How to Make a Smoked Bottom Round Roast

Learn step by step how to make a smoked bottom round roast on ANY grill or smoker!

This beef roast is seasoned, smoked, then seared to a perfect medium rare.   

Whether you’ve got a Traeger or Pit Boss pellet grill, a Weber Kettle, or a Masterbuilt electric smoker, we’ve got you covered.

a smoked bottom round beef roast sliced

While brisket, prime rib and beef tenderloin usually hog all the beefy glory in the BBQ and grilling world, we’ve got a great alternative to show you today.

A smoked beef bottom round roast is a simple, lean beef roast, much like a chuck roast or eye of round, and is typically used to make delicious beef roasts on a budget.

Much like we dressed up our smoked corned beef for St. Patrick’s Day, we are going to take this bottom round roast up a notch by adding some great BBQ flavors, wood smoke, and getting the temperature to a perfect medium rare.

We are going to cover:

  • How to prep your bottom round for the smoker
  • How to set up different grills and smokers for a smoked bottom round
  • What temperature to smoke your beef bottom round
  • The best wood choices for a smoked bottom round beef roast
  • How to know precisely when your smoked bottom round is finished
  • How to rest, slice, and serve your perfect smoked bottom round roast.

Wow, that’s a lot…so let’s get smokin’!


How to Prepare a Bottom Round Beef Roast for the Smoker

Thankfully you won’t need to do much of anything to your bottom round roast other than take it out of the package and season it before you smoke it.

applying oil to bottom round beef roasts for smoking

There isn’t usually too much fat to trim off a bottom round roast, but if there is, you can certainly cut off the excess so that the seasoning penetrates the meat better.

Make sure to always use a good boning knife like this one from Mercer so you don’t tear up your beautiful beef roast while trying to trim the fat.

Once the excess fat is trimmed, give it a rub down with a good high smoke point oil so that if you decide to sear it later, the oil doesn’t burn.

We are big fans of flaxseed or avocado oil for searing beef roasts like smoked bottom round.


Top Seasonings for Smoked Bottom Round Beef Roasts

When it comes to a smoked bottom round beef roast, or most beef roasts for that matter such as ribeye roast, you want to keep the seasonings simple and savory .


applying seasoning to a bottom round beef roast

Save the sugary BBQ rubs for your ribs and pork butts.  Especially since we will be searing this roast later and you’ll just end up burning all that sugar.

If you REALLY want to use a sugary BBQ rub like Blues Hog, one of our favorites for low and slow cooking, then skip the searing step at the end.

For our recipe below, we use a mixture of kosher salt, black pepper, paprika, onion powder, cayenne, and fresh minced garlic to form our exterior bark.

If you want a quick store bought rub with NO sugar, then try Bad Byron’s Butt Rub.  If you read our recipes often, you will see we recommend this one often for sugar free seasoning.

We oil up and season bottom round for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight, wrapped in plastic wrap in the refrigerator, before placing it on the smoker.

This gives the salt loads of time to penetrate the meat and really flavor it all the way through.


Best Smoking Wood Choices for Smoked Bottom Round Beef Roast

For a big piece of beef like a smoked bottom round roast, go with something like hickory, alder, or pecan that will compliment the beef well.

smoking wood on lit charcoal

If you want to keep it simple and straightforward, choose a lighter smoking wood like oak, apple, or peach.

Just know that these lighter fruitwoods may not impart as much smokey flavor into the beef as they might with chicken or fish.

When in doubt, you can always mix and match your choices together.


Best Times and Temperatures for Smoking a Bottom Round Beef Roast

You will need to watch both your cooking temperature and internal temperatures carefully when smoking the bottom round beef roast.

putting two bottom round beef roasts on smoker


Grill or Smoker Temperature

We recommend setting up the grill or smoker to cook at 225-250°F INDIRECTLY.

The bottom round roast is very lean and will cook relatively quickly, compared to a big fatty brisket or boston butt for pulled pork.

So we are keeping the temperature low to not only keep the meat moist but to also impart as much smoke flavor in the brief time it takes to cook as we can.


