Air fryer tri tip may be the best thing I have ever made in my Ninja Foodi or Cosori! Tender with a sweet and savory dry rub, try this recipe!
I must say that this air fryer tri tip with our special seasonings may be our favorite dinner ever! A high protein easy air fryer recipe that will blow your minds too. (affiliate links present)
Tri Tip Air Fryer
What’s the secret to making this out of this world? It is a version of our tri tip rub recipe we shared with y’all a few months ago. This time we toned down the sugar so it wouldn’t burn too quickly and it worked like a charm.
You can kick it up with more heat if you like or leave it as is as wonderful as it is. Grab a piece from your local butcher and let’s get going shall we?
If you love air fryer recipes too, here are some resources to start with:
- My Favorite Air Fryer is a Cosori or for a dual machine, the Foodi.
- You can find more easy air fryer recipes here, we have Ninja Foodi recipes as well; bookmark them both!
I don’t buy this cut of beef super often. It is on the pricier side but if you can find it in smaller portions like you see here it isn’t bad at all! This piece fed all 4 of us perfectly and was under 12 bucks. That’s a win if you ask me.
Is tri tip good in the air fryer?
I think I have answered that already, YES! I actually wasn’t so sure when I picked this baby up. Thought I would give it a whirl because you just never know. Did the same with this air fryer roast and it came out great.
It doesn’t really matter where you buy it. When determining a cook time, first decide how you’re going to make it. In an air fryer it is about 7 minutes per pound, depending on how well done you want it.
You can find this cut in a variety of sizes. Like brisket you can find them small like we purchased, or much larger that probably wouldn’t fit inside your air fryer basket.
Stick to 1-2 pounds total, that is perfect. Like I said, this size will feed 4-5 people comfortably. It is always best once it rests. You can save leftovers but it is never the same as day 1 after it sits in the fridge and reheated.
Air Fryer Tri Tip Medium Rare
Let’s talk about this tri tip dry rub. It’s a combination of savory flavors like garlic, paprika and chili powder combined with the sweetness of brown sugar. Normally I use 1/2 c. but this time used 1/4 cup instead.
Reason being is I knew the outside would caramelize quickly. I thought I needed to minimize the sugar to give the inside time to get to the correct internal meat temperature. If you’re cooking it another way, like dutch oven tri tip you wouldn’t need to worry about this aspect.
One tip when you begin is to take your meat out about an hour earlier so it is closer to room temperature.
With this coating you want to make sure you spray the inside with olive oil spray so it doesn’t stick. If so you’ll lose all the outside goodness on your tip roast and it won’t be as intense of a flavor when you cut the steak.
You want everyone to get some with their cuts of meat because that is where all the wonderful flavors are.
Ready for the best air fryer beef recipes under 30 minute dinner your family will rave over, this is one of our faves.
Air Fried Beef
What temp should I cook tri tip?
- 135 F = rare
- 140 F = medium rare
- 145 F = medium
Remember that beef should always rest for at least 10 minutes and in that time the internal temperature will increase almost 10 degrees higher. SO use your meat thermometer at the end and add 10. If not high enough add a few minutes, then let rest.
How Long to Cook Tri Tip in Air Fryer
There is a printable recipe at the bottom of this post but here is a quick step by step of how to cook this tri tip steak to perfection.
Time needed: 16 minutes.
Air Fryer Tri Tip
Mix together dry rub ingredients in a bowl. Preheat air fryer to 400 degrees F, high heat, for 5 minutes.
Lay tri tip on cutting board and rub in mixture on the top and bottom well. Lift up and allow excess to fall off.
Spray inside of air fryer basket with non stick spray and place meat inside with fat pad on top.
Cook steak for 8 minutes, flip and cook another 8. Then do not open the drawer for 10 to 15 minutes when timing is up. This will give it time to rest as well as continue cooking in the hot heat.
The following time will yield a medium rare result in the center. Ends will not really have any pink so you’ll have a variety of doneness for everyone to choose from.
OH wait….don’t forget to slice against the grain!! This is unique where the grains come in at different angles near the middle. If you don’t look and do it right it will be tougher to chew.
Want to see a few of my favorite things that I am totally obsessed with?? Take a peek and see how many you might already have…twinsies!
Air Fryer Tri Tip
- Mix together dry rub ingredients in a bowl. Preheat air fryer to 400 degrees F for 5 minutes.
- Lay tri tip on cutting board and rub in mixture on the top and bottom well. Lift up and allow excess to fall off.
- Spray inside of air fryer basket with non stick spray and place meat inside with fat pad on top.
- Cook for 8 minutes, flip and cook another 8. Then do not open the drawer for 10 minutes. This will yield a medium rare in the center result, ends will not really have any pink so you'll have a variety of doneness for everyone to choose from.