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Brazilian Smoked Tri Tip on a Traeger

160 Reviews

You need a Traeger and you really need to make this Brazilian smoked tri tip on a Traeger!  The meat is tender, juicy and packed full of flavor!

You need a Traeger and you really need to make this Brazilian smoked tri tip on a Traeger!  The meat is tender, juicy and packed full of flavor!

I know most of us may feel intimidated at first when we start talking about smoking meat and other foods after hearing about those seasoned grill masters and neighbors that smoke their meats like it’s going out of style.  Traeger has made it so easy for all of us.

How to Make Smoked Tri Tip

Before you begin smoking any of your meats, decide whether or not you want to let the meat marinate and how long.  We decided for this specific tri tip that we would marinate it just over night.

Make the marinade and place the meat in the plastic container or big ziploc bag with it over night in the refrigerator.  When you take your meat out of the marinade, give your tri tip a light covering with your favorite seasoning, if you need a rub you can use ours below or just use salt and pepper if you prefer.

read more: Looking for Traeger recipes? Try our Smoked Chicken Breast Recipe next!

What Temperature to Smoke Tri Tip

When you are ready to start smoking your meat on your Traeger, begin by turning the grill on to Smoke, lid open until the fire is established, this can take about 5 minutes for the box to ignite the pellets.  You can experiment with what pellets you like most, We tend to use hickory, mesquite or cherry with the tri tip. You will set the Traeger to 225 degrees Fahrenheit. 

How Long to Smoke Tri Tip

You will need about 3 to 4 hours, depending how well done you like you tri tip.  Here are your internal fresh beef temperatures.  For rare (120-125 degrees Farenheit), medium rare (130-135 degrees Farenheit), medium (135-140 degrees Farenheit), medium well (140-150 degrees Farenheit and well done (when you start getting above 155 degrees Farenheit).  If you don’t have a probe get one :).  If you have a meat thermometer you can use that.  We usually check the meat internal temp about 1 hour and 45 minutes in from cooking.  We like to pull the meat off the smoker once it hits 130-135 degrees Farenheit.

The Secret to Juicy Brazilian Smoked Tri Tip

The secret to juicy Brazilian smoked tri tip is to wrap it in tin foil and let it rest for 20-30 minutes.  After you let it rest, take out the tri tip and cut it against the grain, the thickness of the cut is to your liking.

More Decadent MAIN DISHES You Must Try:

Brazilian Smoked Tri Tip on a Traeger

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You need a Traeger and you really need to make this Brazilian smoked tri tip on a Traeger!  The meat is tender, juicy and packed full of flavor!

Brazilian Smoked Tri Tip on a Traeger

4.36 from 160 votes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 4 -6
You need a Traeger and you really need to make this smoked tri tip on a Traeger!  The meat is tender, juicy and packed full of flavor!


  • 2 1/2 lb tri tip


  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil

For Rub

  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 pinch of nutmeg


For Marinade:

  • Mix ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  • Place in ziploc bag or plastic container.

For Rub:

  • Place all ingredients in a mixing bowl or mason jar for storage.
  • After mixing your marinade ingredients in a bowl, place the marinade and meat together in a ziploc bag or plastic container. Let it marinate 1 hour or up to over night.
  • When you are ready to begin cooking, remove your tri tip from the fridge
  • Turn your Trager to smoke ( allow about 5 minutes)
  • Take your tri tip out of the marinade and lightly dust all sides of the tri tip with your favorite rub
  • Turn the temperature to 225.
  • Place tri tip on Traeger until the internal temperature reaches 130-135 degrees Farenheit, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  • Remove tri tip from grill and wrap in tin foil
  • Let it rest in the tin foil for 20-30 minutes
  • After it has rested, cut slices against the grain and enjoy
Nutrition Facts
Brazilian Smoked Tri Tip on a Traeger
Amount Per Serving (6 ounces)
Calories 616 Calories from Fat 207
% Daily Value*
Fat 23g35%
Saturated Fat 8g50%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 11g
Cholesterol 184mg61%
Sodium 11258mg489%
Potassium 1175mg34%
Carbohydrates 42g14%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 33g37%
Protein 61g122%
Vitamin A 1515IU30%
Vitamin C 13mg16%
Calcium 142mg14%
Iron 7mg39%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

You need a Traeger and you really need to make this Brazilian smoked tri tip on a Traeger! The meat is tender, juicy and packed full of flavor!

