Healthy Steak Marinades (5 Recipes)
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Healthy Steak Marinades (Gluten Free) – these healthy steak marinade recipes are simple to prepare and full of great flavor! Perfect for grilling, meal prep, and freezer friendly too!
Grilling season is almost here! During the summer months in Michigan, we use the grill nearly every day so I’m always creating new ideas for fun new grilling recipes. With my Healthy Chicken Marinade Recipes a staple in our rotation, I wanted to create a menu of delicious options for the steak lovers too. These Healthy Steak Marinades are full of great flavor and super simple to make!
How to Make Steak Marinade
A good marinade should include three basic components – oil, acid, and seasoning (flavor). That’s it! You can skip the bottle store bought marinades and easily make your own with just a few ingredients at home, keeping it clean and free of inflammatory oils and sugars.
A good rule of thumb when marinating steak is to use about 1/2 cup of marinade to 1 lb steak. To make the marinades, simply place all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk well. Or, add everything to a small mason jar, seal, and shake vigorously to combine. Place the steak in a plastic bag or glass dish and pour the marinade over it. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
The Best Steak Marinades
The options are endless when it comes to delicious flavor combinations of marinades, but these are a few of my favorites. Feel free to try them with other meats like pork, shrimp, and chicken too!
- Balsamic Herb Marinade – Balsamic vinegar and my homemade Mediterranean Seasoning
- Garlic Pepper Marinade – coconut aminos, avocado oil, fresh garlic, and black pepper
- Chimichurri Marinade – fresh parsley and cilantro, olive oil, and lemon juice
- Fajita Marinade – homemade Fajita seasoning with lime juice and avocado oil
- Hawaiian Marinade – pineapple, juice, coconut aminos, avocado oil
How Long to Marinate Steak
It really depends on the cut and the marinade ingredients, but on average I like to marinate at least 30 minutes for maximum flavor. Some marinades are better the longer they sit but be careful if using a strong acid (like pineapple juice or lime juice) which will eventually begin to “cook” the steak and could result in a mushy texture.
What Kind of Steak Cuts Should I Use
My favorite cuts for marinating and grilling are sirloin and flank steak. These leaner boneless cuts are suited for an infusion of extra fat and flavor, whereas larger, fatty, and more expensive cuts such as porterhouse and ribeyes need very little to enhance their flavor and tenderness. Try Crowd Cow or ButcherBox for sourcing high quality meat that is delivered right to your door.
Can You Freeze Steak in Marinade
Yes, absolutely! Place steaks and marinade in freezer safe Ziploc bags and seal tightly, removing all excess air. Freeze the marinated steaks for up to 3 months. To cook, first remove from the freezer and let thaw completely in the refrigerator, up to 24 hours.
How to Cook Marinated Steak
My preferred method for cooking marinated steak is on the grill, but all of these methods will result in a super juicy, delicious steak. Cooking method and cook time will depend on the thickness of your steak and the desired doneness. I recommend investing in a meat thermometer for checking level of doneness. The cook methods listed below indicate cook time for medium rare steaks that are approximately 1 inch in thickness. Increase your cook time accordingly for thicker steaks or medium/well done steaks.
- Grill – place marinated steaks on a preheated, oiled grill and cook for 4-5 minutes per side for medium rare (130-135 degrees internal temp) doneness. Increase the cooking time for medium (140 degrees internal temp) and well done (155 internal temp) steaks.
- Air Fryer – remove steaks from marinade and place in the basket of your air fryer lined with a parchment liner. Cook at 400 degrees for 10-12 minutes, flipping halfway through cooking time (for medium rare.)
- Stovetop – preheat a cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Place steak in the pan and sear (do not disturb the steak) for 3 minutes per side (medium rare) or to desired doneness. Oil is not necessary, but be sure to get the pan very hot!
- Broiler – preheat your broiler and place rack about 6 inches from broiler. Place steaks on a rimmed baking sheet (line with aluminum foil if desired for easy clean up.) Place pan on the rack and cook for 4 minutes, then remove and flip the steaks. Broil for an additional 3 minutes, or to desired doneness.
More Tips for Cooking Steak
Remove steaks from the refrigerator about 20 minutes prior to cooking and let them come to room temperature. This will ensure even cooking.
After cooking, tent the steaks with foil and let rest for 5-10 minutes. Never cut a steak immediately – you will lose all the delicious juices!
Trying to save some money in your grocery budget? Flat Iron, Tri-Tip, and Chuck Eye steak cuts are all great inexpensive options.
Finish your cooked steak by adding a pat of grass-fed butter for extra richness.
Healthy Steak Marinades
Balsamic Herb Steak Marinade
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons homemade Mediterranean seasoning, see recipe link below
Garlic Pepper Steak Marinade
Chimichurri Steak Marinade
Fajita Steak Marinade
- 1/4 cup avocado oil
- 1/4 cup lime juice
- 2 tablespoons homemade Fajita seasoning, see recipe link below
- To make the marinades, combine all ingredients in a mason jar.
- Seal the lid tightly and shake vigorously until well combined. Or, place ingredients in a bowl and whisk to cmbine.
- Add steak to a glass dish or large plastic bag. Pour marinade over steak and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Chimichurri Sauce Marinade
- Add parsley, cilantro, garlic, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, salt, and pepper to a food processor. Pulse to combine. Then slowly drizzle in the olive oil while the processor is running, until completely combined (scrape down sides as needed.)
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