Top Round Roast Beef Recipe

sliced top round roast beef on a white platter.

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4.8 from 5 reviews

An easy recipe for top round roast, with a simple rub to enhance the natural flavors of the roast beef. We used a small, two pound roast, but you can increase the cooking time as needed for a larger roast.


  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 2 lbs top round roast beef


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees and take the top round roast out of the refrigerator if you haven’t already, so it begins to come closer to room temperature.
  2. Make the rub: combine the garlic powder, thyme and salt in a small bowl. Place the beef on a work surface. Sprinkle the rub over the meat, and use your hands to spread it evenly over the meat and rub it in. Set the meat aside for about 15 minutes to let the rub absorb into the beef.
  3. Roast on high: put the roast beef on a roasting rack, placed in a roasting pan. Put the beef in the oven and roast at 450 degrees for 15 minutes.
  4. Finish roasting on lower heat: After roasting for 15 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees. Check a two pound roast 35 minutes after lowering the heat (50 minutes total roasting time). For medium rare, you want to be taking the beef out of the oven at around 135 degrees, as the temperature will rise while resting. Roasting time will vary based on heat of your oven and size of your roast. Our small roast came to medium rare after 42 minutes at the lower temp (57 minutes total roasting).
  5. Let the meat rest: Let your top round roast rest on a platter for at least 10 minutes before slicing and serving. This is a good time to make a quick sauce or gravy, if desired.
  6. Serve: After the meat has rested, thinly slice the roast beef. Plate a couple of slices per person. You can serve with a bit of the juice that has accumulated on the platter if you like. Or, serve with a gravy or horseradish cream.


  • Adjusting cooking times: This recipe uses a small, two pound top round roast. Adjust cooking times based on the size of the roast. Cooking the roast for 15 minutes per pound, after dropping the oven temperature to 325, is a good rule of thumb for a medium rare roast. i.e. a 4 lb roast would be 60 minutes at the low temp, 75 minutes total cooking time. Check the internal temperature a bit sooner than that if you like the meat more on the rare side and/or your oven tends to run hot.
  • Similar recipes: We also have a recipe for top round roast beef  if that is the cut that you have. The method is very similar to this one!
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