Watch the Internal Temperature Closely

You HAVE to use a good instant read meat thermometer to know where the internal temperature is of your smoked bottom round beef roast.

bottom round roasts smoking on grill

Ideally you want a good leave in probe thermometer like the ThermoPro as well as a second instant read to spot check different depths and areas on the roast.

While we have used and recommended ThermoPro for years, lately we have also become big fans of the MEATER leave in thermometer.

It is extremely accurate and has an incredible 165 foot bluetooth range and works right with your smartphone so you don’t need to carry a separate controller around with you like many other remote thermometers require.

It’s got a great free app that is constantly being updated and even has an algorithm to predict how much longer your type of meat will take to cook based on cooking temperature, target temperature, current internal temperature.

It’s like a GPS for your meat!

Anyways, back to our smoked bottom round beef roast.

We are going to slowly bring the internal temperature up to about 125°F, then sear it as hot as we can for about 2 minutes on every side until the internal temperature hits about 131°F and then remove it from the grill or smoker.

You can’t do all this without accurate thermometers.  There is very little room for error when smoking a lean beef roast like bottom round.

For spot checking throughout the cook, we are particular fans of this one from ThermoPro because of its durability and affordable price.

Everyone from beginner smokers to competition cooks need to use instant thermometers to consistently make great food.

So keep them handy and use them often.


How Long Does it Take to Smoke a Bottom Round Beef Roast?

A general guide is that most beef roasts take about 25-30 minutes per pound to smoke at 225°F.

So plan on a 5 lb bottom round beef roast to take about 2 to 2.5 hours to cook to medium rare.

Then add in your searing time and about 30 minutes to let it rest after cooking it before slicing.

Unless you want all those delicious juices running all over your cutting board instead of staying in the meat where you want them, you need to set aside time for the smoked eye of round to rest.


Want to see an example for yourself?  Check out this great smoked bottom round roast from


Setting up your Smoker for a Smoked Bottom Round Roast

Vertical or Offset Charcoal Smoker

Weber 22-inch Smokey Mountain Cooker, Charcoal Smoker
The Weber Smokey Mountain is a CLASSIC Charcoal Smoker.
See the Weber Smokey Mountain on Amazon

Fill your firebox or lower charcoal basin with about 1/4 a bag of unlit charcoal and create a small hollowed out depression in the center where you can add your lit briquets.

If your smoker comes with a water pan, like the Weber Smokey Mountain, fill the water pan as well to help stabilize the temperature and add moisture to the cooking chamber.

Light a charcoal chimney about 1/3 way with charcoal and wait about 20 minutes for it to fully ignite.  You don’t want TOO many lit briquests initially or the temperature will get too high too fast and be unmanageable.

Lighting a charcoal chimney starter
A charcoal chimney is the BEST way to get your charcoal fully lit

Fill your water pan first, then add the lit briquets to the center depression you created.

Keep the dampers about 1/2 way to 3/4 open until the temperature is to about 200°F.  Then slowly close them down until you are maintaining a temperature of 225-250°F.

This will obviously take longer on a cold winter day than a hot summer one.

Add 1-2 chunks of smoking wood once the smoker is up to temperature and put your bottom round roast on the cooking grate to smoke.

Want to see a list of our FAVORITE Vertical Smokers for 2021?  Check it out here!


Propane or Electric Smoker

Masterbuilt MB20073519 Bluetooth Digital Electric Smoker with Broiler, 30 inch, Black
The Classic Masterbuilt Electric Smoker


See Masterbuilt Reviews on Amazon

Propane and electric options are some of the easiest smokers for beginners to start with.

Debating whether to buy a propane or electric smoker?  Check out our COMPLETE Comparison Guide HERE.


For Propane: Open your gas valve and light the bottom burner. Adjust it to keep the temperature constant at 225° F.

Fill the water tray if there is one.

Need a refresher? Check our our Complete Guide to How to Use a Propane Smoker HERE.


