How to Make the Perfect Roast Beef in the Oven - CopyKat Recipes (2024)

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You can learn the best way and every detail of how to make the perfect roast beef in the oven. When you use this simple technique for cooking your roast beef in the oven, you will never want to try another way to make a flavorful and juicy tender roast beef. You will have roast beef perfection for any special occasion or Sunday dinner.

How to Make the Perfect Roast Beef in the Oven - CopyKat Recipes (1)

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How to Make Delicious Roast Beef

Growing up, it was on Sundays we would enjoy Roast Beef. As an adult, I make these on long weekends during the cooler months. There is just something about having a marvelous hearty roast to serve for dinner. If you have leftover roast beef, you can always turn it into delicious warm roast beef sandwiches.

Beef roasts are quite uncomplicated to make. Often I have put them in a crockpot, but there is something about slow-roasted roast beef that is so hard to resist.

How to Choose the Best Beef

This recipe works well for most cuts of beef when making roast beef. You can use most cuts of boneless roasts, from a rib-eye roast to a rump roast, a top sirloin roast, top round roast, bottom round roast, or even an eye of round roast. All of these cuts taste quite good.

Often my choice depends on what is available or on sale. This last week it happened to be that ribeye roasts were on sale. These are also known as standing rib roasts when the bone is left in the roast.

The one cut of beef I do not recommend for roasting is a chuck roast. Chuch roasts need a longer amount of time to cook to become tender. You should braise a chuck roast.

What Are The Different Meat Grades and How Do They Matter When You Cook

So years ago, I was a co-manager at a Kroger store. During my training, we received a fair amount of training at the store. I spent a month working in a butcher shop. It was there I learned about different grades of meat.

Typically in grocery stores, you will see three distinct grades of meat, those are select, choice, and prime.

Prime grade beef is the beef that is the highest quality. The fat marbling is throughout the meat. Prime beef has a lot of marbling throughout the meat; less than 5% of all meat is graded prime beef.

The next best grade of beef is Choice. It has less marbling than Prime but more than Select.

What I honestly like to do is to watch when meat goes on sale is to look at what grade of beef it is. I like to compare the price of Prime and Choice grade beef; if the difference is small, I will choose the Prime beef.

It is the fat that gives you the flavor as well as the ability to make gravy and Yorkshire pudding.

Seasoning the Roast

There are a lot of discussions about how to season a roast. If you want to marinate your roast, you must do it a couple of days in advance. It takes time for the flavors to penetrate past the outside surface area of the meat.

If you take the meat from the package and cook it, your options are more limited. The flavors you add aren’t going to make it all of the way through the meat. The old standbys of salt and pepper will do the job for you and make the best roast beef.

You can always serve your roast with beef gravy, au jus, or a wine reduction sauce. There is no need to worry about getting a special seasoning together. I promise salt and pepper will do the job quite well.

How to Make the Perfect Roast Beef in the Oven - CopyKat Recipes (2)

Roast Beef Recipe Ingredients

Here is a list of what you need:

  • Beef roast
  • Kosher salt
  • Ground black pepper

Cooking the Roast

Ideally, it would be best to cook the roast low and slow. This has advantages over cooking the meat as quickly as it can be cooked. By cooking it at a lower temperature, the juices within the meat are retained, and your final result will be more tender and juicy.

Cooking slower means that the meat will cook more evenly; roasts are not always uniformly shaped you don’t want portions of the meat to be overcooked. So by slow cooking the roast, you ensure that it will cook more evenly.

How to Cook Roast Beef in the Oven

  1. Allow the meat to rest at room temperature for an hour before cooking it.
  2. Preheat your oven to 325°F.
  3. Sprinkle salt and pepper on the roast. For leaner roasts, first, drizzle the meat with olive oil. Optionally, truss the roast with twine, which helps it to keep its shape and cook more evenly.
  4. Bake the roast on a baking sheet with a wire rack for 25-30 minutes for every 1 pound of meat (this will produce a medium roast). For example, a 4-pound roast will take approximately 120 minutes (2 hours).
  5. Determine what level of doneness you prefer. Check the meat’s temperature by inserting a meat thermometer into the thickest part. Aim to remove it when the meat internal temp is 10 degrees lower than your preferred doneness because of carry-over cooking.
  6. Allow the meat to rest for 15-30 minutes before enjoying!

