Recipe: 5 Favorite Marinades

Grill season is officially here, and there's nothing more delicious than juicy, flavorful meat and vegetables fresh off the grill. On the other hand, there's nothing worse than a dried out, flavorless, charred piece of meat or vegetable off the grill. A great marinade can make all the difference between the two. Marinades help seal in the natural juices, while infusing flavor. Today I'm sharing my five favorite marinades with you. That's enough for an entire season of delicious grilling! Italian Dressing Marinade Use for: Chicken, Fish, Vegetables 1 bottle Italian salad dressing Directions That's right, a simple bottle of italian dressing makes an easy, delicious marinade for chicken, fish, and vegetables. I especially love it with zucchini and onions, and it's ideal for kebabs. Use a a full bottle, reserving 1/3 cup to brush on during grilling. Let your meat or vegetables soak in the dressing anywhere from 3-12 hours in an airtight container. The longer it marinates, the stronger the flavor. Discard extra marinade before grilling and use your reserved dressing to baste meat and vegetables as they cook. HINT: Vegetarian friends can mix in a dry package of Italian dressing mix to add extra flavor to veggie burgers. Sweet Soy Marinade Use for: Turkey or Chicken 2 1/2 cups lemon-lime soda 1/2 cup soy sauce 1/2 cup peanut oil 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder 1/8 teaspoon horseradish 1 teaspoon lemon juice Directions Combine ingredients and marinate 2-3 pounds of meat for 6-12 hours in an airtight container. The longer it marinates, the saltier the flavor, so adjust according to your taste. Discard extra marinade. Savory Steak Marinade Use for: T-bone, Ribeye, Flank, or Skirt Steak 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 cloves garlic, minced 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 1 teaspoon onion powder 2 teaspoons yellow mustard 2 tablespoons soy sauce 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper Directions Combine ingredients and marinate steaks for 3-12 hours in an airtight container. (Overnight works great.) Discard extra marinade before grilling. Honey Lime Marinade Use for: Chicken and Vegetables 3 tablespoons soy sauce 2 tablespoons honey 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 1 lime, juiced 1 clove garlic, minced Directions Combine ingredients and evenly coat chicken or vegetables in an airtight container. Allow to marinate for 1-4 hours before grilling. Smoky Savory Marinade Use for: Pork, Chicken, Turkey, Beef, and Vegetables 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 1 tablespoon ground ginger 1 cup soy sauce 1 cup water 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke Directions Combine all ingredients and add meat or vegetables to marinate for 1-4 hours in an airtight container. Discard the excess marinade after grilling. HINT: The liquid smoke is key in the recipe to create a rich, barbecue taste. Don't skip it! Those are my five favorites that are about to go into heavy rotation at my house. Do you have a favorite marinade that you'd like to share? Leave your thoughts in the comments section! {Image via Trucs de Food}
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