Air Fryer Tri Tip Steak Recipe (2024)

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By Courtney ODell

4.51 from 347 votes

Jan 23, 2021, Updated Mar 23, 2024

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Tender and juicy tri tip steak with a perfect crunchy crust, air fried to medium rare perfection in less than 25 minutes from the fridge to your dinner table!

Air Fryer Tri Tip Steak Recipe (2)

Don’t want all the extras in a recipe post? We provide a skip to recipe button in the top left corner, as well as a clickable table of contents, just below, to help make this page easier to navigate.

Table of contents

  • Air Fried Tri-Tip
  • How to Air Fry Tri Tip Steak
    • Recipe FAQs
  • What To Serve With Tri Tip Steak
  • The Best Air Fried Tri Tip Steak Recipe
Air Fryer Tri Tip Steak Recipe (3)

Air Fried Tri-Tip

This tri tip steak is incredibly tender and juicy – I love grilled churrasco style steak, but when we can’t get outside over the grill, the air fryer is the BEST way to make steak!

We love air fryer New York strip steaks, and decided to try tri tip in our air fryer – what a game changer!

Air fryers are like mini convection ovens that broil at high temps (and because they are small, they direct heat more efficiently than many ovens, allowing you to get a lovely sear and crunch without overcooking the meat) – giving you perfect delicious steak.

We love to serve this steak with chimichurri sauce – it’s simple, clean, and crazy delicious!

Check out my web story about air frying this tri tip, it includes video!

Air Fryer Tri Tip Steak Recipe (4)

How to Air Fry Tri Tip Steak

This recipe was designed to work with any air fryer model or pressure cooker (Ninja Foodi or Instant Pot) with broiler lid and basket.

We’ve made it in a Phillips air fryer (standard air fryer with basket), a Ninja Foodi with broiler lid, and an Instant Pot with crisping lid and broiler function.

This steak is delicious with a super simple steak rub – we’re going to show you our favorite rub with a little kick from Aleppo pepper (one of my all time favorite seasonings), but if you have a steak rub you love, go ahead and use that as you wish (use 2 tablespoons)!

  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon aleppo pepper (less if you don’t want it too spicy)
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
Air Fryer Tri Tip Steak Recipe (5)
Air Fryer Tri Tip Steak Recipe (6)

Method: You’ll flip the tri tip after about 8 minutes, and aim for 16-20 minutes air fry time – but then leave the tri tip in the air fryer until it hits your target temperature to carryover cook in the ambient heat.

Since cuts of meat can vary in size, and different air fryers hit different temperatures, we strongly recommend on going off the temperature of your tri tip, not the time on your air fryer for absolutely perfect results.

Air Fryer Tri Tip Steak Recipe (7)

Tips to Perfect Air Fried Steak & FAQs

This recipe is incredibly easy to get perfect air fried tri tip with a crunchy crust and juicy, tender center – but there are a few things you can do to make sure your tri tip is a knockout every time.

Bring to room temperature. For the crunchy crust and rich meaty flavor you get from a steakhouse, you want to cook steak as hot and fast as possible. Steak that has come to room temperature before cooking can crisp on the outside faster, and allows the fat to render more. Simply let tri tip rest on the counter for 20-30 minutes before cooking while you prep the rest of your meal.

Pat dry. Steak with excess moisture or water will not crisp and risk boiling instead of broiling – giving you tougher, chewier, gray meat. Simply pat dry with a paper towel to make sure your steak is completely dry before rubbing with oil.

Drizzle in oil. Before air frying, we will be adding a little oil to help seasoning stick and crisp the outside of the steak a bit more when air frying. Think of this as just a drizzle for your steaks – they should just glisten from the oil, they don’t need to be soaked in oil.

Season well. Before air frying, be sure to season steak well. Use your favorite steak seasoning, herbs de provence, Montreal steak seasoning, or rub.

Give steak space. It is absolutely essential to have lots of airflow for your air fryer to properly cook steaks – don’t cram into the basket and don’t let steaks crowd the basket or touch.

Let steak carryover cook in air fryer. If you remove your steaks from the air fryer/broiler basket right when the machine’s timer shuts off, your steak will be crispy outside, but very much raw in the middle. The broiler/air fry function is great for crisping the outside of the steak, but a good deal of the cooking is done after your air fryer fan shuts off and the steaks cook in the heat of the machine. Keep machine closed (you can quickly pop in a digital thermometer to monitor doneness) for at least 5 minutes for medium rare, and up to 10 minutes for medium well to well done.

Let it rest. All steak need to rest for 5 minutes after cooking before serving and slicing (after removed from machine) to let juices set and prevent steak from drying out.)

Know what temperature to cook steak to. Since we’re cooking this steak to an ideal doneness – and less for time – it is critical to know the temperature you’d like to cook your tri tip to. I personally go for “Pittsburg Rare” – charred on the outside, and fairly rare in the middle – it’s my absolute favorite way to eat steaks, including tri tip! Air fryers are great at getting the perfect crunchy crust on the outside of steak, without overcooking the middle, so you get a delicious juicy steak at perfect medium rare (its great even done more, I just love rare-medium rare.)

