Perfect Prime Rib

A ‘Prefect Prime Rib’ | Contributed photo

By CHEF HOWARDD KARP, for the Flathead Beacon

Prime rib is one of the most popular holiday dishes, but a poorly prepared prime rib can wreak havoc on your holiday meal.

Many people are intimidated by this cut of meat, but it’s actually quite simple to prepare.

The key is to get a very good piece of meat – I recommend Perfect Cuts in Columbia Falls.

Make sure you never freeze the meat.

I prefer to prepare my prime rib with a dry rub three days before I plan to cook it.

In case you missed this recipe in last year’s Beacon here’s my fool-proof method for a perfectly prepared prime rib:

Spread French Dijon mustard onto the fat cap of the rib.

For the dry herb rub, combine the following ingredients in a

blender and puree:
  • 1/2 cup fresh winter sage
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley
  • 1/2 cup fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 cup fresh wild thyme
  • 2 cups salt
  • 1/2 cup pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
Layer the dry herb rub over the mustard, pressing into the rib.Once covered in the dry herb rub, wrap the entire prime rib in a piece of cheesecloth that has been oiled with vegetable oil.

Let the wrapped prime rib sit in the refrigerator for three days before cooking.

On the day you plan to cook the prime rib, let it sit at room temperature for a few hours to ensure it cooks evenly.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees.

Cook the prime rib on a roasting pan for 30 minutes, and then turn the oven down to 350 degrees.

Continue to cook for another two-and-a-half to three hours for a seven-bone rib. You may have to adjust the cooking time depending on the size of the prime rib you’re cooking. (Remove from the oven when the internal temperature reaches about 125 degrees.)

Remove the prime rib from the oven and allow it to rest for 30 minutes at room temperature. (Trust me, your prime rib will not get cold – letting it rest is critical to let the juices circulate through the meat.)

Once finished resting, carve your prime rib and serve with au jus beef stock poured over the top. I also like to pair this meal with garlic mashed potatoes and steamed vegetables.

I have had so many positive comments from people who have tried and loved this recipe, and I truly hope this makes your holiday meal a memorable one.

Please share your feedback with me at

Bon Appétit!

Need a recipe for Au Jus?  Check out Bob Zimorino’s Perfect Au Jus Recipe.