For Electric: Plug your electric smoker in, open the vents, and turn the temperature to 225° F.

While it comes up to temperature, add smoking wood chips, not pellets, to the smoking wood tray.

Fill the water tray if there is one.

Refilling wood chips is one of the major drawbacks, besides tray size, of electric smokers compared to pellet grills like Traegers and Pit Bosses.

However, we recently found a great solution.

If you are tired of having to reload fresh wood chips into your electric smoker, especially on longer cooks like with a smoked bottom round beef roast, then check out this Masterbuilt Automatic Slow Smoker Attachment.

It basically burns new fresh wood chips at a constant rate, much like how a pellet grill works, freeing you up to do other things while getting your food nice and smokey!


Pellet Grill

Z GRILLS Wood Pellet Smoker , 700sq in 8-1 BBQ Grill,Auto Temperature Control Pellet Smoker(Cover,Oil Collector Included)-7002BPRO

Check out this Zgrills Pellet Grill on Aamazon

Fill the pellet hopper with your choice of smoking wood pellets.

Plug in the pellet grill and run it through its start up process.

Once it is creating smoke, turn the temperature to 225° F.

When the pellet grill has come up to temperature, place your bottom round beef roast on the grill grates.

For searing the meat later, don’t forget to also throw on your Grill Grates now, preferably over to the side next to the meat to start heating up.

As we’ve said time and time again, Grill Grates are the perfect, and a necessary, accompaniment to any pellet grill for high heat searing.

Never used a pellet grill before? 

Read our ultimate guide to pellet grills to learn why they are so easy and how to set one up for success every time.

Here is also a list of our favorite pellet grills priced under $500


Gas or Charcoal Grill

Weber Spirit E-310 Liquid Propane Gas Grill, 46510001 model - Black
The always dependable Weber Spirit E-310 Propane Gas Grill.
Read Weber Spirit Reviews on Amazon

On a charcoal grill you can use wood chunks just like you would in a charcoal smoker.

On a gas grill you will likely need to use a smoker box filled with wood chips, or a pellet tube smoker filled with wood pellets.

Think you need a fancy smoker to smoke food at home?  Think again. Great smoked food can be made right on your current gas or charcoal grill.

Check out our Ultimate Guide to Smoking on a Gas Grill HERE.

If you are unfamiliar with these gas grill smoking devices mentioned above, no worries, we have you covered!

Read everything you need to know about smoker boxes here, and see a selection of our favorite pellet tube smokers here.

Can’t decide which is best?  Then check out our full comparison guide here.

In the case of a smoked bottom round roast, we would opt for the pellet tube smoker since it will provide you with a longer smoking time without needing to refill multiple times like a smoker box.

However either one will work just fine depending on what you have available.

Set up your gas or charcoal grill for indirect cooking with the burners or a small amount of lit briquets on one side and plan for your meat to be on the other side.

Later, when it is time to sear the meat, we will move it over to the hot side.

charcoal grill set up for indirect heat

Once the temperature of your grill is about 225-250°F, place your wood chunks, smoker box, or pellet tube smoker over the coals or lit burners and once smoke begins coming out, place your meat on the opposite side.


Reverse Searing the Smoked Bottom Round Beef Roast

“Reverse Searing” is just a fancy term for searing your meat at the very end, once it is pretty much all the way cooked through, in order to get a nice crispy exterior crust that you sometimes just can’t get from low and slow smoking alone.

Once the internal temperature of the smoked bottom round roast reaches about 125°F, you are going to move it with some tongs to the hot part of the grill, some Grill Grates on a pellet grill, or even just a hot cast iron skillet.

searing a smoked bottom round roast over hot charcoals

You will need to keep turning the smoked bottom round to get each side seared evenly.

Now, there are several ways to do this depending on what type of grill or smoker you are using.


Gas or Charcoal Grills

These are the easiest grills to reverse sear the bottom round roast on.

When the roast is up to 125°F, simply move it over to the hot side of the grill over the charcoal or the hot burners and crank the heat.

