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Grilled Santa Maria Tri-Tip Recipe

User Rating 4.5 Star Rating (9 Reviews)

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Grilled Santa Maria Tri-Tip Recipe

Grilled Santa Maria Tri-Tip

Photo (c) John Mitzewich
The town of Santa Maria, California, is famous for its delicious grilled tri-tip. Tri-tip is a great piece of beef for the grill, and this West Coast barbecue favorite makes a nice change of pace from the more common Texas or Southern barbecue recipes.

Serves 6 Portions of Santa Maria Barbecue Tri-Tip

Prep Time: 3 hours, 30 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 4 hours

Ingredients:

  • 2 to 2 1/2 lb beef tri-tip roast
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 cloves crushed garlic

Preparation:

Combine the black pepper, salt, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, rosemary, and cayenne in a small bowl. Rub on to all surfaces of the tri-tip. Cover and refrigerate for 3 hours. Remove and let sit out for 30 minutes at room temperature.

Add the Dijon, vinegar, vegetable oil, and crushed garlic to a jar with a lid and shake vigorously until emulsified.

Prepare your charcoal or gas barbecue grill. Place the tri-tip on the grill and brush with the oil and vinegar mixture. Turn every 3-4 minutes, basting generously each time. Grill for 25-30 minutes for medium-rare (internal temp of 135 degrees F.). The outside of the roast will get very dark and develop a charred crust, this is desired and one of the signature characteristics of this barbecue recipe.

Remove the tri-tip from the grill to a large platter. Let rest for 15 minutes before slicing in 1/4" thick pieces across the grain. Serve as you would any barbecued beef, but in California this is often served with tortillas and salsa.
User Reviews

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 5 out of 5
The BEST Recipe for Tri-Tip!, Member mikeyscott13

I moved to Santa Barbara almost 4 years ago, and fell in love with the Santa Maria-style Tri-Tip sandwiches here. Although I was a little intimidated by trying to prepare it myself, I was asked to make it for a Birthday Picnic at the beach yesterday. After scouring the web for a recipe, this seemed to be the closest to what I wanted. I can honestly say that this was incredibly easy to make, and it was the best tri-tip I have ever had! I doubled the recipe because I was preparing 5lbs of meat for about 20 people, and I received compliments that it was the best tri-tip that they had ever tasted as well (one of those compliments came from someone who doesn't usually like tri-tip). It was tender, flavorful, and cooked perfectly over a hot charcoal grill. The combination of dry rub and basting created the most flavorful slices of beef I have had in years. I would recommend this recipe to all of my friends!

4 out of 4 people found this helpful.

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