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15 Easy Leftover Tri Tip Recipes for When You’re Not Sure What to Make

15 Easy Leftover Tri Tip Recipes for When You’re Not Sure What to Make

I’ve never met anyone who cooked a tri-tip-centered meal and didn’t end up with leftovers.

Because this situation happens often, it can become a bit challenging to decide what to make with leftover tri tip.

The good news is:

I’ve compiled a list of 15 recipes that will turn leftover tri tip into delectable meals that no one will suspect are leftovers.

These 15 leftover tri tip recipes include all kinds of dishes, from classic meals to cozy weeknight dinners.

There are even salads with unique twists in there, so this list has a little something for everybody.

Let’s get started!

1. Smoked Tri Tip Mac and Cheese


Whenever I have leftover smoked tri tip, I make sure to make the king of all side dishes: mac and cheese.

Mac and cheese is already an all-time classic, but this smoked tri tip mac and cheese is top tier.

The smokiness of the tri tip, combined with the ooey-gooey Gruyère-sharp-cheddar goodness and the sweetness of the vegetables, all carried by the firm pasta, is just impeccable.


If you can, I suggest you double the recipe because this mac and cheese will be gone in an instant.

Yes, you’ll need to add this to your list of steak pasta leftovers tonight!

2. Leftover Tri Tip Barley Soup

This leftover tri tip barley soup is full of nutritious vegetables, tender beef, plump barley, and a rich broth to bring it all together.

All you need to do:

Place all of the ingredients and seasoning in the slow cooker and cook on low for six to eight hours.

During those hours, each flavor will intensify to create the best hearty soup for dinner.

If you have leftover soup, rejoice because you only need to take it out of the fridge and reheat it the next day.

3. Steak Salad with Berries, Avocado, and Goddess Dressing


If you’re craving a refreshing but unique bowl of salad, this recipe is for you.

The smoky, savory tri tip is tossed in a herby Goddess dressing in sweet-tangy fruits, rich avocado, and feta cheese.

This salad also has plenty of texture, from the vegetables’ crunch to the tender chew of the steak to the pumpkin seeds’ crisp.

Then there are the juicy fruits and the creamy cheese to tie everything together.

It’s the ideal appetizer for when you want to wow your guests.

4. Leftover Tri Tip Sandwich


Leftover tri tip and onions cooked together in olive oil, then put in a Swiss bun with Swiss cheese and mustard aioli.

The simplicity of this recipe shouldn’t fool you.

That sweetness from the caramelized onions and bun? The savory and smoky flavor of the tri tip? The buttery and spicy flavor of the mustard aioli? Major drool status!

Not only will you forget you’re eating leftovers from yesterday’s dinner, but it’s also so simple to make that you’ll just have to make it again the next time you have tri dip leftovers.

5. Leftover Tri Tip Shepherd’s Pie

Shepherds Pie recipe

The saucy, mouthwatering filling, the creamy mashed potato coating, and the crisp, savory golden cheese crust.

These three layers of deliciousness make up the classic Shepherd’s pie.

While it’s traditionally made with lamb, the tri tip makes an immaculate replacement. You’ll be eating leftovers without even realizing it.

The result?

A hearty weeknight Shepherd’s pie made with leftover tri tip to keep you fuzzy and warm when it’s cold outside. 

And if you still don’t finish all of this, you can check out how to reheat your Shepherd’s pie so it’s as fresh as the first day.

6. Smoked Tri Tip Nachos


Next time you’re looking for leftover tri tip ideas, consider making these tri tip nachos for snacks.

Packed with smoked tri tip, guacamole, black beans, cheddar, salsa, jalapenos, and sour cream, every bite of these loaded nachos is an explosion of flavors.

What’s more, this recipe is easy and quick to make, making it the perfect dinner for your next game day gathering or family movie night.

7. Leftover Tri Tip Salad

Tri Tip Salad recipe

There’s nothing like a plate of fresh greens for appetizers, right?

OK, I know what you’re thinking.

But when you add the leftover tri tip, the salad no longer remains one-dimensional.

It’s a very simple recipe: lay a bed of your favorite leafy greens on the plate and scatter some sliced radishes as well as a few edible flowers.

Season with salt, black peppercorns, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.

Your appetizer is ready to serve, and it’s not only delicious but also pretty to look at.

8. Tri Tip Stroganoff


Beef stroganoff is a traditional Russian dish that combines savory beef with umami mushrooms and is topped with a rich, creamy gravy-like sauce.

It’s often made with ground beef or hamburger, so what better way to elevate it than to use tri tip steak instead?

The tender chew and smoky buttery flavor of the tri tip add a new flavor dimension to the dish that I didn’t realize I needed until I tried this recipe.

You can serve this delectable goodness on hot wide noodles, as in this recipe, or on a bed of rice.

9. Smoked Tri Tip Fajitas


This Mexican classic is my go-to meal whenever I’m in the mood for a succulent, flavorful dish without putting in any effort.

