How to Cook Tri-Tip on the BBQ

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Things You'll Need

  • Marinade of choice

  • Tri-tip (about 2 lbs.)

  • Barbecue grill

  • Grilling tongs

  • Instant-read meat thermometer

  • Clean platter

You can grill your own tri-tip at home, but keep it away from direct flame.

Tri-tip, also known as triangle roast, is a triangular cut of beef that comes from the end of the sirloin. The tri-tip can be sliced into steaks or cooked whole and sliced across the grain before serving. It has a rich flavor, but is lean. Because there is little fat on the cut, it can dry out easily and become very tough if it is overcooked. For this reason, tri-tip is usually cooked only to medium-rare. Marinating the beef will also help keep it moist, as well as add to its flavor.


Step 1

Place the meat in a large bowl and pour your favorite marinade over the meat. If you do not have a favorite marinade, you can use two or three bottles of store-bought Italian dressing.

Step 2

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the fridge overnight, or for at least an hour.

Step 3

Bring the meat to room temperature when you are ready to cook it. This will take about one hour with the meat sitting on the counter.


Step 4

Prepare your barbecue grill while your tri-tip is coming up to temperature. If you are using a charcoal grill, rake the coals slightly to one side of the grill so that you will have a low-temperature spot, away from the flames, where you can cook your tri-tip.

Step 5

Remove the meat from the marinade and pat the extra marinade off with paper towels.

Step 6

Place your tri-tip on a low-temperature spot on the grill, once your grill is ready. Grill your tri-tip, turning it occasionally with grilling tongs, until it is medium-rare---about 35 to 40 minutes. The tri-tip's internal temperature should be 135 degrees F when you cook it, which is just below medium-rare.


Step 7

Remove the tri-tip from the grill onto a platter. Let it rest for 15 to 20 minutes. During this time, the tri-tip's internal temperature will continue to rise 5 to 10 degrees F, cooking it to medium-rare.

Step 8

Thinly slice the meat against the grain and serve it while it's still hot.


If you'd rather grill the tri-tip as steaks, cut the marinated tri-tip into steaks, 1-inch thick. Grill the steaks over indirect heat until they are medium-rare, about 8 minutes. Flip the steaks halfway through the cook time. Again, use the instant-read thermometer and remove the steaks when they reach 135 degrees F. Let them rest for 10 minutes before serving.