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Smoked Tri Tip Roast

User Rating 4 Star Rating (1 Review)


Spare ribs and tri-tip smoking over red oak.
Eugene Kim/Flickr
This is the smoker version of a traditional Santa Maria Tri-Tip or Santa Maria Barbecue. Usually this Tri Tip Roast is cooked over a live fire on a grill, but works great for the smoker. Using the smoker is going to give you a better smoke flavor but won't give you a seared surface.

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

Total Time: 3 hours, 30 minutes

Yield: Serves 4 to 6


  • 2 to 3 pound beef tri-tip roast
  • 2 tablespoons light cooking oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper


Brush tri tip roast with oil. Combine salt, sugar, garlic and black pepper and sprinkle evenly over the surface of the meat. Set aside. Prepare smoker for a cooking temperature around 225 to 250 degrees F. for 2 to 3 hours. After allowing beef to sit with the seasoning for around 30 minutes, place in heated smoker. A good wood for this is oak (red oak is the traditional wood of Santa Maria Barbecue). Smoke until meat is tender and has reached an internal temperature around 170 degrees F. Remove from smoker and allow to rest, covered, for 10 to 15 minutes before carving.
User Reviews

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 4 out of 5
Smoked Tri-tip - getting that seared taste, Member mihondo

Smoked meat is often best 2nd day. Cross-cut the meat and pan-fry to get that seared thing going. I'll fire up the smoker, and put something like a turkey breast in for that day, and then the tri-tip for the next.

15 out of 19 people found this helpful.

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