Roast beef is a familiar recipe most cooks get wrong. Most recipes rely on a hot oven and the result is a tough, dry roast. In the test kitchen, we’ve developed a unique method that can turn a chewy, tough cut of cheap beef into a succulent and tender centerpiece for the dinner table.
Our recipe is very simple and straightforward, and mostly hands-off. The technique requires a very low oven (225 degrees) to promote the enzymatic breakdown of the muscle fibers within the beef. That breakdown will only happen when the internal temperature of the beef is below 122 degrees. To extend the maximum amount of tenderizing time, we allow the meat to sit in a turned-off oven while it comes up to the desired serving temperature.
Once you master this recipe, you’ll find that other cuts of beef, from top sirloin to the ubiquitous holiday prime rib, also benefit from slow-roasting.