Sous vide prime rib removes all of the guesswork from preparing the perfect prime rib roast.
The most succulent and juicy roast beef is surrounded by a herb crust and cooked to your desired doneness.
This amazing cut of meat, also known as a standing rib roast, boneless rib roast, or ribeye roast, is usually reserved for special occasions such as Christmas dinner or an anniversary meal, but any occasion is a good occasion to have an amazing dinner.
WHY SOUS VIDE WORKS FOR THIS RECIPE?
- The beauty of sous vide is that you can find the right combination of temperature and time, as well as the cut of meat prepared exactly how you like it. Although 18 hours is probably too long for some people, I had the time to wait.
- If I had been pressed for time, I would have gone with a shorter cooking time, such as 8 hours, but the meat would have been more fatty.
- My family dislikes fat in meat but enjoys the flavor of the meat when it is sous vide in the renderings. You do you, as the kids say.
WHAT IS SOUS VIDE?
Sous vide is essentially a method of cooking that employs an immersion circulator.
This immersion circulator circulates water in a temperature-controlled water bath at a specific temperature to ensure that your food is perfectly cooked every time.
Because the temperature does not change and your meat (or dessert, vegetables, etc.) remains at the same temperature, the risk of overcooking is greatly reduced.
WHAT IS A RIB ROAST?
A rib roast, also known as a prime rib roast or standing rib roast, is a rich and tender cut of beef that comes from the cow’s rib section and is usually well-marbled.
The bone-in prime rib roast is our preference, but boneless is also available. The bone-in option is unquestionably more tender and flavorful.
TO SMOKE OR SOUS VIDE FIRST?
There’s a lot of debate about whether you should cook the meat sous vide first or smoke it first. Both sides have valid points to make and reasons for doing things the way they do.
Raw meat absorbs more smoke and forms bark more easily than cooked meat, which is why it should be smoked first.
That, however, will be washed away (along with a lot of the smoke flavor) as it cooks in the water bath inside a vacuum-sealed bag.
My preferred method is to sous vide the meat first, then smoke it. Cooking sous vide first ensures that it is perfectly cooked, fully chilled, and left wet, ready to attract flavorful smoke. Every time I’ve tried it, the outcome has been fantastic.
People will sometimes smoke, sous vide, and then smoke again.
This is completely unnecessary and requires far more effort than it is worth. Especially since one of the benefits of sous vide is that it is mostly hands-off.
HOW LONG DO YOU SOUS VIDE A PRIME RIB?
The thickness of the cut of beef will determine how long to sous vide prime rib. Measure the thickest part of the meat and allow at least an hour for each thickness.
Keep in mind that a piece of meat’s length is not the same as its thickness.
I say a minimum because the beauty of sous vide cooking is that you don’t lose any moisture from the beef due to cooking in a food-safe bag, and the longer you cook it, the more tender it becomes.
This is a boneless rib roast that is 4 inches thick. I cooked it for 18 hours to give the connective tissues more time to break down and the fat to render out completely.
I would have cooked this piece for 6 hours if you like your prime rib to have more marbling and the fat ring to be defined.
WHAT TEMPERATURE DO YOU SOUS VIDE PRIME RIB?
Whatever temperature you set your sous vide to will determine the doneness of your piece of beef from edge to edge, regardless of thickness.
My family prefers prime rib cooked to a temperature of 135 degrees Fahrenheit.
|Doneness for Prime Rib||F||C|
|Well Done||160||71 and up|
HOW TO PRE SEAR THE ROAST?
I love pre-searing beef before putting it in the sous vide bath. Instead of trussing the meat, the searing gives it a bit of a crust to keep it together.
As the meat cooks in its own juices in the sous vide bag, the caramelization of the proteins will add flavor.
This step is entirely optional, but I recommend you try it at least once so you understand the difference between pre-searing and not pre-searing.
In a small mixing bowl, combine:
- melted butter
- powdered garlic
- Allow an hour for the meat to come to room temperature.
- To remove excess moisture, pat the meat dry with paper towels.
- Spread the seasoned butter mixture evenly over the beef on all sides.
- Heat a heavy bottomed or cast iron pan until it begins to smoke.
- Place the roast, cut side down, in the hot pan and sear for 2-3 minutes, or until it turns a deep golden brown caramel color.
- Sear the meat on all sides, rotating the searing side 90 degrees with each flip.
HOW TO SOUS VIDE A BONELESS RIB ROAST?
- Herbed butter should be used to coat the meat.
- In a cast-iron skillet, sear the meat.
- Heat the sous vide machine to the temperature you desire.
- Vacuum and seal the beef in a sous vide vacuum bag with a vacuum sealer, or use the water displacement method to force the air out of the bag.
- If the bag is not heat sealed, use a clip to secure it to the container’s side.
- Cook for 6 to 18 hours, depending on the tenderness desired.
- Remove from the water bath after the cook.
- Open the bag and strain the juices into a clean container. Set aside to make a sauce.
- Reheat the cast iron skillet until it is smoking hot.
- Using paper towels, pat the meat dry.
- Sear for 1-2 minutes on all sides to give the meat a crust.
- Served sliced.
HOW TO REHEAT PRIME RIB?
Slowly heating the prime rib prevents it from overcooking or drying out.
Remember to save some of the cooking bag juices for reheating the meat if you remember. If you can avoid it, don’t slice all of the prime rib if you intend to reheat leftovers.
SOUS VIDE METHOD
Place the leftover roast and any saved au jus in a gallon-sized ziploc bag and lower the bag into the sous vide water bath, allowing the pressure of the water to press out the air in the bag.
Attach the bag to the container’s side. Make sure the water container is large enough to submerge the meat by 1 inch.
Set your temperature to the original sous vide setting. Allow the cold water to slowly warm up, and the internal temperature of the meat will rise along with it.
Heat for an additional 30 minutes after the water has reached temperature.
Cook for 20 to 30 minutes, depending on the size of the piece, in a preheated 300-degree oven. Wrap a piece of foil around the meat and drizzle with au ju or beef broth to keep the moisture in.
- Plan ahead and season ahead of time, then cook sous vide a day before smoking and serving. Simply store it in the refrigerator, vacuum-sealed.
- If the rib roast is too large to fit in your bags, cut it in half. If you want different levels of doneness, you can cook each piece separately (e.g., one medium-rare and one medium).
- Purchase a whole rib roast (usually cheaper per pound). Divide it into steaks of varying thicknesses and a large portion for your prime rib. Freeze what you don’t need and put the rest away for later.
- Slicing – Because this is likely for a special occasion, you want a healthy portion, and a little thicker is better (12″ to 34″ thick) and always against the grain (across the roast).
Frequently Asked Questions
What cut of meat is the prime rib?
A prime rib is a cut of beef from a steer’s primal rib in the front forequarter. A full rib section will have ribs numbered six through twelve, and a standing rib roast may have two to seven of those rib bones. The rib portion of a boneless rib roast has been removed.
What is a reverse sear?
When I mention reverse sear, I’m referring to the process of searing meat after it has been cooked sous vide. A steak is traditionally seared over high heat and then cooked until the desired internal temperature is reached.
Can you overcook prime rib when cooking it sous vide?
In the traditional sense, you can’t overcook it. It will not cook past the temperature of your water bath, but it will become more tender. However, if you cook it for a day or more, it will become mushy.
Do I need to rest the prime rib?
The sous vide prime rib does not need to be rested once it has been removed from the smoker, but it must be completely chilled before smoking.