Kamado Joe Tri Tip: Techniques For Grilling The Perfect Steak On A Ceramic Grill

Are you a fan of grilling? Do you enjoy the juicy and flavorful taste of a perfectly cooked steak? If so, then you need to try grilling a Kamado Joe tri tip on your ceramic grill. This cut of beef is not only delicious but also easy to prepare and cook, making it a perfect choice for any backyard BBQ.

In this article, you will learn everything you need to know about grilling the perfect Kamado Joe tri tip. From understanding the cut of meat to preparing it for the grill, setting up your ceramic grill, and grilling techniques, you will be able to impress your friends and family with your grilling skills.

So, grab your apron and tongs and let’s get started!

Understanding Kamado Joe Tri Tip

If you’re looking for a mouthwatering steak that’s packed with flavor, then you need to understand Kamado Joe Tri Tip. This cut of beef comes from the bottom sirloin, and it’s known for its rich, beefy flavor.

To prepare it properly, you’ll need to remove any excess fat or silver skin and season it with a dry rub or marinade. Then, you’ll need to cook it low and slow on your Kamado Joe ceramic grill until it reaches the desired internal temperature.

One of the keys to grilling Kamado Joe Tri Tip is to use indirect heat. This means that you’ll need to set up your grill so that the heat source is not directly underneath the meat. Instead, you’ll want to position the meat over a drip pan or on the opposite side of the grill from the heat source.

This allows the meat to cook slowly and evenly, without burning on the outside and remaining raw on the inside. Another important factor to consider when grilling Kamado Joe Tri Tip is the internal temperature. You’ll want to use a meat thermometer to ensure that the meat reaches the desired temperature, which is typically around 135-140 degrees Fahrenheit for medium-rare.

Once the meat has reached the correct temperature, you’ll need to let it rest for at least 10 minutes to allow the juices to redistribute throughout the meat. Then, you can slice it against the grain and serve it up for a delicious and flavorful meal.

Preparing the Meat

Now that you’ve learned the techniques for grilling the perfect Kamado Joe Tri Tip, it’s time to prepare the meat.

First, you’ll want to season the Tri Tip with your favorite rub or spices.

Next, consider marinating the meat for added flavor and tenderness.

Finally, be sure to bring the meat to room temperature before grilling to ensure even cooking.

With these simple steps, you’ll be on your way to a delicious and perfectly cooked Tri Tip.

Seasoning the Tri Tip

To enhance the flavor profile, it’s crucial to season the tri tip generously with a blend of spices and herbs before placing it on the grill. Here are three tips to consider when seasoning your tri tip:

  1. Use a blend of spices and herbs that complement the natural flavor of the meat. A simple blend of salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika works well, but you can also experiment with different herbs and spices to customize the flavor profile to your liking.

  2. Apply the seasoning liberally, making sure to coat all sides of the tri tip evenly. This will help to create a flavorful crust on the outside of the meat as it cooks.

  3. Let the seasoned tri tip sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before grilling. This will allow the meat to absorb the flavors of the seasoning and will help it cook more evenly on the grill.

By taking the time to season your tri tip properly, you’ll be able to create a delicious and flavorful steak that is sure to impress your family and friends.


For even more flavor, consider marinating your steak overnight before grilling. A marinade is a mixture of oil, acid, and seasonings that can be used to infuse your meat with additional flavors and tenderize it at the same time. There are countless marinade recipes out there, but here are a few ideas to get you started:

Marinade Type Ingredients
Classic Olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, rosemary, salt, and pepper
Asian Soy sauce, rice vinegar, honey, ginger, garlic, and sesame oil
Spicy Olive oil, lime juice, chili powder, cumin, garlic, salt, and pepper

To use a marinade, simply place your steak in a resealable plastic bag with the marinade and let it sit in the refrigerator for at least a few hours or overnight. When you’re ready to grill, remove the steak from the marinade and discard the excess liquid. Pat the steak dry with paper towels before seasoning and grilling as you normally would.

Keep in mind that while marinades can add wonderful flavor to your steak, they can also mask the natural taste of the meat itself. If you’ve invested in a high-quality Tri Tip, you may want to consider using a simpler seasoning method, such as a dry rub, instead. Ultimately, the choice is yours – experiment with different marinades and find what works best for your taste buds.

Bringing the Meat to Room Temperature

Bringing the meat to room temperature is a crucial step in achieving a juicy and evenly cooked piece of meat. This means taking the meat out of the fridge at least an hour before grilling and letting it sit at room temperature.

Why is this important? Well, if you cook a cold steak straight from the fridge, the outside will cook faster than the inside, resulting in a dry and overcooked exterior and a raw interior. By letting the meat come to room temperature, the heat will penetrate evenly throughout the steak, resulting in a perfectly cooked and juicy piece of meat.

