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For many families, Standing Rib Roast is to Christmas what turkey is to Thanksgiving: the centerpiece of the holiday table and a tradition repeated year after year. This standing rib roast recipe is perfect for any occasion when you want to impress—rosy pink, supremely tender, and richly flavored, but also incredibly easy to make.

easy recipe for standing rib roast

Why You’ll Love This Prime Rib Recipe

  • The Quintessential Christmas Roast. While beef tenderloin, Braised Short Ribs, and Rack of Lamb all qualify as Christmas roasts, I think the standing rib roast is the absolute classic Christmas main dish. (Well, that and Baked Ham.) This luxurious cut of beef isn’t your everyday kind of dinner, but it is the kind of special occasion meal you want to savor with your closest family and friends.
  • Unbelievably Easy. While making Thanksgiving Turkey can cause heart palpitations weeks in advance (Dry Brine or Wet Brine? Fresh or frozen? How long does it need to thaw?!), standing rib roast is an absolute dream to make. The price tag may make you feel intimidated, but it’s no more difficult than the Baked Chicken Breast you make for a weeknight dinner, promise.
  • The Best of the Best. Standing rib roast is delectable, indulgent, flavorful even before you add anything to it, and supremely tender and juicy when cooked properly. (And you will cook it properly if you follow my recipe!) It’s one of the most desirable cuts of beef there is!
how to make standing rib roast perfect in the oven

What Is Standing Rib Roast?

Standing rib roast is a large cut of beef from the primal rib section of the cow. It’s typically roasted whole, with the bones still attached.

The name comes from the fact that the roast is cooked standing on the rib; the other name for standing rib roast is prime rib, which denotes not the USDA grade of the beef, but the part of the cow it comes from. (In other words, prime rib doesn’t mean USDA Prime Beef, just that it’s cut from the primal rib area.)

Roasting the beef with the bone not only adds flavor to the meat but also makes for a striking presentation when served.

A whole standing rib roast can be cut into several ribeye steaks, which should explain why it’s so pricy!

Standing rib roasts contain the eye of the rib and lots of fat marbling. While the roast cooks, the fat renders, which is one of the reasons the roast beef stays juicy and tender.

standing rib roast of beef baked perfectly in the oven

How to Make Standing Rib Roast

The Ingredients

  • Standing Rib Roast. You want the bone in; ask the butcher not to separate the ribs. If you really want to splurge, go for dry-aged beef.
  • Kosher Salt and Ground Black Pepper. Two essential seasonings for good prime rib.
  • Dijon Mustard. The base of a flavorful standing rib roast seasoning, mustard adds punchy flavor while still letting the succulent beef shine.
  • Garlic. Mince it finely with a knife or push it through a garlic press.
  • Olive Oil. I recommend a cooking olive oil, which has a higher smoke point than extra-virgin olive oil.
  • Lemon Juice. Use freshly squeezed; you’ll put the whole lemons to use in this recipe.
  • Rosemary. A classic pairing with roast beef.
  • Onions. The onions infuse the prime rib with flavor, and the prime rib infuses the onions with flavor. Symbiosis!

Ingredient Note

You can add other veggies to the roasting pan too, like parsnips and carrots. DELISH!

The Directions

spices for rib roast including garlic, lemon, rosemary, salt and pepper and dijon mustard
  1. Prep the Seasoning. Sprinkle the roast with lots of salt and pepper and let stand at room temperature for 1 hour. Add the rub ingredients to a bowl.
the perfect standing rib roast rub
  1. Mix. Stir everything together.
slathering on rub for standing rib roast recipe made in the oven
  1. Add the Rub. Rub the mustard mixture onto the roast.
standing rib roast on lemons and onions in roasting pan
  1. Prepare. Set the onions and juiced lemons in a pan. Place the roast over the onions and lemons.
  2. Roast. Cook the standing rib roast at 450 degrees F for 20 minutes, then continue cooking at 350 degrees F until it reaches 115 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. Rest 20 minutes, then slice, serve, and ENJOY!
oven roasted rib roast

Storage Tips

  • To Store. Wrap leftovers in foil or plastic wrap, or place them in an airtight container. Refrigerate for up to 4 days.
  • To Reheat. Place slices of the standing rib roast in a baking pan with a few tablespoons of broth. Cover with foil and warm it in a 250 degree F oven until the meat is heated through.
  • To Freeze. You can freeze the meat, but it will likely dry out a bit, so it’s not ideal. Be sure to wrap it very well. Thaw it in the refrigerator, then reheat according to the instructions above.

Meal Prep Tip

You can mix together the rub a day in advance and refrigerate it in an airtight container.

