Smoked Sirloin Tip Roast: Go-to Smoking Guide (and Recipe)!

October 9, 2023
Written by Kristy J. Norton
Edited by John Smits 

It’s easy to transform this cheap cut of beef into BBQ nirvana – set up your smoker to 250°F and cook until the beef hits 125°F internal temp. You’ll have some unbelievably tasty smoked sirloin tip roast in no time.

I first had smoked sirloin tip roast when I was at a friend’s cookout. Stunned that they had managed to turn this cut of meat into something so delicious, I begged for the recipe. I tinkered with what they gave me until I landed on my incredible recipe (don’t worry, I’m dropping my recipe here)!

Ready to make the best-smoked sirloin you’ve ever tasted? Keep reading!

Smoked Sirloin tip roast

Smoked Sirloin Tip Roast Recipe


  • 4 lb sirloin tip roast
  • 4 tbs. of yellow mustard or extra virgin olive oil

Dry Rub

  • 2 tsp. of kosher or sea salt
  • 2 tbs. of smoked paprika
  • 2 tbs. of black pepper
  • 2 tsp. of garlic powder
  • 2 tsp. of onion powder
Sirloin Roast on a Flaming Grill


Step 1

Trim any excess fat from your sirloin roast. It’s a lean cut – there shouldn’t be much fat. Leave the fat cap intact (more on that in a bit). Pat it dry with paper towels.

Apply the mustard or the olive oil to the entire sirloin tip roast. This will act as a binder for the seasoning. Next, liberally apply the dry rub all over the cut. Let the roast sit in the fridge for around 4 hours. This will dry brine the meat, making it more flavorful (and juicier)! 

Step 2

Preheat your smoker to 350°F.

Step 3

Place on the smoker and cook until the internal temperature of the roast reaches 125°F for medium rare. This should take about 1.5 hours.

Remove and let the smoked sirloin tip roast beef rest for at least 10 minutes. Cover it in foil and a clean towel while resting to insulate it.

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Selecting and Prepping Sirloin Tip Roast

Here are the top tips you need to follow for the ultimate roast:

Choosing Sirloin Tip Roast

The sirloin tip is bottom round from the hind quarter of a steer. It’s right next to the tri-tip, so it’s often referred to as tri-tip’s cousin.

Don’t mistake this section for the top sirloin roast. While the sirloin tip roast is taken from the bottom, the top sirloin roast is actually taken from the sirloin. Top sirloin is more tender but also more expensive.

My advice is to always go to a good butcher when looking for this particular cut. When in doubt about a cut, ask your butcher.

Always buy fresh meat for the best taste. Read the packed-on label.

Trimming the Fat

While this is a leaner cut, I remove any excess fat.

Use a Binder

I like to use either mustard or olive oil as a binder. Binders help the rub stick to the meat.

I think mustard complements both the smoked sirloin tip roast flavor and the rub beautifully. But I know mustard isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Use olive oil if mustard isn’t your jam.

Seasoning Your Sirloin Tip Roast Beef

My personal favorite for this cut is a dry rub that I provided in my recipe. I like to keep things simple and let the beef flavor shine through. You can whip up your favorite rub or use your go-to commercial rub. It’s all about choosing the flavors that you enjoy.

I know that some people like to use fresh ingredients such as onion and garlic in addition to dry ones such as smoked paprika. If this is something that you choose to do, I would suggest combining and running all the ingredients through a food processor. Use them as a coarse rub. You’ll be rewarded with a sirloin roast that’s brimming with fresh flavor.

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Tying Up the Beef

If you want, you can tie up the beef roast with twine at several points throughout. This is usually done for presentation purposes so that your meat is an even shape and size.

It will also help the roast cook more evenly. Uniform sizes of meat smoke at uniform times. If you’ve got a small section that’s not tied up, it’ll cook more quickly than larger portions.

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Grilled Sirloin with Potatoes

Setting Up Your Smoker

Let’s get you set up for success. Here’s how to get your smoker just right for your smoked sirloin tip roast:

Smoking in a Charcoal Grill

If you are smoking using a charcoal grill, you will need to use the indirect heat method. Set up the hot coals on one side of the grill and sprinkle some wood chips or chunks on top. Place the roast on the opposite side, away from the heat.

Next, close the lid and smoke until you reach the desired internal meat temperature.

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Smoking on a Gas Grill

Turn on the burners on one side of the grill, and stick an aluminum pouch full of wood chips on the burners. Poke some holes in the aluminum so smoke can escape. Place the roast on the side of the grill with unlit burners.