This also allows the steak to cook more quickly and evenly, which means you’ll spend less time grilling and more time enjoying your delicious kamado joe tri tip. So, take the time to bring your meat to room temperature before grilling and you’ll be rewarded with a mouth-watering steak that’s sure to impress.

Setting up the Kamado Joe Grill

Before you start grilling the perfect steak on your Kamado Joe grill, it’s important to properly set it up.

This includes preheating the grill to your desired temperature, which could take up to 20-30 minutes depending on the size of your grill.

Once the grill is heated, you can start controlling the temperature using the vents and dampers to create the perfect cooking conditions.

Don’t forget to add wood chips for that extra smoky flavor that’ll take your steak to the next level.

Preheating the Grill

To ensure the perfect cook on your tri tip steak, it’s crucial to preheat your Kamado Joe grill to the desired temperature.

You should start by lighting your charcoal and allowing it to burn until it’s white-hot. Once it’s ready, spread the coals out evenly in the firebox and adjust the air vents to the desired temperature.

It’s important to give your grill enough time to preheat before adding your steak. This typically takes about 15-20 minutes, depending on the temperature you’re aiming for.

You can use a digital thermometer to monitor the temperature of your grill and make adjustments as needed.

Once your grill is preheated, you’re ready to start cooking your tri tip steak to perfection.

Controlling the Temperature

Now that you’ve preheated your Kamado Joe grill, it’s time to move on to the next crucial step in cooking the perfect tri tip: controlling the temperature. This is where the real magic happens, as the temperature you maintain throughout the cooking process will determine the final texture and flavor of your steak.

The beauty of a ceramic grill like the Kamado Joe is that it’s designed to retain heat extremely well, which makes it easy to control the temperature. However, it’s important to note that the temperature inside the grill can vary depending on where you place the meat, the amount of charcoal you’re using, and other factors.

To ensure that you’re cooking your tri tip at the right temperature, you’ll want to invest in a reliable meat thermometer and keep a close eye on the grill’s temperature gauge throughout the cooking process. By monitoring the temperature and making adjustments as needed, you can achieve the perfect level of doneness and flavor that you’re looking for in your steak.

Adding Wood Chips for Flavor

As you’re cooking your tri tip on the Kamado Joe ceramic grill, one way to enhance its flavor is by adding wood chips. Not only do wood chips infuse the meat with a delicious smoky taste, but they also add a unique aroma that will make your mouth water.

To get the most out of your wood chips, you’ll need to choose the right type and quantity. Refer to this table to help you make the perfect choice:

Wood Type Flavor Profile Best Pairings
Mesquite Bold, earthy Beef, lamb
Apple Sweet, fruity Pork, poultry
Hickory Strong, bacon-like Pork, beef
Cherry Mild, fruity Beef, pork

Remember to soak your wood chips in water for at least 30 minutes before using them. This will prevent them from burning too quickly and will create a more steady smoke. Add the soaked wood chips directly onto the coals or place them in a smoker box for a more controlled smoke. By adding wood chips to your tri tip, you’ll be taking your grilling game to the next level.

Grilling the Tri Tip

Now that your Kamado Joe grill is all set up, it’s time to start grilling that delicious tri tip.

First, you’ll want to sear the meat over direct heat to create a crispy, caramelized crust.

Then, switch to indirect grilling to slowly cook the meat to perfection without burning the outside.

Finally, use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature and ensure it’s cooked to your desired level of doneness.

Happy grilling!

Searing the Meat

You’ll want to crank up the heat on your Kamado Joe and get that tri tip sizzling on the grates for a beautiful sear that locks in flavor and juices. Searing is a crucial step in cooking the perfect tri tip. It not only adds a nice crust to the meat, but it also helps to keep it juicy and tender.

To achieve a perfect sear, preheat your Kamado Joe to a high temperature, around 500-550°F. Once it’s hot, place your tri tip on the grates and let it cook for about 2-3 minutes on each side, or until a nice crust has formed. Don’t move the meat around too much while it’s searing, as it can cause it to stick and not get a good crust.

Once it has seared on both sides, you can lower the temperature and continue cooking until it reaches your desired level of doneness.

Indirect Grilling

To achieve even cooking and a tender finish, it’s best to use indirect heat when grilling a large cut of meat like this. Indirect grilling means that the heat source is not directly under the meat, but rather on one side of the grill, allowing the meat to cook slowly and evenly without burning.

Here are a few tips to help you master indirect grilling:

  • Use a drip pan: Place a drip pan filled with water or other liquid under the meat to help keep it moist and prevent flare-ups from dripping fat.
  • Close the vents: Adjust the vents on your grill to control the airflow and maintain a consistent temperature. Closing the vents will reduce the amount of oxygen and lower the heat, while opening them will increase the heat.
  • Rotate the meat: To ensure that the meat cooks evenly, rotate it every 15-20 minutes. This will prevent one side from getting too hot and burning while the other side is undercooked.

