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Tri-Tip Sandwich

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Okay, seriously – is there anything better than a juicy, steak-filled sandwich topped with heavenly melted cheese and a generous dollop of chimichurri and horseradish sauce? I didn’t think so. Although I adore this scrumptious dish at any time of year, this smoked tri-tip sandwich is the perfect recipe to pull out during a summertime BBQ. Put that leftover Traeger smoked tri-tip to good use and satisfy your inner carnivore with this incredible sandwich!

There is a lot to love about this delicious recipe, including its tender meaty center, the toasted ciabatta rolls, and the combination of mint cilantro chimichurri and creamy horseradish that give the entire sandwich a well-rounded flavor.

Don’t sleep on the other star ingredients though. The overall profile is mellowed out by slices of provolone cheese and sweet caramelized onions that add a level of decadence to what could otherwise be just another humble sandwich.

The result? An irresistible recipe that you’ll want to recreate for every outdoor party, lazy afternoon BBQ, and family gathering. Mark my words!

tri-tip sandwiches on a ciabatta roll with herby minto cilantro chimichurri and melted provolone cheese all on a wood cutting board

Why This Recipe Works

  • It’s ready to serve in minutes.
  • The caramelized onions pair perfectly with the mild provolone, herby chimichurri, and creamy horseradish for a well-rounded bite.
  • The homemade chimichurri can be dialed up or down on the spice scale depending on your taste.
  • It’s suitable for picky eaters as you can easily remove anything they don’t like from the sandwich.

Ingredients

Here is a list of ingredients that you’ll need to make this recipe. Scroll down to the printable recipe card for all the details.

  • Red onion. Red onions are naturally sweet and intensely flavorful when caramelized.
  • Ciabatta rolls. As Ciabatta is made from lean yeast, it has a moist and chewy texture that perfectly soaks up the tri-tip’s juices.
  • Creamy horseradish sauce. Complements the beef and provolone with a spicy tang.
  • Thinly sliced smoked tri-tip. Use some leftover Traeger smoked tri-tip for a tender, juicy, and smoky sandwich.
  • Chimichurri sauce. This mint cilantro chimichurri has a wonderfully fragrant profile and gives the sandwich a delectable herby base.
  • Provolone cheese. You can substitute this with other cheeses if you wish, but provolone is mild and melts effortlessly for those photo-worthy cheese pulls.

tri-tip sandwiches on a ciabatta roll with herby minto cilantro chimichurri and melted provolone cheese sliced in half diagonally

How To Make It

This sandwich is easy to assemble! I like to use the Blackstone griddle. It provides a large work surface, allowing you to sauté the onions while toasting the ciabatta rolls. Use a basting dome to melt the cheese to perfection.

If you don’t have a Blackstone, you can use a cast iron skillet to caramelize the onions and the broil setting in your oven to melt the cheese on the sandwiches.

For the full details, scroll down to the printable recipe card for step-by-step instructions.

  1. Sauté the red onions on the Blackstone or in a skillet until caramelized.
  2. Slice the ciabatta rolls in half and toast them on the Blackstone or in your toaster.
  3. Spread the horseradish sauce on the bottom half of each roll and layer on the thinly sliced tri-tip.
  4. Place the caramelized onions on top of the smoked tri-tip and place two slices of provolone cheese on each sandwich.
  5. Place all assembled half-rolls of the sandwich under a basting dome with a splash of water to create steam and melt the cheese. Or place them under the broiler until the cheese melts.
  6. Add the cilantro mint chimichurri to the other half of each ciabatta roll.
  7. Assemble the sandwiches and enjoy.
putting butter on the ciabatta rolls

Butter each half of the ciabatta roll and place it on the hot Blackstone to toast until golden brown.

spreading horseradish on the ciabatta rolls with a spoon

Spread the horseradish on the bottom half of the ciabatta rolls.

layering sliced tri-tip on sandwich on the blackstone

Layer thin slices of tri-tip on each bottom half of the rolls.

spreading chimichurri on a ciabatta roll

Spread the chimichurri on the top half of each ciabatta roll.

provolone cheese on tri-tip sandwich on blackstone

Place the caramelized onions on top of the tri-tip and layer the provolone cheese slices on top. Place a basting dome over the sandwich and melt the cheese.

assembling tri-tip sandwich on blackstone

Assemble the sandwich and dig in!

Tips For Success

  • Use your favorite device to melt the cheese. Don’t be afraid to use an air fryer, Blackstone griddle, or a broiler to make the magic happen!
  • To keep your meat tender, cut across the grain of the tri-tip for the best results. This shortens the individual fiber pieces and prevents your meat from becoming dense. If you’re not sure how to find the grain, look out for parallel lines that run down the meat and slice against these.
  • Keep an eye on your rolls and don’t let them burn. You’ll want a delicate golden-brown color across the top for a crunchy bite that’s still soft in the middle. If you want to add a hint of garlic to your buns, add a thin layer of garlic butter to the tops before toasting.
  • If you want to give your meat more flavor, dry rub it with a blend of salt, pepper, sugar, and garlic before grilling.
  • It’s worth investing in a meat thermometer for the best results with the Traeger smoked tri-tip so that every bite of the sandwich will be tender and juicy. All you’ll need to do is insert the thermometer into the meat and you’ll be good to go.
  • For easier slicing, let the tri-tip cool to room temperature before cutting. This usually only works if you’re using the tri-tip for leftovers. If you’re not, just dive in and slice it once it has rested!

