haitian coffee

This is going to be a showstopper! If you were looking for the perfect Valentine’s Dinner, look no further (unless you’re a vegetarian…) 

This complex combination of Haitian coffee, natural cocoa and spices rubbed all over a beer cross rib roast (which is much more affordable then a beef tenderloin, but still delicious) is great for a fancy dinner, but also makes plenty for sandwiches and leftovers all week. 

Also, it’s super simple. No hot oil, no smoky kitchen, just mix up the rub and slather it on the beef and call it a day. Your dinner is done, my friend. 

beef cocoa rubbed in cast iron

The rub has a special coffee that my friend Aslan gave me. She’s currently starting a business that will import coffee, jewelry and other amazing handmade goods. Check out the kickstarter page and consider getting your special someone a Valentine’s gift that gives back! Empower Haiti Together kickstarter page

Haitian Coffee

Back to the rub. You probably have everything to make this! I used Haitian coffee, but any good quality coffee will do. I totally want to try this on other meats…. I actually think some sort of rubbed bacon situation would be amazing! Brown sugar, cinnamon, cayenne, oh yea baby. 

coffee cocoa rub

To “sear” the beef, you’ll want to cook it at 450 degrees for 15 minutes first, then lower the oven to 350 degrees to finish it to your desired doneness. I love medium rare, so that’s what I went for here. I cooked my 3.13lb roast for 60 minutes more after lowering the oven to 350. We like ours medium rare, but here’s a cooking chart for more times and temperatures: beef cooking chart. 

sliced beef roast

What to serve with this? Potatoes and salad, or a simple roast of potatoes and vegetables together. Keep it simple, open some wine, and you can’t go wrong. 

Coffee and Cocoa Beef Roast
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 8 servings
  • ⅓ cup fresh ground coffee
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • ⅓ cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • For the beef:
  • 1 beef cross rib roast, about 3 pounds
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  1. Mix the rub ingredients together and store in an airtight container like a mason jar. You can use this on other meats too! This can be done a month ahead of time.
  2. For the beef, preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Drizzle olive oil on the beef roast and put a little in the bottom of a cast iron skillet or heavy roasting pan.
  3. Rub the spice mixture all over the roast, using about 3 tablespoons to 1/4 of a cup.
  4. Place the roast in the pan, then put the pan in the oven. Roast at 450 for 15 minutes. Lower the temperature to 350 and cook an additional 50-60 minutes or until you reach your desired doneness. Check the temperature with an instant read thermometer. I went until mine was at about 130, for medium rare. See beef cooking chart for more temperatures.
  5. Let it rest for at least 15 mintues. The temperature will continue to rise about 5 degrees, so keep that in mind. Thinly slice against the grain and serve with salt and pepper to taste.