This is the best ever sous vide prime rib recipe. It’s foolproof and cooked perfectly every single time. It’s rubbed in the most delicious garlic herb butter that makes the most incredible crust. This is the best way to make prime rib for your Christmas dinner!
Sous Vide Prime Rib
This is seriously the best ever way to cook a prime rib! The delicious, gorgeous seared bark on this sous vide prime rib is flavored with a homemade garlic herb butter that is truly next level delicious. The inside is just melt-in-your-mouth tender. Then you pair it with some easy au jus and creamy horseradish sauce and all of a sudden you have a restaurant quality meal for a fraction of the price.
My favorite part is the sous vide prime rib roast makes perfect prime rib, every single time, with basically no effort. You don’t have to worry about overcooking, and there’s a nice time buffer so it’s easy to time a perfectly cooked holiday roast with all of the other dishes you’re cooking.
Sous vide is a French term that literally means “under vacuum.” It’s a cooking method where food is sealed in a plastic bag or vacuum sealer bag with all the air removed, and then cooked in a water bath at a precise temperature. This technique is super popular among chefs and home cooks for its ability to cook meats, like our prime rib, to a very precise level of doneness, which completely eliminates all the guesswork.
Our sous vide prime rib recipe is cooked to a medium rare temp, achieving that perfect balance between a juicy interior and a beautiful seared crust. And speaking of crust, this recipe doesn’t stop at the sous vide. After the prime rib has reached the perfect internal temperature, it’s time for the oven seared finish. It’s a quick finishing step, but it takes your prime rib from delicious to unforgettable.
Prime Rib Roast: This cut of beef comes from the rib section and is known for its marbling and tenderness. When shopping for a prime rib roast, look for one with a rich red color and plenty of marbling. The marbling will melt and baste the meat while it cooks, leading to a juicier, more flavorful roast.
Kosher Salt: Kosher salt dissolves well and its larger grains allow for better control when seasoning. Since it’s less salty than table salt, it makes it easier to season the entire prime rib without making it overly salty.
Black Pepper: Black pepper brings a slight heat and depth to the flavor profile. Freshly ground black pepper is the best choice because it’s more flavorful than already ground black pepper.
Unsalted Butter: Unsalted butter adds a richness and creaminess to the prime rib. It’s the base for our herb mixture. Since the prime rib is already salted, it’s best to use unsalted butter so that you don’t run the risk of the prime rib becoming overly salty.
Fresh Rosemary and Thyme: Rosemary and thyme infuse the butter with their fresh, aromatic, earthy flavors. When shopping for fresh herbs, look for bright, vibrant leaves.
Garlic: Fresh minced garlic adds a punch of flavor that compliments the richness of the beef and the freshness of the herbs. Always choose firm, plump garlic cloves. Avoid any that are soft, shriveled, or beginning to sprout.
- Don’t have fresh herbs? Dried herbs can be a great alternative. Just remember to use less because dried herbs are 3 times more potent.
- If you’re looking to experiment with flavors, try adding other herbs or spices to your butter mixture, like sage or a hint of cayenne pepper for a bit of heat.
How To Make Sous Vide Prime Rib
Prepare the Prime Rib: Start by patting your prime rib roast dry. Season it liberally with salt and pepper. Allow it to rest in the fridge for a minimum of an hour, but preferably overnight. (See the recipe card below for the full printable instructions.)
Preheat Your Sous Vide Machine: When you’re ready to cook, take the prime rib out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature. Preheat your sous vide machine to your desired doneness level.
Prepare the Prime Rib for Sous Vide: Place the prime rib inside a vacuum-seal bag or a zip-top bag. If you’re using a Ziploc bag, use the water displacement method.
Cook the Prime Rib: Once the sous vide reaches the set temperature, submerge the bagged prime rib, making sure it’s fully immersed, and cook until it’s completely cooked through and tender.
Prepare the Herb Butter: While the prime rib is cooking, mix together the softened butter, chopped rosemary, thyme, and minced garlic. Cover it and let it rest so the butter can infuse with the fresh herbs and garlic.
Preheat Your Oven: About twenty minutes before you’re done cooking the prime rib, preheat your oven for the searing process.
Prepare the Prime Rib for Searing: Remove the prime rib from the bag and pat it dry (if you’re going to make au jus, be sure to save the juices). Apply your fresh herb butter mixture to the entire surface of the prime rib, making sure all sides are well coated.
