How to cook a roast to meduim rare

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 22, 2013 at 4:09 AM

How do I cook a roast to medium rare? I roasted a cross rib roast for dinner this evening, and though the meat thermometer said it was ready, when we cut it open, is was all red and bloody and so rare it was practically mooing at us, and nobody thought it was safe so we put it back in the oven. How can I roast a roast to rare or medium rare safely?



on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

what temperature did the meat thermometer say? Position of the meat thermometer is critical. Deep into the muscle, away from fat or bone. Also remember to foil tent your roast and let it sit for 15-20 minutes. It will continue to cook after it is removed from the over. This will also help the muscle re-absorb the juices.


on April 22, 2013
at 04:52 PM

@Matt I've seen other people ask cooking questions here on PH



on April 22, 2013
at 12:48 PM

I thought PH was paleohacks, not cooking-basics hacks. :)

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6 Answers

best answer


on April 22, 2013
at 12:46 PM

For a beef roast, 120-125F is rare. So you cook it until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the roast reads about this temp, then take it out. The temp will move up 5-10 more degrees as it rests. You should always rest the roast 10-15 minutes before cutting it, or all of the juices will escape.

Rare meat means just barely not raw, it will be very pink and a bit chewy. If you don't really want rare (it sounds like you might not) then wait until the temp is about 130-135 before taking it out. Note that the rarest part will be the middle and the sides of course will be more done, so if some people like rare and some don't then you'd be fine.

When taking the temperature, try several different spots, because if the end of the thermometer is in fat or next to bone you won't get a good reading. A rib roast usually has a cylinder of meat running through it and it should be easy enough to hit that spot. Also if you leave the thermometer in the meat while it's in the oven it can mess up the reading, so I would check it by taking the temp and removing the thermometer.

If you do this often it is worth spending a few extra dollars on an instant-read thermometer, they are usually battery powered and will give a reading in a few seconds, rather than the mechanical ones that need to sit in the roast for a while before they give a reading.



on April 22, 2013
at 11:38 AM

I found this method on the net some time ago, and it's always worked out for me.

  • Preheat oven to 500F
  • Calculate initial cook time: Roast weight in lbs * 7 = initial cook time minutes
  • When oven heated, lower to 475, and cook roast for initial cook time minutes
  • When the timer goes off, turn off the oven, but do not open the door
  • Let the roast sit in the hot even for 2 - 2.5 hours.

You should have a perfect medium rare roast. Super easy, too - just don't open that door early!


on April 22, 2013
at 05:03 AM

It was safe. For beef, you just need to cook the surface unless it's ground. My best guess is that your thermometer is broken, or you aren't positioning it properly. What I do is sear the outside, then put it in covered to a 300 degree oven. Read up on suggestions of cook time per pound. Usually, for the last half an hour I uncover it. Generally, I can just tell by looking at it if it's done, but I like really rare meat. Rest assured though, it was safe to eat.



on April 22, 2013
at 12:07 PM

Another problem, even if you are using the thermometer, is that ovens don't cook evenly. Make sure you rotate the meat a few times so that there isn't that one quarter that never gets enough heat.



on April 22, 2013
at 10:15 AM

Use a very low temperature and a loooooooong time. With a good precision thermometer.


on April 22, 2013
at 04:42 AM

We ran into the same issue when we started serving our Top Round Roast. We found two solutions that worked. First, you have to let the roast sit AT LEAST 10 minutes out of the oven without touching it. The meat is still cooking while out of the oven. Second, we used to cook our roasts on a turkey rack and they were quite good (we now have an all-glass policy and use a different technique). But with the rack, the trick was to massage the outside thoroughly with canola oil and our house seasonings, which hardened and created a sort of shell sealing in all the juices, so we could cook it longer without drying it out. I don't think Paleo Dieters use canola oil, but I'm sure any shortening or whatever you prefer will work just the same. Give it a try and let us know!

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