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Christmas Roast from Costco

About 12-15 of us will be gathering for our Christmas Day repast and I have been assigned the "Roast Beast." It will be coming from costco for various and sundry reasons. Do I buy one of those huge hunks of meat in the chest coolers or do I buy something less massive (and presumably more costly but more delicious???) from the actual meat counter.

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  1. Simple, get a sanding rib roast, plus it practically cooks itself. You may wish to contact Costco where you can order a larger size roast for your crowd.

    1. Look for a larger, whole ribeye loin. By larger, I mean >12#. Something in the 15# range would be perfect. Unless your Costco buys small loins, that shouldn't be anything too out of the ordinary.

      The stuff cut in the meat counter probably isn't any more delicious since it's cut from the cryovac packs you see sitting in the chest coolers.

      1 Reply
      1. re: JayL

        Sorry, I instinctively thought about prime rib/standing roast immediately. That probably isn't what you were referring to.

      2. Buy a big roast from Costco and cut it in half. I wouldn't pass up the amazing deals and meat selection from Costco this time of year.
        I just picked up a pork roast.
        Love this time of year at the Costco meat section!

        1. Appreciate the replies, all of them. And I did look at the standing rib roast, but its not going to be an event when anyone will have a chance to admire it, so it seems like a lot of effort for naught.

          I bought a 15 pound pork shoulder. Looks like it will be easy to divide into two roasts (and we are at 15 confirmed people.) I'd like to marinade it overnight and then cook it, but I'm open to suggestions.

          26 Replies
            1. re: fourunder

              there is no skin on the roast, so porchetta isn't gonna work.

              1. re: KaimukiMan

                You certainly can reject my suggestion or roast any way you want, but if you actually read the thread, you will see there was a roast where I used separate pigskin purchased to make a Porchetta. Pigskins are readily available to make Braciole or Fried Pork Rinds,...Plus, you could always purchase a Pork Belly as well and wrap it around the shoulder.

                enjoy your roast marinated roast.

                1. re: fourunder

                  Hey fourunder. I hear you, but you gotta de-bone, then wrap... it is a little tricky. Whatever flavors you do, K-Man, I would say that marinating won't do much in terms of penetration unless you butterfly. I would keep that baby whole, hit is with heavy seasoning/rub/paste, and slow roast in the oven, uncovered, maybe 275-300, for a long time (give it about a 12-hour window), to an internal temp of 180 for slicing or 195-200 for pull apart chunky or pulled. It needs a long time at moderate to low temp to break down the fat.

                  1. re: woodburner


                    I can only aspire to level of greatness on the BBQ....

                    1. re: fourunder

                      Hey Fourunder! Happy Holidays to you and everyone else on here.

                      "I'm just a lowly cook."
                      Anyone care to cite the reference?

                      1. re: woodburner

                        the fat guy with the ponytail.... who used to have the hot wife, no?

                    2. re: woodburner

                      I agree with 180 for slicing. I'm not a "pulled" kinda gal.

                    3. re: fourunder

                      fourunder - appreciate all your input. it sounds interesting, and when i'm not dealing with all the other realities of the holidays I will look for a roast with skin on, or try to find someplace where I can get pig skin - short of buying a whole pig. I know it's hard for people who don't live here to understand, but some things many of you take for granted just don't exist here - like a butcher shop. Pork belly I might be able to find somewhere in Chinatown, but it's just not happening this week.

                2. re: KaimukiMan

                  No skin necessary to do a Cuban-style roast pork.

                  1. re: KaimukiMan

                    Do you have any idea how you're leaning to marinade it? Flavors?