  • Rare – 120 degrees
  • Medium Rare – 130 degrees
  • Medium – 140 degrees
  • Medium Well – 150 degrees
  • Well – 160+ degrees

Recipe FAQs

Can I Air Fry Tri Tip?

Tri tip steak is great for an air fryer – it comes out with a perfect crunchy crust and tender, juicy meat!
The hot air circulation in an air fryer helps steak cook hot and fast, so you’re left with tons of rich meaty flavor, without all the butter, oil, or splattery, smoky mess from pan frying steak at home.

What model air fryer should I use?

This recipe was designed to work with any air fryer model or pressure cooker (Ninja Foodi or Instant Pot) with broiler lid and basket.

How hot should I air fry tri tip?

Air fryer/pressure cookers with broiler functions should be set at 450 degrees.

How long to air fry tri tip?

For medium rare, broil for 12 minutes and let steak sit in machine for another 5 minutes to carryover cook until steak is 130-135 degrees Fahrenheit.

What temperature should I cook steak to?

Rare – 120 degrees
Medium Rare – 130 degrees
Medium – 140 degrees
Medium Well – 150 degrees
Well – 160+ degrees

Air Fryer Tri Tip Steak Recipe (8)

What To Serve With Tri Tip Steak

Tri tip is delicious for fajitas and tacos, but it’s also great on its own, served with delicious hearty sides.

We’re rounding up our favorites below:

  • The Best Easy Oven Roasted Asparagus Recipe
  • Easy Keto Naan Recipe
  • Easy Homemade Blue Cheese Dip Recipe
  • Easy Instant Pot Vegetable Soup Recipe
  • The Best Easy Baked Scalloped Corn Recipe
  • 10 Minute Pan Seared Thai Chili Scallops Recipe
  • Easy Air Fryer Broccoli Recipe
  • The Best Easy Spinach and Artichoke Dip Recipe
  • Bacon Raspberry Cheese Bites
  • Steakhouse Style Garlic Butter Charred Artichokes

For our complete side dish recipe archives, click here.

  • The Best Easy Oven Roasted Garlic Flank Steak Recipe
  • The Best One Pot Steak Fajitas Ever Recipe
  • The Best Garlic Grilled Flank Steak Recipe
  • One Pot Keto Steak and Mushroom Soup Recipe
  • The Best Oven Broiled Ribeye Steaks with Mushrooms Recipe
  • Spicy Grilled Flank Steak with Lime

For our steak recipe archives, click here.

Air Fryer Tri Tip Steak Recipe (9)

The Best Air Fried Tri Tip Steak Recipe

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Air Fryer Tri Tip Steak Recipe (11)


Air Fryer Tri Tip Recipe

Air fryer tri tip steak recipe – the most delicious tender and juicy tri tip steak with a perfect crunchy crust!

Course Air Fryer

Cuisine American

Keyword air fried steak, air fryer beef, tri tip steak

Prep Time 15 minutes minutes

Cook Time 20 minutes minutes

Total Time 35 minutes minutes

Servings 4

Calories 388kcal

Author Courtney O’Dell


  • 1 tri tip steak about 4 lbs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon paprika*
  • 1 tablespoon aleppo pepper* less if you don’t want it too spicy
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder*
  • 1 teaspoon salt*
  • 1 teaspoon pepper*
  • *or two tablespoons of your favorite steak rub
  • ½ cup chimichurri sauce to garnish, optional


  • Remove steak from refrigerator and let come to room temperature.

  • In a small bowl, mix together herbs, spices, and seasonings.

  • Pat steak dry with paper towels.

  • Rub olive oil into steak.

  • Add spice rub to steak.

  • Preheat air fryer at max heat for 5-10 minutes.

  • Add steak to air fryer basket, set to maximum heat, and fry 8 minutes.

  • Flip tri tip and cook again 8 minutes.

  • Check the tri tip temperature – if you are within 10-15 degrees of your target, close the lid and let the tri tip continue cooking in the air fryer (it will stay very hot after air frying, don't let all the heat escape when measuring temp.)

  • If tri tip is more than 20 degrees from your target temperature, cook additional 5-10 minutes.



Serving: 1g | Calories: 388kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 122mg | Sodium: 609mg | Fiber: 1g

Categorized as:
Air Fryer, Beef, Easy Keto Beef Recipes, Instant Pot, keto, Main Dishes, One Pot, Recipes, Steak

About Courtney

Courtney loves to share great wine, good food, and loves to explore far flung places- all while masting an everyday elegant and easy style at lifestyle blog Sweet C’s Designs. Sweet C's devoted to finding the best food and drinks you'll want to make or find, around the world!

Read More About Me

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Air Fryer Tri Tip Steak Recipe (2024)


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