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Sous Vide: Beef Tri-tip Steak

While designed with simplicity in mind, this recipe can be useful to even the most experienced sous vide practitioners.


Beef tri-tip/bottom sirloin steaks, 6 oz/175 g-12 oz/350 g.
Kosher salt, up to 2 tsp/1 lb/450 g,
Ground black pepper, to preference.

Optional ingredients:
TRI TIP BROWN GRAVY, 1 oz/30 ml per steak.

Visit HERE to view our own customized rubs and seasonings!
Post processing seasonings and rub.
Grape tomatoes, 1 per steak.
CELERY HEARTS,  one per steak.
Mushrooms, halved, 1 per steak.
Scallions, trimmed, 1 per steak.
Sweet potato/yam, 3 oz/90 g per steak
Cream, 1 Tablespoon per portion of sweet potato/yam.
Butter, 1 Tablespoon per portion of sweet potato/yam.

Serves 1+
Level of difficulty–1.75


About Beef Tri-tip

This cut appears in butchers’ cases in various forms. Big box stores frequently offer the roast whole, either peeled or unpeeled. For a detailed explanation of beef tri-tip, read the article LINKED HERE

Butchers also offer a convenience added version cut into individual steaks, mapped below:

Once vacuum packaged, the steaks will look like this:

Vacuum seal the steaks in heat rated bags and process in a preheated bath at

129 F/54 C for twelve hours.

This will create a rare appearance. If you prefer a different appearance of doneness, refer to the guide linked HERE.

Time in the bath determines texture/tenderness, but time in the bath cannot be used to precisely MEASURE tenderness–this requires the acquisition of a small amount of skill, explained HERE.

Once the interval has elapsed and the desired level of tenderness has been achieved, remove the steak from the bag and pat dry with a paper towel. Season to your preference, applying up to 2 teaspoons kosher salt/450 g/1 lb. of meat. Most chefs apply ground black pepper in the amount of approximately 15% (by volume) of the amount of salt.

Heat a skillet to 350 F/176 C. When you detect hot air radiating from the pan without actually touching the pan, you can begin. Add enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan. add the steak immediately–this prevents the oil from smoking. Add enough oil to conduct the heat into the steak without adding so much that it splatters out of the pan. Usually one or two tablespoons.

This process will take less than two minutes. Use tongs to turn the steak.

Remove the steak from the pan and allow to rest for two minutes–this makes it easier to handle. Slice thin or thick, the cut is going to be tender regardless.

If you want to upgrade your presentation, visit our more detailed explanation linked HERE.

Norm King


In the case of beef tri-tip, people have resigned themselves to a certain amount of chewiness inherent in the cut. This is rationalized by noting its typically competitive price point. Our simple, straightforward approach to processing and serving the cut demonstrates the value added tenderization characteristics of sous vide. In turn, the practitioner is liberated from the crossed finger, "hope for the best" outlook when serving a tri-tip to family or friends.

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