Celebrate the holidays with this delicious, classic prime rib with horseradish cream

5D4B3840 - Classic Prime Rib Roast

Looking for that perfect prime rib recipe to impress your holiday guests? Make our classic prime rib with horseradish cream — adapted from That Skinny Chick Can Bake — and your family and friends will want to have holiday dinner at your house every year.

A convivial conversation stopper, this prime rib comes to the table with a garlicky, crisped exterior and a succulently moist interior. Every slab of juicy red meat begs to be served with a big dollop of the homemade horseradish cream sauce. Your holiday dinner guests will be so busy devouring their meal, they won’t even notice no one is talking.

ALSO TRY: Slow-roasted beef prime rib

Prime rib is a scrumptious roast and a popular holiday entree. A prime rib roast has ribs and can be cooked with them in or boneless. Our recipe calls for a prime rib roast that has its ribs removed and is tied. You can find bone-in and boneless prime ribs at your local butcher shop. When choosing your prime rib, look for the roast with the most marbling. More marbling means more flavor. Unlike most cuts of meat, prime rib is best after it has been salted and refrigerated before cooking. The salt helps tenderize and season the meat.

Are you intimidated by making prime rib because you don’t want to ruin this expensive cut of meat? Take heart, our classic prime rib recipe will make you feel like a seasoned pro. All you need is patience, a few hours, and a meat thermometer. Once you prep the roast with fresh garlic, salt, and pepper, the oven takes over and does the work for you. While the prime rib is cooking, you can make the horseradish cream sauce and then kick your feet up until you need to check your roast.

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Salt the prime rib

Rubbing salt all over the prime rib 3 days before cooking will help tenderize and flavor the succulent meat. Refrigerate your salted roast uncovered.

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Insert garlic slices into slits in the roast

When ready to cook, use a sharp knife to cut 16 slits in the top of the roast. Insert sliced garlic into each slit. As the prime rib cooks, the garlic will ooze its earthy flavor into the meat. Season the roast with additional salt, if desired, and freshly ground black pepper.

5D4B3473 - Classic Prime Rib Roast - Salt the prime rib

Sear the meat

Searing the outside of the roast will seal in the meaty juices. Pour oil into a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, place the roast in the skillet and cook until it is nicely browned on one side. Rotate the roast and sear on all sides. Set the roast on a rack in a roasting pan.

5D4B3485 - Classic Prime Rib Roast - Sear the meat

Place prime rib on roasting rack

5D4B3487 - Classic Prime Rib Roast - Place prime rib on roasting rack

Cook the prime rib

Low heat and slow cooking is the key to a mouthwateringly moist prime rib. Cook at 200F for 3 to 4 hours or until a meat thermometer inserted in the center registers 110F. Keep the roast in the oven — it’s not done cooking yet.

5D4B3800 - Classic Prime Rib Roast - Cook the prime rib

Let the roast sit in the oven

Turn the oven off and place a meat thermometer in the middle of the roast. Let it rest in the oven for 30 minutes without opening the oven door. When the thermometer is at 120F, your prime rib is cooked to rare.

To allow the juices to redistribute through the meat, cover the roast with aluminum foil and let it rest in the oven for another 10 to 30 minutes.

Finally, uncover the roast and turn the oven to broil. Broiling just a few minutes will give the prime rib a delectable brown crispy crust.

5D4B3807 - Classic Prime Rib Roast - Let the roast sit in the oven

Make the horseradish cream

While the prime rib is cooking, whip up the horseradish cream. In a bowl, whisk together sour cream, prepared horseradish, and minced fresh chives. Keep refrigerated until ready to use.

5D4B3497 - Classic Prime Rib Roast - Make the horseradish cream

Serve the prime rib with the horseradish cream sauce

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So succulent and tender

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Beautifully caramelized crust

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Incredibly juicy and full of flavor!

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Just look at that marbling!

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A luscious cut of meat

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Perfect for the holidays!

5D4B3904 - Classic Prime Rib Roast

Classic prime rib with horseradish cream

Yield 8-10 servings


  • One 6-pound Certified Angus Beef® prime rib roast (ribs removed and tied)
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 16 slices fresh garlic
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh chives


  1. Up to 3 days before serving, rub salt all over roast and refrigerate uncovered.
  2. When ready to cook roast, preheat oven 200F.
  3. Cut 16 slits in top of roast, and insert slices of garlic into the slits.
  4. Season roast with additional salt, if desired, and generously season roast with black pepper.
  5. Pour oil into a large skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Add roast and sear until it is browned on one side. Flip roast and sear other side. Repeat this process with the other two smaller sides.  
  6. Place a rack in a roasting pan and set roast on the rack.
  7. Cook roast in oven for 3 to 4 hours, or until meat thermometer registers 110F.
  8. Turn oven off.  Place a meat thermometer in the middle of the roast, and let it rest for about 30 minutes without opening the oven door. Remove roast when internal temperature reaches about 120F for rare.
  9. Cover roast with foil and let it rest in the oven for at least 10, and up to 30, minutes to allow juices to redistribute.
  10. Remove roasting pan from oven.
  11. Turn oven to broil.  
  12. Uncover roast and place it under the broiler. Broil until the top of the roast is browned and crispy, watching carefully to make sure it doesn’t burn.
  13. To serve, cut roast into slices. Remove and discard the string.
  14. Prepare the horseradish cream sauce by mixing sour cream with horseradish in a bowl. Stir in chives.
  15. Serve sliced roast with horseradish cream sauce.

Courses Main dish

5D4B3885 - Classic Prime Rib Roast