Roast Beef Internal Temperature

  • 120-130°F for rare
  • 130-135°F for medium-rare
  • 135-145°F for medium
  • 145-155°F for medium well
  • 155°F and above is well done

Special Equipment

Using a meat thermometer is the only true way to know when the roast has reached the correct temperature range that you want. If you estimate just by how it looks visually, you might under or overcook the meat.

There are plenty of cooking thermometers available. Many thermometers have an instant digital read that will tell you what the meat is internally, so there is no guessing involved.

Do you need to cover the roast?

You do not need to cover the meat in this style of cooking which is roasting. A pot roast is a braised beef dish.

Braising means cooking with liquid, a couple of examples are beef broth or beef stock. Both roasting meat and braising meat are great ways to cook beef, but they are different from each other.

Wait Before You Carve the Roast

So you have cooked your roast perfectly; what should you do now? Wait for 15 to 30 minutes. Why should you wait? This will give the meat a chance to rest.

What does it mean to rest a roast? It means that the juices within the roast will get an opportunity to redistribute within the roast.

This has a few advantages. You can prepare the gravy, set the table, or even make some Yorkshire pudding while the meat is resting.

You can cut it immediately when you remove it from the oven, but if you wait a few minutes, it will pay off. So when you pull the roast out of the oven cover it with foil and let it rest before carving it up.

How to Make the Perfect Roast Beef in the Oven - CopyKat Recipes (3)

Searing the Beef

You can sear the beef if you like. Searing can help brown the roast on the outside. Some people believe this gives the roast a better flavor. I am not entirely satisfied if it enhances the flavor, but it makes the beef look wonderful and brown.

To sear the beef, I suggest an iron skillet. I add some oil to the pan, and a good tablespoon. I like to use an oil that has a high smoke point. So something like canola or your generic vegetable oil will be perfect. Fancy olive oil tends to burn at a lower temperature, so it isn’t ideal for this use.

Season the meat, and put it into the hot skillet with the hot oil. Let the meat rest there for a couple of minutes on each side.

If you try to move the meat around initially, it will stick. It is counter-intuitive to wait. When the meat is brown, it will let you pull it to flip it to the other side.

Continue this process until all sides are browned. This step is not necessary for this recipe.

Other Optional Steps


Why would you truss a roast? You can truss a roast to help force it into a more smooth shape. This will contribute to cooking the roast evenly.

It also can make the roast easier to slice when it comes time to slice the beef.

Did you know that often you can ask the butcher to truss the roast for you? You can also truss the roast yourself with some butcher’s string that is sold in most grocery stores.

How to Serve Roast Beef

Serve your oven-baked roast beef with delicious sauces to accentuate the meat’s natural flavor. For instance, pour a classic brown gravy over the meat or an umami-filled mushroom sauce. Other condiments that taste fantastic with it are horseradish, Worcestershire, or even BBQ sauce.

You can’t go wrong with a simple herb garnish. Use fresh rosemary, thyme, or parsley to instantly upgrade the presentation of the roast beef when you serve it.

How to Store Leftover Roast Beef

You should store leftover roast beef in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Another option is to tightly wrap it in foil or plastic wrap, but there is a higher chance air will get in and deteriorate its quality, so a container is best. Allow it to fully cool before you transfer it to the refrigerator.

How to Freeze Leftover Roast Beef

You can freeze leftover roast beef in tightly wrapped plastic wrap or a vacuum-sealed bag in the freezer for up to 3 months.

The vacuum-sealed bag is a smart way of guaranteeing that the meat won’t get freezer burn prematurely. Make sure to safely thaw it in the refrigerator or a cold-water bath before reheating it.

What’s the Best Way to Reheat Roast Beef

For reheating your roast beef, I do not recommend the microwave as the meat can get tough. Place your meat into a moderate oven with an oven temperature of 350°F.

If you have some gravy or some au jus, or even beef broth, I like to add a bit of that to the pan, add my roast beef, wrap with foil, and reheat for about 20 minutes.

This ensures that the meat comes out tender and juicy, just like the first time.

