How to Carve a Bone-In Rib-Eye


When you have a choice between buying a bone-in rib-eye roast or a boneless rib-eye roast, always go with the bone-in. The melted marrow and collagen that oozes from the bones during roasting make bone-in rib-eyes taste better. Bone-in rib-eye roasts, better known as prime ribs, contain between two and seven bones, each one usually carved away prior to serving. You get a better yield when you carve using as few knife strokes as possible, and with the cost of prime rib as premium as the meat itself, the proper carving technique belongs in every cook's repertoire.

Things You'll Need

  • Large plate or dish
  • Aluminum foil
  • Cutting board
  • Kitchen towel (optional)
  • Long meat-carving knife
  • Warmed plates
  • Take the rib-eye roast from the oven when it reaches the desired doneness. Remove the roast from the roasting pan and place it on a large plate or dish.

  • Wrap the dish and the roast tightly with aluminum foil and let it rest for 15 minutes per pound. Unwrap the rib-eye roast after the resting period and place it on the cutting board.

  • Grasp the rib bones protruding from the roast and position the roast upright on the cutting board. You can hold the bones with a clean towel in your hand if you like.

  • Position a long meat-carving knife against the rib bones where they meet the fatty lip of the roast. The edge of the knife should be right up against the bones and slightly under the fatty lip.

  • Slice between the rib bones and the meat, holding the knife against the curvature of the bones as you do. You want to cut as close to the bones as possible to avoid cutting into the meat. You should get to the bottom of the bones in about four or five slices if you use a sharp knife and make long slices equal to the length of the blade.

  • Open the rib-eye roast up like a book when you reach the bottom of the bones, pulling the bones to one side and the mass of meat to the other.

  • Position the knife on the seam of connective tissue that connects the bones to the meat. Slice through the connective tissue using long, smooth strokes with the carving knife. The bones and meat will separate. Reserve the bones to nibble on or for use in stock.

  • Position the rib-eye roast with the wide, flat side, or bottom, down on the cutting board and the back of the roast facing you.

  • Hold one end of the roast with one hand to stabilize it against the cutting board. You can also use a carving fork to hold the roast if you like more formal carving presentations.

  • Position the knife at the other end of the roast at the point that you want to cut your first steak. You can cut your rib-eyes as thick or thin as you like. A 1/2-inch-thick slice of rib-eye roast usually weighs around 10 ounces, constituting an average single serving in a restaurant. If you want to cut a 1/2-inch-thick rib-eye, position the knife 1/2 inch inward from the edge of the roast.

  • Slice through the roast crosswise to cut the rib-eyes. Again, use long, smooth strokes, utilizing the entire length of the blade. A general rule of meat slicing is, "the fewer cuts, the better."

  • Place the rib-eye you just cut on a warmed plate for holding while you slice the remainder of the roast. Continue slicing the roast to the desired thickness.

Tips & Warnings

  • Never give your dog a cooked rib-eye bone to gnaw on or any cooked bone for that matter. Cooked bones are brittle and splinter easily, and they can cause a host of problems with your dog's digestive system.

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