A perfectly cooked steak with mashed potatoes and a side of vegetables is a classic dinner most meat eaters enjoy. Steak can be enjoyed all year long and prepared in several different ways. One of the best ways to prepare a nice, juicy, and delicious steak is by marinating it before you cook it. This article is for you if you’re unsure how to marinate your steak or don’t know what marinate to use. Keep reading to learn more about how to marinate a steak, and be sure to try out some of these tips and tricks for dinner tonight!
What Does Marinating a Steak Do?
A marinade is a liquid seasoning in which you soak your steak anywhere from 30 minutes to 8 hours before cooking it. It adds extra flavour to the meat, makes it more tender, and helps it maintain moisture throughout the cooking process. While there are many different ways to cook a steak, one of the best ways to cook them after marinating them is on the grill.
The Four Main Ingredients of a Steak Marinade
When it comes to preparing a good steak marinade, there are a few key ingredients that you’ll want to include. Sure, it’s easier to buy a bottled marinade at the store, but a homemade marinade will likely taste ten times better. Here are four of the key elements you want to include for a flavour-packed marinade:
Oil or Another Fat
The first ingredient you want to be sure to include in your steak marinade is some oil or other fat. Oil coats your meat and becomes infused with all the other flavours in your marinade. It will also help your steak stay juicy while giving it a nice char on the grill.
An Acid Like Vinegar or Lemon Juice
An acidic ingredient in your marinade will help tenderize the meat and balance its natural richness. For the best results, pair your acidic ingredient with the same amount of oil. If you make a homemade vinaigrette for your salads, you can even use that as a steak marinade.
Something Salty, Something Sweet
The next two ingredients in your steak marinade should be something salty and something sweet, but not just your regular white sugar and table salt. Get creative with your flavours, using ingredients like soy sauce or A1, fish sauce, fruit juice, or even honey.
Herbs, Onions, & Garlic
Last but certainly not least, it’s important to include herbs, onions, and garlic in your steak marinade. These aromatics will add freshness and depth to bring life to your steak.
How Long Should You Marinate Steak?
Once you’re finished mixing your homemade steak marinade, place your steak in a bowl or deep dish pan and pour the marinade over it, making sure it’s completely coated. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator. Your steak should marinate for a minimum of thirty minutes. However, the longer you let it marinate, the more tender and juicy it will be when you cook it.
The maximum time you should marinate your steak is about eight hours. If you let it sit longer than that, the acidity of the marinade may start to break down the proteins and cause the outer layer of the meat to become mushy rather than crisp when you put it on the grill.
Never Use the Same Marinade Twice
When it comes to marinating steak, get creative! The joy of creating a homemade marinade is that you can switch it up every time. Don’t be afraid to try out different oils, various sweet and salty ingredients, and a blend of other herbs and spices. The best part about cooking steak is that you can have it done differently every time but still taste amazing every time!
Marinating a steak is a process that doesn’t have to be difficult. With a little creativity and a lot of love, you’ll be cooking deliciously juicy and perfectly cooked steaks for you and your family or spouse to enjoy. The effort to make a marinate is well worth it when you or others get that first bite of your steak. It will leave you planning to use a marinate each time you make a steak.