How to cook beef?

Perfect roast beef

  1. Remove the beef from the fridge 30 minutes before you want to cook it, to let it come up to room temperature.
  2. Preheat the oven to 240°C/475°F/ gas 9.
  3. Wash and roughly chop the vegetables – there’s no need to peel them. Break the garlic bulb into cloves, leaving them unpeeled.
  4. Pile all the veg, garlic and herbs into the middle of a large roasting tray and drizzle with oil.
  5. Drizzle the beef with oil and season well with sea salt and black pepper, then rub all over the meat. Place the beef on top of the vegetables.
  6. Place the tray in the oven, then turn the heat down immediately to 200°C/400°F/gas 6 and cook for 1 hour for medium beef. If you prefer it medium-rare, take it out 5 to 10 minutes earlier. For well done, leave it in for another 10 to 15 minutes.
  7. If you’re doing roast potatoes and veggies, this is the time to crack on with them – get them into the oven for the last 45 minutes of cooking.
  8. Baste the beef halfway through cooking and if the veg look dry, add a splash of water to the tray to stop them from burning.
  9. When the beef is cooked to your liking, take the tray out of the oven and transfer the beef to a board to rest for 15 minutes or so. Cover it with a layer of tin foil and a tea towel and leave aside while you make your gravy, horseradish sauce and Yorkshire puddings.

How to roast beef

I still think the roast beef of old England, served with meaty gravy, crisp Yorkshire pudding and crunchy roast potatoes, is not only one of the world’s greatest meals, it is something the British do better than anyone else. The cut of beef for roasting is of great importance – if it’s a very special occasion I would go for a sirloin joint on the bone with the fillet still in it, but for a family Sunday lunch the next best cut is the wing end of the sirloin, otherwise known as rib of beef. If you want to serve 6-8 people and have some left over, you’ll need a piece weighing approximately 5-6 lb (2.25-2.75 kg) – this would be 3 ribs. Beef on the bone is great as the bone acts as a conductor of heat and gives the roast extra flavour. Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 9, 475°F (240°C).

A layer of fat on the beef provides not only basting juices to keep the joint moist and succulent, but you can choose to eat it if you so wish. To make the fat extra crusty during cooking, dust the fat surface of the beef with 1 level dessertspoon each of English mustard powder and plain flour – just rub them in gently – then season with salt and pepper.

Place the joint in a roasting tin on top of 2 small halves of onion. The onion will caramelise as the beef cooks and give a lovely flavour and colour to the gravy. Now place the meat on a tray just above the centre of the oven. It will have plenty of fat so don’t add extra. Give it 20 minutes’ cooking at the initial temperature; after that turn the heat down to gas mark 5, 375°F (190°C) and cook it for 15 minutes to the pound (450 g) – this will give you rare beef. Add 15 minutes to the total cooking time for medium rare and 30 minutes for well done.

While the beef is cooking, lift it out of the oven from time to time, tilt the tin and baste the meat really well with its own juices – this ensures that the flavour that is concentrated in the fat keeps permeating the meat, and at the same time the fat keeps everything moist and succulent. While you’re basting, close the oven door in order not to lose heat. Baste the meat with the juices at least three times during cooking.

To see if the beef is cooked to your liking insert a thin skewer into the thickest part of the joint and press out some juices: the red, pink or clear colour will indicate how much the beef has cooked. When it is cooked to your liking, remove it from the oven, transfer it to a board and allow it to stand in a warm place for up to an hour, loosely covered with foil, before carving – to let all the precious juices that have bubbled up to the surface seep back into the flesh. Also, as the meat relaxes it will be easier to carve. Some of the juices will escape, though, and these should be poured into the gravy. The finishing touch is to serve the succulent beef with Yorkshire pudding, gravy, seasonal vegetables and creamed horseradish.

