The Best Roast Beef… Ever.

by irene on October 29, 2007

Sirloin Tip Roast

I’ve made a beef roast or two in my time.  My repertoire ranges from a quick yet elegant tenderloin to an extremely slow roasted brisket, braised in a tangy liquidy base.

This weekend I was in the mood for a slow roasted cut of beef.  Not a stringier brisket, and yet not a fattier prime rib.  I headed to the local butcher shop, Kens, in Monona, in search of the perfect cut of meat.  I found a five pound sirloin tip roast and knew that would do the job.

My idea was to roast it like a prime rib – put it in a blazingly hot oven for a short period of time to sear it, then drop it all the way down to around 225 degrees and let it go for a few hours.  In preparation, I did a little bit of searching to see who else in the blogosphere was making their roast beef in that manner.  I found Elise, who is always doing something interesting.  While the method wasn’t quite what I had in mind, she did add an element which I would not have if I had not found her entry.  She put the beef roast directly on the oven rack.

Well, ok, I could add that to the mix easily enough.

And so I pulled the roast beef out of the fridge and let it warm up at room temperature on the counter for about 45 minutes.  I turned the oven on to 500 degrees and let it heat up well in advance.

I cut slits into the roast and studded it with garlic – a trick which I have resorted to often, with good results.  Then I rubbed the roast with rosemary, Penzey’s smoky sea salt, pepper, cumin, and a Penzey’s roast beef seasoning.  It was popped into the very hot oven, which was left at 500 degrees for about 20 minutes.  I had placed a pan on the rack immediately underneath the roast to catch the drippings.  In that pan I placed beef broth, onions, and garlic.

Then I dropped the temperature to 200 degrees and let it go.  Using my temperature probe, I monitored the progress.  After about 3 hours, it began to get up to around 120 degrees.  I had planned on leaving it in for at least 4 hours, and so I turned the oven off completely, without opening the oven door.  This held the oven temperature nicely, and the roast ever so slowly inched its way up to 131 degrees.

As I estimated that my roasted root vegetables would be done shortly, I again turned the oven up high, to about 450 degrees.  The roast temperature rose to 135 degrees.  At that point I pulled it, let it sit a very short amount of time, the sliced it.  I had made a pan gravy from the drippings, broth, onions and garlic that had simmered in the drippings pan, adding some red wine as a finish.

Sliced Roast Beef    Roast Beef

This was perfectly done, melt in your mouth tender, with the best flavor I have ever tasted out of a beef roast, bar none.  This will be repeated, there is no question.

Served alongside roasted root veggies – turnips, potatoes, sweet potatoes and onions, with some cauliflower thrown in for good measure.


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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Recipe Nut April 8, 2008 at 12:12 am

Oh man – this looks good – and I am so hungry right now!

I was just reading that the reason really really slow methods of roasting create that taste and tenderness, as there is a bacterial reaction as the meat goes past room temperature to pretty warm inside, over a long period of time – and that you can in fact mimic the effects of dry aging through this lengthy cooking style.

Looks great anyway!


Dan December 12, 2009 at 1:50 pm

No need to do all this.. Just 500 degrees, 5 minutes per pound.. Shut off oven..leave oven door closed for 2 hrs. DO NOT OPEN.. Roast is done. Medium rare.


Donna December 21, 2010 at 2:48 am

can you do the same if you want to cook 2 10 lbs roast would the timing be the same


Jacki November 14, 2010 at 4:26 pm

This caught my eye , not just because of my search for the best roast beef, but Ken’s. I live in Monona and when I first moved here I asked around for the best butcher and found him. Any meat that you get there is great no matter how you prepare (unless you have no talent at all)
Anyway..I have done the high temp and then turn off oven every year for my prime rib but am going to try this one today to see if there is any difference.


Cindi September 7, 2011 at 9:00 am

Agree with Dan. That’s how I do a sirloin tip roast. I make holes in the roast with a knife before roasting and put in garlic hunks and fresh rosemary with a little olive oil. The key here is to make sure the roast is room temperature. I actually do six minutes per pound. Never open the oven door and let the heat out during that two hour period.


Robert January 11, 2012 at 2:40 pm

Hi, I’ve drooled over this post for far too long now, and have even writtent he recipe down and tucked it into my cookbook. Finally, FINALLY I have gotten around to making it. Picked up at 8 LB sirloin tip at Sam’s for a fantastic price, and yes it is BIG, but if this turns out half as good as promised it will not last long at all. With what litlle remains, I’m imagining packets of sliced beef, in single serving size tucked away in my freezer for lunches later. Thanks for the post!


Danielle March 10, 2012 at 3:49 pm

Cindi or Dan – Do you think it would be necessary to sear the roast first before putting in 500 degree oven? Or does the roast hold it juices very well by doing it the way you both suggested?



Danielle March 10, 2012 at 3:50 pm

How big is your roast in this picture? How many pounds is it?



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