Sear the Prime Rib: Place the prime rib onto a wire rack placed in a cast iron skillet or on a baking sheet. Sear it in the hot oven until a golden-brown crust forms.
Rest the Prime Rib: After searing, remove the prime rib from the oven, tent it with aluminum foil, and let it rest.
Serve the Prime Rib: Slice the prime rib against the grain and serve it with creamy horseradish sauce or au jus. Enjoy! See the recipe card below for the full written instructions, including ingredient amounts, and helpful tips, etc.
- Use Enough Seasoning: Don’t skimp on the seasoning. Salt and pepper bring out the natural flavors of the beef, so don’t be shy in using them.
- Give it More time: Resting the prime rib in the fridge after seasoning allows the salt to penetrate the meat, enhancing its flavor.
- Make sure your roast is dry before searing: This helps achieve a beautiful, flavorful crust.
- Rest After Searing: This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the roast, keeping it moist and flavorful.
How Long Does It Take To Sous Vide A Prime Rib?
Sous viding a prime rib can take quite a bit of time, but the results are so worth it. The exact time depends on the size of your roast and your preferred level of doneness. The process can take anywhere from 8-12 hours.
Is It A Good Idea To Sous Vide A Prime Rib?
Yes! Sous vide cooking is a fantastic way to prepare prime rib. It allows for precise temperature control, that makes sure your roast is cooked to your perfect level of doneness. Because it cooks slowly over a long period, the meat becomes incredibly tender and flavorful.
Should I Sear Prime Rib Before Sous Vide?
It’s up to you. You can sear it twice if you have the time for a better end result. The first sear will impart the flavor of the Maillard reaction, but it isn’t necessary. I find that only searing it after sous viding gives amazing results and saves time. Both options give a beautiful, flavorful crust without overcooking the inside.
Is Sous Vide Prime Rib Better Than Reverse Seared Prime Rib?
Both methods are great, but what sets sous vide prime rib apart is its precision. The sous vide method allows you to cook the prime rib to the exact temperature you want, resulting in perfectly cooked meat every time. Reverse searing can also yield excellent results, but it requires a bit more skill to hit that perfect doneness.
Should I Season A Roast Before Sous Vide?
Yes, seasoning your roast before sous viding is a great idea. This allows the salt to penetrate deep into the meat, enhancing its flavor from the inside out. I like seasoning the prime rib with salt and pepper and letting it rest in the fridge for at least an hour, but it’s even better when it has a chance to season overnight.
Can You Sous Vide Prime Rib Too Long?
Since prime rib is already marbled and tender, the meat can become mushy if you’re cooking for longer than 12 hours at a high temperature. So, it’s best to follow the recommended cooking times for the best texture.
Can You Refrigerate Sous Vide Meat Before Searing?
Yes, you can refrigerate sous vide meat before searing. Chilling the meat can make it easier to sear without overcooking the interior. Just make sure to pat it dry before searing to get the perfect crust.
Can You Sous Vide A Roast For 24 Hours?
I wouldn’t recommend sous viding prime rib for 24 hours. It’s already a tender cut of meat and doesn’t need to sous vide for that long. Sous viding for 24 hours works better for roasts that are a bit leaner and tougher and need to break down more. It works better for cuts like chuck roast, eye of round roast, top round roast, sirloin tip roast, or rump roast.
Is Sous Vide Prime Rib Good?
Yes! Sous vide prime rib is so incredibly tender, juicy and delicious. With the herb butter we’re using and oven searing finish, you’ll have a meal that’s mouthwatering.
Is A Standing Rib Roast The Same As Prime Rib?
Yes, a standing rib roast is essentially the same as a prime rib. Both terms refer to a roast from the rib section of the beef. The term “standing” simply means that the roast is cooked standing on the rib bones.
Can I Use a Different Cut of Meat for This Recipe?
Yes, you can use a different cut of meat for this recipe. However, keep in mind that prime rib is known for its rich marbling and tenderness, which makes it perfect for this cooking method. If you use a leaner cut, you may need to sous vide it for longer for it to turn out well.
Can I Cook the Prime Rib in the Oven Instead of Sous Vide?
