Roast Beef Dinner (Sunday Roast) is a long time British tradition and the meal that every Brit looks forward to all week.  Perfectly roasted beef served with crispy roast potatoes (roasties), carrots and Yorkshire pudding.

Perfectly cooked roast beef sliced on a cutting board

It’s actually Sunday lunch rather than Sunday dinner

Sunday is the day we eat our big Sunday dinner typically the middle of the day , lunchtime (dinner being lunch where I come from in the North of England, not confusing at all). But for the sake of the title, I called it roast beef dinner.

Sunday is also family day and that is when we would all gather around the table for a roast.

Pouring gravy over sliced roast beef

The side dishes for a Sunday Roast:

Yorkshire Pudding and roasted potatoes (roasties pictured below) are a must (< click links for recipes).  The vegetable is entirely up to you. I like roasted carrots but broccoli, peas or any of your favorite vegetable can be served. Don’t forget the gravy! It’s made in the pan that the beef is roasted in. 

Browned, roasted potatoes in a white oval serving dish

Roast Beef FAQ’s

Why is it called a Sunday roast?

In the days of King Henry VII in 1485 it was considered a celebration. It is eaten on Sundays after church to end the religious fast.

What are the cooking times for roast beef?

Beef temperature roasting temperatures:  
Rare 120-125°F (48-50°C), bright red center
Medium rare 130-135°F (55-58°C) very pink center
Medium, 140-145°F (60-63°C) pink center
Medium well, 150-155°F (66-68°C) light pink center
Well done, 160°F + (71°C +), brown throughout

Growing up, my mum would make a roast that would vary week to week from roast lamb, or beef or pork.  Sundays were my favorite. Mum would put on a Nat King Cole record (yes a vinyl record) and we would get busy in the kitchen.

I remember at a young age, my job was either stirring the gravy, or going to the garden for the fresh mint for the mint sauce when we had roast lamb.

Yorkshire Pudding for Sunday roast

Yorkshire Pudding, or ‘Yorkies’, are an important part of the  Sunday dinner. They are basically made with a simple flour batter (similar to the American popover). The drippings from the beef would be added to a muffin pan and heated in a very high oven until smoking.

The batter is poured into the hot fat and they essentially ‘fry’ in the oven and rise up to light and crispy ‘puddings’.  They have a crevice in the middle which is perfect for pouring in a little bit of delicious beef gravy.

4 Yorkshire pudding on an oval plate

If you like horseradish sauce with your roast beef, I have a delicious homemade recipe for Horseradish Sauce (see picture below).

After trying this homemade creamy horseradish sauce, you will never buy store bought again.  This is a light, tangy, yet cooling sauce that is the perfect accompaniment to any roast beef dish and is really quick and easy to make.

Key tips for roasting beef

There are a few key tips when roasting beef. Letting the beef sit at room temperature before roasting ensures a more tender meat. I like to sear the beef on all sides before putting it in the oven to get a nice browning on the outside.

A meat thermometer is the one of the best kitchen tools when roasting any meat.  

This recipe serves 6 people.

Roast Beef Dinner (Sunday Roast) Leftovers

A couple of my favorite leftover ideas are Mini Roast Beef Yorkshire Pudding Bites (picture below) and the classic Bubble and Squeak Recipe.

Closeup of a mini Yorkshire pudding with roast beef and horseradish cream sauce

Creamy Homemade Horseradish Sauce

After trying this homemade creamy horseradish sauce, you will never buy store bought again.  This is a light, tangy, yet cooling sauce that is the perfect accompaniment to any roast beef dish and is really quick and easy to make.
Yield: 6

Roast Beef Dinner (Sunday Roast)

Sliced roast beef on a serving board

Perfectly roasted beef served with crispy roast potatoes, carrots and Yorkshire pudding.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes


  • For the Yorkshire pudding:
  • ½ cup (74 grams) all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • ½ cup (118 ml) whole milk, slightly warmed
  • 12 teaspoons vegetable oil/lard or fat from beef roast
  • For the beef:
  • 3 pounds (1.4kg) beef rump or round roast , see note
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped
  • For the potatoes:
  • 6 tablespoons vegetable oil, lard or beef fat
  • 6 to 8 yellow or gold potatoes, peeled and cut into wedges
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • For the gravy:
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 yellow onion, cut into thin slices
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups (709 ml) beef broth/stock


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F/200°C.
  2. For the Yorkshire pudding:
  3. To a large bow add the flour and salt. Whisk and slowly drizzle in the milk until there are no lumps. Whisk in the egg. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  4. For the beef:
  5. Coat the beef well with the oil. Sprinkle the salt, pepper and rosemary evenly all over.
  6. Heat a cast iron skillet or oven-proof skillet on the stove top over medium high heat. Sear the beef on all sides. Transfer the beef in the pan or to a roasting dish and place in the oven. Roast the beef 15 minutes per pound for rare and 20 per pound for medium. ** see note
  7. For the potatoes:
  8. While the beef roasts. Add the 6 tablespoons oil/lard or beef fat to a high-sided roasting pan. Place in the oven to heat. Add the potatoes to a large pan and cover with water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 3-4 minutes. You are only par-boiling them. Drain the potatoes into a colander and shake them around. This roughs up the edges and makes them crispy when roasted. Carefully remove the roasting pan with oil from the oven and add the potatoes. Sprinkle evenly with the 1/2 teaspoon salt and turn the potatoes to coat well with the oil and in an even layer. Place back into the oven for 40-45 minutes until golden brown. Turning as necessary to brown all over. They are done when a sharp knife inserts easily. Keep warm covered with foil.
  9. When the beef is done, remove from the roasting pan onto a platter and cover with foil and allow to rest on a cutting board (reserving any fat ) while you make the gravy and Yorkshire pudding.
  10. For the gravy:
  11. To a pan over medium heat and melt the butter. Add the onions and cook until they are softened. Whisk in the flour and cook until it starts to turn a golden color. Whisk in the beef broth/stock until the flour is incorporated and there are no lumps. Simmer until thickened, season with salt and pepper to taste. You can strain the gravy if you wish to remove the onions or any lumps of flour that you can't remove. Keep warm.
  12. For the Yorkshire pudding:
  13. Turn up the oven to 425°F/220 °C. If you have any fat from roasting the beef add that to the lard or vegetable oil to make up 12 teaspoons fat and add 1 teaspoon to each cup of a clean 12-cup muffin pan. Place on the center rack of the oven to heat for 10 minutes. The oil should start to smoke. When ready, slide the oven rack out and carefully pour the Yorkshire pudding batter in each of the cups about 1/3 full. Slide the pan back into the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes until browned and puffed. Do not open the oven door before they are finished baking, they will deflate. Remove immediately from the oven when they are risen and golden.
  14. Slice the beef and serve with the potatoes, your vegeables of choice and Yorkshire pudding. Drizzle with gravy and serve.


*Take the meat out of the refrigerator 1 hour before roasting.

** Internal cooking temperatures:

Rare 120-125 degrees, bright red center
Medium rare 130-135 degrees, very pink center
Medium, 140-145 degrees, light pink center
Medium well, 150-155 degrees, no pink
Well done, 160 + degrees, brown throughout

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 878Total Fat 43gSaturated Fat 10gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 31gCholesterol 106mgSodium 1538mgCarbohydrates 23gFiber 1gSugar 4gProtein 12g

This nutrition calculation is provided by Nutronix that is only a guideline and not intended for any particular diet.