Perfect Roast Beef

Here’s how you do it

  1. Take the beef out of the fridge an hour before roasting so that it comes to room temperature. Preheat your oven to 200°C. Peel and halve the onions and pop them in a roasting tray – they’ll caramelise in the meat juices whilst cooking, creating the base for a delicious gravy.
  2. Massage the beef with a glug of oil then sprinkle over a good amount of sea salt and cracked black pepper evenly on all sides. Heat a drizzle of oil in a heavy based frying pan. When the oil is hot, carefully brown the beef on all sides to seal in the juices. Place the browned beef on top of the onions in the roasting tray and pop in the oven.
  3. Reduce the oven temperature to 180°C and cook the beef for around 45 minutes, for medium-rare. If you prefer your meat a little less pink, keep in the oven for a further 10 minutes. Remove the beef from the oven, wrap in foil and leave to rest for at least 20 minutes.
  4. To finish off the onion gravy, place the roasting tray on the hob to heat the juices and caramelised onions. Add the flour and stir to form a thin paste. Cook the paste on a medium heat for 30 seconds then pour a little stock into the tray and whisk vigorously to avoid any lumps. Keep adding stock a little at a time, whisking as you go, until your gravy is silky and smooth.
  5. Slice the rested meat and serve with a generous glug of gravy and all your Sunday roast trimmings.

When it comes to roast beef, the received wisdom is that it should always be cooked on the bone – whether it’s a sirloin joint or rib roast – as the bone both conducts heat and adds flavour. However, this doesn’t suit everyone and some of our most popular recipes are bone-free and much easier to carve. Buy what suits you best.

More important than the bone is the fat – don’t be tempted to trim it off as it will baste your meat while it cooks. You can always cut it away when you serve it. If you want the fat to make a crust, then you have to sprinkle or rub it with flour and/or mustard powder to absorb the fat released on the surface.

Generally roast beef is cooked at a high temperature to caramelise the outside, then the temperature is turned down. This method can also be reversed with a lower temperature to start before a blast of heat at the end. As an example, see our herb-scented slow-roasted recipe.

If you don’t have a meat thermometer then check your beef is roasted by piercing it with a skewer. The juices should run red for rare, pink for medium and clear for well-done. Also, a meat thermometer should read 40C for rare (it will rise to 54-56C, medium-rare, as it sits), 48C for medium (it will rise to 65C).

It is essential you rest your joint for at least an hour so the juices are re-absorbed. If you carve the beef too soon it will be dry rather than juicy. Some juices will be released as it sits and you can tip these into the gravy.

If cooking beef on the bone then a three-rib roast (about 3kg) will serve about seven to eight people. Calculate roughly 400g per person. If cooking beef off the bone, 1kg will serve four and 1½ kg will serve about six, so 200-300g per person. Calculate your cooking time for medium-rare with 20 mins per 500g, or for medium use 25 minutes per 500g.

For beef on or off the bone cook it at 240C/220C fan/gas 9 for 20 minutes, then turn down to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 (not forgetting to take this 20 minutes off the timing you have just calculated).

Roast beef recipe

Serves 7-8

  • three-bone rib of beef, about 3kg
  • flour or mustard powder
  • 1 onion, halved

1. Take the beef out of the fridge at least an hour before you want to cook it. Calculate the cooking time and heat the oven to 240C/220C fan/gas 9.

2. Season the fat with salt and pepper and rub in a little flour or mustard powder, if you like.

3. Lay the beef on top of the two halved onions in a roasting tin and roast for 20 mins before turning down to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and cooking for 1 hours 40 mins. Remove and rest for at least an hour.

Our top roast beef dishes

Herb & pepper crusted rib of beef

This classic recipe makes the perfect Sunday lunch and will feed eight people easily. Herbs and pepper form a flavourful crust for the beef – they will darken as they cook but don’t worry.

Herb & pepper crusted rib of beef

Herb-scented slow-roasted rib of beef

Our mustard, treacle and Bovril crust for this roast reverses the cooking method, which means slow-cooking the meat and then turning the heat up.

