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Prime Rib: How To Cook

How to cook prime rib in the oven, on the grill, or in a smoker
Prep Time12 hrs
Cook Time3 hrs
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: standing rib roast, prime rib, prime rib roast, rib roast recipe, beef
Author: Melissa Reome


  • instant read thermometer
  • Remote cooking thermometer
  • Elevated cooking rack
  • Roasting pan or sheet pan
  • Oven, grill, or smoker


  • 1 standing rib roast (prime rib) 4-10 lbs *cook time will vary by size*
  • kosher salt season liberally to dry-brine roast at least 12 hours ahead of time. Amount will vary depending on size of roast
  • black pepper, freshly ground enough to lightly season outside of entire roast
  • rosemary, fresh, minced or thyme leaves optional
  • olive oil enough to lightly cover entire roast prior to cooking


  • Defrost roast completely if frozen
  • If roast is not tied, use butcher's twine to tie roast into uniform shape

Dry-brine standing rib roast a day ahead of time

  • Place rib roast on an elevated rack and season liberally with kosher salt on all surfaces. Place roast in refrigerator uncovered preferably a day ahead of time until ready to cook

Season roast

  • Remove roast from refrigerator. Lightly coat entire roast with olive oil, ghee or vegetable oil.
  • Season all surfaces with black pepper. If desired, lightly season with minced fresh rosemary or thyme.

Preheat oven, grill or smoker to 225°F

  • Once oven or grill is preheated, place meat inside to cook on an elevated baking rack.
  • Insert probe of a cooking thermometer to monitor internal meat temperature while it cooks. Reference approximate roasting times and monitor roast for cooking progress.

Remove roast from oven or grill or smoker

  • When internal temperature of meat is within 10-15 degrees of your desired finished temperature, remove from oven.

Sear meat

  • Increase temperature of oven or grill to 450-500°F. *Make sure meat has been removed prior to getting oven or grill up to temperature*
  • Remove roast from the roasting pan you initially cooked it on and replace with a clean pan. (Prevents smoking during sear)
  • Place roast into 450-500°F oven and sear for approximately 5-10 minutes. *It may take less time. Pull roast if adequately browned*

Remove from oven and rest

  • After the rib roast is seared, remove from oven and loosely tent with aluminum foil. Rest meat a minimum of 20 minutes prior to slicing to serve.
  • Note: If roast is done well in advance of the time you would like to serve, wait to sear it until 30 minutes prior to desired serving time.