This mouthwatering ribeye roast is seasoned with a simple dry rub and savory garlic butter. It’s an impressive main dish perfect for special events or just an elegant dinner.
If I want to impress my dinner guests, I’ll whip up a London broil or a sirloin tip roast. But when the occasion calls for an extra elegant entree, nothing compares to a show-stopping ribeye roast. It’s the ultimate centerpiece for any holiday dinner table!
This baked ribeye roast may be a fancy meal, but learning how to make it yourself is quite simple. The meat is seasoned with garlic butter and a dry rub, then roasted low and slow in the oven. In the end, you’re left with a slab of mouthwatering and perfectly seasoned meat that slices like butter. Honestly, once I mastered cooking this cut of beef perfectly, anything else was pretty much foolproof.
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Why this recipe works
- Simple ingredients; big flavor. The well-marbled beef is naturally moist and meaty. Coating it in a layer of luscious garlic butter, deeply savory dry spices, and brown sugar elevates it to the next level.
- Easy to make. This is a restaurant-quality meal that’s surprisingly easy to make! All you need to do is season the meat before letting the oven take care of the rest.
- Juicy, tender, and delicious. Ribeye roast is a pricey cut of meat compared to a bottom round roast or top round roast. But as soon as you take that first mouthwatering bite, you’ll understand that it’s worth every penny.
- Holiday favorite. Similar to the above point, because it’s pricy, I typically only make this for my family for special occasions, including Christmas dinner. I know that sounds a little different but everyone who comes loves the change from your standard turkey or ham.
Apart from the meat, this ribeye roast recipe calls for ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen. This is everything you need:
- Ribeye roast. Look for a fresh ribeye roast that is well-marbled with fat, has a vibrant red color, and has an even thickness. I recommend buying this particular cut directly from a butcher because their cuts are generally more well-balanced and thicker than anything in a grocery store. Also, if it’s too big (3 pounds is the ideal size for this recipe), you can always use the off-cuts for shaved steak or steak bites.
- Garlic. To mix with the melted butter. Please use fresh garlic because the flavor is unmatched.
- Butter. The butter is melted, infused with garlic, then brushed over the meat to give it a rich flavor.
- Dry spices. The meat is seasoned with a dry rub made from kosher salt, pepper, paprika, and Italian herbs. It’s short, simple, but boasts big flavors.
- Brown sugar. Adding brown sugar to the dry rub adds a balancing sweetness to the meat and encases it with a caramelized crust. Don’t worry though, this roast won’t taste sweet.
How to cook a ribeye roast in the oven
I’ve included step-by-step photos below to make this recipe easy to follow at home. For the full printable recipe instructions and ingredient quantities, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
Step 2 – Add the dry rub. Mix the salt, paprika, brown sugar, black pepper, and Italian seasoning in a separate bowl. Use your hands to rub the spice mixture all over the meat.
Step 3 – Sear, then slow-roast. Place the meat, fat side up, on a rack in a roasting pan. Sear it in a hot 500ºF oven until the surface is nicely browned. Afterward, reduce the temperature to 350ºF and bake to your desired doneness.
Step 4 – Rest, slice, and serve. Remove the ribeye roast from the oven, tent it with foil, and let it rest before slicing and serving. Enjoy!
Ribeye roast vs. prime rib
Ribeye roast can sometimes be mistaken for prime rib roast. While the terms are often used interchangeably and the cuts are both taken from the rib section, prime rib refers to a typically bone-in standing rib roast while ribeye roast is usually boneless.
The roast is not to be confused with ribeye steaks either, which are cut from the raw boneless ribeye roast.
Tips to make the best recipe
- Bring the meat to room temperature before cooking. This helps the meat cook evenly. I recommend 30-40 minutes before starting the cooking process.
- Ribeye roast is best when it’s cooked medium-rare or medium. Use a reliable meat thermometer to check that it’s cooked to the ideal internal temperature: 115ºF to 120°F for medium rare (125ºF to 130°F after resting) or 125ºF to 130°F for medium (135ºF to 140°F after resting). Of course, if you prefer your red meat more cooked, just cook until 160°F (medium well done) or 170ºF (well done).
- Adjust the cooking time based on weight. The general rule is to cook the roast for 15 to 20 minutes per pound at 350ºF (after searing).
- Let the roast rest for 15 to 20 minutes. This gives the juices time to soak back into the meat and make every bite more tender and juicy. I know it’s extra time added when you could be digging right in but trust me, it is worth it!
- Slice against the grain. As with carving any large cut of beef, you must slice the roast against the grain to retain its tenderness and beefy juices. Also, the leftover slices of meat are begging to be made into roast beef sandwiches.
- Drizzle with beef broth. Or beef stock. This is my secret trick when I’m waiting to serve this beef. A drizzle of this before slicing will ensure the meat is extra juicy and never dry.
What to serve with this dish
I always keep things simple with just a drizzle of horseradish sauce, dijon mustard, or an au jus made from pan drippings. It really lets the natural richness of the beef shine.
Of course, standard sides are also great. Serve each slice with warm crusty bread or dinner dolls and holiday-worthy sides, like scalloped potatoes, roasted brussels sprouts, sauteed carrots, and mushrooms.
How to store leftovers
To store: Let leftovers cool to room temperature, then wrap the whole roast or individual slices in plastic wrap or foil. Store them in the fridge for 3 to 4 days.
To freeze: You can also freeze ribeye roast for up to 3 months. Let it thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.
To reheat: Place the leftover ribeye roast in a baking dish and cover it loosely with aluminum foil. Reheat in a 350°F oven for about 15 to 20 minutes.
Frequently asked questions
The only way to check for doneness is to insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the meat. Remember to cook it to medium-rare or medium.
I find it’s best to cook ribeye roast uncovered to achieve a flavorful, browned crust around the outside. However, if you notice the surface is browning too quickly, you can cover the pan loosely with foil to prevent burning.
In my experience, this 3-pound roast easily feeds my family of four with some leftovers. Of course, I pair it with several sides, including vegetables and potatoes.
More holiday-worthy mains
- In a small bowl combine melted butter and garlic.
- Brush the meat with this mixture from all sides.
- Combine spices in a small bowl and rub it all over the roast, pressing firmly to make sure the rub sticks to the meat.
- Place the meat, fat side up, on a rack in a roasting pan and preheat the oven to 250C/500F.
- Cook the roast for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 180C/350F and cook for 1 hour.
- Remove the roast from the oven and allow it to rest for 20 minutes, covered with foil. 1Slice and serve warm.
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