Prime Rib vs Ribeye: Choices, Choices

prime rib and ribeyeSo many cuts, so little time! Here at Steak University, we know how confusing it can be to learn the differences between the many cuts of steak out there. That’s why we’re dedicated to making the learning process as simple as possible for you by comparing some of the most popular cuts of steak so you don’t have to. This brings us to prime rib vs ribeye: two amazingly delicious cuts that are must-haves on any steak menu.

What is the Difference Between Prime Rib and Ribeye Steak?

One of the things that we get asked often is, “Is prime rib and ribeye the same thing?”. Our answer? Yes and no. Unlike some of the other steak cuts we prepare, prime rib roast and ribeye are actually from the same cut of beef. Their main differences lie in the way they’re prepared. So, let’s dig a little deeper to find out why these cuts have different names.

What is Ribeye and Where Does it Come From?

RibeyeYou may see ribeye referred to in several ways, like ribeye or rib eye and rib steak. Don’t get too hung up on the names; the ribeye has many but they all generally refer to the same cut. This cut comes from the rib area of the animal, hence the “rib” portion of its name. The cut is from the rib roast, which usually includes rib bone. But, to become a ribeye cut, the bone is usually removed before cooking, leaving the tender, flavorful part to enjoy.

What is Prime Rib and Where Does It Come From?

rib_roastThe prime roast comes from the same part of the animal the ribeye does: the rib area. So, is prime rib ribeye? Not quite. Ribeye and prime roast may come from the same cut of beef, but the ribeye is cut from that rib section before it’s cooked. In contrast, the prime rib is cut from the full rib roast after it’s cooked. Is rib roast the same as prime roast or ribeye? Again, no. But, both the ribeye and prime rib are cut from the rib roast. Prime ribeye steak cuts are larger than ribeye cuts since they include the ribeye and, usually, the bone.

Cost of Prime Roast vs Ribeye Steak

Now that you know the difference between the prime roast and ribeye, let’s take a look at the pricing. Basically, this comes down to the type of cut, since ribeye and prime rib can be cut a few different ways. Ribeyes can be bone-in or boneless, with boneless cuts generally being more expensive per pound. Prime rib usually includes the full roast, which you can make prime rib cuts yourself. The roast is usually more per pound than ribeye steaks because it’s a larger cut. However, if you get pre-cut steaks, you may end up paying a bit more for prime rib steaks because they have more meat than a ribeye.

Prime Rib Verses Ribeye: Cooking Differences

Is ribeye roast the same as prime roast for cooking’s sake? It can be, but it depends on the way in which the ribeye and prime rib are cut.

Ribeye is generally cooked like a steak. That means you can grill it or pan-fry it to your heart’s content. A prime rib, on the other hand, can refer to either the full roast or a prime rib steak. Treat the steak cut as a steak by cooking it with your preferred method.

A roast is different, though. You’ll want to make sure your roast is completely thawed and seasoned before attempting to roast it in the oven or grill it. Steak University offers easy instructions for roasting or grilling a prime rib roast.

Wrapping it Up: Difference Between Prime Rib and Ribeye

We hope we’ve answered your questions about the difference between ribeye and prime rib. These particular cuts can be a bit confusing to understand because they’re often spoken about as two completely different cuts. In reality, they come from the same part of the cow, but their specific cuts are different and their preparation is different. Ribeye gives you the best part of the cut in a smaller portion; the prime roast gives you a larger cut that contains the ribeye area as well. Both are incredible cuts you’ll want in your steak arsenal. Check out Chicago Steak Company’s Ribeyes and Bone-In Heart of Rib Roast.