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What Should You Marinate Steak In

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Tips For Grilling Steak

How to Marinate a Steak

While this marinade is full of vibrant and savory flavors, you also have to remember grilling your steak properly is equally important. The reason being is if you overcook your steak it will end up dry and chewy.

  • Preheat Grill | Always preheat your grill, this will help get the grates hot and when you put the steak on the grill it will offer that sear sound which means success.
  • Steak Tip | I always sit my steaks out for at least 15-20 minutes before I plan to place them on the grill. I watched this tip on the Food Network channel years ago, and have done it ever since. This always sets you up for the success of a juicy steak that is cooked nicely.
  • Dont Cut Steak | When checking the done-ness of your steak dont slice into the steak to see how red or done it is. Use a meat thermometer and check it that way. If you cut the steak it will leak the juice and dry out.
  • Rest the Steak | Once your steak is done, lay it on a plate and put aluminum foil over the top. Let it sit for five minutes to allow it to soak in all those juices for a juicy and flavorful steak.

How Do You Apply A Marinade For Steak

First, choose and make a marinade recipe . We recommend making ¼ to ½ cup of marinade for each one to two pounds of beef.

Then, place the marinade and meat in a sealed plastic bag or glass container so that the beef can sit in the liquid. We like to use 1 gallon Ziploc bags since it makes it easy to periodically flip the beef so that the marinade works in evenly. We dont recommend using a metal container since the acidic ingredients can react with metal.

Lastly, make sure to place the container in the refrigerator as the beef marinates. Never marinate beef at room temperature.

As a side note, contrary to popular believe, beef doesnt absorb the marinade flavor throughout the cut of beef. Rather, the flavor stays on the surface of the meat and thats the punch of flavor that you taste with your tongue.

What Does A Marinade Do

Marinades are made from acidic or enzyme components like wine, vinegar, lemon juice, or any combination of them. The acids change the consistency of the meat, making it tender.

Marinades usually contain salt herbs & bold flavors which in turn flavor the meat.

Marinades help with caramelization to give that nice brown crust we love so much.

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Levels Of Doneness For Steak:

  • Rare: Cool red center, 125° F
  • Medium Rare: Warm red center, 135° F
  • Medium: Warm pink center, 145° F
  • Medium Well: Slightly pink center, 150° F
  • Well Done: Little or no pink, 160° F

In general, we want it at least 145° for a safe-to-eat internal temperature. However, unlike with chicken breast, it is safer to eat undercooked steak than it is to eat undercooked chicken. Keep in mind as well that the steak will continue to cook and increase in internal temperature by approximately 5° F AFTER its removed from the heat.

If you dont have a digital thermometer , here are some tips for how to know when steak is cooked.

Why Should I Marinate Steak

Best Steak Marinade

The purpose of a steak marinade is to infuse the meat with flavor. Much more effective than seasoning during the cooking process, steak marinades impart all of their flavor throughout the cut of meat. Particularly important if the steak will be grilled, a steak marinade nearly eliminates the carcinogens created by grilling.

In my steak marinade recipes, the citrus and vinegar ingredients serve to tenderize the meat. This makes it not only easier to chew but also easier to digest. It locks in the moisture for a better meal all around.

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What Ingredients Are Best For Marinating Steak

Now, you may wonder what ingredients are best for marinating steak.

There is a huge list of amazing things to put in a marinade from fruit juices and soy sauce to wine and vegetables. However, it is best to stick to the basics when you are first starting out.

These include ingredients such as soy sauce, olive oil, garlic, pepper, salt, and vinegar.

Pretty much any spice can go well with your marinade to create a customized taste for every bite.

When determining what marinade to use it is important to pick some ingredients you like and those that will compliment each other.

This is because some flavors will overpower others which can make the final product not as good as it could be.

So, try some different marinades out and find what combinations work best for you.

Meal Prep Tools For This Recipe

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Tips For Grilling A Perfect Steak

  • Preheat the grill so the grates are nice and hot before putting the steaks on.
  • Once youve placed the steak on the grates, try to move it as little as possible.
  • Only flip your steak once to keep it from sticking to the grates and to cook it evenly on both sides.
  • Dont cut into your steak to check for readiness! This will let the juices run out and dry out your steak. Use a thermometer or the hand test .
  • Once cooked, allow steak to rest for at least five minutes before cutting into it to preserve the juices and keep it from drying out.

Add Acid But Not Too Much

How to Make the Best Steak Marinade |

Acid helps tenderize tough connective tissueswhich my favorite steaks have plenty ofbut too much acid will actually cook and toughen the meat, turning it weird and chalky. To prevent this from happening, use equal parts or less acid to oil.

