Menu Icon Menu Print Icon Print Email Icon Email Reading List Icon Reading List Product Icon Product Fire Icon Fire Grill guide Icon Grill guide Beef Icon Beef Poultry Icon Poultry Chicken Icon Chicken Pork Icon Pork All Icon All All Icon Spanish All Country Icon Country Seafood Icon Seafood Fruit and Veggies Icon Fruit and Veggies Vegetables Icon Vegetables Hamburger Icon Hamburger Spatula Icon Spatula Thermometer High Icon Thermometer High Thermometer Medium Icon Thermometer Medium Thermometer Low Icon Thermometer Low Tree Icon Tree Nose Icon Nose Picnic Table Icon Picnic Table Smoke Icon Smoke Table Clock Icon Clock Clock 10 Icon Clock 10 Clock 15 Icon Clock 15 Match Icon Match Grill Icon Grill Clean Grill Icon Clean Grill Arm Icon Arm Oven Icon Oven Charcoal Icon Charcoal Charcoalpile Icon Charcoalpile Charcoalpile 2 Icon Charcoalpile 2 Search Icon Search Right Arrow Icon Right Arrow Left Arrow Icon Left Arrow Down Arrow Icon Down Arrow Facebook Icon Facebook Twitter Icon Twitter Instagram Icon Instagram Pinterest Icon Pinterest Google Plus Icon Google Plus Youtube Icon Youtube Cloudy Weather Icon Cloudy Weather Sunny Weather Icon Sunny Weather Snow Weather Icon Snow Weather Rain Weather Icon Rain Weather Partly Cloudy Weather Icon Partly Cloudy Weather Charcoal on fire icon Charcoal on fire
Grilling.com has moved to Kingsford Country. The all-new Kingsford.com features how-tos, recipes, product info and news about the latest in BBQ. Slow down and grill with Kingsford. OK, got it
Skip to content

How to: prime rib

Guide to perfect prime rib on the grill.
  • beef-ribs
  • Cut:Prime Rib
  • When it’s Done:
    • 120°F rare
    • 130°F medium-rare
    • 140°F medium
    • 150°F medium-well

Few foods inspire the “wow” factor like a standing rib roast, aka prime rib. Add to that the deep smoky flavor that is only achievable on the grill and suddenly you’ve got a sure fire hit. It might sound hard, but if you follow these 5 steps, you’ll steal the show.

  1. Selecting prime rib
    1

    Select the Prime Rib: Bone-In or Boneless

    There are two choices when picking a rib roast: bone-in or boneless. A boneless rib roast can lead to easier browning and cooking, but nothing wows like a perfectly cooked bone-in rib roast. As a general rule of thumb, you can expect to feed 2-3 people for each bone on the roast.
  2. Prepping the Prime Rib
    2

    Prepping the Prime Rib

    A big cut of meat can take a lot of seasoning. There are countless beef rubs available, but a simple combination of Kosher salt and ground black pepper will let the beef taste shine. You can add salt up to 24 hours in advance or just season right before putting on the grill.
  3. Prepping Your Grill for Cooking
    3

    Prepping Your Grill for Cooking

    If you’re using a kettle-type grill, use an indirect technique like the 2-zone parallel fire configuration to set up your grill. Be sure to use a drip pan with water directly underneath the meat to stabilize the temperature. For backyard smokers, set it up for a long smoke. Learn more about smoking here. With either method, add 3-4 large wood chunks to the top of the charcoal prior to placing the meat on the smoker or grill.
  4. Cooking the Prime Rib
    4

    Cooking the Prime Rib

    When it comes time to cook the rib roast, place it bone side down directly above the water pan (if using the 2-zone method on a grill), cover with the lid and bring the temperature up to 250 degrees by using the vents to regulate the temperature. Allow the rib roast to smoke until it reaches an internal temperature of 115 degrees for medium-rare or 125 degrees for medium. Remove the rib roast and loosely tent with foil.
  5. Searing the Prime Rib
    5

    Searing the Prime Rib

    Open the smoker or grill vents fully to bring the temperature to 450+F degrees, adding additional charcoal if needed. Place the roast back on the smoker or grill and cook directly over the heat until browned on all sides. Allow the roast to rest for 10-15 minutes before removing the rib bones and slicing the roast.
Never use lumber scraps for smoking. Lumber is often treated with chemicals that can be harmful to you when used in cooking.

There’s a whole universe of rubs out there that you can choose from. Here are a few of our favorite rubs.

You look like someone who loves to grill

Sign up for our mailing list and we’ll send you “show-stopper” grilling ideas and recipes to make your cookouts the talk of the town.

We’ll also share exclusive offers and other great info from Kingsford Charcoal.

Sign up now
Top