A marinade is a seasoned liquid that a meat soaks in prior to cooking. Marinades often contain vinegar, oil, or another liquid base and herbs and seasoning. The goal of a marinade is to allow flavor to seep into the meat so when cooked it is more flavorful and often times also more tender. Marinating meat is a GREAT way to add flavor and to make it more enjoyable. It requires effort in the prep stage but usually decreases the work during cooking because the meat is already flavored.
You can marinate meats prior to most ways of cooking like sauteing and baking or roasting. Below are some of my favorite marinades for lamb, chicken, and salmon.
Lamb (Arab flavorings for roasting)
Throw all of the following ingredients into a food processor or blender and then coat 1 pound of lamb with it. Allow to sit for at least an hour up to overnight (highly recommend overnight!). Check out my Roasted Lamb recipe for full instructions and recipe.
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion, quartered
- 3-4 cloves garlic
- 1/3 cup water
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Salt to taste (try 1/4 teaspoon)
- Pepper to taste (try 1/4 teaspoon)
- Arab mixed seasoning (1/4 teaspoon)
Chicken (great for baking chicken pieces as is and also breading and then oven-frying)
This marinade is perfect for chicken because it incorporates yogurt which really helps to make a very tender chicken. If the yogurt is intimidating, you don’t actually taste the yogurt nor feel its presence once cooked. Mix all of the following ingredients together and coat one whole chicken (cut into pieces). Allow to sit at least a half hour and up to 12 hours.
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon Dijon or spicy mustard
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Salmon (great for baking or broiling fish fillets)
The salmon can go straight into oven after coating with marinade but allowing to soak for 1-2 hours provides a lot more flavor! This is perfect for one fillet but if making four then just use a tablespoon of each ingredient. Check out my Honey Mustard Salmon recipe for the details on the full cooking instructions.
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1 teaspoon Spicy mustard
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
Enjoy! Please share your favorite marinades below. I’m always looking for awesome new recipes! Thanks!