Leftover Ideas

Use leftovers to make roast beef sandwiches—you can heat the beef slices or eat them cold. I also like serving leftovers alongside Creamy Polenta or Butternut Squash Risotto.

recipe for the best beef standing roast with seasoning

What to Serve with Standing Rib Roast

  • Roasting Pan. You can use a cast iron skillet, but I like a roomy roasting pan.
  • Carving Board. A carving board is not a cutting board! It has a little moat to collect the juices from the meat.
  • A Good Meat Thermometer. Absolutely essential for this recipe.
tender and rare standing rib roast beef

Recipe Tips and Tricks

  • Let the Roast Come to Room Temperature. It’s perfectly safe, and it’s important for cooking prime rib. Allowing it to come to room temperature will help it cook evenly in the oven.
  • Use a Meat Thermometer. Think of standing rib roast as an investment. You want to take care of it! You want to do right by it! You want to reap its full value! And that means using a meat thermometer. It’s just not worth chancing it—a meat thermometer will let you know exactly when your prime rib is ready to take out of the oven. Insert the thermometer at the center, avoiding the bone.
  • Know Your Target Temperature. Building on the point above, I recommend aiming for a rare (115 degrees F) or medium-rare (125 degrees F) prime rib. Because the temperature will continue to climb after you pull the roast out of the oven, you want to remove it about 5 degrees before it hits the temperature for rare or medium-rare—that would be 110 degrees F for rare or 120 degrees F for medium-rare.
  • Don’t Rush the Rest. Even if all your sides are done! Even if your guests are impatiently waiting! Just like tired cooks (and Spatchcock Turkey), standing rib roast needs a good rest in order to be its best. While the 20 minute resting time may test your patience, it allows the juices to reincorporate into the meat, ensuring that it’s tender and succulent.
  • Make Sure You Buy Enough. Plan on one pound per person if you’re only making a handful of side dishes. For a full holiday feast—especially one serving both children and adults—you can get away with less, but I’d still buy at least 1/2 pound per person.
the best standing rib roast on a platter

Standing Rib Roast

5 from 10 votes
Call it Christmas roast, prime rib, or just roast beef, standing rib roast is tender, juicy, and oh so flavorful. Easy recipe for the perfect roast!

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total: 2 hours 50 minutes

Servings: 4 -6 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 1 standing rib roast* bone-in (4 pounds, 2 ribs)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 3 garlic cloves minced (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice about 1/2 medium lemon
  • 1/4 cup rosemary leaves finely chopped
  • 2 medium onions peeled and quartered

Instructions
 

  • Place the meat bone side down on a rimmed baking sheet and sprinkle on all sides with the salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature for at least 1 hour prior to cooking.
  • Make sure your oven racks are positioned such that the rib roast can fit comfortably. Preheat the oven to 450°F. In a medium bowl, stir together the mustard, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, and rosemary (reserve the juiced lemon for roasting if desired). Spread the mustard mixture all over the meat.
  • In a large cast-iron skillet or a roasting pan, place the onions (if you like, you can add the juiced lemon half, as well as the unused lemon half if you have it). Place the meat on top, bone side down.
  • Roast for 20 minutes at 450°F, then reduce the oven temperature to 350°F. Continue roasting until the meat registers 115°F on an instant-read thermometer inserted as close as possible to the center of the meat without touching bone (or 125°F for medium-rare), about 45 minutes to 1 hour more. Prime rib can overcook quickly, so check early and often. You want it to be nice and pink.
  • Remove the pan from the oven. Transfer the meat to a cutting board, tent with foil, and let rest for at least 20 minutes before slicing and serving with the pan juices and onions.

Video

Notes

  • *For larger parties (more than 6 people), get a 4-rib roast, which will be around 8 pounds. Leave it at room temp for 2 hours before roasting instead of 1. Double all mustard sauce ingredients. After you lower the oven temp to 350°F, cook for 1 to 1½ hours, checking the meat every 10 minutes after it’s been in for an hour.
  • *Ask the butcher not to separate the ribs. You can have it trimmed if you want, but it’s not necessary and the fat really enriches the dish and the onions underneath.
  • TO STORE: Wrap leftovers in foil or plastic wrap, or place them in an airtight container. Refrigerate for up to 4 days.
  • TO REHEAT: Place slices of the standing rib roast in a baking pan with a few tablespoons of broth. Cover with foil and warm it in a 250 degree F oven until the meat is heated through.
  • TO FREEZE: You can freeze the meat, but it will likely dry out a bit, so it’s not ideal. Be sure to wrap it very well. Thaw it in the refrigerator, then reheat according to the instructions above.

Nutrition

Serving: 1(of 6)Calories: 970kcalCarbohydrates: 6gProtein: 42gFat: 86gSaturated Fat: 34gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 39gTrans Fat: 0.002gCholesterol: 183mgPotassium: 758mgFiber: 2gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 40IUVitamin C: 6mgCalcium: 54mgIron: 5mg

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Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at wellplated.com and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

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6 Comments

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  1. This was absolutely perfect!! I used a smaller roast (3.68 lb) and it still turned out amazing! A perfect medium rare…I just made sure to check the thermometer more regularly. I paired it with a sweet potato mash. Thank you for this recipe. I’ll be coming back to this one very soon!!5 stars

  2. OMG!! This is the BEST recipe for a standing rib roast! I have had mixed results with other recipes but this one is amazing and a keeper for sure! Served it with a side of Parmesan mashed potatoes and coleslaw, as well as some Beer Chipotle Grainy Mustard. Yum!!5 stars

  3. It was my first time cooking a rib roast and I was anxious to not screw it up – but your instructions and tips were excellent and my roast was delicious! I can’t wait to cook this again on New Year’s Eve.5 stars