The Best Prime Rib Dinner

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I’ve been dying to share with you how to make the best prime rib dinner ever! In my family our tradition for many years has been to serve a prime rib dinner on Christmas Eve. I’ve updated this post with more information for everyone.

Sometimes I think people are afraid to cook a prime rib. Now, you do have to decide between a bone in or boneless roast, but both are good choices. I have cooked both and love them equally.

Mark and I used to live in Salt Lake City, Utah and every year we would order a roast ahead of time. The reason being this awesome meat store called Snider Bros Meats would sell out fast.

If you didn’t order by December 5th you would have to buy it somewhere else. Maybe that’s changed, but that’s how it was when we lived there. I always had to give them the size in inches so it would fit in our roaster pan.

We have been following this tradition for almost 40 years now. Wow, how the time has flown by. Now our daughters carry on the same tradition.

When the family was smaller we baked our prime rib in the oven in a roaster pan. As the family grew with sons-in-law and grandkids we needed to use a large electric roaster pan to bake it.

Prime Rib Dinner

Prime Rib

Prime Rib Cooked sliced on PLte

I typically buy my prime rib roast pre-seasoned. The butcher will suggest some seasonings they recommend if yours is not preseasoned. We love to serve it with horseradish mixed with sour cream, to taste.

You can make the bottle of horseradish a little milder by adding more sour cream, depending on the “heat” of the brand you choose to purchase.

How thick should I slice the Prime Rib?

The answer to this question really is personal preference. I like my cuts cooked longer than Mark does since he eats his “medium rare.”

A thin sliced end cut is my cut of choice. I have noticed that Mark’s cuts tend to be more juicy. I’d suggest cutting the meat in 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick.

Is Prime Rib cooked fat side up?

Most professional cooks will tell you to cook the prime rib roast with the fat side up, and thus, the bone side on the bottom. It’s a good idea to let the meat sit outside the fridge long enough to get to room temperature before you put it in the oven. This will usually take two hours to get it to room temperature.

Plan on preheating the oven to 250 degrees and cook for the time(s) suggested in the recipe below based on the weight of your prime rib roast. Also, I’d suggest using a meat thermometer to check on the meat’s internal temperature so it’s cooked to the desired level.

What’s the difference between Prime Rib and A Ribeye Roast?

It is a matter of semantics. The rib eye steak is actually part of the prime rib roast. You may find that the roast tends to have more fat and muscle, with the rib eye steak cut having less of both fat and muscle.

Both taste great and can be enjoyed in most any situation, depending on the number of people to be served and how they want it cooked.

How long should I wait before slicing the Prime Rib after cooking it?

I’ve found it’s a good idea to let the prime rib roast sit at least 15 minutes after removal from the oven. The meat will tend to be more moist and juicy as you let the natural juices be absorbed by the meat.

Those wanting the meat to be more well done should ask for cuts towards the end of the roast, with the ones wanting a more rare approach to wait for the center cuts.

How much Prime Rib do I need to buy?

You need to buy the size based on the number of people to be served, taking into account men tend to eat more than the women and children at your event.

You could use the rule of thumb of one pound per person uncooked, but you will probably end up with some leftovers, which isn’t all bad if you like making prime rib sandwiches later.

Which is better bone-in or boneless Prime Rib?

With some experience cooking prime rib you’ll form your own ideas about which meat choice is best. From my personal experience, I like the bone-in roast since it seems to come out more juicy, as long as I don’t cook it too long.

Do you cut the meat with the grain or against it?

The way the meat is cut can influence how tender it ends up. If you examine the meat and look for the way the muscle fibers are running through the meat, you’ll want to cut across the grain to get the most tender tasting cuts.

What is the best cut of a Prime Rib?

When you try to determine the “best” cut, again, that is personal preference. End cuts tend to be cooked through more, and thus are more well done. The juicy and more rare cuts are found in the middle of the roast.

Why is Prime Rib served rare?

One thing you’ll notice about prime rib is that it appears more pink in color than most roasts tend to be. Some people don’t like the idea of eating something that may look “uncooked.”

Mark loves his prime rib cooked to medium rare, which means the meat is cooked to about 140 degrees. The rare cuts will come out more juicy, if that’s the way you like it. Cook it longer or at a higher temp and it may be more tough, chewy and dry to the taste.

Can it be cooked well-done?

As mentioned a couple to times above, the more well done cuts will be found on the end of the roast where the meat is thinner. If you and your guests want a thicker cut but cooked to be considered well-done throughout, you may find that the end cuts are cooked past a desired level.

It is great that you can cook this roast to a degree that will please everyone, just keep track of cooking times and internal temps as outlined in the recipe.