Use a good pair of long handled BBQ tongs to keep the bottom round beef roast continuously rotating and searing on every edge, about 2 minutes per side.


Electric and Propane Smokers

If you are stuck with a vertical electric or propane smoker that only goes up to say 325°F, you may want to heat up a gas grill burner, a cast iron skillet, or even a flat top grill.

Anything to get a nice searing hot surface to move your smoked bottom round roast to when it’s ready.


Pellet Grills

The hands down BEST way to sear meat on a pellet grill, especially an older model that may not have a built in searing feature, is to use a Grill Grate.

the grill grates getting hot on a pellet grill

These handy aftermarket pellet grill accessories use the ambient heat of a pellet grill to create a searing hot surface on which to finish your meat hot and fast.

We love them for finishing smoked pork chops, steaks, and hamburgers on a pellet grill such as a Traeger or Camp Chef.

Make sure to measure and choose the right size for your specific pellet grill.


How to Slice a Smoked Bottom Round Beef Roast

Let it Rest

You will then remove the smoked bottom round roast from the hot grill, Grill Grate, or skillet and let it rest on a cutting board.

finished smoked bottom round beef roasts

Do not cover, wrap, or tent with foil when you let meat rest or it will continue to steam and over cook!

Let the smoked bottom round roast rest for about 20-30 minutes before slicing.


Slicing Like a Pro

Make sure to use a good meat slicing knife if you want those ultra thin deli style slices for the best roast beef ever.

slicing a smoked bottom round roast


We particularly like this meat slicing knife from Mairico.

Want to review our 5 FAVORITE Meat Cutting knives of the past year? Check out this Complete List HERE!

The outside slices will be more done than the very center if you have people in your house who prefer various levels of doneness to their beef.

Or, if you are serving your smoked bottom round roast as a dinner, go ahead and slice thicker 1/4″ slices to serve with a jus, horseradish, or cream sauce.

Make sure to only slice what you plan to eat immediately in order to keep the beef roast as moist as possible.


Best Things to Serve on the Side

You can’t go wrong with a flavorful jus to make a smoked french dip or a traditional horseradish cream to cut through the richness of the smoked bottom round roast beef.

For sides, we especially like asparagus, our yummy smoked carrots, or sticky smoked sweet potatoes.

smoked sweet potatoes

Hope you enjoy!


What Other Foods Can I Smoke?

Looking for some more smoky inspiration?

So glad you asked.

Check out some of our other great recipes of smoked and grilled food to try out at your next outdoor BBQ!











Other Odds and Ends

a smoked bottom round beef roast sliced

Smoked Bottom Round Roast with Horseradish Cream Sauce

Learn step by step how to make a smoked bottom round beef roast on ANY grill, pellet grill, or smoker!
We season, smoke, and sear this bottom round roast to a perfect medium rare then slice and serve with a delicious horseradish cream sauce.
Whether you have a Traeger or Pit Boss pellet grill, a Masterbuilt electric smoker, or a Weber kettle, we've got you covered.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Resting Time 30 minutes
Total Time 3 hours
Course Main Course, Sandwich
Cuisine American, Australian, barbecue, BBQ, French, Holiday, Smoked
Servings 6 servings
Calories 500 kcal


  • Smoker, Grill or Pellet Grill
  • Cutting Board
  • Meat Slicing Knife
  • Instant Read Thermometer
  • Dual Probe Thermometer
  • Wood for smoking (chunks, chips, or pellets). Preferably Hickory or Pecan.
  • Cast Iron Skillet or Grill Grates for a Pellet grill for searing optional


  • 1 Bottom Round Beef Roast About 5 lbs
  • 2 Tbsp Cooking Oil High smoke point oil like avocado or grapeseed oil

Savory Beef Rub

  • ½ cup Kosher Salt
  • ½ cup Black Pepper
  • ¼ cup Fresh minced garlic about 10 cloves fresh
  • 1 Tbsp Paprika
  • 1 Tbsp Dried rosemary or can substitute fresh rosemary finely minced
  • ½ Tbsp Onion Powder
  • 1 tsp Dried Thyme