You can always add more acid later, but you can’t take it away. So though you can add up to as much acid as oil, I like to start with less, just to be safe. For two pounds of steak I usually start by whisking together 1/4 cup of acid and 1/2 cup of oil. What kind of acid you use depends on how you want it to tasteyou could use a fresh fruit juice such as lemon juice, orange juice, or pineapple juice, or you could use any kind of vinegar such as balsamic, apple cider, or rice vinegar. Your acid could also come in the form of wine, beer, buttermilk, yogurt, or even puréed onions and garlic. I love a classic combo of olive oil and balsamic on a juicy hanger steak.

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The Ultimate Skirt Steak Marinade Recipe

Cooking steak can be intimidating, I know it used to intimidate me. I think it was because steak is usually a more expensive cut of meat and I did not want to mess it up. Steak on its own has incredible flavor and texture. This skirt steak marinade enhances the natural flavors of the steak without overpowering it. Using the right marinade for your cut of steak can elevate it from great, to absolutely amazing. And this marinade does just that for skirt steak.

Adding marinades to meat does a few things that make it a must when cooking steak. First of all marinades tenderize the meat, helping to break down the fibers that make meat tough. Marinades add flavor. Allowing the meat to sit in the marinade for even as little as 30 minutes will infuse it with intense flavor, guaranteeing a scrumptious meal. And then it adds moisture, helping to ensure your meat is moist and tender.

How Do You Make Marinade

Its quite simple! When I make a marinade, I aim to combine the following: some form of acid to tenderize , an oil and flavor. I always add some salt for flavor, but I also like to add garlic, onion or onion powder and dried seasonings. Whisk the ingredients together and toss with your choice of meat. Small pieces of meat season faster, so you wont have to marinate them for very long. Remove the meat from the marinade and discard. Cook however youd like and enjoy your juicy, flavorful meat.

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Why Is My Steak Tough And Chewy

The muscle fibers in meat have to be broken down and the proteins turned into gelatin in order to make meat tender. This happens very quickly over high heat with tender cuts of steak like filet mignon, but tougher cuts of meat require slow cooking, usually in some sort of liquid to keep them from drying out.

How Long Do You Have To Marinate Steak

Steak Marinade

How long you marinate steaks really depends on how thick the steak is before cooking. If youre using a Tri-Tip steak, which is 2-3 at its thickest part, youll want to marinate it for 6-7 hours. Skirt teak or flank steak is one of my favorite cuts of beef for a few simple reasons- its inexpensive, super tender and easy to cook! Skirt steak often is folded in the package so once you remove it, youll see its quite thin. Thin steaks dont need to marinate very long! I aim for 3-6 hours, and usually end up marinating mine for 4 hours.

This really is the BEST Steak Marinade ever! Its very simple to make as it uses just 6 ingredients that you likely already have in your pantry. Marinade for 3-6 hours, depending on the type of steak youre using. Small, thin round steaks take less time to marinade than flank steak, but I love flank steak, so thats what I use most often. The marinade yields a flavorful, juicy steak that everyone loves. Its reminiscent of teriyaki with a slight twist- try it and youll see what I mean!

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Best Steak Marinade Ever

Besides being the best marinade for all types of beef steaks, the marinade is also awesome with the following:

  • Pork
  • Seafood
  • Vegetables
  • Roasts

Anyhow, this is the way I like my steak done medium, but well done on the edges .

I never bother to make large batches, as this Marinade takes only minutes to make, and it contains all standard, everyday pantry ingredients.

This way I can also make a single batch, double or even more, depending on how much meat we want to cook on a specific day.

I always have to share the recipe with all our family and friends when we have them over for a barbecue or dinner ! Many people refer to this recipe as the best steak marinade for bbq, but it is so much more.

Using this Marinade turns out the meat , tender and juicy, each and every time.

Cooked to perfection and ready to be served


Over time we have used the Marinade not only with most red meats, but it is also very good with chicken and pork.

My daughter also marinated a pork roast and they loved it !

She did however, marinated the roast over night as she had a busy day ahead.

Every now and then she turned over the marinade container. And then she cooked the roast, using her rotisserie gadget in her oven. Below the roast she had a dish with plain, lightly salted potatoes into which the juices from the roast dripped.

Hearing about how fantastic her pork roast turned out, I just had to try it, also with the potatoes in a separate dish below the roast. Absolutely amazing !

When To Skip The Steak Marinade

Are there times when skipping the use of a steak marinade is a good idea? Absolutely.