Please invest in a good meat thermometer:

138 degrees is rare

148 degress is medium

158 degrees is well done

Instant Meat Thermometer

5 from 1 vote
Prime Rib Dinner
Prime Rib by Food Storage Moms
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
4 hrs
Total Time
4 hrs 10 mins
 
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 people
Ingredients
  • Prime Rib Roast (weight of choice)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees. Season the roast and cook fat side up uncovered in the oven. If you use an electric roaster you will bake it with the cover. A meat thermometer is recommended to ensure the desired doneness. Remove the roast from the oven when the temperature hits 138 to be rare, 148 to be medium, 158 to be well done. Larger roasts cook faster than times listed so watch over your thermometer. Your roast will continue to cook approximately 5 additional degrees once removed from the oven or roaster. Let the roast sit for at least 15 minutes before you start to carve it. Oven temperatures vary so much, please keep your eye on the temperature of the meat.

  2. The following temperatures will vary, so these times are approximate.
  3. 4-6 pounds: 2-1/2 to 4 hours
  4. 6-8 pounds: 4 to 5-1/2 hours
  5. 8-10 pounds: 5-1/2 to 6 hours
  6. 10-12 pounds: 6-1/2 to 7 hours
  7. 12-16 pounds: 7-9 hours

Cheesy Potatoes

These potatoes are famous in Utah, they are called either cheesy potatoes or funeral potatoes. They are super yummy!

5 from 1 vote
Cheesy Potatoes
Cheesy Potatoes by Food Storage Moms
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 20 mins
 
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 people
Ingredients
  • 12 Potatoes (shredded or sliced)
  • 1 Pint Sour Cream
  • 2 Cans Cream of Chicken Soup
  • 1/4 Cup Butter
  • 2-3 Cups Cheese-grated
  • 1 Cup Frosted Flakes type cereal
Instructions
  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grease a 9 by 13-inch pan and scoop the mixture into the pan. I crush the frosted flakes and sprinkle them over the casserole. Bake at 350 degrees covered with foil for 1 hour, or until bubbly.

Twice Baked Potatoes

We usually decide ahead of time which potato we feel like eating with the prime rib dinner, so I’m sharing almost all of them today.

5 from 1 vote
Prime Rib Dinner
Twice Baked Potatoes
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 10 mins
 
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 people
Ingredients
  • 8 Baked Russet potatoes
  • Oil
  • Kosher Salt
  • 2 cups grated cheese
  • 2 cups sour cream
Instructions
  1. You can bake the russet potatoes covered with foil (non-shiny outside), plain or oiled and sprinkled with Kosher Salt. I poke the potatoes with a fork. I don’t know if its an old wives tale but I always do this when baking them. After baking, cut them in half lengthwise. Scoop out the insides as close to the edge of the peel as possible. I mash the insides with my potato masher with butter, sour cream, green onion and salt in a medium-size bowl. Heap the filling back into the skins and bake until heated through. Bake at 350 degrees about 30 minutes. Sprinkle with grated cheese on top when you serve them.

Mashed Potatoes

Mark would have these every night of the week! They really are creamy and fluffy with all that butter, milk, sour cream, or whipped cream!

5 from 1 vote
Prime Rib Dinner
Mashed Potatoes
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
50 mins
Total Time
1 hr 5 mins
 
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 people
Ingredients
  • 8 Russet Potatoes
  • Sour Cream, Whipped Cream, Milk, or Sour Cream
  • Butter
  • Salt and Pepper
Instructions
  1. Peel the potatoes and cut them into medium size chunks. Then boil them in water until a fork test shows that they are cooked enough. I drain the water and add whatever I have in the refrigerator to make them creamy and fluffy. I use either milk, sour cream, whip cream, butter, and salt, then mash them with my stainless steel masher. You can cook them in your pressure cooker as well. Easy Peasy!

Dinner Rolls

I always make my homemade no-fail dinner rolls. You can make these rolls, if you have fresh ingredients, I promise.

5 from 1 vote
Prime Rib Dinner
No-Fail Dinner Rolls by Food Storage Moms
Prep Time
1 hr 15 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
Total Time
1 hr 30 mins
 
Cuisine: American
Servings: 36 rolls
Ingredients
  • 4 Teaspoons SAF Instant Yeast
  • 1/2 Cup Water
  • 2 Cups Warm Milk
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 1-1/2 Teaspoons Sea Salt
  • 4 Teaspoons Dough Enhancer NutriMill (optional)
  • 2 Eggs
  • 6-7 Cups White bread flour (Add 1/2 of the flour and then add more until the dough pulls away from the sides of the mixing bowl)
Instructions
  1. Place all of the ingredients in order into your mixing bowl. Be careful with the eggs not to add the warm milk too slowly or you will have scrambled eggs. Add half of the flour and keep adding the rest of the flour until the bread dough pulls away from the sides of the mixing bowl. Cover with greased plastic wrap and let rise the first time, about an hour. Punch the dough down and mold into small balls about 1-1/2 inches to 2 inches in diameter. Cover with greased plastic and let rise one more time, about an hour, or until double the size. Remove the plastic wrap and bake at 350 degrees for about 15-20 minutes on a greased cookie sheet. Do not overbake. They should be golden brown. I spread a little butter on the tops after baking so the rolls are soft on top. If you like a crispier top you can skip this step.