                    1. re: monavano

                      open to suggestions monavano. I have a container of tztaki (however it's spelled) was thinking I might marinade in that, but thats only a possibility. I was gonna look at lemons suggestion of cuban style as well.

                      my fallback if all else fails is to kalua it (hawaiian salt, some pepper, liquid smoke, wrap in banana leaf and put it in the slow cooker) I'd rather do a more traditional roast pork with gravy (local food truck style)

                      1. re: KaimukiMan

                        I second Cuban-style -- the ingredients for mojo are easy to get, particularly in warm climates where a sour orange isn't an oddity, and woohoo, is it good.

                        1. re: sunshine842

                          I've subbed a combo of regular orange and lime juices for that. And yes to the wahoo.

                          1. re: lemons

                            that's what I mean -- mojo is rockin' good if you can't find the sour oranges -- it's nirvana when you can find them.

                            (Sour oranges are produced by some varieties of orange -- when sweeter varieties are killed back to below the graft by frost/drought disease, it's not uncommon for the tree that grows back from the rootstock to be sour, but with a definite orange flavor.)

                        2. re: KaimukiMan

                          I'd make paste of salt pepper garlic & onion powder,smoked paprika. lime juice, olive oil, cumin, dried thyme, oregano anything really including Goya seasoning mixes, Rub it on liberally and refrigerate overnight. Cook in a slow cooker until tender.If you're doing it whole, it's going to take a long while. This blog is real informative. even know it's about barbecue there is a lot of useful cooking science here.

                          1. re: zackly

                            The problem with a slow cooker is that it stews stuff. I've used a 300 oven with that pork - some recipes put the temp even lower - and the skin or external fat becomes wonderfully crisp.

                            1. re: lemons

                              Yes, a slow cooker is a trade off if your looking for crispy skin but it is simple, foolproof and delicious but more like pulled pork.

                              1. re: lemons

                                A few hours after I posted the above I was crawling around the net looking at some old email from various food sites that come to me. Several pork roast recipes have folks saying "Do you need to use the oven, can't you just use a slow cooker?" So at least for my own personal curiosity I have some idea of where this came from. Personally I wouldn't use the slow cooker for this unless forced to, as in, the oven broke or the air conditioning broke. (And in the latter case, surely you know someone who knows how to grill low and slow??? One would hope.) Anyway, not impossible, but the two cooking methods are not interchangeable. Good luck with it, though.

                              2. re: zackly

                                of course if you REALLY want to do it Cuban style, you'll have a Caja China...

                                But in the meantime, here's a killer mojo recipe:

                                and the preparation: http://icuban.com/food/lechon_asado.html

                                This recipe is good because it's specifically designed for a smaller piece of meat. (You ever get an invite for a real lechon asado, get there somehow-- even if you have to crawl!)

                                1. re: sunshine842

                                  in Hawaii Lechon Kawai (various spellings - nothing to do with the island of Kauai) is a popular dish at Filipino restaurants here, and I have had lechon as part of a whole roasted pig at a big family party once or twice. It is indeed a rare and wonderful treat. I didn't have to crawl, but thats another story.

                                  1. re: KaimukiMan

                                    well, maybe didn't have to crawl *to* the party....!

                                    plenty of folks here in Florida do cook the pork in a slow cooker -- because it's usually done til it has a pulled-pork texture

                                    Not as good as the real deal in a caja china, but darned good stuff.

                                    Cuban-style pork, black beans and yellow rice, and fried plantains (the ripe ones) -- a really, really traditional Cuban Christmas dinner.

                          2. re: KaimukiMan

                            I assume you're going to slow roast that bad boy.

                            1. re: treb

                              it seems to be the way to go, as others have mentioned crock pots are just fine if you want to do a pulled pork presentation - be it bbq, cuban, or kalua style. I'm going for a more "traditional" sliced and served with gravy for this dish. kalua would be my back-up plan. I have oven issues, but I am able to work around that.

                              1. re: KaimukiMan

                                A slow braise sounds great, even better if the ole oven has hardening of the arteries. How the heck are you going to brown that monster before laying it to rest in the roasting pan? Will it be surrounded in root veggies?

