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Get ready for the ultimate dinner experience! This easy steak marinade recipe guarantees tender and juicy steak every time. And, you can use it with any cooking method you like — stovetop, oven, grill, or even air fryer.
There are many ways to make marinades for steak, but this simple balsamic version is my favorite. It’s the best steak marinade for maximum flavor and minimum effort. Pair your marinated beef with roasted broccolini, buttery sauteed mushrooms, and quick Instant Pot baked potatoes for the ultimate meal, from weeknight dinners to special occasions.
Ingredients & Substitutions
This section explains how to choose the best steak marinade ingredients, what each one does in the recipe, and substitution options. For measurements, see the recipe card below.
- Coconut Aminos Or Soy Sauce – Adds umami flavor and balances out the acidity of the vinegar. Coconut aminos is my favorite soy sauce substitute, but you could use regular soy sauce or low-sodium soy sauce if it fits your lifestyle.
- Olive Oil – Oil is a must to lock in moisture. Avocado oil would also work, or use any neutral oil you prefer.
- Balsamic Vinegar – Acidic ingredients are key in steak marinades, because they tenderize the meat. I like the slight sweetness from balsamic, but you can also try using red wine vinegar, lemon juice, lime juice, or apple cider vinegar. If you’re using something that isn’t sweet at all, add a few tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce to balance the flavors.
- Italian Seasoning – I used my own homemade Italian seasoning (it takes just 5 minutes), but you can use store bought. You can also swap in dried herbs on their own instead, such as rosemary, thyme, oregano, parsley, or basil.
- Spices – You will need garlic powder, sea salt, and black pepper. If you have fresh garlic, you can substitute 2 cloves (or more!) of fresh minced garlic in this marinade for steak, instead of the garlic powder. You can also add 1/2 teaspoon of onion powder if you like.
How To Marinate Steak
This section shows how to make steak marinade and use it for marinating steak, with step-by-step photos and details about the technique, to help you visualize it. For full instructions, including amounts and temperatures, see the recipe card below.
- Whisk together the steak marinade. Combine all ingredients together in a small bowl with a whisk.
- Marinate the steaks. Pour the marinade into a gallon zip lock bag (alternatively, you can use a larger bowl and just marinate directly in it). Add the steaks, seal the bag, and move them around to coat well. Marinate in the refrigerator.
- Cook your steak. Use your favorite cooking method! This steak marinade recipe works for sirloin steak made in a cast iron skillet, for grilled steak, or even air fryer steak.
Tips For The Best Steak Marinade
Although steak marinade recipes are super easy to make, I have some tips for the juiciest steaks:
- A steak marinade should always include oil, an acidic ingredient (such as lemon juice or vinegar), seasonings, and salt. The salt and acid are key to tenderizing the meat, the oil locks in moisture, and the seasonings add flavor. See more ideas for steak marinade recipes using these components below!
- The optimal marinating time is between 3 and 12 hours. This allows enough time for the flavors and acids in the marinade to penetrate the surface of the meat and tenderize it, without breaking down the texture too much. Marinating for longer than 24 hours can result in a mushy texture.
- Refrigerate while marinating. For food safety, keep your steak in the fridge while marinating.
- Bring the steak to room temperature before cooking. Bringing the steak to room temperature before cooking allows it to cook more evenly and helps to prevent overcooking. Cold meat takes longer to cook in the center, which can result in uneven doneness and a dry exterior.
- Don’t freeze steak in marinade. Even if it’s frozen, keeping steak in marinade for more than 24 hours will make it mushy.
More Steak Marinade Recipes
Looking to switch up your steak marinade game? From spicy and tangy to sweet and savory, these marinades will take your steak to the next level.
- Chimichurri – For an Argentinian marinade for steak, use 1/3 to 1/2 cup of chimichurri sauce per pound of steak.
- Montreal – Instead of using Italian seasoning for this recipe, use 1 teaspoon Montreal steak seasoning instead. Follow the same instructions to marinate.
- Fajita – Follow my recipe for sheet pan fajitas (which uses a combination of oil, lime juice, and fajita seasoning). Just marinate the steak instead of cooking right away.
- Teriyaki – For a sweet and savory flavor, marinate your steak in teriyaki sauce! You can also add extra minced garlic and extra ginger. Mix well, then add the marinade for steak to a bowl or resealable bag, making sure the meat is fully coated.
- Lime – Follow the steak marinade recipe in my tutorial for cooking flank steak (but you can use the marinade for other types of steak, too).
Steak Recipes To Use Steak Marinade
My favorite cut of beef to use with this marinade is a sirloin steak, but you can use it on just about any steak you choose. It’s particularly great for tougher cuts of beef, such as flank steak or skirt steak. Here are some more steak recipes to try with it:
- Cast Iron Skillet – I love to use the sear and oven method for steaks. This is the best pan to go from stove to oven and perfect for steaks.
- Meat Thermometer – So helpful to ensure you are cooking meat to the proper and desired temperature. I love this one because you can set the temperature that you want the meat to reach and it will go off when it’s hit that temp. No more overcooked meat!
The Best Steak Marinade Recipe
Steak Marinade Recipe (5 Ingredients)
Made the best marinade for steak with just 5 ingredients! This easy steak marinade recipe make tenders, juicy and flavorful steak every time.
Recipe VideoTap on the image below to watch the video.
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Balsamic steak marinade:
Steaks to use with steak marinade:
Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
Whisk together all marinade ingredients in a small bowl.
Pour the marinade into a gallon zip lock freezer bag. Add the steaks, seal the bag, and move them around to coat well.
Marinate for at least 3 hours, but no more than 24 hours. (More may result in mushy meat.)
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Serving size: 1 steak (8 oz)
Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy. Have questions about calculations or why you got a different result? Please see our nutrition policy.
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