The Biggest Mistake You're Making With Your Beef Roast

Roasting a giant hunk of meat in the oven might seem intimidating: The bigger, fancier cuts of meat can be expensive, and since it's not an everyday meal, you might have had less practice. But with the right preparation, roast beef can be one of the savory, meaty joys of holidays and special occasions. It might be time to finally break out that family recipe, especially if you're planning a smaller gathering this year. You're going to nail it.

The pitfalls of roasting meat can be enough to trip anyone up, leaving them with a dry, tough roast — or maybe worse, one that's bland and flavorless. The biggest mistake, however? Not planning ahead. Allow us to explain: According to seasoned (sorry) pros, the key to a tender, juice beef roast is getting the timing right, from the night before to right before going into the oven, and after the beef is done (via Bon Appetit). Regardless of your cut of beef — ribeye, prime rib, bottom round, or sirloin tip — these tricks will ensure the beefiest, best results (via U.S. Wellness Meats).

Stick to a schedule for perfect beef roast results

It's these crucial steps of timing that most often lead home cooks astray: seasoning ahead of time, bringing the beef to room temperature before cooking, and resting a cooked roast. Bon Appetit and Serious Eats say beef should be rubbed liberally with salt and pepper (and any other seasonings) and popped in the fridge overnight — although some chefs think seasoning right before is just as good (via Food & Wine and Delish). This will allow the salt to permeate the inside of the meat and lock in moisture — in addition to lending even, delicious flavor (via Cook's Illustrated) — so build in time to season the beef.

Don't make the mistake of putting beef straight from the fridge into the oven. Again, save extra time to bring the meat to room temperature so it cooks evenly and doesn't add on extra time in the oven. According to Bon Appetit, 1-2 hours on the counter should do the trick. When you roast the meat, don't do it for too long. Roast beef benefits from a crisp exterior and pink interior, which can be achieved with an oven at about 300-325 degrees after searing. Lastly, for the love of meat, please let your roast rest before slicing into it. While 10 minutes might do for a steak, a big cut like roast beef should get about 30 minutes out of the oven to lock in the juices, per Bon Appetit.