In most cases, youll want to skip the steak marinade unless you buy budget-friendly cuts. More expensive steaks, like ribeye, strip steak, and filet mignon, end up juicy and tender without the help of a marinade. Plus, many of the high-priced steaks are also full of flavor, so they dont need any help in that area, either.

Filet mignon is one exception to the full-of-flavor rule. Its not as beefy as other cuts, but its one of the most tender cuts there is. Therefore, a marinade isnt the best option. However, it can benefit from an au jus or an herb butter placed on top after cooking for just the right amount of flavor.

Another downfall to steak marinade is that it creates a lot of moisture on the outside of the steak. Although you should always pat your steak dry before cooking it, marinade soaks into the meat, and some of that escapes during the cooking process. Therefore, if youre looking for a perfect sear on the outside of your steak, you might end up disappointed when using a marinade.

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Pat It Down Then Grill

When your grill is ready for cooking, remove the steak from the marinade and give it a good pat down with paper towels. Make sure no bulky flavorings like slices of jalapeño are stuck to the meatthey’ll just burn on the grill.

Your cook time will depend on the heat of your grill and the cut of steak you’re using, but generally speaking all thin cuts fare well cooked over high heat. They won’t take long, so have your thermometer and tongs at the ready and keep flipping them over high heat and checking the internal temperature until your steak reaches your desired doneness. Aim to pull it off the grill at 120125°F for medium-rare, or 130135°F for medium. If you don’t have a thermometer, simply slice into the steak a bit to have a peek at the color in the center to know if it’s done to your liking.

Now that’s a good summer supper.

Can You Make The Marinades Ahead Of Time

How to Marinate a Good Steak : Savory Flavors

You can make the marinades themselves and keep them in mason jars in the fridge up to one week in advance. I wouldn’t recommend any longer than that, especially for marinades with fresh herbs as they can lose their flavour. But creating the marinades ahead of time is a great way to cut down on prep time if you like to do a little bit of meal prep earlier in the week before cooking.

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How Do You Make A Steak Marinade Without Soy Sauce

If you are allergic to soy or dont like the taste of soy, you can use a substitution instead on in the marinade.

  • Consider skipping it all together and just using the other ingredients, increasing your oil and balsamic by cup each.
  • Tamari sauce is another Japanese sauce you can use that tastes like soy but is thicker and more flavorful than soy sauce.
  • Coconut aminos make a good substitution for soy sauce.
  • Bragg liquid aminos will help to tenderize your steak and add flavor as well.
  • You can also increase the amount of worcestershire sauce if you enjoy that flavor more.

Tips For How To Marinate Steak

Okay, so while its simple, there are still some quick tips Id like to share that will help you marinate and cook your steak like a pro. Here are some helpful tips on how to marinate steak to have the best results.

  • Use a sealable plastic bag, large bowl with plastic wrap, or an air-tight container. You want to seal in the juices and flavors as much as possible. As a general rule, I use a 1 quart sized bag when Im marinating less than a pound of steak, and its perfect.
  • Keep marinating meat away from other foods in your fridge to avoid unsafe contamination of the raw meat.
  • Use a combination of an acid, oil, and spices in your marinade.
  • Make sure to discard the unused marinade once its time to cook the meat and dont use it as a sauce unless you cook it first because it will contain raw steak juices.
  • For the best results, try to marinate the steak the night before you cook it for the maximum flavor.
  • If you cant get to cooking your marinated steak within two days, you can also freeze the meat in the marinade to be used later. Thats a benefit of using the freezer-safe bags you can just toss them right into the freezer for later. Then, when its time to cook, thaw the meat and cook.
  • For most marinades, use about 1/2 cup of the marinade for every 2 pounds of beef.
  • After removing the beef from the marinade, pat all sides of the steak dry with paper towels to prevent steaming and encourage browning.

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How To Freeze Marinated Steak

If you cant get to cooking your marinated steak within 24 hours, you can safely freeze the meat in the marinade to be used later. Thats why I love using the freezer-safe re-usable bags when marinating steak, for you can just toss them right into the freezer for later. When its time to cook the steak, just thaw the meat and cook.

Should You Marinate Steak

Best Steak Marinade

Absolutely. Marinating a steak gives it time to soak in all those ingredients and flavor. The longer that you let a steak marinade, the more flavorful it is going to be. Your marinade should complement your steak, not overpower it.

If I have frozen steaks Ill actually throw the frozen steak in a marinade and let it thaw in the marinade. Its makes it so easy and the steak is amazing!

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