Herb-scented slow-roasted rib of beef

Roast beef sirloin with simple Asian sauce

Ring the changes with Chinese flavourings for a roast boneless sirloin.

Roast beef sirloin with simple Asian sauce

Roast beef & carrots with easy gravy

For a bone-free and cheaper cut, try a beef top rump for your roast.

Roast beef & carrots with easy gravy

Roast fillet of beef with mushroom stuffing

A stuffed fillet makes an elegant cut for a dinner party and is easy to carve.

Roast fillet of beef with mushroom stuffing

Like this? Find more mouth-watering roast recipes…

Roast beef recipes
How to make the ultimate roast potatoes
How to roast and carve rib of beef
How to cook duck
How to roast pork belly
4 ways with roast potatoes
Healthy one-pan roast chicken

Do you have any other tips for the perfect roast beef? Leave a comment below…

The BEST Oven Roast Beef is tender, flavorful and perfect every time! Sunday roast has been a tradition in our family for years. We hope you love this classic recipe as much as we do.

How Do You Cook a Roast in the Oven?

Don’t be intimidated by oven roast. It couldn’t be easier! There are just a few tricks to getting that buttery, melt-in-your-mouth roast beef you love:

  • Bring the meat to room temperature. Take it out of the fridge and let it relax a little before roasting.
  • Start with the right pan or pot. A heavy duty roasting pan or a Dutch oven works best. It needs to be able to transfer from stove top to oven.
  • Sear that meat! Using hot oil, sear all sides of your roast until there’s a nice brown crust. This step will ensure all those delicious juices stay locked in and give it a gorgeous color.
  • For tantalizing fall-apart meat remember these two words: LOW and SLOW. Simmering at a lower heat for a longer period of time will give even tougher types of meat that tender texture your family will die over!
  • Make sure your meat never roasts dry. Keep it covered in its natural juices and beef broth for maximum juicy tenderness.

How Long Does it Take to Cook a Roast Beef in the Oven?

Depending on the size of roast, plan to keep that meat snug in the oven for at least three hours (remember low and slooooow) for a three pound roast. Then add about an hour per extra pound on top of that.

But even better than watching a clock is using a meat thermometer. Oven roast is ready when it’s 180 degrees inside, or when it easily pulls apart with a fork.

Which Roast Beef Cut is Best for an Oven Roast?

Choosing a cut of meat can seem confusing, but it doesn’t have to be. With the low and slow method, most any cut can be roasted to tender perfection. But here are a few options to look for at the grocery store:

  • Rump Roast
  • Chuck Shoulder Pot Roast
  • Rib Roast
  • Ribeye Roast
  • Tenderloin Roast
  • Top Sirloin Steak
  • Tri-Tip Roast (try this Rosemary Tri-Tip Roast!)
  • Round Tip Roast
  • Bottom Round Roast
  • Eye Round Steak

Optional Roast Beef Cooking Methods

Growing up, Sunday just wasn’t Sunday without the waft of savory roast permeating the house. But sometimes during the summer, our mom refused to heat up the house using the oven. This Slow Cooker Roast Beef came to the rescue during those hot months and is so delicious! And now with the popularity of the Instant Pot, a homemade roast can be on the table in a fraction of the time. Try our Instant Pot Sunday Pot Roast for a quick and easy roast dinner.

How to Make Beef Gravy from Beef Drippings

Don’t forget about the show-stopper topper: gravy! Those delectable drippings from the pan make the richest, creamiest gravy you’ve ever had. It’s delicious over roast, mashed potatoes, veggies, rice, just about anything. Just use our simple tips for How to Make the Best Beef Gravy. It’s easy, fool-proof and oh so yummy.

