To marinate is to soak in a marinade. A marinade is a liquid mixture, usually of vinegar, wine, or lemon with various oils, herbs, and spices, in which meat, fowl, fish, or vegetables are soaked before cooking. Marinades can also be made with produce such as pineapple or papaya.
The two main reasons for using marinade are to add flavor to foods and to tenderize tough cuts of meat. Depending on both the meat and type of marinade, marination may take place instantly to several days. When marinating meats, it is important that the marinade is acidic so that it breaks down the tissues. The breakdown of tissue allows for more moisture to be absorbed allowing for a juicier finished product.
I don’t think it’s possible to make and use too much marinade, but as a general rule, make about a half cup of marinade per pound of meat. Marinades containing acids, alcohol, or salt should be used for under four hours to prevent damaging breakdown of the meat. Marinades containing citrus should not be used for more than two hours before damage may begin to occur. Marinades containing no acids, alcohol, or salt can be left in the refrigerator overnight to several days.
Remember: all marinating should take place in the fridge to prevent illness and should be conducted in a zip closure bag, plastic container, or glass container. Metal bowls or dishes should never be used for a marination celebration!
Directly below you will find a chart for type of meat, cuts of meat, and marinating times. Below that, you will find a beautiful collection of marinade recipes.
|Beef, Lamb, Pork||Chops, Steaks||2 to 4 hours|
|Beef Flank Steak||2 hours or overnight|
|Whole Roast||4 to 6 hours or overnight|
|Poultry||Breasts, thighs||2 hours to overnight|
|Whole Chicken||4 to 6 hours to overnight|
|Seafood||Shrimp, Scallops||15 to 30 min5 min|
|Fish||Steaks and Fillets||15 to 30 min|
|Vegetables||Any||30 min – 4 hours|
25 Marinade Recipes
All purpose Marinade – chicken, meat, pork, burgers, veggies
Basic red wine vinegar and mustard marinade – meat, veggies
Basil Lime Marinade & Sauce – chicken
Chipotle Marinade – chicken, or pork
Cilantro, Garlic, and Lime Marinade – chicken
Coffee Marinade – meat
Easy Marinated Olives – assorted olives
Fried Chicken Marinade with Buttermilk – chicken
Garlic Rosemary Marinade/Rub – chicken, pork, or beef
Ginger-Sesame Marinade – chicken, seafood, meat, veggies
Greek Marinade – chicken, pork, white fish
Grilled Vegetable Marinade – veggies
Hot Dog Marinade – hot dogs
Jerk Marinade – chicken, seafood, pork, beef
Kiwi Marinade – chicken tacos
Mojito Marinade – fish
Mushroom Marinade – mushrooms
Peanut Ginger Marinade – chicken
Quick Teriyaki Marinade – meat, veggies
Soy Garlic Marinade – meat
Spicy BBQ Marinade – meat, steak, veggies
Spicy Marinated Summer Vegetables – veggies
Tequila Lime Marinade – meat, fish
Tofu Marinade – tofu
Vanilla Lime Marinade – meat, pork, chicken
If you have any questions or comments, I invite you to post them below. Enjoy your marination celebration!