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How to Cook a Rib Eye Roast Without Ruining It

by Jon Mohrman, studioD

You're off to a good start when you choose to make a rib-eye roast. It's a tender, flavorful cut that responds well to oven-roasting, so a lot of the work is already done for you. Help ensure the best results by paying the extra money for a prime cut, rather than a choice or select cut. While the proper procedure for preparing a rib-eye roast is fairly simple and straightforward, a few missteps along the way can ruin it. Most importantly, don't cook the roast beyond medium-rare, or it begins to dry out and the meat becomes chewier and less flavorful.

Remove the rib-eye roast from the refrigerator an hour before roasting so it can come to room temperature. When cold meat goes into a hot oven, it cooks unevenly and the muscle fibers contract and the meat ends up tougher.

Move an oven rack a slot or two below the middle so the rib-eye roast sits centered in the oven chamber and cooks evenly. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Season the roast with salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste. Use any other seasonings you like or that are called for in a recipe you're following. A little dried thyme or rosemary adds a nice depth of flavor, but use it lightly so you don't overpower the rib-eye's natural flavor.

Transfer the rib-eye roast onto the rack of a shallow roasting pan. Don't use a pan that's more than 2 inches deep. Too deep of a pan obstructs the flow of heat around the meat and can cause the bottom of the roast to partially steam in its own juices. Steamed beef comes out an odd color and texture.

Put the roast into the oven. Cook a bone-in cut for about 16 minutes per pound or a deboned cut for about 18 minutes per pound. Cooking time varies some based on oven accuracy, the size and shape of the roast and other factors, though, so monitor its internal temperature with a meat thermometer.

Take the rib-eye roast out of the oven as soon as its internal temperature reaches 120 degrees F for rare or 125 degrees F for medium-rare. Its temperature rises about 5 more degrees while it rests.

Move the rib-eye roast off the roasting pan rack and onto a serving platter. Tent it with aluminum foil to keep it hot while it rests. Allow the meat to sit uncut for 15 minutes, during which time its internal juices redistribute. Cutting without properly resting causes much of these juices to bleed out of the meat, greatly detracting from its quality.

Items you will need
  •  Seasonings
  •  Shallow roasting pan
  •  Meat thermometer
  •  Serving platter
  •  Aluminum foil


  • Don't handle or transfer the rib-eye roast with a large fork or other kitchen tool that pierces the meat. The beef's juices escape through puncture marks, robbing the finished product of tenderness and flavor.

About the Author

Jon Mohrman has been a writer and editor for more than seven years. He specializes in food, travel and health topics. He attended the University of Pittsburgh for English literature and San Francisco State University for creative writing.

Photo Credits

  • Eising/Photodisc/Getty Images