How to Make the Best Oven Roast Beef

The BEST Oven Roast Beef

Pin Video This Best Oven Roast Beef is tender, flavorful and perfect every time! Sunday roast has been a tradition in our family for years. We hope you love this classic recipe as much as we do. Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 3 hours Resting time: 15 minutes Total: 3 hours 10 minutes Serves: 9 servings


  • 3 pounds rump roast (see notes above for meat options)
  • kosher salt to taste
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 (2-ounce) package dry onion soup mix
  • 1 cup beef broth


  • Remove roast from refrigerator and allow to come to room-temperature (about 30-40 minutes) Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
  • Trim excess fat from roast and generously rub all sides with Kosher salt.
  • In a heavy roasting pan or Dutch oven, over medium-high heat, melt butter.
  • Add roast to pan and sear on all sides for about one minute per side. You want the roast to be brown all over.
  • Sprinkle onion soup mix over the roast and pour beef broth over the top and around the inside of the roasting pan.
  • Cover and roast in the oven for 3 hours or until beef is fall-apart tender (add 40-60 minutes per pound over 3 pounds).
  • Allow roast beef to rest 10-15 minutes before carving.


  • Conventional Oven

Recipe Video


Calories: 236kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 100mg | Sodium: 215mg | Potassium: 530mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 78IU | Calcium: 30mg | Iron: 3mg Course: Dinner, Main Course Cuisine: American Oven Roast Recipe by: Echo Blickenstaff Tried this recipe?Mention @favoritefamilyrecipes or tag #favoritefamilyrecipes!

Roast beef might sound fancy and complicated to make, but it’s actually quite simple! With a good piece of meat and some simple herbs, you can have roast beef that’s way more tender and flavorful than the store-bought kind. Below, we break down what’s most important to know when preparing this classic dish.


There’s no single cut of beef that is necessary to make roast beef. Some common cuts include:

– Top round roast

– Top sirloin roast

– Bottom round roast

– Eye of round roast

We usually use a top round roast, but a bottom round roast should work too. If you’re unsure, ask your butcher! Since the meat is slow roasted for a long amount of time, even tougher, more lean cuts of meat will be tender. Just be aware that if you choose a particularly lean cut of meat, it should be sliced relatively thin to avoid being too chewy.


This is where you can really get creative. We kept things simple in this recipe: just thyme, rosemary, salt, and pepper. Feel free to swap in any of your favorite herbs (sage, parsley, oregano etc.) or use dried if you prefer. Spices like cumin or coriander seeds would be delicious as well, do what feels right to you! Just don’t be shy on the flavorings, this is a big cut of meat and the more flavor, the better. We suggest 1 teaspoon salt per pound. Alliums like onions, garlic, and scallions would be delicious additions as well. I prefer to mix all my flavorings with olive oil to make a paste—it allows for more even distribution and insures your beef gets seasoned all the way around. (Don’t forget the bottom!)


You might be wondering why you have to change the temperature of the oven 15 minutes into cooking. I swear, there’s a good reason! Ideally, all roasted meats would be seared on all sides in a hot skillet to develop a golden, delicious crust. With something like a top round roast, searing can be next to impossible. (AKA it’s WAY too big and heavy to move around in a skillet.) Starting with a hot oven gives the roast a chance to get that beautiful crust without bringing out a pan. After you’ve got a head start on that crust, you can lower the temperature and the meat will start cooking from the inside out.


We prefer a medium to medium-rare roast, with a little pink in the center. In our opinion, the meat stays more tender and flavorful this way. If you prefer not to see any pink, you can roast longer! One thing that’s not optional, though, is a meat thermometer. It takes the guess work out of cooking big pieces of meat, and we swear it’ll come in handy more than just this once. Pro tip: make sure you’re inserting your thermometer far enough to hit the center of the roast for an accurate reading. For a medium-rare pot roast, aim for an internal temperature of about 130°F. The temperature of the meat will continue to rise a bit as it rests as well.


I know it’s tempting to dig right in when your roast comes out of the oven. Resist! Transfer your meat to a cutting board and let it rest for 30 minutes to allow all the juices to redistribute throughout the muscle. If you cut it right away, all those flavorful juices will end up on the cutting board and your meat will be dry and sad. 😢When it’s time, make sure to use your sharpest carving knife or chef’s knife to get nice thin slices.


