What is the Best Cut of Beef for Barbecue?

Beef is a popular ingredient cooked around the world in a variety of styles. If you’re cooking on a grill for the next holiday or gathering with family and friends, you’ll need to know the best beef cuts to work with.

Barbecue beef cuts go beyond popular steaks with larger and wonderfully flavorful pieces of meat. Here are our top-two selections for the best beef cuts to buy.

Tri-Tip Roast

What is the Best Cut of Beef for Barbecue?

Tri-tip roast is an elegant and flavorful cut of beef that is excellent for medium-rare barbecue grilling. Although costlier than a brisket, the richer flavor and improved texture with shorter cooking time are favored by many backyard chefs.

To get the most out of a tri-tip roast, marinate it overnight. Smokey and sweet flavors work best. You can base your marinade on Italian dressing or soy sauce, depending on your preference.

Add liquid smoke flavor, garlic powder, onion powder, and red pepper flakes for some extra kick. Any of your favorite marinades will work, as will any dry rub, so feel free to experiment. You can also marinate in a simple soy sauce and then baste the meat with barbecue sauce before cooking.

Tri-Tip should be cooked medium-low for the most authentic barbecue flavor. Your hood thermometer should read between 224°F and 274°F. This cut can be cooked over direct heat for an impressive and flavorful sear and can be turned during cooking, according to your preference.

Cooking time for a 2.5 pound cut of tri-tip roast will be up to three hours, depending on your grill. Cook with the hood down to infuse rich flavor and ensure a consistent temperature.

Your roast barbecue cut will be ready when its internal temperature maintains 140°F at the deepest part of the meat.

Beef Back Ribs

What is the Best Cut of Beef for Barbecue?Excellent value and a delicious flavor come together when you choose back ribs for your next barbecue. Perfect for smoking and grilling, this versatile option will expand your repertoire and delight family and friends.

Beef back ribs are ideal for indirect cooking on your grill. Keep the coals burning on one side, or ignite gas burners away from the meat.

A 1” thick cut of beef back ribs will cook in around 5 hours at 203°F. Larger 2” cuts will cook in around 10 hours at the same temperature.

Keep the grill hood down when barbecuing beef back ribs.

Cooking times may vary depending on your grill, or if you use a smoker. Use a meat thermometer to keep things simple and accurate. The temperature at the thickest part of the meat will be 175°F when the ribs are fully cooked.

Low and slow is important for barbecue beef. It will allow for the best flavor, no matter what kind of marinade or barbecue sauce you use.

If you’re using sauce directly on the meat, be sure to re-coat it throughout the cooking process using a basting brush.



A Meat Thermometer is Your Best Friend When Barbecuing Beef

To help with cooking times and food safety, always use a thermometer when cooking meat. You’ll know when your beef is fully cooked and safe to eat. Temperature also impacts flavor, so you’ll get the tastiest food when you cook it up to its target temperature.

This ThermoPro TP21 Digital Wireless Meat Cooking BBQ Thermometer is perfect for grilling and smoking and works great for slow barbecue cooking.

Enjoy Beef Even More with Barbecue Cooking

The best beef cuts work great for slow cooking on your grill. Barbecue cooking is all about low and slow flavor, enhanced by your choice of marinade or sauce.

If you’re just getting started with grilling and want a great versatile sauce for basting. Sweet Baby Ray’s Barbecue Sauce is one of the world’s most popular basting sauces and is perfect for the beef cuts above. You can also experiment with your own sauces, rubs, and marinades to perfect your recipe.

Enjoy tender and flavorful barbecue cuts on your grill or in your smoker in the holiday season or at any time of the year.


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