Meat Roasting Cooking Times and Degrees of Doneness Hacks

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By Fayyaz Sidhu

Meat cooking Different conditions & Roasting


Cooking meat to perfection is both a science and an art. Understanding the degrees of doneness and the corresponding cooking times is essential for achieving that delectable outcome. In this guide, we’ll explore the different degrees of doneness, their descriptions, and approximate cooking times for various types of meat.

Degrees of Doneness

  1. Bleu:
    • Describes meat that is very underdone, with the surface quickly browned.
    • Meat may appear rare or raw in the center.
  2. Rare Au Bleu:
    • Meat cooked to maintain a red or pink center.
    • Originating from France, “Au Bleu” refers to a method of cooking fish or shellfish by immersing them alive in boiling water or bouillon/stock.
  3. Underdone (Medium Rare):
    • Meat cooked with a pink center, but not raw.
    • The center is just cooked, retaining juices and tenderness.
  4. Medium:
    • Meat with a brown exterior and a pink center.
    • No visible traces of blood.
  5. Well Done:
    • Meat cooked until no pinkness or blood is visible, both in the exterior and the center.
    • Often preferred by those who enjoy a fully cooked, firm texture.

Approximate Cooking Times for Roasting

  1. Beef:
    • For underdone (medium rare) beef: 30 minutes per 1kg + 15 minutes per joint.
    • Adjust cooking time according to desired doneness.
  2. Lamb:
    • For cooked-through lamb: 40 minutes per 1kg + 15 minutes per joint.
    • Ensure meat is tender and juicy by monitoring cooking time.
  3. Mutton:
    • For thoroughly cooked mutton: 40 minutes per 1kg + 15 minutes per joint.
    • Adhering to recommended cooking times yields succulent results.
  4. Veal:
    • For cooked-through veal: 50 minutes per 1kg + 15 minutes per joint.
    • Use a meat thermometer to ensure internal temperature reaches desired doneness.

Tips for Cooking Meat Perfectly

  1. Use a Meat Thermometer:
    • Invest in a reliable meat thermometer to accurately gauge the internal temperature of the meat.
    • Different meats have varying safe cooking temperatures.
  2. Let Meat Rest:
    • Allow cooked meat to rest before slicing or serving.
    • Resting allows juices to redistribute, ensuring a juicy and flavorful outcome.
  3. Preheat Your Oven:
    • Ensure your oven is properly preheated before roasting meat.
    • Consistent temperature is key to even cooking.
  4. Season Generously:
    • Enhance the flavor of meat by seasoning it generously with salt, pepper, and other spices.
    • Marinating meat beforehand can also add depth of flavor.
Degree of DonenessDescriptionApproximate Cooking Time
BleuVery underdone, quick browning on the surface30 min per 1kg + 15 min per joint (underdone)
Rare Au BleuPink or red center, reminiscent of French cooking method
Underdone (Medium Rare)Pink center, cooked but still tender
MediumBrown exterior, pink center, no visible blood
Well DoneNo pinkness or blood in the exterior or center


Mastering the art of cooking meat involves understanding the degrees of doneness and corresponding cooking times. Whether you prefer your meat rare, medium, or well-done, following these guidelines will help you achieve perfect results every time. Experiment with different cooking methods and seasonings to create mouthwatering dishes that delight your taste buds. Happy cooking

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