By following these tips and using indirect heat, you’ll be able to grill a perfect tri tip that’s tender, juicy, and full of flavor. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different seasonings and marinades to find the perfect flavor profile for your taste buds.

Checking the Internal Temperature

Ensuring that your meat is cooked to the perfect temperature is crucial for a safe and delicious meal. When it comes to grilling tri tip on a kamado joe ceramic grill, checking the internal temperature is a critical step to achieve the perfect doneness. Different levels of doneness require different internal temperatures, so it’s essential to have a reliable meat thermometer to check the temperature accurately.

To help you achieve the perfect doneness for your tri tip, here’s a table with the recommended internal temperatures for different levels of doneness:

Doneness Internal Temperature
Rare 120-125°F
Medium Rare 130-135°F
Medium 140-145°F
Medium Well 150-155°F
Well Done 160°F or higher

By following these recommended internal temperatures and regularly checking the temperature of your tri tip, you’ll be able to achieve the perfect doneness every time. Remember, always let your meat rest for a few minutes before slicing to allow the juices to redistribute and ensure a juicy and flavorful cut of meat.

Resting and Slicing the Meat

Now that you’ve grilled the perfect tri tip on your Kamado Joe, it’s time to let it rest. Resting the meat allows the juices to redistribute, making it more tender and flavorful.

When you’re ready to slice, remember to cut against the grain for the best texture.

Letting the Meat Rest

Once the tri tip is finished cooking, resist the urge to cut into it right away and give it a chance to rest for at least 10 minutes. This is a crucial step in ensuring a juicy and tender steak.

When meat is cooked, the heat causes the juices to move to the center. Resting allows the juices to redistribute throughout the entire steak and settle, resulting in a much more flavorful bite.

During this resting time, tent the steak with aluminum foil to keep it warm. This also helps prevent the juices from escaping and drying out the meat.

While you wait, take the opportunity to prepare any side dishes or toppings you plan to serve with the tri tip.

Once the resting period is over, slice the steak against the grain for optimal tenderness and enjoy!

Slicing Against the Grain

To achieve optimal tenderness in your tri tip, it’s important to slice against the grain of the meat. The grain refers to the muscle fibers that run through the meat. Slicing against the grain means cutting perpendicular to these fibers, which results in shorter muscle fibers and a more tender bite.

When you’re ready to slice your tri tip, first identify which direction the grain is running. Look for the lines of muscle fibers that run the length of the meat. Then, position your knife at a 45-degree angle and make thin slices against the grain.

Cutting against the grain will make a noticeable difference in the tenderness of your meat, so take your time and be sure to slice carefully.

Serving and Pairing

When it comes to serving and pairing your perfectly grilled kamado joe tri tip, the options are endless and can truly take your meal to the next level.

To start, consider serving your tri tip with a side of roasted vegetables or a simple green salad. The earthy flavors of the roasted vegetables and the freshness of the salad will complement the richness of the steak and provide a balance to your meal.

Another great pairing option for your kamado joe tri tip is a glass of red wine. A bold and full-bodied red such as a Cabernet Sauvignon or a Malbec would pair well with the smoky flavor of the tri tip. If you prefer beer, a hoppy IPA or a smooth porter would also pair nicely.

To really take your meal to the next level, consider making a flavorful sauce to accompany your kamado joe tri tip. A classic chimichurri sauce made with fresh herbs, garlic, and olive oil is a great option. Or, try a bourbon glaze made with brown sugar, soy sauce, and bourbon for a sweet and tangy complement to your steak.

With the right serving and pairing choices, your kamado joe tri tip will be the star of the show at your next grilling party.

Troubleshooting and Tips

Now that you know how to serve and pair your kamado joe tri tip, let’s talk about troubleshooting and tips.

Don’t panic if your steak is not cooking evenly. Simply move it to a cooler spot on the grill and continue cooking until it reaches your desired temperature.

If you’re having trouble getting your grill up to the desired temperature, try using a chimney starter to light your charcoal and let it burn for a bit before placing it in the grill.

Another common issue is flare-ups. These can be dangerous and can also result in overcooked or burnt meat. To avoid flare-ups, make sure to trim excess fat from your steak before grilling and keep a spray bottle of water nearby to quickly extinguish any flames. Additionally, avoid constantly flipping your steak as this can cause flare-ups.

Lastly, let’s talk about some tips for achieving the perfect kamado joe tri tip. First, make sure to let your steak rest for at least 10 minutes after cooking before slicing. This allows the juices to redistribute and results in a more flavorful and tender steak. Also, invest in a meat thermometer to ensure your steak is cooked to your desired temperature. And lastly, don’t be afraid to experiment with different seasonings and marinades to find your perfect flavor combination.