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Smoked N’ Seared Tri-Tip With An Awesome Crust

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  • Author: Kenyatta
  • Category: Beef
  • Method: Indirect
  • Cuisine: BBQ


For this Tri-Tip cook, I setup my Weber Summit Kamado for indirect smoking using my Slow n Sear. I filled the reservoir in the Slow n Sear with water to help keep the temperature inside the chamber low and to add a little humidity. You can do this cook with any smoker as long as you can keep the temperature around 225 – 250 and set it up for indirect cooking. This means that the coals are on one side of the smoker and the Tri-Tip cooks on the other side.

To finish the Tri-Tip off, I removed it from the smoker and placed it in a hot cast iron skillet. I know everyone is a fan of having visible grill marks across the steak but that only gives you a sear over a portion of the steak. Finishing the Tri-Tip in a cast iron skillet allows you to seal in an awesome crust over the entire surface of the meat. Read on to learn how you can make this fantastic meal at home.


Units Scale
  • One 23 pound Tri-Tip
  • Kosher Salt for dry brining
  • Montreal Steak seasoning (or equal parts salt, pepper and garlic powder)
  • 1 TBSP of Ghee or a couple of TBSPs of salted butter


1) Sprinkle some Kosher salt over all sides of the Tri-Tip and let it sit in the fridge while you get the smoker ready (you can also start the brine up to 4 hours before you’re ready to cook).

2) Preheat the smoker. Preheat your smoker to 225 – 250 degrees F; setup for indirect, 2-zone cooking. I like to use my Weber Summit Kamado with a Slow n Sear insert filled with water and a few chunks of a strong wood like oak or hickory.

3) Season the Tri-Tip on all sides with Montreal Steak Seasoning and equal parts salt, pepper, or garlic powder. Lightly pat the seasoning into the meat.

4) After the smoker has reached temperature, place the Tri-Tip on the cool side of the smoker with the thickest part closest, but not directly above the lit coals.

5) Close the lid and smoke until the internal temperature of the Tri-Tip is within 5-10 degrees of your target final temperature (115 degrees F for rare, 125 for medium rare, 135 for medium, 145 for medium well, or 150 for well done).

6) When the Tri-Tip is near the desired internal temperature, preheat a cast iron skillet over high heat. Remove your Tri-Tip from the smoker and get ready to sear it in the cast iron skillet.

7) Put a tablespoon of ghee (or a couple of tablespoons of salted butter) into the cast iron skillet and let it melt. Sear the Tri-Tip for 2-3 minutes per side.

8) Remove the Tri-Tip from the skillet and place onto a cutting board. Let it rest for 15 minutes before slicing. Make sure to slice against the grain.


I highly recommend using a thermometer during the cook to monitor the internal temperature of the Tri-Tip and help ensure that you don’t go past your desired finishing temp. I used my Meater+ which allowed me to track both the internal meat temperature and the temperature inside of the cooking chamber.