                            2. re: KaimukiMan


                              "Will Owen's Pork Shoulder" I have done this SO many times over five years, always to raves. And have passed it on to even more raves. It's perfect every time, requires little attention. If not this time, then use this for the other half please :)

                            3. For a Group of average eaters you need about 7# of Boneless Meat. or 12 -14# of bone in.
                              They both have their advantages. I like a Rib-eye Roast personally(10-13# average)

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: chefj

                                that was what went in the shopping cart first, but with that amount and this group I once came perilously close to running out of meat, so I need about 15 pounds - which was running well over $100. I ended up with a pork roast for about 1/3 of that cost.

                              2. OK, as things stand:

                                1) I now have access to a working oven (yay.) That was a complication I had not originally anticipated but worked itself out.
                                2) I will be cutting the roast into two seven or eight pound roasts.
                                3) I will be doing a "moist rub" and letting it sit in the fridge for about 24 hours that way.
                                4) I plan to brown it before roasting.
                                5) It will go into two cheap aluminum roasting pans on a bed of butternut squash, carrot, and onion. No celery (a personal preference). And covered with aluminum foil.
                                5) It will go covered into a 350 degree oven which will be turned off after one hour and will be left alone for 2 1/2 hours after that to give me a medium roast (or so various websites say.)

                                13 Replies
                                1. re: KaimukiMan

                                  You can not cook pork shoulder, whole or separated into the butt and picnic, by cooking at 350 for 1 hour then turning off the oven and letting it sit in there for 2.5 more. No way. No how. And whatever "medium" means, you need an internal of about 175 to 180 for slicing, or the fat will still be hard gristle. That plan is a train wreck... and I'm just trying to help you, not to be negative. Think at least 6 to 8 hrs at 325. Fourunder, get in here!!!

                                  1. re: woodburner

                                    He's already dismissed me....I noticed that earlier...and I agree with you.

                                    What are the odds, he's going to say he meant a beef roast?


                                    1. re: fourunder

                                      foundunder I did not dismiss you, and I have expressed my appreciation for your input REPEATEDLY. I can not do what you think is best. At your and woodburner's suggestion I gave up on the marinade.

                                      woodburner: I don't hear your suggestion as negative. If i didn't want input from the people I trust on chowhound I could follow a lot of different suggestions on the web and end up with a train wreck. I will cut it in half (for ease of handling and transport) and go 6-8 hours at 325.

                                      Thats exactly why i put the last plan on the thread. Thank you both. PS: do i roast it covered or uncovered or covered for half the timeā€¦ etc?

                                      1. re: KaimukiMan

                                        Hey K-Man. Remember to give yourself that window of 8 hrs, but monitor it so when it hits about 180 internal it is done (whether 6, 7 or 8 hrs), and you need to take it out. You can foil at the end, and keep in a 150 oven or wrap and hold in a cooler until service. It can hold for hours. Let us know what happened.

                                        1. re: KaimukiMan


                                          I was only teasing....sorry for the printed words, but I thought the smiley face took care of that......I thought you knew my dry sense of humor....and I never expect everyone to follow my suggestions....10% at most....

                                          I have a little notoriety on these boards for low and slow....but I never have said it was best....only best for me. If someone wants to go in a different direction....I rarely offer any suggestions, as I do not try to convince anyone unless asked.

                                          So peace brother and I really do hope your roast turns out exactly as you desire....


                                          1. re: fourunder

                                            no, you guys were fine. like many of us it has been a hell of a week for me 1 1/2 hours on the freeway today for what should be a 20-40 minute trip . . . but then the President is in town . . . on top of that my mouse has developed an independent streak and only clicks when it wants to, sometime double clicking when I only single click. And I thought your "emoticon" was for wood burner not me. Oh the vagaries of the internet.

                                            I like the idea of Low and Slow, but I've had great results with beef in the high and wait method, my Grandmother cooked roasts that way at least as far back as the 60's. I saw some recipes for pork that seemed similar. If you and woodburner both say "don't do it", I believe you. Is low and slow covered or uncovered?

