Making your beef taste better!

Homemade Beef Marinades

by Dollar Stretcher Contributors

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Beef Marinade Recipes

My family likes to have beef at family gatherings. I'd like to do something a little different with a beef marinade this year. So I'm looking for a recipe for a beef marinade that will be a real crowd pleaser. Anyone care to share their best marinade?

Keep It Simple

I tend to keep it fairly simple. I mix 2/3 teriyaki sauce and 1/3 red wine. For steaks, I marinate overnight. For roasts, I let sit for a few days, rotating it a few times per day.
David (via Facebook)

Salad Dressing Does the Trick

The easiest, cheapest, and quickest beef marinade is also very delicious. Just use your leftover bottled salad dressing! You can add some aromatics like minced garlic or various herbs, but just the dressing by itself will do a good job of tenderizing and flavoring the meat. I sometimes buy bottles of Italian dressing on sale just for this purpose, but using up whatever dressing you already have on hand works, too.

Fresh Is Best with Homemade Beef Marinades

Juice from 1 orange
Juice from 3 limes
2 garlic cloves
3 chipotle chilies in adobo sauce
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
1/2 tablespoon soy sauce

This is for roughly two pounds of meat, so for a gang, you would have to adjust. It's best to let it marinate overnight. The meat will be delicious, tender, and flavorful. Don't skimp on the fruits either. Use fresh, not bottled juices.

15 Garlic Cloves!

I have had this recipe for about ten years now.

1 can beer (I use lite beer)
1 eight-ounce bottle of soy sauce
15 (YES 15!) crushed garlic cloves

Combine and soak the beef roast in the marinade overnight or for at least three hours. Cook the roast as you like, using BBQ sauce, or roast on an outdoor grill. (This is wonderful at the beach!)

Caribbean Style Marinade

A can of frozen limeade concentrate or juice of 6 limes
1/2 c. sugar
1 Tbs. red pepper flakes
2 Tbs. minced garlic (6 cloves)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup rum (dark or light, to taste)
2 tsp. salt

Marinade meat at least half of an hour to overnight. Baste while grilling with leftover marinade. This is also good with pork short ribs.

Not Just for Beef

I've found this recipe to be good for beef, pork, or chicken. It's easy and tastes good.


1/4 cup olive oil
1/8 cup soy sauce
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke seasoning
dash of Worcestershire sauce

Toss this mixture with the meat and let marinate for at least a half of an hour and more if possible. The proportions aren't too precise; I just add some of this and some of that and it turns out great.

Use Kiwi in Homemade Beef Marinades

We love a Korean marinade that is a great tenderizer too. One kiwi is sufficient per pound or two of meat and about one fourth cup of vinegar per kiwi. Add remaining spices to taste, but don't skimp on the pepper! We buy kiwi on sale, and when they are ripened, we prepare and freeze the pulp and then have the main ingredient ready to go anytime without waiting for the fruit to ripen. You can also prepare marinade and then put meat and marinade in a freezer bag for a future quick meal. The marinade permeates the meat quite well while defrosting. As a bonus, the natural sugar of the kiwi gives a wonderful, flavorful glaze to the grilled or pan seared beef.

Minced garlic
Coconut oil
Balsamic vinegar
Roughly ground pepper
Fresh ginger

Scoop kiwi from peel and crush with fork. Caramelize garlic in coconut oil, add to kiwi, stir in remaining ingredients, and mix well. Spread over meat and marinade in refrigerator. Turn meat every few hours and marinate up to 24 hours.

Enjoy a Taste of Hawaii

The very best and most popular among native people and longtime residents of Hawaii is teriyaki sauce. We marinate steaks, chicken, pork, etc. in it before throwing the meat on the grill. No other marinade tops this one in Hawaii! Through the internet, look for a recipe from Hawaii. The ingredients are soy sauce, crushed fresh garlic, fresh ginger, sugar (white or brown), and a "twink" of bourbon. Marinate two or more hours. Always cook the meat over the grill!

Experience the Joy of Great Homemade Beef Marinades

Typically, a marinade needs acid to tenderize beef. This means wine, vinegar, or citrus. I went to the 1975 version of The Joy of Cooking. The author recommended a beer marinade for beef or pork.


1 1/2 cup flat beer
1/2 cup vegetable oil

Stir the oil in slowly and then add:

1 clove garlic
2 T. lemon juice
1 T. sugar
1 tsp. salt
3 cloves

For a more pungent taste, add:

1 T. dry mustard
1 tsp. ground ginger
3 T. soy sauce
1/8 tsp. hot pepper sauce
2 T. honey or sugar
4 T. marmalade
1 garlic clove

Beef Bourguignon calls for marinating stewing beef overnight in dry red wine. I have never tried flat beer; I drink it while it's fresh!

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