How To Marinade Meats Like A Pro

Oct 6, 2022 | Meat and Seafood

Tough and flavourless meat is such a waste! 

That’s why we’re committed to helping all meat lovers unlock the secrets to better, juicer, tastier meats and marinades. 

In this article, we dig into the best flavours and tips you should know about before setting your next steak on the grill.

Create Your Marinade 

The main ingredients for any great meat marinade are:

Salt ensures that moisture from the marinade is absorbed into all parts of the meat. In combination with herbs and spices, salt enhances the flavour.

Oil helps the meat to reveal amazing flavours and smells. 

Soy also brings the flavour of the meat to life. It can be used in addition to salt or as a replacement for salt in marinades. 

Acids are another great option for marinades as they break down tough meat. We suggest exploring options such as soaking meat in a marinade made with lemon, lime juice, or vinegar. 

However, don’t leave your meat in lime or lemon juice for too long, or else it’ll get too soft. Anywhere between 30 minutes and an hour is a good time frame for acidic marinades. 

Sugar and honey add a delicious sweetness to any marinade. Honey also helps to tone down the acidity of the vinegar.

Other popular additions include pepper, parsley, and dried mustard. 

Once you’ve decided on your marinade ingredients, whisk your ingredients together in a mixing bowl. 

Prick Holes In The Meat 

Before marinating your meat, prick some holes into the meat with a sharp fork. This will allow the marinade to get deeper into the meat, and faster.

“To help the marinade penetrate as deeply as possible (especially thicker cuts like flank steak), prick the surface of the meat with a fork or score it with a knife.” Cooks Illustrated 

Cover The Meat In Marinade 

The meat should be covered evenly with the marinade. To ensure full coverage, we suggest putting your meat in a sealable zip-lock bag with the marinade, or to use a bowl. 

“Flip the bag or stir the meat halfway through the soaking time to ensure that the meat is thoroughly coated.”Cooks Illustrated 

To get the best flavour, let the meat sit in the marinade through the night.

Put The Meat In The Fridge 

To reduce the chance of bacteria growth, it is crucial to place your marinated meat in the fridge. Don’t forget to put a tray underneath, or to place your marinated meat in a bag to prevent leaks onto other food. 

“To eliminate the risk of microorganisms spreading in raw meat, don’t leave meat on the counter—refrigerate it.”Cooks Illustrated 

Cook It With Caution 

When it’s time to cook, don’t rush it. Our suggestion is to cook your marinated meat in an oiled-up grill pan or cast iron skillet. 

Get your pan or skillet to medium-high heat and keep a close eye to ensure there’s no burning. 

Cook about 3 – 5 minutes per side for 1-inch thick steaks.

“Remember, no matter how delicious the marinade, a great steak means proper grilling – find out how to reach a proper core temperature with this guide to achieving your desired degree of doneness.” – Otto Wilde Grillers

Additional Tips From Our Maunders Marketplace Butchers 

Choosing Your Meat 

Maunders Marketplace rib roast, flank steak, and tenderloin are all great choices for the grill.

Preparing For The Grill 

Before you cook, remove your meat from the refrigerator and bring it to room temperature.

Pound The Meat 

Pounding meat with a mallet is a very effective way to tenderize it. 

Up Your Spices

The more salt you add to your marinade, the more herbs and spices you’ll need to ensure the meat takes on those flavours as well. 

Dabbing Meat 

Dab steaks with a paper towel to remove excess moisture for a better sear and so the marinade doesn’t burn up.

Grilling Meat 

Grill to 5 to 10 degrees under the desired temperature. Meat continues to cook once it is removed from the heat.

Preparing To Serve 

To preserve the juiciness of the meat, let it stand for 15 to 20 minutes and then slice.

Side Dishes 

The best side dishes for any sort of meat are roasted potatoes, vegetables, corn on the cob, coleslaw, or other cold salads. 

Never Re-Use Marinade

Used marinade is contaminated with raw meat juice and is therefore unsafe to eat.

Get Your Meat At Maunders

Visit Maunders today to learn more from our talented staff and butchers. We’ve got all the local meat and meat tips you could ever need!