                                            I bought a new meat thermometer (a cheap one) the last one lasted 15 years, in 10 or 15 years I can afford to shop for a new one again. LOL

                                              1. re: KaimukiMan

                                                I would go uncovered... and as Jay notes below, I'm rethinking 325, go 275 or 300, and yes, check temp even after a few hours to see how its progressing. Have a great roast!

                                            1. re: KaimukiMan

                                              If you're going to cook at 325, don't wait 6hrs to check your meat temp. I would suggest you check it after 3 hours to get a gauge on how it's cooking. You may be surprised by a shorter cooking time.

                                        2. re: KaimukiMan

                                          Step 5 sounds like a recipe for death from botulism.

                                          1. re: kagemusha49

                                            Step 5 is a common method for roast beef, I found examples on line for pork, however I'm gonna follow fourunder and woodburner's suggestions and go low and slow, as soon as I figure out how low and how slow.

                                            1. re: KaimukiMan

                                              No problem with beef. Big problem with pork. Good idea to follow fourunder and woodburner's suggestions.

                                          2. re: KaimukiMan

                                            I have a friend who uses that cooking method for standing rib roast beef but, not pork. Consider that the shoulder has lots of connective tissue and fat running through the primal. Not sure it will get tender using this method.

                                          3. when i opened it up, it is two 7+ pound roasts, which is how I planned to cook it. I scored them and rubbed in some seasoned salt & pepper, then threw the "wet" rub on, horseradish mustard, tztazki, minced garlic, minced onion, rosemary, marjoram, some worchestershire, a little more salt, and turbinado sugar. At 5:30 tomorrow morning it will go into the oven at 450 for 20 min, then turn it down to 275 and let it go for 3 hours, and check the temp, then decide how much longer it should go, probably 3-5 more hours.

                                            So in some ways similar to what I had originally planned, but it sits in a very warm oven for a longer period, twice as long. I will report back sometime on Thursday.

                                            Thanks for the help everyone.

                                            7 Replies
                                            1. re: KaimukiMan

                                              Cooked it as noted, I actually did get them into the oven at 6:30 not 5:30, gave it 20 minutes at 450 then let them go at 275 for 3 hours before I went to check (they were 2 miles up the road.) They were looking good. At 1pm I was back to take them out of the oven. The thermometer registered just under 180, a nice crust had formed, and they were swimming in a ton of juices. I probably should have used larger pans but fortunately they didn't overflow.

                                              The juice was poured off, some of the fat skimmed off, and the rest used to make gravy. There were 11 of us total, including a 15 month old, and by the time dinner was over we were partway into the second roast. Very very good. Great favor, very moist, everything you could ask for from roast pork.

                                              Thanks for all your help. If I get pics back I'll post them.

                                              1. re: KaimukiMan

                                                Thank you for the followup. That cut is only now beginning to be appreciated as delicious, easy to cook and not terribly expensive, and I'm glad you had what sounds like a delightful experience.

                                                1. re: lemons

                                                  I guess I've been ahead of the times :) I can't remember when I didn't cook pork shoulders.

                                                  1. re: c oliver

                                                    Well, me, too, but we can be smug and congratulate ourselves. I'm just enjoying seeing more pig meat in high-end food publications and restaurants. (I know two CIA grads at multistar restos who ten years ago were saying, "Can't put it on the menu, but I sure do cook pork at home when I'm doing the big family dinners. Love it.")

                                                    1. re: lemons

                                                      Good point! 'Course I'm originally from the South and I think pork was always popular there.

                                                      1. re: c oliver

                                                        Very true, ditto the rural Midwest. Nyahnyahnyah, fashionables, we were there first!

                                                        1. re: lemons

                                                          Slow roasted pork shoulder will always have a place in my kitchen and has for years.