The Tri-Tip is a cut of meat from the lower Sirloin where the Sirloin, Rump and Flank meet. Can be grilled, smoked or oven roasted.
Tri-Tip roast oven cooking
1. Seasoning the tri-tip roast
For added flavor, consider rubbing it with a tasty spice rub. If you have the time, cover the seasoned roast and chill for 6 to 24 hours. This will allow the flavors to penetrate the meat more deeply. Or marinate the roast in your favorite marinade for up to 24 hours in the refrigerator. You can also just sprinkle the meat with salt and ground black pepper before baking, then serve with a sauce or a topper of sautéed mushrooms and onions.
2. Prepping the tri-tip roast
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place the roast on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Insert an oven-going meat thermometer into the center of the roast. Because a tri-tip roast is only a couple of inches thick, it will brown nicely on high heat while keeping the center moist and pink.
3. Oven-roasting the tri-tip roast
§ Place roast in the oven and roast, uncovered, for 30 to 35 minutes or until the thermometer registers 135 degrees F. Remove from the oven and cover with foil. Let the meat stand for 15 minutes, which will bring the temperature up to 145 degrees F (medium rare) after standing.
§ For medium doneness, roast for 40 to 45 minutes or until the thermometer registers 150 degrees F. Cover and let stand for 15 minutes, which will bring the temperature to 160 degrees F (medium). Because this cut contains so little fat, be sure not to cook it past medium. I remove mine at 125/130 as I prefer rare/medium rare.
4. Carving the trip-tip roast
Transfer the roast to a cutting board. With a carving knife, thinly slice the meat across the grain.
Tip: The stand time not only brings up the temperature, it also allows the juices to be absorbed back into the meat so they don't spill out onto the cutting board.
Tri-Tip Smoke Roasted
1. Season as above
2. Smoking: Use indirect cooking method, fat side up and smoke with Hickory for 3 hours at 180 degrees or until internal temp is as above. I like mine Medium Rare so I remove at 125/130 degrees. Cover with foil and let rest for 10-15 minutes minimum.
3. Carve as above
Tri- Tip Grilled
1. Set up your grill for indirect smoking. If you divide your available grilling space in half, one half needs to have a nice pile of charcoal underneath it and the other needs to be charcoal free. Have a small container of wet wood chips/chunks (preferably hickory) ready to add to the fire when the time is appropriate. Your first step will be to sear the tri-tip directly over the coals. I usually need 3 to 5 minutes a side for the tri-tip roast to develop a nice crust. Once crusted on both sides, I move the tri-tip to the indirect heat side of the grill and add my soaked wood chips/chunks to the charcoal. At this point, you are effectively grill-roasting-smoking your tri-tip until it is done. You have a nice crust and the goal is to add flavor via the smoke while bringing the roast to a medium rare temperature of 125 degrees. Depending on the size of your tri-tip, this can take from 25 to 45 minutes total. When you have reached the desired temperature of 125 degrees, pull your tri-tip and bring it in to rest (covered) for 5 to 10 minutes.