What to Serve with Roast Beef

Here are some delicious side dishes to make and serve with roast beef:

  • Boiled Carrots
  • Fried Okra
  • Green Bean Bundles
  • Jiffy Corn Casserole
  • Oven Roasted Brussel Sprouts
  • Roasted Red Potatoes
  • Scalloped Potatoes

Popular Roast Recipes

  • Beef Tenderloin Roast
  • Eye of Round Roast
  • New York Strip Roast
  • Oven Brisket
  • Ribeye Roast
  • Tri Tip Roast

Take a look at even more easy beef recipes and the best side dish recipes here on CopyKat!

How to make the Perfect Roast Beef in the Oven

You can make the perfect roast beef in your oven, it’s actually very easy to cook a roast!

5 from 117 votes

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Course: Main Course

Cuisine: American

Keyword: how to make roast beef in the oven, Roast Beef

Prep Time: 10 minutes minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour hour 20 minutes minutes

Total Time: 1 hour hour 30 minutes minutes

Servings: 10

Calories: 217kcal

Author: Stephanie Manley


  • 3 to 4 pound roast like a ribeye roast
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons black pepper, crushed or ground


  • To prepare the meat remove from the refrigerator 60 minutes before cooking. This will give the roast a chance to reach room temperature.

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

  • If the roast is very lean you may want to drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil or two over the roast. Sprinkle salt and pepper over the roast. Place the roast on a wire rack on a baking sheet. Bake the roast for approximately 25 to 30 minutes for every pound of meat for a roast to be cooked to medium.

  • Adjust accordingly for your preferred level of doneness. You should use a meat thermometer to determine when the roast is done. Push the meat thermometer all of the way into the center of the roast. Pull the roast from the oven when the inside temperature of the roast is about 10 degrees less than your desired level of doneness. The temperature of the roast may rise while the roast is resting.

  • Let the roast rest for at least 15 minutes, tented in aluminum foil to keep warm, before carving to serve.

    Rare : 120 – 130 degrees – bright purple red, tender and juicy.

    Medium Rare: 130-135 degrees – bright red, warm, tender very juicy.

    Medium: 135 -145 degrees – rich pink, slightly juicy

    Medium well: 145 – 155 degrees – tan with slight pink, firm, slight juice

    Well Done: 155 and above – tan to brown, very little juice, meat can become tough.

  • So if you want a medium rare roast remove it from the oven when the internal temperature reaches 120, it will rest for 15 minutes. The internal temperature will rise while the meat is resting. It is always best to use a meat thermometer if you have one to ensure you cook the roast to your desired level of doneness.PLEASE NOTE: Your cooking time depends on the size of your roast.



Calories: 217kcal | Carbohydrates: 0g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 103mg | Sodium: 3428mg | Potassium: 508mg | Sugar: 0g | Vitamin C: 81.7mg | Calcium: 508mg | Iron: 3.8mg

How to Make the Perfect Roast Beef in the Oven - CopyKat Recipes (2024)


What is the secret to a perfect roast? ›

The secret to making tender roast beef:

It's all about cooking low and slow. With a cut of meat like this, a longer cook time will give you better, more tender results. Ideally, all roasted meats would be seared on all sides in a hot skillet to develop a golden, delicious crust.

Should you bake a roast beef covered or uncovered? ›

When cooking a roast in the oven, keep it uncovered until roasted to the desired doneness. After removing from the oven, tent with foil and let stand 15 minutes before carving. This allows the juices to redistribute, preventing them from draining out during carving—and preventing dry, disappointing meat.

What temperature should roast beef be cooked at in the oven? ›

Cooking Times
CutPreheat Oven to…Roast For…
Premium oven roast (prime rib, sirloin, tenderloin)425°F (220°C)30 min.; reduce heat to 300°F (150°C) and cook 2-2 ½ hours.
Oven roast (inside round, outside round, sirloin tip, cross rib)425°F (220°C)40-50 min. (20 min per lb)

How long does it take to cook a roast beef at 350? ›

Beef Roasting Guide
Type of roastOven temperatureCooking time
Sirloin strip roast Whole350°F1½ – 1¾ hours
Sirloin strip roast Half (5-6 lbs)350°F1¼ hours
Top sirloin roast Whole350°F12-15 mins / lb
Top sirloin roast Half350°F17-20 mins / lb
11 more rows

Should you cover beef with foil when roasting? ›

Just be sure not to wrap the foil too tightly, otherwise it will steam your joint. But loosely covering a hefty cut of beef halfway through as it roasts in the oven will keep it succulent.

