so keep your fingers crossed for me! Making it for small gathering on Christmas, crazy huh?! It sure sounds good.

  47. I have a 10.47lb standing rib roast I’m cooking Christmas. I’m using an antique gas oven where the heat only comes from the bottom of the oven. There’s only 2 choices for rack positions. The lower rack position is very close to where the heat generates. I feel as though I need to roast with the rack in the higher position. I’m hoping this will work ok and the end result will be a delicious medium rare. If you think I should use lower level, please let me know. 

    • Hi Marsha,
      I’d suggest getting the roast as close to possible to the middle of the oven so that it won’t be too well done on the bottom or not done enough on the top. Even if you have to use a roasting pan with an insert to get the roast up toward the middle – or something of that nature. Hope this helps. Thanks!

  48. Do you use an au jus with this prime rib ? Also would you make any adjustments for cooking a larger (12-14lb) boneless prime rib ? 

    • Hi Julie,
      Yes, I use pan juices for aus jus. Make certain to follow the step by step instructions and cooking time per pound of the beef. Boneless will be same temp and time per pound.
      Enjoy it! xo

  49. I will be roasting a 19 pound prime rib tomorrow.  I’ve read your instructions and have salted, wrapped tightly as directed. 

    I followed your instructions for  the turkey which I cooked today and will reheat tomorrow.  Amazing done to perfection.  Thank you.  Now I hope I have the same results with my prime rib.

  50. After 25 years of marriage, I have only made Prime Rib twice. Today for Christmas was the best. I am so glad I followed your easy  recipe. Thank you 

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