My friend and his Brazilian wife are pretty crazy about Picanha. As I understand it, this cut is also called Coulotte and is a part of the top sirloin cut with a fat cap on top.

Typically, it's skewed and cooked over an open flame - which hardens the fat and provides for a nice char over a medium/medium rare cut.

I'd like to make some Picanha for the next time we have them over - but I don't have the luxury of a grill. I do, however, have a Traeger smoker.

The Traeger tops out at 400 degrees. So, I'm wondering if I should smoke the Picanha low and slow or crank the Traeger to 400 and go hot and fast.

I'm hoping for the fat to render and become edible and for the meat to be very tender without being overcooked.

What would be the best way to go about cooking this cut in a smoker?

  • 1
    Not what you're asking for, but a good alternative to cook picanha is to cut it in thick steaks and just use a very hot skillet to sear the meat until your desired cooking point.
    – Luciano
    Sep 26, 2018 at 9:21
  • @Luciano if I can't figure a good way to smoke, the cast iron skillet will be mo go to.
    – Hueco
    Sep 26, 2018 at 14:00
  • Some rubs will give you a crust without searing.
    – paparazzo
    Sep 27, 2018 at 15:41

1 Answer 1


I'd put it in the smoker low&slow until the desired internal temperature is reached (minus some degrees, depending on the size of the meat), then brown it in a hot pan.

  • I've read about the reverse sear but I haven't tried it before. Should one remove the meat from the low and slow quite a bit before the sear? As in, I imagine the sear will continue to cook a bit so if I want a medium steak, I'd remove it maybe 20 degrees less than medium (med rare territory) and expect it to come up to medium during the sear?
    – Hueco
    Sep 27, 2018 at 15:30
  • Almost. Per Kenji, you'll want to remove the meat 10-15 degrees below the target temperature.
    – kraligor
    Sep 28, 2018 at 16:35

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