Choosing Your Wood Chips

I like to use hickory or oak for sirloin tip roast! The beefy flavor of this cut tastes amazing when infused with oak or hickory smoke flavor. You are free to use whatever wood chips or chunks you like. 

Much hoopla is made about wood species when smoking. To me, the most important thing is smoke quality. You want small wisps of blue or white smoke for the best-smoked meat. Billowy clouds of smoke will make the meat taste acrid.

Smoker Temperature – Going Low and Slow

In the recipe, I have set the smoker to 350°F. It’s higher than conventional smoking temps, but I have found that this results in perfectly smoky beef and a quick cooking time.

Smoking the Sirloin Tip Roast

Here are the guidelines to follow while smoking:

How to Face the Fat Cap

While there can be a great deal of debate about whether the fat should be facing up and down, there is actually a simple answer. The fat layer should be facing the direction of the heat source.

Your smoked sirloin tip cut isn’t going to have much of a fat cap. It’s a lean cut. But it should have a thin fat cap on it – place it toward the heat source. That’s down on a charcoal, gas, kamado, or pellet grill. On an offset smoker, place the fat cap toward the firebox. Place the fat cap toward the heating element of an electric smoker.

Paying Attention to Internal Temperature

I like sirloin tip medium rare, around 125°F. It’ll be tough and lose a lot of juice if you overcook it. Keeping it in the smoker for even a bit longer than you should can result in a very tough slab of beef. 

However, it isn’t enough to just monitor the cooking time, as you can get the meat’s temperature wrong. Instead, keep a careful eye on the temperature with a thermometer.

Tracking the meat’s internal temperature means that you’ll need to use an instant-read or digital thermometer. A good thermometer is the best investment you can make to cook better food. If you’re looking for a cheap thermometer, I like the Javelin made by Lavatools.

You may be aware there is a phenomenon known as carryover cooking. This is where the temperature of the meat continues to rise even after it is taken off the heat source. The beef can go up as much as 10°F before internal temperatures start to fall.

It is due to this that I would suggest taking your roast out at the 125°F mark for medium-rare. The meat will rise to around 135°F after cooking. If you like your beef medium, pull it at 135°F.

Note: The USDA recommends cooking beef roasts and steaks to 145°F. I think medium rare tastes better, and cooking to 125°F internal temperature will eliminate any bacteria on the beef’s surface.

Smoked Sirloin Tip Roast with Rosemary

Should You Reverse-Sear the Beef?

Yes, you can reverse-sear sirloin tip. Reverse searing is when meat is cooked slowly to almost finish temperatures (around 115°F), and then cooked over high heat for a short period of time. This creates a well-seared exterior, which can really boost the flavor.

Is this something that you should try?

Like many things in BBQ, it’s up to you. I am a big fan of reverse-searing. The combo of smoked meat and toothy bark is next-level.

Let me drop one piece of advice, though. Make sure to take this roast off the smoker at the right time so it can still be medium rare after you sear it. Pull the beef at 115°F and monitor the internal temp when you cook it over a hot grill. It should only take a minute or two per side to sear the meat and reach 125°F internally.

Resting the Beef

I like to rest larger cuts of meat, and sirloin tip roast is no exception. Resting allows the meat to reabsorb and distribute the juices throughout the beef. In the recipe, I have mentioned 10 minutes, but letting it rest for a little longer certainly can’t hurt. Wrap the beef in foil and cover it with some clean towels to keep it hot.

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Slicing It Up

Cut the beef as thin as possible. Cut it against the grain. This will shorten the muscle fibers, making the meat taste more tender. 

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Wrapping It Up

Smoked sirloin tip roast is not typical BBQ food,  but it is a dish that you don’t want to sleep on. It’s affordable. It smokes up in under 2 hours. It’s divinely beefy and delicious.

Dry brine your beef ahead of time for extra flavor and juiciness. Set your smoker to 350°F. Let the sirloin absorb that incredible smoke flavor for around 1.5 hours until the internal temperature reads 125°F. Or, take it to 115°F, then reverse sear it over piping hot coals. The choice is yours! Either way, you’ll have a dinner that will “wow” your friends and family. Happy grilling!

By Kristy J. Norton
I'm Kristy – a chef and connoisseur of all things BBQ! You can find me either in my kitchen (or someone else's) or at a big outdoor barbecue surrounded by friends and family. In both my professional and personal life I’ve picked up more than a few tips and tricks for turning out delicious food. I consider it a privilege to share it with others!
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