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How To Make A Perfect Rare Beef Roast

January 25, 2014

Finding the correct cooking times for a rare roast can be such a headache when so many recipes over complicate things that should be very straight forward by trying to apply their own gourmet spin.

Below I have outlined an incredibly simple way to make a perfect rare roast beef and I have included serving suggestions to help you on your way to a fabulous meal.

The best thing about making a rare roast, even if you don’t have a big family or if you live alone is that you can eat the leftovers for days as they are delicious warm or cold.

Rare Beef Fact:

A solid cut of beef will have bacteria growing on the outside because that is the part that has been exposed to the air.

The inside of the (unpunctured) beef is perfectly sealed muscle tissue. This is why you can safely enjoy a rare steak or a rare roast as long as the outside has been sufficiently cooked or seared.

This is not true for Poultry or Pork.

Though many people do enjoy a medium cooked burger, minced beef that hasn’t been thoroughly cooked is likely to make you unwell due to it being mushed. As soon as a cut of beef stops being whole, every part of its surface has the potential to be crawling with microscopic beasties.


Beef Roast

Gel stock cube or olive oil

Herbs and spices for crust



Remove the roast from the refrigerator and leave the packaging on for 1 hour before you prep so that it’s not freezing cold when it goes into the oven. Use common sense though, if it’s the peak of summer and your house is outrageously hot it’s probably not a good idea to leave a lovely raw roast out on the counter.

This (pictured) is a silver-side roast. It is a solid hunk of meat and it’s beautifully marbled (that’s referring to the fat stripes throughout the cut). It also has a nice piece of fat on the top and the bottom which will help to keep the roast nice and juicy.

You can trim the fat off after the roast is cooked if you want to but I would strongly recommend that you leave it on while it’s cooking.

Remove any netting or ties, they’re only really necessary if the cut of meat is rolled into a roast shape and if that’s the case you can’t really cook it rare safely anyway because there would be surface area potentially crawling with beasties tucked inside.


Gel stock cubes or “stock pots” are readily available in the UK. I’m not too sure about how easy they are to get a hold of in the states, however you can substitute the stock pot with some olive oil easily enough. Or even a normal stock cube mashed into some olive oil.

The idea is to massage the gel or oil (with your hands, gloves optional) all over the roast so that it’s completely coated. This layer provides seasoning as well as something for your crust to stick to.

The crust is composed of herbs and spices and will serve to further season the meat.

I made my crust for this roast out of cracked black pepper, garlic pepper, garlic granules, paprika, mustard powder and onion granules. To be honest, I wing the crust every time, it’s an adventure and it’s really up to you what sort of spices you put in your crust. I always encourage people to be inventive and to use my recipes as a starting point, however I suggest that there is plenty of cracked black pepper in there because it compliments the meat really well.

You’ll need more or less dry seasoning depending on the size of your roast. Just enough to lightly coat the surfaces. You’ll massage it into the meat (top and bottom) the same way that you applied gel or oil.


Putting the roast on a rack over a sheet pan will ensure that it’s getting evenly cooked all around.

The photo above is of the roast after it’s been coated with a Rich Beef Stock Pot (Knorr brand – very dark in color) and the spice crust that was pictured previously.

The oven must be preheated (very important) to 220c (420f) before the roast goes in and you will leave it in at this temperature for 15 minutes. After the 15 minutes are up turn down the heat to 180c (350f) and leave for another 25-30 minutes if the roast is Between 2 and 3 pounds…After much experimenting I discovered that if the roast is under 2 pounds you may need to reduce the cooking time, however if it is over 2 pounds but is still relatively long and thin the cooking time will remain the same.



Once the roast is finished cooking, remove it from the oven and allow the meat to rest.

You will notice that between the pictures of the roast pre cooked and post cooked, it’s tightened up a fair bit. You need to allow the meat an opportunity to relax.

As difficult as it may be to restrain yourself, do NOT cut into it for at least 15-20 minutes after it comes out of the oven because as soon as you poke it or cut it the juices will squirt out due to the muscle fibers being so tense and that means that you’re losing a lot of juiciness and flavor which could have been salvaged and that would be tragic.


When you do slice up the roast cut against the grain of the meat. You’ll notice in this photo, the meat fibers are running downward, therefore the slices run across the opposite direction.

The slices of meat more toward the center of the roast will look more red but they aren’t raw, they’re just extremely rare… and wonderful.

Another Rare Beef Fact:

It annoys me to no end when people say they can’t stand rare beef because it’s bloody.

The red liquid that comes out of a rare roast is not blood. Remember, this is a lump of muscle you’re cutting into, not a vein. The liquid is basically the inside of the muscle cells. As you sever the tissue, the fluid spills out and it’s DELICIOUS.

I know that this little tid bit probably won’t make rare beef anymore attractive or appetizing to people who are already visually put off by it, however it needed to be said.


Serving Suggestions: 

If you want to eat this warm you should eat it straight out of the oven, (after it rests of course) because if you reheat it you’ll be cooking the meat. I personally absolutely love it cold on top of salad!

1. Slice and serve fresh out of the oven with a nice red wine gravy, roasted potatoes and green vegetables.

2. Serve on top of a colorful fresh salad warm or chilled.

3. Cube and serve on top of pasta with a cream based onion and garlic sauce.

4. Chill and slice for sandwiches.


From → Main Courses, Recipes

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