Rock Salt-Encrusted Prime Rib


Moist, juicy, and full of flavor, this rock salt prime rib is one you'll want to try. The thick, salty crust makes a really cool impression on your holiday table, and it comes off easily when it's time to slice and eat the meat. The only drawback I've found is that the drippings are way too salty for au jus or gravy, so make that separately from a store-bought mix. Serve with horseradish sauce.

Prep Time:
30 mins
Cook Time:
3 hrs 15 mins
Additional Time:
50 mins
Total Time:
4 hrs 35 mins


  • 20 pounds standing rib roast (weight with bones), top fat trimmed

  • 2 (1 ounce) packages dry onion soup mix

  • 2 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper

  • 8 cups rock salt

  • 8 cups all-purpose flour

  • 2 tablespoons crushed dried rosemary

  • 2 cups water, or more if needed


  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).

  2. Rinse roast and pat dry with paper towels. Mix soup mix and pepper together in a small bowl; rub generously over all sides of roast. Place roast onto a clean, dry baking sheet; let rest for 30 to 45 minutes.

  3. Mix rock salt, flour, and rosemary together in a bowl. Gradually pour in water and mix by hand (wear gloves if desired) until batter is thick and paste-like, adding more water if necessary.

  4. Spread salt batter into the bottom of a roasting pan to make a 1/2- to 3/4-inch-thick layer; reserve 1 to 2 cups batter. Place roast, with the bones facing down, on batter in the center of the pan. Pull batter up and around roast until meat is completely covered. Pat on extra batter if necessary. Insert an oven-safe meat thermometer into the roast so its gauge will be visible from the front of the oven.

  5. Cook in the preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and patch any holes or breaks in the coating with remaining salt batter.

  6. Return roast to the oven and cook until internal temperature reaches 130 degrees F (54 degrees C), about 3 hours, or to desired doneness. Remove from the oven and let rest until internal temperature reaches 140 degrees F (60 degrees C), 20 to 30 minutes.

  7. Chip off and discard salt crust, then slice and serve.

Editor's Note:

Nutrition data for this recipe includes the full amount of salt crust. The actual amount consumed will vary.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

1554 Calories
115g Fat
42g Carbs
82g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 20
Calories 1554
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 115g 147%
Saturated Fat 47g 235%
Cholesterol 318mg 106%
Sodium 45272mg 1,968%
Total Carbohydrate 42g 15%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Protein 82g
Potassium 1394mg 30%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

You’ll Also Love