You can pile on as many toppings as you want, from cheese to pico de gallo to guacamole. As for me, I prefer to go all-in on the toppings.

These fajitas are just what you need for a summer dinner: juicy steak and fresh colorful veggies wrapped in a soft tortilla.

10. Coffee-Rubbed Grilled Tri Tip Tacos with Chimichurri Sauce


These tri tip tacos are probably unlike any tacos you’ve had before.

Coat the leftover tri tip with the dry rub in the same way you would uncooked tri tip, adding a little olive oil to help the flavors soak into the meat.

That’s it!

Build your tacos with the meat and pickled red onions, then top with the herby and mildly spicy chimichurri sauce.

Every bite will deliver layers upon layers of bold, one-of-a-kind flavors that’ll keep you going back for more.

11. Tri Tip Quesadillas


Quesadillas are by far one of the easiest meals to prepare, and they taste just as good with leftovers as they do with freshly cooked food.

Fill soft tortillas with leftover tri tip, grilled peppers and onions, and a creamy blend of your strongest-tasting melty cheese.

Take them off the heat when they’ve turned a golden brown color, and you’ll be ready to dive in.

12. Garlic Butter Steak

Looking for a keto-friendly recipe while pondering what to do with leftover tri tip? This garlic butter steak is the dish you seek.

The juicy tri tip steak is cooked in garlicky-buttery goodness with your choice of vegetables. It’s a flavor explosion that’ll make you forget you’re eating a low-carb meal in the first place.

It’s filling and tasty on its own, but it also goes well with a simple salad and dinner rolls.

13. Tri Tip Steak Chili


There’s no better way to make use of leftover tri tip than in this mouthwatering steak chili.

This medium-spiced tri tip chili is the ultimate comfort food, with plenty of three types of beans, fire-roasted tomatoes, green chilies, and the most aromatic blend of spices.

When you put the chili on the stove to cook, the tantalizing aroma will permeate your home, and everyone will come to you with a growling stomach, asking when they can eat.

14. Tri Tip and Picanha Breakfast

Have you ever had a meal so delicious that you wished you could have it again for breakfast the next day?

If you’ve ever felt this way about tri tip and have some leftovers, this recipe is for you.

Tender savory tri tip, crunchy spicy serrano chilis, chopped sweet onions, and fluffy semi-scrambled eggs are cooked in butter and seasoned to your taste.

It’s easy to make, but this double-protein breakfast will help you get your day started right.

15. Leftover Beef Fried Rice


Using leftover rice is the key to making a delicious fried rice dish. With leftover tri tip, you’ve got the ultimate hearty breakfast or low-carb dinner, whichever you prefer.

Want to know the best part?

This tri tip fried rice can be as simple or extravagant as the ingredients you use. This recipe keeps it simple with the tri tip being the star of the dish.

However, you can take the dish up a notch with other ingredients like kimchi, mushroom, and fresh ginger.

Best Way to Store and Reheat Tri Tip

Meat spoils faster and more easily than most foods, and eating spoiled meat can be harmful to your health.

That’s why, if you want to use up any leftover tri tip, you must store it properly.

In the Fridge

Wrap each piece of meat in freezer paper, then place them in Ziploc freezer bags. Make sure to remove as much air as possible to prevent oxidation and spoilage.

If you don’t think you’ll eat your tri tip leftovers within three days, you should freeze them instead.

In the Freezer

Use the same method you used to store leftover tri tip in the fridge. It’ll keep the meat’s water content and juices from crystallizing.

You can freeze tri tip for up to six months without affecting its quality or spoiling it.

For up to a year in the freezer, the meat may lose its juiciness and texture and become more susceptible to freezer burn.

Don’t forget:

You shouldn’t use meat that’s been frozen for more than a year. It’s also not safe to refreeze any type of meat after you defrost it.

Reheating Leftover Tri Tip

The oven is the best way to reheat room-temperature, refrigerated, or frozen leftover tri tip, and it should take 30 to 45 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 250°F and place a baking pan with water beneath a roasting rack.

Place the tri tip on an aluminum foil sheet and place it on the oven’s roasting rack.

Check the internal temperature of the meat after 20 minutes. You can safely eat it if it has reached 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

This way, the tri tip will become hot and delicious without losing any moisture or texture.


leftover tri tip recipes hdr

What to Make with Leftover Tri Tip

Ideas and recipes to cook with leftover tri tip


  • Mac and Cheese
  • Barley Soup
  • Steak Salad
  • Sandwich
  • Shepherd’s Pie
  • Nachos
  • Salad
  • Stroganoff
  • Fajitas
  • Tacos
  • Quesadillas
  • Garlic Butter Steak
  • Steak Chili
  • Picanha Breakfast
  • Beef Fried Rice


  • Choose your desired leftover tri tip recipe.
  • Gather and organize needed ingredients.
  • Create a tasty leftover tri tip recipe to complete your meal!


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