Sous Vide Tri Tip

5 from 1 vote
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Sous Vide Tri Tip – the most delicious and tender way to cook tri-tip. Completely transform this cheaper cut of meat into something magical!

I feel like tri-tip gets a bad rap. It isn’t available in all grocery stores around the country, but I believe Costco carries it all over the U.S. From everything I have seen Costco sells it 2 different ways; you can get one that is pre-seasoned in a vacuumed sealed bag. Or you can get them unseasoned, as a pack of 2 of them.

The best thing, is they are reasonably priced! They are almost always between $5-6 per pound, which for beef is really good lately.

close up of sliced tri tip on cutting board

 

The first time I had tri-tip was when I went on a trip with Certified Angus Beef. There we learned how to make the most delicious Smoked Tri Tip, and it is how we make it at home most of the time. That is until I tried it sous vide.

Sous Vide turns a $5 cut of beef into the most tender, juicy, and expensive tasting cut of steak. And with almost no work on your part. Sous Vide Steak has always been one of my favorite things to make in the sous vide, but this tri-tip is so good and is great to feed a lot of people.

tri tip seasoned in food saver bag

How To Cook Sous Vide Tri Tip

  1. Season your meat well with salt, pepper and garlic powder. You can add other spices here, but I like to keep it simple and really let the meat shine.
  2. Place the meat inside your plastic bag and if using a vacuum sealer, seal the bag. If you do not have a vacuum sealer, you can use a zip top bag that you seal almost all the way. Slowly add the bag to the water bath until just below the top is submerged. Then seal the rest of the bag to ensure most of the air is out.
  3. Cook at 130º F for 5 hours.
  4. After 5 hours remove from the water and place the meat on a paper towel lined tray. Pat the them dry.
  5. Heat oil in a large skillet over high heat. Once the oil is shimmering you know it is hot enough.
  6. Carefully place the tri-tip in the pan with a little bit of butter and cook for about 30-45 seconds a side, until it is nicely browned.
  7. Remove from the pan and serve.
cooked tri tip searing in pan

How Long Does It Take To Sous Vide Tri Tip?

When you are cooking tri tip sous vide, the longer you cook it the more tender it gets. I think 5 hours is the magic time to have enough of the collagen and connective tissues break down so you end up with a super tender and juicy cut of meat.

What Temperature To Sous Vide Tri Tip

This is up to your preference. Tri-tip is best when it is medium rare, so I always cook at 130º F. But if you like it a little more done you can go to 135º F. I wouldn’t go much higher, cooking this to medium-well or well really loses the tenderness and flavor of the meat.

fully cooked and seared tri tip on cutting board

How To Slice Tri Tip

When you are slicing any cut of meat, you really want to slice against the grain. This will give you the most tender bite. To do this place the meat on the cutting board in front of you. Look to see where the grains of the meat go. Rotate the meat 90º, so your knife is cutting perpendicular to those lines.

Tri Tip is a little tricky, because part way through the roast, the grains change directions. So just keep an eye on it, and know you will rotate the meat some when you are about half way through slicing.

sliced tri tip on plate

Sous Vide Cooking Tips

  • Sear the meat after it comes out of the sous vide bath to give it that great taste and texture. It will look brown and not appetizing when you first remove from the bag, make sure you pat the meat dry to ensure you get a good sear.
  • Make sure the oil is hot when you go to sear the meat. The meat is already cooked to the desired temp, so the longer it sits in the pan the more done it gets. To minimize the time in the pan, it should be hot and the oil should be shimmering before you add it to the pan.
  • Use a little butter. When you are searing tri tip you want to make sure to use avocado oil or a vegetable oil that has a high smoke point. But with beef, you want to add just a little butter to the pan to add flavor to the meat.
  • There is no need to allow your meat to rest when you cook sous vide. Because of how it cooks, all of the juices are already evenly distributed in the meat. So as soon as you sear you can serve.
  • You will want to cover your water bath as the tri tip cooks. Over the course of 5 hours you can loose a lot of water. If you don’t have a lid for your sous vide bath, you can use a cookie sheet, foil or pot lid. I have even seen people use table tennis balls for this.

I use the Joule by Breville Sous Vide, and I highly recommend it. It works very well, the temperature is accurate and it is reliable. I have used 2 others in the past few years that have not lasted.

tri tip on cutting board and sliced in collage for pinterest

What Side Dishes To Serve With Tri Tip

More Sous Vide Recipes

close up sliced sous vide tri tip on plate
5 from 1 vote

Sous Vide Tri Tip

By Erin
Sous Vide Tri Tip – the most delicious and tender way to cook tri-tip. Completely transform this cheaper cut of meat into something magical!
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 5 minutes
Additional Time: 5 hours
Total: 5 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 8

Ingredients 

  • 2 pound tri-tip roast
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons avocado oil, or other high heat oil
  • 1 Tablespoon butter

Instructions 

  • Preheat water bath using your sous vide to your desired temperature. Medium rare 130º F or Medium 135º F
  • Season tri tip well on both sides with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
  • Place the meat inside your plastic bag and if using a vacuum sealer, seal the bag. If you do not have a vacuum sealer, you can use a zip top bag that you seal almost all the way. Slowly add the bag to the water bath until just below the top is submerged. Then seal the rest of the bag to ensure most of the air is out.
  • Cover water bath with a lid (foil, pot lid, cookie sheet, table tennis balls) to help not lose too much water when cooking.
  • After 5 hours remove from the water and place the meat on a paper towel lined tray. Pat the dry.
  • Heat oil in a large skillet over high heat. Once the oil is shimmering you know it is hot enough.
  • Carefully place the tri tip in the pan with a little bit of butter and cook for about 30-45 seconds a side, until it is nicely browned.
  • Remove from the pan and slice against the grain to serve.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 286kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 98mg | Sodium: 653mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Author: Erin
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Additional Time: 5 hours
Total Time: 5 hours 10 minutes
Course: Dinner Recipes
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8
Calories: 286
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About Erin S

Welcome to Dinners, Dishes, & Desserts where my love of food meets my busy life. My name is Erin and I’m a casual home cook who loves to feed people. On this blog, you’ll find hundreds of quick and easy recipes made mostly from scratch. My days are spent in the kitchen, creating new recipes to share with family and friends.

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6 Comments

  1. I have an insta pot with a sous vide option. I tested the temp with a very accurate thermopen digital thermometer. The insta pot was 1 degree off.
    I also tried this using my barbeque to sear at 650 degrees that worked great, I also have seared in a cast iron pan using pure white beef tallow that I rendered myself. If you trim off the fat cap on the tri-tip you can render that slowly while the tri-tip is sous vide. Cut the fat cap into small cubes for even and faster rendering at low heat to keep it a beautiful white color when refrigerated.

    Both ways had excellent results! In the summer I prefer searing on the barbecue to keep the heat out of my house. I rarely use our wall oven preferring the outdoor oven (barbecue) even in the winter.