Yes! You can get similar results by roasting in the oven. Roast your seasoned prime rib at a low temperature until it reaches your desired level of doneness, then crank up the heat at the end to get that beautiful, flavorful crust. Just follow the instructions on this boneless prime rib recipe for perfect results!
What Side Dishes Pair Well with Prime Rib?
I like pairing this dish with roasted baby potatoes, mashed potatoes, steamed vegetables, a fresh salad, or even some creamy Velveeta mac and cheese. For a classic combination, try it with Yorkshire pudding and creamy horseradish sauce.
How Do I Store Leftover Prime Rib?
Leftover prime rib should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator and eaten within 3 days. When reheating, reheat it gently at a lower temperature so you don’t overcook the meat.
Can the Herb Butter Be Made in Advance?
Yes, the herb butter can be made up to a week in advance. Simply prepare it following the recipe card instructions, then cover and refrigerate until you’re ready to use it. Just let it come to room temperature so that it’s spreadable before applying it to the roast.
Can I Use Dried Herbs Instead of Fresh?
Yes, if fresh herbs aren’t available, you can use dried herbs. They’re more concentrated though, so use about a third of the amount called for in the recipe.
Keep In Touch
I’d love to hear what you thought of this recipe in the comments or on Instagram! @KeyToMyLime #KeyToMyLime
If you like this recipe, be sure to check out all of our other beef recipes. Some reader favorites are:
- Creamy Horseradish Sauce
- Au Jus Recipe
- Boneless Prime Rib Recipe
- Prime Rib Rub Recipe
- Air Fryer Prime Rib
- Bottom Round Roast
- Top Round Roast
- Instant Pot Frozen Roast
- 5-6 pound prime rib roast (boneless or bone-in, see notes)*
- 1 Tablespoon Kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons coarse black pepper
Garlic and Herb Butter:
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 3 Tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- 3 Tablespoons fresh thyme, finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- Pat the prime rib roast dry using paper towels. Season it liberally with the Kosher salt and black pepper. Allow the seasoned prime rib to rest in the refrigerator uncovered for a minimum of 1 hour, but preferably overnight.
- When you’re ready to cook the roast, remove the prime rib from the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature for about 30 minutes. Prepare your water and preheat your sous vide machine to 132°F-134°F (depending on doneness preference). The prime rib in the photos was cooked at 134°F, which is between medium-rare and medium, 132°F will be more truly medium-rare.
- Place the prime rib inside a vacuum-seal bag or a zip-top bag. If using a Ziploc bag, use the water displacement method (slowly submerge the bag into the water to allow the air to leave without allowing any water to get inside the bag, then seal the bag closed).
- Once the sous vide reaches the set temperature, submerge the bagged prime rib, making sure it's fully immersed. Cook for 8-10 hours.
- While the prime rib is cooking, combine the softened butter, chopped rosemary, thyme, and minced garlic. Mix until all ingredients are well incorporated, cover, and let it rest to allow the butter to infuse with the fresh herbs and garlic.
- About 20 minutes before you’re finished cooking the prime rib with the sous vide, preheat your oven to 500°F.
- Remove the prime rib from the bag and pat it dry with paper towels (if you’re going to make au jus, be sure to save the juices).
- Apply the fresh butter herb mixture to the entire surface of the prime rib, making sure all sides and the nooks and crannies are well coated. Be careful moving the prime rib around at this point, the roast is very tender!
- Place the prime rib onto a wire rack placed in a cast iron skillet or on a baking sheet and sear in the hot oven for 8-10 minutes, or until a golden-brown crust forms. Monitor it closely to make sure it doesn't overcook.
- Carefully remove it from the oven, tent it with aluminum foil, and let it rest for about 10-15 minutes.
- Slice against the grain, serve with creamy horseradish sauce or this delicious au jus, and enjoy!
*I prefer using a boneless prime rib for this recipe because it’s easier to vacuum seal it.
Allowing the roast to season overnight provides deep seasoning.
Applying the butter and herb mix just before searing ensures a fresh garlic flavor and helps achieve a flavorful crust during the searing phase.
Storage: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Reheating: Reheat slices in a warm oven (around 250°F) until just heated through.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 341Total Fat: 18.2gCarbohydrates: 3.4gFiber: 0.8gSugar: 0gProtein: 40.7g
Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.
Try making this delicious sous vide prime rib for your special holiday dinner! Your family will definitely be back for seconds.