Leftover cold roast beef is one of life’s greatest pleasures. It’s so versatile! Use it in French dip sliders, in a breakfast hash, or just cold, straight from the fridge. We won’t judge!

Five Ways to Cook Beef


Roasted or grilled, braised or sautéed, beef can be cooked in several different—and delicious—ways. Here are five of the easiest methods.

1. Roast Beef

For some, roast beef brings back fond childhood memories of family around the dinner table. For others, it’s a new tradition to gather around a juicy, flavourful roast on the weekend or special occasions. Here’s how to prepare this hearty classic.

General technique

  • Sear all sides of beef.
  • Always place the roast fat side up in the roasting pan.
  • Season with herbs.
  • Do not add liquids or salt.
  • Cook in the oven, uncovered as per your recipe. For tender beef, roast at 160°C (320°F).

Once the beef has reached the desired internal temperature, remove it from the oven and cover loosely with aluminum foil. Let it rest for about ten minutes to allow the juices to circulate and the fibres to relax. This will make your beef more juicy and flavourful!

For round, sirloin tip, rump, eye of round, inside and outside round, French roasts and bottom sirloin roasts

  • Add a little liquid before cooking, then place uncovered in a 260°C (500°F) oven for 30 minutes.
  • Lower the temperature to 140°C (285°F) and continue cooking until the meat thermometer indicates 70°C (160°F).

Flap steak (Bavette)

Did you know there is a specific way to slice cooked flap steak? To preserve all its tenderness, it should be sliced crosswise.

  • Marinate the flap steak for 6 to 12 hours in a mixture of red wine, Dijon mustard, olive oil, freshly ground pepper and thyme.
  • Remove the beef from the marinade and pat dry with paper towels.
  • Place on the rack of a roasting pan.
  • Place the pan in a 230°C (450°F) oven.
  • Cook for 10 to 12 minutes, depending on the thickness of the beef.
  • After cooking, remove from oven and cover loosely with aluminum foil, allowing heat to escape. Let stand for 5 to 8 minutes before serving. Serve with shallot sauce (recipe below).

Shallot Sauce

  • In a frying pan over medium heat, mix oil, butter and shallots and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Deglaze with red wine and reduce by half.
  • Add a bit of beef broth and continue cooking for 5 to 8 minutes.
  • If necessary, add a little cornstarch diluted with water to thicken.
  • Spoon the sauce over the flap steak.

Rib Roast

  • Heat oil in a roasting pan.
  • Brown onions and a sprig of rosemary.
  • Sear the beef on both sides.
  • Sprinkle a mixture of dried mustard and flour (one part mustard to two parts flour) on the beef. Add some beef consommé to the pan.
  • Place in a pre-heated oven at 180°C (350°F).
  • Baste the roast with its own juices from time to time to prevent it from drying out.
  • Toward the end of the cooking period, insert a meat thermometer in the thickest part of the roast, away from bone and fat.
  • Once the roast has reached the desired internal temperature, remove from the oven and cover loosely with aluminum foil, allowing steam to escape. Let stand for about 15 minutes before serving.

Roasted fillet of beef

  • Trim the fillet.
  • Brown onions and herbs in a lightly oiled roasting pan.
  • Sear the fillet on all sides.
  • Sprinkle a mixture of dry mustard and flour (one part mustard to two parts flour) on the fillet. Add some beef consommé to the pan.
  • Place in a pre-heated 180°C (350°F) oven and roast until meat has reached the internal temperature you want. (See below for tips on internal temperatures and doneness.)
  • Baste the fillet often with its own juices to prevent it from drying out.
  • For a fillet weighing 1.4 kilos (3 pounds), cook for about 25 minutes at 180°C (350°F), at which point it will be rare.
  • Remove from oven and wrap loosely in aluminum foil, allowing steam to escape.
  • Let stand for 8 to 10 minutes before serving.

