Tri-Tip Roast

Tri-Tip Roast

Tri-Tip is typically barbecued over red oak on the central coast of California, where it is known as Santa Maria style BBQ. It also makes a great tri-tip roast that cooks quickly and consistently if properly tied.

Tri-Tip Roast

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This recipe is timed for a 2 pound tri-tip that has been tied into a compact bundle. A larger piece of meat will take longer to cook. Use a thermometer if you are unsure. For medium-rare the interior temperature should be 125 to 130 degrees when the meat is ready to remove from the oven.

Tri-Tip Roast


  • 1 (2‑lb) tri-tip roast
  • salt and pepper (as needed for seasoning)


Lay the tri-tip flat onto a clean surface, you’ll notice that it’s wedge shaped. Liberally season all over with salt and pepper. Tuck the thinnest point under, then roll the roast into a neat and consistent sized rounded bundle. 

Using butcher’s twine tie the roast in several places to assure that it maintains this shape throughout cooking. Wrap the tied roast in plastic and refrigerate at least 12 hours and up to 3 days.

When ready to cook, remove the roast from the refrigerator, unwrap and bring to room temperature. Season once again lightly with salt and pepper.

Place the oven rack in the center position and preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Set the tied tri-tip roast on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Place in the oven and roast, uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes or until an insta-read thermometer registers about 125 (rare) to 135 (medium) degrees F, or according to taste. Remove from the oven and loosely cover with foil. Let the meat stand for 15 minutes.

Slice and serve warm or at room temperature.