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Cozy Soup Recipes to Get You Through the Winter

About the authors

carrian feik cheney oh sweet basil

Cade and Carrian have three children and love to spend time together whether it’s vacationing or snuggled up on the couch for a good movie.

And this family especially loves to eat.

They love everything from the keep you fit and healthy to the get out your sweat pants indulgent and everything in between.

But most of all, they love the memories made, shared and treasured and it’s all thanks to a meal shared together with loved ones.

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Recipe Rating


  • I missed it! Cooking temperature is 225F. It’s in the Instructions section (duh) but after the Rub instructions.

    • Reply
    • Ya, but it should have been in the actual post too, so I’ve added it there as well! Thanks again, Brian!

      • Reply
  • In the Brazilian Smoked Tri Tip on a Traeger recipe you have a whole section “What Temperature to Smoke Tri Tip” and then never state what temperature to cook the Tri Tip at. 🙁

    • Reply
    • Sorry I missed it. 225F. Cooking temp is in the instructions (duh) but after the Rub section.

      • Reply
    • Doh! It has been updated. Thanks for bringing that to our attention!

      • Reply
  • S


    People do yourself a favor, instead of the absolute asinine amount of salt in the dry rub, shoot for about a tablespoon or so. If you follow these instructions to the T you might has well go drink sea water and kiss your money goodbye. Honestly I would never EVER trust another recipe that these people or site ever put out….

    • Reply
    • Hello! I’m so sorry that you didn’t enjoy this recipe. It’s not required to use all the rub. I often have some left over to use for the next time.

      • Reply
  • Hello,

    ~ I love your recipes they all sound delish, the thing is that I don’t own a smoker nor can I afford a Traeger Smoker, and it is only me.

    ~ Is there any possibility of making these recipes in my oven and turn it into a smoker?

    ~ I would greatly appreciate any suggestions that you may be able to offer.

    ~ Thank you for your recipes and your time, I look forward to hearing from you.

    ~ Have a happy and safe holiday,

    ~ Respectfully,

    ~ Randyellen Klapper
    [email protected]
    242 El Cerro Loop
    Los Lunas, New Mexico 87031

    • Reply
    • Hi Randyellen! What a great question! Yes, you can make the smoked recipes in your oven. It won’t have quite the same flavor or texture, but it will be delicious! Bake it at the same temperature and add a little liquid smoke to a pan with apple juice and place the pan right beside the meat. Enjoy!

      • Reply
  • Looks delicious. Trying it today. The picture looks more like a well done brisket. Is that really one taken out at 135?

    • Reply
    • Yay! I hope you enjoy it Greg! Yep, we took it out at 135. We would love to hear what you think!

      • Reply
      • It was phenomenal! Although I didn’t achieve the red smoke ring. I just got a smoker so I’m new to this. Any tips to get that ring?

      • It was phenomenal! I didn’t get the red smoke ring but I just started learning to smoke meat. Any tips?

  • Thank you! Turned out great! The flavor was excellent! We like it on the rare side of med-rare so took it off at 127 (~2hrs) and then seared on our propane grill. I made all the sides ahead of time just to be safe. That worked out nicely and had less kitchen mess after dinner. Bonus!

    • Reply
    • Hurray! Love to hear this! Thanks Joanna!

      • Reply
  • I’m planning to make this for New Year’s Day however I’m confused by the timing. At the top of the recipe it says cook time = 4 hours. But in the body of the recipe the total cooking time is 1 1/2 to 2 hours. I understand that the internal temperature is what’s important, but I need to time my side dishes so I need a more accurate window. I just got the Traeger for Christmas so I can’t go by experience yet. Thank you

    • Reply
    • Hi Joanna! I’m so sorry for the confusion! Smoking a large piece of beef is so tough to give exact times because it can vary so much depending on the marbling of the meat, how big it is, and how well your smoker maintains its heat. Cook time will need to be around 3 hours however, depending on the size and how well the heat is maintained it can change so much. So start checking it at 1:45, and then keep your eye on the temperature until it reaches your desired done-ness. Enjoy! And happy new year!!