What makes the most tender roast? ›

Tenderloin. The most tender roast of all—it's under the spine— with almost no fat or flavor. It's tapered in shape, the middle being the "center cut." The labor involved and waste produced in trimming and tying a tenderloin drives up the price.

Is it better to cook a roast at 325 or 350? ›

When roasting meat and poultry, set the oven temperature to 325°F (163°C) or higher. Explore the charts below to learn how to get great results every time you cook.

Do you put water in the pan when cooking roast beef? ›

Please don't use water to cook your roast beef! But yes, do use a liquid in your pan when cooking roast beef. You don't want to use water because you really need something with some flavor and seasonings! In this recipe we are using beef broth, red wine, and plenty of seasonings for the perfect flavor.

What is the time chart for cooking roast beef? ›

  • Seal the joint in a hot pan for 3-4 minutes over a high heat before transferring to the oven.
  • Preheat oven to 180°C/Gas 4 and allow:
  • 20 minutes per 500g plus 20 minutes (for rare)
  • 25 minutes per 500g plus 20 minutes (for medium)
  • 30 minutes per 500g plus 20 minutes (for well-done)

How long do you cook a 2 lb roast at 325? ›

Oven Roasting Guidelines
beef cutSirloin Tip Center Roast
oven temperature (preheated)325°F
weight (pounds)2 to 2-1/2
Approximate Total Cooking TImeMedium Rare: 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 hours
Internal TEMPERATURE*135°F

What temp is roast most tender? ›

We recommend a temperature of 195-200 °F / 90-93 °C for a tender and juicy roast. Serve: Remove the bay leaves and rosemary sprigs. Blend some of the celery, carrots and onion with some of the juices until you have a smooth puree.

How long do you cook a 2.5 lb roast at 350 degrees? ›

As a general rule of thumb, you can estimate about 20-25 minutes per pound for a boneless beef roast cooked at 350 degrees. Here's a basic guideline for cooking times: For a rare roast: Cook until the internal temperature reaches 125-130 degrees Fahrenheit. This will take approximately 15-18 minutes per pound.

How long does a 3 lb roast take to cook at 350? ›

If you're up for some light math, here's a rule of thumb: For every pound of meat you're roasting at 350°F, it will take approximately 18 minutes for rare, 20 minutes for medium, and 25 minutes for well-done. But your cook time can vary widely based on the cut used.

How do I cook a beef roast without drying it out? ›

To keep the roast from drying out, add some liquid to the roasting pan to create a small steam bath. Beef or chicken stock works well, especially if the drippings will be used to make gravy. Adding liquid to the pan also provides something to baste the meat with, helping to deepen its flavor.

How long to cook 1.5 lb roast at 325? ›

Bake 12 to 15 minutes per pound at 325 degrees F to heat throughout. Bake 30 minutes per pound until Internal Temperature reaches 185 to 190 degrees F. Or Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes.

How would you enhance the flavor of a roast? ›

Here are some simple ways to add a lot of flavor to your next rib roast. Use mesquite, cherry or apple woods to enhance the beef by adding savory aromas and flavors. Season the outside of the roast with salt and pepper and a little olive oil. Or coat with any other seasonings that you enjoy.

What can I add to my roast for flavor? ›

A little tomato paste, generous amount carrots to sweeten, garlic, onions, thyme, and rosemary to add flavor the roast. I love root vegetables like add parsnips, or white turnips and may add them for complex unique taste. Roast slowly on low heat in oven for a few hours until tender.

What can I add to my roast to make it taste better? ›

Potatoes: The best potatoes for putting in a roast are yellow, golden or Yukon potatoes. Onion: Yellow or white onions are flavorful but mellow enough to add flavor but not overpower. Beef Broth: Make your own or buy prepackaged beef broth. Red Wine: The alcohol will cook off and you're left with flavor and tenderness.

How do you keep a roast juicy? ›

Sear the Roast:Preheat your oven to a high temperature, typically around 450°F (230°C). Heat a heavy skillet or oven-safe pan over high heat with a bit of oil. Sear the roast on all sides until it develops a brown crust. This locks in the juices.

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