FAQ

What is tri-tip steak?

Tri-tip steak gets its name from the unique, triangular shape of the meat. It’s taken from the bottom of the sirloin and is typically lean, full of flavor, and slices well for sandwiches.

Can I make this smoked tri-tip sandwich ahead of time?

This is a great recipe to make in advance. I like to use leftover tri-tip and I always prepare the mint cilantro chimichurri ahead of time. Then, assembling the sandwich only takes a few minutes.

The thinly sliced tri-tip heats up quickly when you are assembling the sandwiches. The heat from the Blackstone, especially when the basting dome is over the sandwiches, will be enough to warm up the meat.

Should I add anything else to my leftover smoked tri-tip sandwich?

I love keeping this recipe simple, but you can add fresh tomatoes, garlic aioli, or chipotle mayo to your sandwich if you’re feeling feisty. Alternatively, you can add jalapenos for a spicy kick.

What sides should I serve with tri-tip sandwiches?

This recipe pairs well with potato salad, coleslaw, beans, corn, pasta salad, fries, and chips. It’s equally delicious on its own though, so don’t fret!

tri-tip sandwiches on a ciabatta roll with herby minto cilantro chimichurri and melted provolone cheese all on a wood cutting board

What Else is Cooking?

Tools and Equipment

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  • This massive 36″ Blackstone griddle is an absolute workhorse! It is perfect for things like this tri-tip sandwich. You can set one side of the griddle to high to caramelize onions while leaving the other side on low so you can toast the ciabatta rolls.
  • If you want to get those amazing cheese pulls, you need a cheese melting basting dome. This 12″ basting dome can fit even the largest of meals.
  • When things get hot on the Blackstone griddle, you need a tuner that can hold up to the heat. This Hells Handle heavy-duty turner doesn’t have any issues with the hot griddle and has industrial strength for small jobs like flipping burgers or big jobs like moving a large brisket.

Wrap Up

This Traeger smoked tri-tip sandwich is a reliable lunchtime staple that always receives compliments whenever I make it. Whether you’re preparing a standout dish for a large event or simply want to cook a tender hunk of steak for a week’s worth of leftover sandwiches, you certainly won’t be disappointed with this flavorful recipe!

tri-tip sandwiches on a ciabatta roll with herby minto cilantro chimichurri and melted provolone cheese all on a wood cutting board

Tell Me What You Think!

Did you try out this recipe? Please leave a comment below and let me know how you liked it. Also, snap a picture and post it to your favorite social platform. Be sure to tag me at @alicensetogrill and let me know how you liked it!

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Tri-Tip Sandwich

Tri-Tip Sandwich

Yield: 4 Sandwiches
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

These juicy, tender tri-tip steak sandwiches are topped with heavenly melted cheese and a generous dollop of chimichurri and horseradish
sauce. Whether you have leftover tri-tip that you need to use or if you are craving a delicious sandwich packed full of flavor, this sandwich will be sure to hit the spot

There is a lot to love about this delicious recipe, including its tender meaty center, the toasted ciabatta rolls, and the combination of herby chimichurri and creamy horseradish that give the entire sandwich a well-rounded flavor.

I like to assemble this sandwich on the Blackstone after carmelizing the onions to perfection. The flat top griddle is a great work surface, making it incredibly easy to toast the ciabatta buns and melt the provolone cheese for that photo-worthy gooey cheese.

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Set the Blackstone to medium-high heat on one side and low heat on the other. Sauté the red onions until caramelized. If you don't have a Blackstone, sauté the onions in a medium skillet for 20-30 minutes.
  2. While the onions caramelize, slice the ciabatta rolls in half and butter and toast them. Then, on the Blackstone, lay them down on the cooler side of the Blackstone.
  3. Spread the horseradish on the bottom half of the rolls. Lay down a layer of sliced tri-tip and place on some caramelized onions. Layer two pieces of provolone cheese on each sandwich.
  4. Cover the sandwiches with a basting dome on the Blackstone and place some water under the basting dome until the cheese melts. If you don't have a Blackstone with a basting dome, place each half of the sandwich with meat on it under the broiler for 1 minute until the cheese melts. Instead of the broiler, you can use an air fryer at 400°F for 2 minutes.
  5. Spread 2 tablespoons of chimichurri sauce on the other half of the ciabatta rolls.
  6. Join the two halves of the sandwich and enjoy! Check out that cross-section!

Notes

  • You can use your favorite device to melt the cheese. For a large group, use the Blackstone griddle with a large basting dome, or set the sandwiches under the broiler in your oven. You can also use your air fryer and make the sandwiches in batches.
  • When slicing your tri-tip, be sure to slice across the grain. This will make sure the meat is tender and will keep your sandwich bite experiences optimized!

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 746Total Fat: 37gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 150mgSodium: 1035mgCarbohydrates: 52gFiber: 2gSugar: 22gProtein: 49g

Nutrition information is a guideline only, is calculated automatically by third party software, and absolute accuracy is not guaranteed.

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