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+ servings
medium rare slice of tri tip steak

Santa Maria Tri Tip Steak

This Santa Maria style tri tip steak recipe explains the authentic way to prepare the dish with adjustments for different grills and the oven
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 45 minutes
Servings 8


  • 1 Swift Meats tri tip steak

Garlic Oil

  • 1/4 cup corn oil
  • 3 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • pinch salt

Tri tip Seasoning

  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper


  • Prep the Meat: Remove the meat from the packaging and pat dry. Trim away any excess silver skin or fat.
  • Garlic Oil: Place the oil in a bowl and microwave for 2 minutes. Add the smashed garlic and let steep for 1 hour while you heat the grill. Stir in the vinegar.
  • Light the Grill: Heat your grill to 325F degrees with red oak, creating an indirect heat zone.
  • Seasoning: Combine the seasoning ingredients in a small bowl or shaker.
  • Grill: Place the meat on the heated grill. Immediately, baste with the garlic oil and sprinkle liberally with the seasoning. Grill for 15 minutes.
  • Flip and Baste: Flip. Baste and season again. Cook for 10 minutes. Flip. Baste again. Cook for 5 minutes. Flip. Baste again. Continue this flip and baste process until the internal temperature of the tri tip is 130F degrees.
  • Rest and Slice: Remove from the grill and let rest for 15 minutes. Slice against the grain.


Prepare in an Oven

Add 1 tsp of liquid smoke to the garlic oil. Set your oven to 325F degrees. Place the tri tip on a rack over a rimmed sheet pan. Cook following the baste and flip method above. After the first three flips, raise the oven temp to 425F. Continue basting and flipping every 5 minutes, until it reaches 130F degrees. 


Calories: 254kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 24gFat: 17gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 75mgSodium: 351mgPotassium: 374mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 27IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 32mgIron: 2mg
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