How to Make the Perfect Prime Rib Roast

Holiday Prime Rib Roast

A tender, melt-in-your-mouth prime rib is a classic main course to serve family and friends during holiday gatherings. It's an impressive showstopping centerpiece that's also surprisingly easy to cook. If you're not sure how to cook this majestic piece of meat, we have a quick guide on how to cook the perfect prime rib every time.


The day before you plan to serve the prime rib, remove it from all packaging, and place it on a rimmed baking sheet with a rack. Season the roast generously with either the included seasoning pack, or if you want to mix up your own, we recommend starting with a dry brine. Season all over with 4 teaspoons of kosher salt (½ teaspoon per pound). If you’re using table salt, use ¼ teaspoon per pound. You can add the rest of your seasoning rub now too. If your rub includes salt, just be careful not to double salt your roast.

Place the roast in the refrigerator and start dreaming about the deliciousness.  

Tip: Seasoning up to 24 hours ahead will give the salt time to work its magic. Salt will be drawn into the meat to tenderize and add flavor.


Start Low

Cooking the prime rib at a low temperature will allow it to cook slowly and evenly. 

We love our pellet smoker for low and slow cooking. Use whatever you have that can maintain a consistent temperature. An oven is perfect, as is a gas grill if you can keep a low temperature with indirect heat (heat on one side, meat on the other). Our favorite prime rib was on a pellet smoker and finished on high heat in the oven.

Roast the prime rib at 225 degrees until the internal temperature reaches 115 degrees for medium-rare (about 3 to 4 hours). Tent with foil and let it rest for 15 to 30 minutes. 

Blast High to Finish

Right before serving, you want to blast it in a hot oven (or a grill, if it can reach 500+ degrees). This will add texture and flavor to the exterior of the roast.

Turn the oven to 500+ degrees for about 5 to 10 minutes until you get the sweetest roasted crispiness on the outside. 

Slice & Serve

When you reverse sear like this, we find that you don’t need to rest it again (but you can if you want to).

And don't forget the sauce! Here are two of our favorite sauces to serve with your prime rib.

Simple Horseradish Sauce

What you need

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup prepared horseradish (more or less depending on your taste)
  • 2 tbsp. lemon juice
  • Minced chives
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


Whisk all ingredients together in a bowl. Refrigerate until chilled, about 15 minutes.

Chimichurri Sauce 

What you need

  • 1/2 cup curly parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes (add more if more spice is desired)
  • 5 garlic cloves, grated or minced finely
  • 4 tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (extra virgin works fine as well, but will have a stronger oil flavor)
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Make the chimichurri sauce first by combining parsley, red pepper flakes, garlic, and vinegar in a medium bowl and mixing well to coat. Pour olive oil over the top and stir gently. Add salt and pepper to taste and stir again. Serve alongside the roast.