      • Reply
  • A-MAZ-ING….. I’ve never tried a tri tip before but found a sale on one and decided to try it. WOW! I smoked it on my camp chef pellet grill and then seared it off on my propane grill. The family scarfed it up and now I wish I had done two. Thanks again for the recipe!

    • Reply
    • Tri tip is so dang good! I wish it wasn’t so expensive! But you get what you pay for I guess because it is heaven! I’m so glad you enjoyed this recipe!

      • Reply
  • Oh sweet basil, don’t ever worry about people that have to have someone hold their hand while they are cooking… Not everything comes with instructions in life people. Geez learn from your mistakes, and if you cook enough you will inherit some much needed common sense. I can’t stand skepticism, and criticism coming from someone that is inexperienced and lacking simple common sense. Amazing recipe in my honest opinion…

    • Reply
    • Thank you so much! And thank you for the support!

      • Reply
  • 1/4 cup of salt for the rub is WAY too much. My tri-tip tastes like a salt lick and is otherwise ruined. Really was hoping for a lovely savory flavor, instead, I’m wondering how to salvage 5lbs of beef.

    • Reply
    • Did you use all of the rub? The instructions say to lightly dust all the sides of the tri tip with the rub. If you used it all on a 5lb tri tip, then it would definitely be too much! So sorry it didn’t turn out the way you expected!

      • Reply
  • The rub on this is outstanding. I keep coming back to this recipe for the rub, but have used the marinade as well, because we love it so much. Thanks for sharing or creating this recipe. Yum!

    We don’t have a Traeger but we have a competitor smoker, we smoked it at 325 for the 1.5 hours. We don’t care for rare or medium red meat, so it works better for us. The higher temp also really provided for some “burnt” bits that we fight for.

    • Reply
    • Thank you so much for the feedback Mary! We sure love this recipe too! And those burnt bits are the best!

      • Reply
  • Do you have a recipe for the salad pictured with the tri tip? Looks delicious!

    • Reply
    • Hi Ana! It’s just the kale power greens salad packet from Costco. Haha! It’s so yummy!

      • Reply
  • This recipe may taste good, but the directions are terrible. Remove at 130? It will not coast to a desired temperature if you do that on a smoker. Mine coasted to about 132 and I had to finish it on a grill (which thankfully many intelligent commenters suggested anyway).

    For anyone smoking for the first time, the directions are not helpful.

    • Reply
  • I made this today for a Sunday gathering and could not have been more blown away. I followed the recipe exactly and honestly think it was one of the tastiest pieces of beef I’ve ever eaten. I smoked it on my Traeger and the seared it on my gas grill after. Truly phenomenal and definitely my new go-to. Thanks for the fantastic recipe.

    • Reply
    • Thank you so much Kerry! Now you have me craving tri tip!

      • Reply
  • I have made this my go to! Ive made 3 tri tips in a couple cooking sessions. This has great flavor. I like to cook the marinade too, this gives an au ju on the side if anyone wants even more flavor. I also always use root beer with marinade for pork as well as this one.

    • Reply
    • Thank you so much for the feedback Josh! Glad you love it!

      • Reply
    • We don’t have a Traeger but we’ve a competitor, Best Electric Smoker, we smoked it at 325 for the 1.5 hours. We don’t take care of rare or medium beef, so it really works higher for us.

      • Reply
      • Thank you for the feedback Patricia!

  • I am marinating two right now in food savers. One for overnight and one for the deep freezer for another time. This will be the second time smoking thus receipe. It is delicious. So delicious, it is my go to since I found it. The key is the marinade. Let it sit. Smoke low and slow, a little longer on time to get to your preference, and check your internal temp when getting close to the fourth hour if smoking at 225fh. Those with a bad taste in their mouths for this receipe are missing the love, time Nd understanding of truly smoking. If you do not get it right the first time, you try again. Take and add what you want to make it yours. A true smoke receipe for a true smoke champion. The family and friends love every bit! Thabk you so much for providing. (I add a little bit of my special coffee rub before sticking it in) just saying. Make it yours!

    • Reply
    • Thank you! Great tips and suggestions! Thanks for the feedback and so glad you enjoy it!

      • Reply
  • Bad recipe. Not once does it mention to change temperature from the smoke setting, only gives direction on time and internal temperature of meat. After leaving it in on smoke for 5 hrs even though the recipe calls for 3-4, the meat was still quite under cooked even for rare meat. First and last time I use this site. 

