A Trip-Tip cannot be cooked like a normal steak (Strip, T-bone, filet, etc…). This California “Santa Monica” style of grilling is easy to recreate by following this recipe.

This cut has been called the poor man’s prime rib. It is actually two different muscles from the front shoulder of the cow. A triangular cut with contrasting grains in the middle.

Its OK to season this cut aggressively since it needs some help tenderizing and the thin slices will keep the seasoning in check. Allow to season at room temp for an hour if you can. A 10 minute rest at the end is essential too. A good cut is 3” thick and 8 inches long, 2-2.5lb and is triangular shape. Most suggest thin slices against the grain.

TIP- Tri-Tip can be found at CostCoby

  • Yield: Serves 4 people
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • Total: 2 hrs
  • Active: 45 mins

Ingredients (4)

  • 2.5 lb Tri-Tip
  • Canola Oil (optional)
  • Meat tenderizer (e.g, Adolf’s)
  • Salt and Pepper


  1. Preperation: At least 1 hour prior to grilling bring steak out of the fridge
  2. Optional: Some suggest coating with canola oil prior to applying rub
  3. Apply your favorite tenderizing rub and let stand for 1 hour to come to room temp and let the spices penetrate the meat
  5. Set grill to MED/LOW grill heat. You’ll get a super sear while letting the meat slowly cook and come up to temperature.
  6. Turn at 7 minute mark. Turn and twist in 7-8 more minutes to get nice cross hatch on presentation side.
  7. At 20 Minutes- Check internal temperature with a meat thermometer 120F is your target. If you are close, turn off the grill and leave the meat on for 5 minutes and remove.

Remove at 120-130F for medium rare. Let rest under tent of tin foil for 10 minutes.

  2. First cut the meat in HALF find the grain change and cut the meat in half basically in the middle.
  3. Then cut from the ends to the cut side cutting across the grain.
  4. If you think you overcooked it- CUT THIN.
  5. If you are dead on rare- cut it thicker
  6. Use a cutting board with a tray around the outside to catch the juice. Plate the cut pieces and pour the juice over and serve!