Roast Beef Dinner Menu Suggestions

by Sara Ipatenco

A raw beef roast on a plate with rosemary sprigs.

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Rich in protein and iron, roast beef is a nutritious addition to your healthy eating plan. If you have a portion of roast beef that's thawed, it can be tough to decide how to prepare the meat, as well as what to serve with it, because it's such a versatile dinner ingredient. Luckily, you have numerous options to experiment with that are both tasty and nutritious.

No-Fuss Dinner

A roasted piece of beef has a depth of flavor that doesn't need much seasoning or hands-on work if you need a quick and tasty meal. Simply sprinkle the roast beef with salt and pepper, stick it in a preheated oven and roast it until it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit. Serve the roast beef with baked potatoes and steamed broccoli for a nutritious meal that's a snap to prepare. Better yet, wash and peel several potatoes and carrots and toss them with a bit of cooking oil. Roast them in a separate baking dish from the meat, and you'll have tasty meal that takes just a few minutes to get into the oven.

Marinaded Roast Beef

If you have a bit more time to prepare your roast beef for cooking, plan to soak it in a marinade for several hours before putting it in your oven. Philip Robinson, author of "The Perfect Roast Beef Meal," suggests marinading a whole roast beef in a combination of olive oil and red wine vinegar that's been seasoned with dried herbs and spices, such as marjoram, black pepper or rosemary. Experiment with your favorite herbs and spices, and don't be afraid to use fresh herbs if you have those on hand. Replace the red wine vinegar with rice vinegar or white vinegar as another easy change that influences the flavor slightly. Add fresh onions, jalapenos and garlic to enhance the flavor of the marinade even further. Serve the marinaded and roasted meat with mashed sweet potatoes and steamed vegetables, such as asparagus.

Gourmet Roast Dinner

Roast beef is versatile enough that it can be incorporated into a gourmet meal for date night or other special occasions. Bruce Aidells and Denis Kelly, authors of "The Complete Meat Cookbook," suggest using a standing rib roast for special occasion dinners, but any quality roast will work. Season the roast with your favorite herbs and spices, pop it into the oven and prepare a decadent sauce while the meat is cooking. Aidells and Kelly suggest sauces that include flavorful ingredients such as sherry, mustard, ginger and orange juice. Roast baby potatoes and fresh green beans, and drizzle the sauce over the entire meal just before serving it. Fingerling potatoes and sauteed kale are additional sides that fit into a gourmet meal.

Out-of-the-Box Ideas

While eating the sliced roast beef plain is a common way to serve the meat, it's far from your only option. Shred the cooked roast beef and use it as a filling for tacos, burritos or enchiladas. Combine shredded roast beef with low-sodium barbecue sauce and serve it inside a whole-wheat bun for a tasty sandwich. Add bits of cooked roast beef to pasta salads or macaroni and cheese as alternatives to incorporate the meat into your dinner menu. Replace the traditional sausage in spaghetti sauce or lasagna with cooked roast beef as another idea.

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About the Author

Sara Ipatenco has taught writing, health and nutrition. She started writing in 2007 and has been published in Teaching Tolerance magazine. Ipatenco holds a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in education, both from the University of Denver.