Cooking Perfect Roast Beef

There is no better known British meal than Roast Beef and Yorkshire Puddings it is the national dish of Great Britain and loved by almost everyone. Cooking the perfect roast beef is not that difficult, just follow the tips and recipe below.

First, you need to choose your beef, now how much you need, easily figure out the cooking times and temperatures, cook, rest and serve. It really is that simple.

Choosing the Beef

Cooking perfect roast beef

The best joints for perfect roast beef are either a Rib of Beef, a Sirloin or a Fillet. Rib works well as usually it will be cooked on the bone as keeping the bone in makes for a tastier piece of beef when cooked but both Sirloin and Fillet are also very good.
The beef should be:

Dark in colour – means the meat is well hung and mature.

A thick covering of fat which adds flavour and prevents the joint from drying out during cooking. This layer can be removed before serving so no need to worry too much about excess fat.

Marbling: Marbling is small slivers of fat running through the flesh which again adds flavour and prevents drying out during cooking.

How Much to Buy

2.5kg bone in will feed 6

1.5kg boned will feed 6

Don’t worry about buying too much. Cold roast beef is fab in sandwiches or added to a plate of cold cuts.

How to Cook Perfect Roast Beef

The beef should always be at room temperature.

Stand the beef joint in a roasting tin, season generously with salt and pepper then cook to the temperature and time below depending on how you like your beef cooked.

Cooking Times and Temperatures

Start the beef in a very hot oven 220°C/425°F/Gas 7 for the first 30 mins then lower the temperature to 190°C/375°F/Gas5 for the remaining cooking time based on how you like your beef when cooked.

Rare – 11 mins per 450g 

Medium – 14 mins per 450g 

Well done – 16 mins per 450g 

Based on normal convection ovens. You may want to adjust for a fan oven according to your manufacturer’s instructions.

Another way to work out the cooking time is to use a meat thermometer pushed into the thickest part of the beef.

60°C – rare

70°C- medium

80°C- well done

Rest, Rest, Rest

An important part of cooking any meat is once it is removed from the oven the meat must rest. Wrap the meat loosely in aluminium foil and put to one side. The fibres in meat tighten up during cooking and resting allows the fibres to relax, release some of the meat juices (which you must keep for the gravy) and results in a soft tender piece of meat. 20 minutes should be long enough but up to an hour won’t do any harm. The joint is then ready to carve.

Don’t Forget the Gravy