Final Word

I hope you enjoy reading about my prime rib dinner tradition for the holidays. We also have green beans, asparagus, or some other vegetable in season. Please let me know what your family does for the holidays. Please keep prepping. May God bless this world. Linda

12 thoughts on “The Best Prime Rib Dinner

  • December 4, 2018 at 9:22 am
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    Linda: I love your website! I love your book, your articles on food storage, your fantastic recipes! Because of you, my 72 hour kits are almost complete. I can’t thank you enough for all you do. I’m learning so much helpful information! I was searching one day for food storage info and there you were! I was excited to see your name – I am a former neighbor of yours from Riverton, Utah. Thanks so much! Sue Lloyd

    Reply
    • December 4, 2018 at 9:40 am
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      Sue, Oh my gosh!!! I saw the name and started screaming in excitement!!! I miss you!!! This was a cartwheel moment for me, thank you so much for commenting!! Hugs! Linda

      Reply
  • December 4, 2018 at 2:40 pm
    Permalink

    I, too, serve a prime rib for Christmas Eve dinner. Being Norwegian, we’ve always celebrated Christmas Eve as our family does in Norway. I used to be scared of cooking a prime rib because it’s such an expensive cut of meat. However, Costco is my go-to place to get them each year. They’ll even provide you with receipes. I don’t, however, get them preseasoned. I usually just use a salt rub – kosher salt, pepper and rosemary. I lay it on pretty thick, too, and it’s really yummy. No one in our family likes it well done so the trick is to cook it to just about the right temperature and let it stand while it finishes cooking. Don’t be afraid to try one! Sometimes at Costco, they’ll cut it down in size if it doesn’t leave the remaining piece too small.

    Thanks for all you do, Linda! Keep those recipes coming…love ’em!
    Robbie

    Reply
    • December 4, 2018 at 2:55 pm
      Permalink

      Oh my gosh, Robbie, I’m Norwegian!! Did you mention this before? Do you make homemade Lefse? I miss my mom’s way of making it! I love hearing you bought a good prime rib from Costco! I love the Costco we have here in Southern Utah! I love my Lefse with butter and brown sugar. My mom and sisters liked butter and white sugar. Now, my mouth is watering!! Linda

      Reply
  • December 5, 2018 at 6:59 am
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    Lefse! Our church growing up had a strong Norwegian base! Every November after deer season the Men’s group would host a lutefisk and lefse banquet! The lefse was my favorite part of the meal!

    Reply
    • December 5, 2018 at 5:06 pm
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      Hi BDN, oh my gosh, my grandmother fixed lutefisk as well!! The fish I never really cared for! The lefse is my favorite part of the meal. I love hearing you shared the same memories!! Linda

      Reply
    • December 24, 2019 at 7:53 am
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      We have some kind of roast “beast” and yorkshire pudding for a bread, cranberry sauce made with lime, cloves and ginger and green beans– not casserole!– and salad to round it out. And my husband’s grandmother’s recipe for sour cream cookies and pie for dessert. Almost time to get cooking! Merry Christmas!

      Reply
      • December 24, 2019 at 8:27 am
        Permalink

        Hi Jan, oh my goodness, your menu sounds delish!! Merry Christmas! Linda

        Reply
  • December 9, 2018 at 7:47 am
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    Stop teasing us! What is Lefse?

    Reply
    • December 9, 2018 at 7:24 pm
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      Hi Debra, oh I love your comment!! I should have said who knows what Lefse is! It’s made with mashed potatoes and flour. Then you roll it out and bake them like tortillas. I love mine with butter and brown sugar. My family used to eat them with butter and white sugar. I need to make a post on this family tradition!!! P.S. My husband, Mark never liked Lefse so I didn’t carry on the tradition as my mom did. I really miss it!! Hugs, Linda

      Reply
  • December 25, 2019 at 10:58 pm
    Permalink

    5 stars
    Linda, excellent article on one of my favorite foods.

    My family enjoys Prime Rib (bone-in and first three ribs) medium rare. There are only three of us. My grandmother as well as my wife’s always told us to get the first three ribs from the small end, but things have changed at the butchers. Now I have them bring out a roast rated as Prime (that’s right, most prime rib roasts are only rated choice) and I examine both ends and the three ribs cut from whichever end shows the best marbling, ie the finest grained marbling. The roast is terribly expensive, often running between $160 and $200, but it’s a once a year meal–and more than one meal at that.

    We usually do mashed potatoes (I use heavy cream and lots of butter).

    And yes to your rolls–though sometimes we cheat and get “holiday rolls” at the market. They are delicious, cheap, and I usually buy several dozen to freeze and enjoy throughout the year.

    We also add a fresh tossed salad, with mostly fresh ingredients (cucumbers excepted) from our winter garden. We only use a bit of lemon juice for the dressing.

    Reply
    • December 26, 2019 at 8:25 am
      Permalink

      Hi Ray, thank you for telling me where to look at the ends for the most marbling. Great tip!!! We only make ours once a year as well! I want to try just putting lemon juice on my salads! I love that! Life is good with fresh veggies from the garden. Thanks for sharing these awesome tips! Linda

      Reply

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