Horseradish Cream Sauce

  • 1 cup Sour cream
  • ¼ cup Horseradish
  • 1 Tbsp Stone ground or dijon mustard
  • ½ tsp Kosher Salt
  • 1 tsp White wine vinegar
  • Fresh cracked black pepper to taste


Season the Bottom Round

  • Take the bottom round out of the packaging and trim any excess fat present.
    1 Bottom Round Beef Roast
  • Rub with a thin layer of cooking oil.
    2 Tbsp Cooking Oil
    applying oil to bottom round beef roasts for smoking
  • Mix all the rub ingredients and thoroughly coat the entire outside of the bottom round roast including the sides with the mixture.
    ½ cup Kosher Salt, ½ cup Black Pepper, ¼ cup Fresh minced garlic, 1 Tbsp Paprika, 1 Tbsp Dried rosemary or can substitute fresh rosemary, ½ Tbsp Onion Powder, 1 tsp Dried Thyme
    applying seasoning to a bottom round beef roast
  • Wrap in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator until ready to put on the grill or smoker.
    bottom round beef roasts wrapped in plastic

Setup and Start the Grill or Smoker

  • Start or light your smoker and bring the temperature up to 225°F. If using a gas or charcoal grill, only light one side and set the grill up for indirect heat.
    setting the traeger pellet grill to 225 degrees F
  • If not using a pellet grill, add wood to the smoker using either chunks or a smoker box or pellet tube smoker placed over the hot charcoal or burners on a gas grill.
    charcoal grill set up for indirect heat

Smoke the Bottom Round Beef Roast

  • Place the bottom round roast in the cooking chamber away from any direct heat. Place a temperature probe into the deepest part of the roast.
    putting two bottom round beef roasts on smoker
  • Smoke for about 2 hours until the internal temperature reaches about 120°F.
    bottom round roasts smoking on grill

Prepare the Horseradish Cream

  • While the bottom round is smoking, you can prepare the horseradish cream sauce if you wish.
  • Combine all the horseradish cream sauce ingredients in a small bowl and mix well to incorporate. Add extra salt as needed.
    1 cup Sour cream, ¼ cup Horseradish, 1 Tbsp Stone ground or dijon mustard, ½ tsp Kosher Salt, 1 tsp White wine vinegar, Fresh cracked black pepper to taste
    mixing up horseradish cream for a smoked beef tenderloin
  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator to serve with the smoked bottom round roast later.

Reverse Sear the Smoked Bottom Round Roast

  • Prepare to move the bottom round to the hot side of the grill for reverse searing, or, prepare a hot skillet with cooking oil or Grill Grate on a pellet grill to sear the bottom round when it is ready.
  • Once the internal temperature of the smoked bottom round roast reaches 120°F, move the beef roast to the selected place for reverse searing. Rotate about 2 minutes on each side until it is fully seared on all edges.

Remove, Rest, and Slice the Smoked Bottom Round Roast

  • Let the smoked bottom round rest on a cutting board, uncovered, for about 20-30 minutes.
    finished smoked bottom round beef roasts
  • Using a good meat slicing knife, slice in about 1/4" thick slices. Only slice what you plan to eat so the meat does not dry out.
    slicing a smoked bottom round roast
  • Serve immediately with the horseradish cream sauce.
    smoked bottom round beef roast sliced



Video example from


Calories: 500kcal
Keyword barbecue, bbq, bbq beef, BBQ Rub, Beef, Beef Roast, Beef Rub, bottom round, bottom round roast, Charcoal, electric smoker, Grilling, horseradish, horseradish cream sauce, pellet grill, pellet grills, pellet smoked, Pit Boss, propane smoker, Reverese Sear, Roast, roast beef, roast beef sandwich, smoked beef roast, smoked bottom round roast, smoked roast beef
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

One Comment

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  1. 5 stars
    This was great, although I think I took it off too soon since I was so worried about over cooking. We just threw the underdone slices back on for a little while and were still good.

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