How to Grill a Tri-Tip Roast

  • by Omaha Steaks
sliced medium-rare tri-tip roast
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Tri-tip roast is a non-traditional meat to grill and is one of our favorites. The tri-tip is revered among BBQ enthusiasts for its rich, beefy flavors, juiciness, and simplicity of cooking. It’s simple to grill using direct and indirect heat on your gas or charcoal grill. Just follow our grill-side video and tutorial to grill a perfect tri-tip roast and experience tri-tip in a new and delicious way.

What is a tri-tip roast?

Tri-tip is a versatile cut of beef with rich steak flavor and juicy texture. It’s big beefy flavor and juiciness make it a favorite for fajitas and sandwiches, as well as served in a traditional roast fashion. Our 1.5 lb. Tri-Tip Roast is butcher-cut from the bottom sirloin from hand-selected beef and flash frozen for perfect delivery. Once you experience the bold flavors of the tri-tip roast, you will be hooked!

How to Grill a Tri-Tip 

Tri-tip roasts are easy to grill on your gas or charcoal grill using indirect heat for perfect doneness and a nice crust. Follow the steps below for an incredible grilled tri-tip roast.

1. Thaw and Season Roast

Completely thaw your roast in the refrigerator for 24-48 hours. Once thawed, pat dry and season with coarse sea salt and fresh ground black pepper or our Private Reverse Dry Rub. The tri-tip roast has two distinct and different grains, so take note before you season to ensure you slice against the grain when fully cooked for maximum tenderness. Before grilling, bring the tri-tip roast to room temperature.

How to Grill a Tri-Tip Roast

2. Prep Grill with Direct & Indirect Heat 

Grilling a tri-tip roast is a two-step process using both direct and indirect heat. This simple cooking technique is ideal for thicker cuts of meat that might burn if grilled directly. You want your roast to cook evenly throughout for the perfect doneness with a juicy center and a great crust. The indirect grilling method involves placing food next to, instead of directly over, the flames.

Indirect grilling with gas grills

For indirect grilling with gas grills, you will only light one burner. For grills with three or more burners, light only one of the side burners, never the middle burner. Sear the roast over the flames and finish with indirect heat in the zone furthest away from the lit burner.

Indirect grilling with charcoal grills

It’s a more manual process to set up a charcoal grill for indirect grilling, but just as easy. Once your traditional or hardwood charcoal is lit using a chimney starter, set up a three-zone fire. Place the lit charcoal in the lower area of grill. Using a long, heat-proof tool push the charcoal to one side, putting most of the coals on 1/3 of the grill. The middle and opposite 1/3 of your grill should not have any coals in it. This is your indirect heat zone where you will grill your roast. The 1/3 of the charcoal grill with coals and direct heat will be where you give your roast a quick sear for a great crust.

Clean the grill grates and oil immediately before grilling. To keep your roast from sticking to the grill, we recommend oiling your grates using tongs and a paper towel soaked in oil.

3. Sear Roast over Direct Heat

A nice, hard sear over direct heat will give your roast a perfect brown crust. Sear the roast over the flames for about 90 seconds per side until you see a nice crust form. Don’t forget to also sear the sides for larger cuts of meat.

How to Grill a Tri-Tip Roast

4. Finish Cooking with Indirect Heat

After searing, move the tri-tip roast to indirect heat to finish cooking. The indirect heat will slowly bring the roast to your desired temperature and ensure the meat cooks evenly inside and out. Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the roast and remove from the grill at 5 degrees below your target temperature.

5. Rest Roast 5-10 Minutes

After cooking, it’s important to let your tri-tip roast rest 5-10 minutes under tented foil before slicing. Resting meat allows the juices to redistribute and results in a more tender, juicy bite.

6. Slice Against the Grain to Serve

The tri-tip roast grain goes in two different directions. Start by cutting the roast in the half where the grains intersect. Then, slice each section against the grain for best results. Serve in your favorite recipes or with a potato side dish and a decadent dessert for an incredible meal. Enjoy!

How to Grill a Tri-Tip Roast
How to Grill a Tri-Tip Roast

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