    • Reply
    • Hey Alex! I am so sorry about that recipe! We have been converting our recipes to a new recipe card and we have had some casualties. It looks like this was one of them! It has been fixed. Again, I apologize!

      • Reply
  • We are marinating ours as we speak! We can’t wait to dig into this! We have a traeger and will be using mesquite with this this time around! I have a question though… I am not too familiar with searing… do you recommend cooking it to 130, wrapping and letting it sit for 30 min, THEN searing? Or cook to 130, sear, THEN wrap?? I just want to maintain the crispiness on the outside after searing and I was thinking it might go away and soften while wrapped in the foil! Might be a dumb question, but we aren’t very experienced with searing!

    • Reply
    • Hi Brittany. I’ve used this recipe many times and have always immediately seared the meat after taking it off of the smoker. I sear it on the grill at a high temperature for three minutes on each side and then wrap it. It comes out perfect each time.

      One other tip – I cut a corner of the meat off before smoking it so that I know where to slice it (you always want to slice the meat against the grain).

      • Reply
      • Thanks for the tips Tina!

  • This was a fantastic recipe for tri tip. We used a Masterbuilt electric smoker cooking at 225f for about 2 hours. We crutched it for about 30 minutes. We did not have any lemons so we used fresh squeezed orange juice. The tri tip turned out delicious. We are going to try it with the lemon juice this time.

    • Reply
    • Yummm! I bet it was delicious with the orange juice! Thanks for the feedback!

      • Reply
  • Is it possible to use a regular grill to make your tri tip? The recipe sounds soooooo delicious I would really like to try it. Thinking maybe I would burn it with the rub going on after it has marinated. I do follow you and love so many of your recipes. I have a very picky husband who is hard to cook for so I am happy to be a regular!

    • Reply
    • Yes absolutely! On a regular grill, heat it on high heat and then so a quick sear on each side (about 5 minute on each side). Then turn off the heat on one side of the grill and move the tri tip to the no heat side. Grill it on indirect heat for about 30-45 minutes depending on how big the tri tip is. Enjoy!!

      • Reply
  • What type of pellets do you use for this recipe?

    • Reply
    • We tend to use hickory, mesquite or cherry.

      • Reply
  • Love, Love, love, this rub!! Since trying it on a tri-tip, I have made jars full. Used it on chicken, New York Strip and Rib eye. Love the salty, spicy paprika flavor. Real does great on my smoker. Thanks for the recipe. Now to add a few ingredients and experiment. Thanks Again

    • Reply
    • Yay! happy to hear that!

      • Reply
  • We made this tri tip recipe on Easter. Everyone raved about the flavor & tenderness of the meat. This is now our “Go-To” recipe for tri tip. I make extra of the rub to keep on hand. P.S. the rub is excellent on chicken too. I made chicken strips in the oven they turned out sooo tasty!

    • Reply
    • We just had it on chicken on Sunday! It really was so good. Maybe we will have to do another post for it on the chicken!

      • Reply
  • This was quite spicy, unfortunately. 

    • Reply
    • Hi Sarah,

      I’m sorry yours turned out spicy. I don’t like spicy, so I’m assuming there must have been some heat for you. You can change ingredients.

      • Reply
  • What temperature should I set my traeger?

    • Reply
    • Leave it on the smoke setting. Other recipes call to set it at 225, which takes about 1.5 hours for a 2.5 pounder. Pull it at 130 and do a high sear for 3 mins on each side. Reverese searing creates a nice crisp char but still allows it to be juicy. 

      • Reply
      • Yes, what Chuck said! We love having a crusty sear on the outside! Yum!!

      • We just bought a new Traeger and this sounds delicious! I can’t wait to try it!  Can you sear on the Traeger or do you do it on the grill?

      • You can sear on a Traeger, just turn it up to high heat. Happy Traeger-ing! Enjoy this tri tip!!

  • I have a different brand of smoker, what temperature should i set it to? Mine has several temps in the smoke range.

    • Reply
  •  No! You really dont need a Treager! A Weber kettle is a terrific smoker that produces exquisite results!

    • Reply
    • Great recipe though…THANK YOU!

      • Reply
    • Oh I’ve never heard of that one, and thank you!

      • Reply

Cozy Soup Recipes to Get You Through the Winter