2. Grilled Beef

Tender marbled cuts of beef, such as ribs, cutlets, slices of fillet, rib-eye, porterhouse, strip loin and sirloin, are excellent on the barbecue. These cuts should be quickly seared to protect their juices and to keep them tender. Tenderized or marinated cuts are best cooked in the oven.

  • If there is fat around the steak, score the fat before cooking to prevent the steak from curling on the barbecue.
  • Heat oven to medium, 180°C (350°F), or pre-heat the barbecue.
  • Turn meat with tongs once halfway through cooking to avoid piercing the meat and losing the juices.
  • Basting is recommended when barbecuing the following cuts: eye of round, outside round, sirloin tip, top sirloin, bottom sirloin, blade, cross ribs, flank, flank steak and top blade.
  • Season with pepper and garlic, if desired, but only after you have seared the beef on both sides. Otherwise the seasonings will burn and turn bitter, masking the taste of the beef.


  • Thread alternate cubes of beef and vegetables onto skewers.
  • Make sure the vegetables are cut to the same size as the beef cubes.
  • Leave a little space between each piece to ensure even cooking.
  • Grill each skewer for about 5 minutes.

3. Braised Beef

This slow, gentle method of cooking makes for a welcoming aroma that wafts through the house. Braising is ideal for cross rib roasts or steak, bottom blade, shoulder, short ribs, as well as round, sirloin tip, and outside round steaks. A de-boned, rolled cut of beef will take about 2½ hours per kilo (1 1/4 hours per pound) in a 160°C (325°F) oven.

  • In a large, lightly oiled casserole, brown the meat on all sides to preserve the juices and enhance the flavour.
  • Add enough liquid to cover one quarter of the beef. The liquid can be wine, broth or a mixture of both. The liquid should be cold rather than hot to prevent the meat’s juices from combining with the liquid.
  • Add aromatic vegetables such as onions, leeks and carrots, plus a bouquet garni.
  • Cover and place in a 160°C (325°F) oven until the meat is tender.
  • Season with salt and pepper once the meat is cooked.

4. Beef Sauces and Stews

This slow-cooking method lends itself to less tender cuts of beef such as cross rib roast or steaks, bottom blade, shoulder, short ribs, blade or round steaks, sirloin tip or outside round.

  • Coat the beef with a mixture of flour, salt and pepper. In a large, lightly oiled casserole, brown meat on all sides.
  • Add onions or aromatic vegetables of your choice and mix well.
  • Add enough liquid to cover the beef.
  • Cover and place in a 160°C (325°F) oven for about 1½ hours.
  • Add chopped vegetables such as potatoes, carrots and mushrooms 30 minutes before the stew is ready.

5. Sautéed Beef

Sautéing is great for sirloin, marinated beef, round, sirloin tip or flank.

  • If using sirloin, prepare a dry marinade to enhance its flavour.
  • Other cuts (round or sirloin tip) should be marinated in liquid for 30 minutes to 2 hours before cooking.

Sautéed beef with vegetables

  • Quickly sear strips, cubes or steaks in a lightly oiled pan or wok for 2 to 3 minutes at medium heat. Set aside.
  • Sauté the vegetables and return the beef to the pan a few minutes before cooking is complete.

How to know when cooked beef is done

For Rare Beef

The beef will yield slightly to the touch. When cut, it should be red on the inside and firm in consistency. The internal temperature should be about 63°C (145°F).

For Medium Beef

The meat should be firm to the touch. When cut, its interior should be pink, with very firm consistency. The internal temperature should be about 71°C (160°F).

For Well-Done Beef

The meat should be greyish when cut, with a very firm consistency and an internal temperature of about 77°C (170°F).

For Ground Beef

Ground beef should be cooked to an internal temperature of 71ºC (160ºF).

Recipes to try


Rib Roast with Espresso Rub


Beef Rib Eye with Tarragon


Beef Stew

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