I am smoking tri tip for about 50 people and would like to know an approximate cooking time for medium rare.
Tri Tip smoke for 50.
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It's hard to give you an accurate time when when we don't know the cooker, what temps your going to smoke at, what the size of the meat is, etc. I did a small tri tip previously and smoked it to med rare and it took around 2 hours using my pellet cooker on a fall day cooking at 230.
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A good tri tip can be a forgiving cut of meat. They are fantastic on the grill, even better when smoked at 225F with a quick reverse sear over very high heat. They have tasted great at ITs anywhere from 125F to 155F (155F was a screw up, not recommended but came out surprisingly delicious).
Two hours is about right when smoked at the lower temp. Just be sure to slice across the grain or your jaw will get tired from chewing.
to get to an IT of 135° at the temps you've mentioned you're looking at 2-2 1/2 hours +/- That would include letting them rest for 15-30 minutes before slicing. You can keep them wrapped in foil in a cooler stuffed with towels if you finish early.
The Tri tip turned out perfect. Raves all around. Turned out there were 70 people, but there was plenty of meat. It was Santa Maria style, with chili, roasted potatoes, green salad, and garlic bread. Would like to do brisket next. Thanks for the help.
Cooking time was 21/2 hours at 250. IT was 125. I did 2 different smokes because I didn't have enough room and then refrigerated for a day. Our church has a large gas grill where I seared first then brought up to IT of 140. The meat had a perfect smoke flavor and color with a little char on the outside. I cooked 13 TTs.