Standing Rib Roast With Fig-Port Glaze

Recently I stopped by The Nate Berkus Show to cook up some of my favorite holiday recipes and the episode is airing today!

When they asked what I’d like to cook, a standing rib roast immediately came to mind because it’s a staple at our Christmas table. I’ve been making variations on rib roast for years, even wrapping it in prosciutto when I’m feeling extra indulgent. This year I wanted to make something that was easy to make yet elegant and impressive, and this fig-port glaze perfectly fit the bill.

The key to this roast is that it’s layered with flavor — first with an herb rub and then with the glaze — ensuring that every bite has tons of taste. It’s a behemoth piece of meat but don’t be intimidated because this simple roasting method results in a meltingly tender roast with sweet, earthy flavor that’s sure to steal the holiday spotlight.

For more details be sure to check out today’s episode of The Nate Berkus Show where Nate and I will also be whipping up a Chocolate-Coconut Cream Pie.

Standing Rib Roast With Fig-Port Glaze Recipe

  • Makes 6 to 8 servings servings
  • Total Time: 2 hours 45 mins
  • Hands On Time: 45 mins


  • For the roast:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
  • 6 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning
  • 1 (3 to 4-rib) standing rib roast (about 7 to 8 pounds)
  • For the sauce:
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 cups ruby port
  • 1 cup low-sodium beef broth
  • 1/4 cup fig jam or pear or quince preserves
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


For the roast:

Combine the oil, thyme, garlic, salt, and pepper in a bowl and stir to combine. Pat the roast dry with paper towels then rub the herb mixture all over the roast; set aside at room temperature for 1 hour. (Can be done up to 1 day ahead. Store loosely covered in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature while oven heats, at least 30 minutes).

While roast rests, heat oven to 450°F and arrange rack in lower third. Place roast, bone-side down, in a roasting pan, and roast until the meat is browned, about 25 minutes. Meanwhile, make the sauce.

For the sauce:

Melt butter in large saucepan over high heat. When it foams, add onion, season with salt, and cook until softened. Add port, broth, jam, thyme, and pepper, and bring to a boil. Boil until reduced to 1 1/4 cups, about 15 to 20 minutes. Strain, pressing on solids to extract as much liquid as possible, and discard solids. Reserve half the reduction for serving and half for the glaze. (Can be made up to 2 days ahead. Cool slightly, then cover and refrigerate until ready to use.)

Reduce the oven to 350°F, and continue to cook the roast. Brush the roast with the glaze every 15 minutes and roast until the internal temperature registers 120°F to 125°F for rare or 130°F to 135°F for medium-rare, about 1 more hour. (Be sure the thermometer is exactly in the center of the roast.)

Remove roast from oven and transfer to a cutting board. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and rest for 15 minutes. Remove kitchen string, cut meat off the bones, and carve against the grain into slices. Transfer to a platter and serve sauce on the side.

Beef // Lamb // Pork Entertaining Recipes