How Long Should You Marinate Beef for? Find out With This Quick Guide

beef marinade

Although high-quality beef doesn’t require a marinade for tenderness, there are still advantages to marinating, like extra flavour. If you like to cook with secondary cuts of beef (like chuck, round, brisket or shank), marinades will help to tenderise the meat.

Regardless of whether you are marinating for taste or texture (or both), the amount of time you should marinate the meat depends on the beef cut.

How Much Marinade?

In general, allow about ¼ cup of marinade per 500 grams of beef. Since most marinades contain an acid (like lemon juice, vinegar or even yoghurt), make sure you don’t leave the meat to soak up the marinade in a metal pot (the acids reacts with the metal and causes undesirable flavour). Ideally, place the marinated meat in a glass/plastic container or a ziplock bag, and then refrigerate according to the times below. Make sure to let the meat return to room temperature before you cook it, as this will allow the muscle fibres to relax (and the meat to cook more evenly and become more tender).

Want to know how to make marinades from scratch? Check out our 6 steps for making delicious marinades.

Beef Marinating Times

Primal Cuts Marinating Time
Chuck (Steaks) Chuck Arm Steak, Chuck Eye Steak, Mock Tender Steak, Chuck Shoulder Steak, Top Blade Steak 4 to 6 hours
Chuck (Roasts) 7-Bone Roast, Arm Roast, Chuck-Eye Roast, Cross Rib Roast, Shoulder Pot Roast 8 to 10 hours
Rib (Steaks) Rib-Eye Steak, Rib Steak 30 minutes to 1 hour
Rib (Roasts) Rib Roasts, Rib-Eye Roast 1 to 2 hours
Short Loin (Steaks) T-Bone Steak, Tenderloin Steak, Top Loin Steak 30 minutes to 1 hour
Short Loin (Roast) Tenderloin Roast 1 to 2 hours
Sirloin (Steak) Sirloin Steak, Tri-Tip Steak 2 to 4 hours
Sirloin (Roast) Tri-Tip Roast 4 to 6 hours
Round (Steak) Round Steak, Round Tip Steak 4 to 6 hours
Round (Roast) Bottom Round Roast, Eye Round Roast, Round Tip Roast, Rump Roast, Tip Roast 8 to 10 hours
Plate (Steak) Hanger Steak, Skirt Steak 4 to 6 hours
Flank (Steak) Flank Steak 4 to 6 hours
Brisket Trimmed 10 to 12 hours
Brisket Untrimmed 16 to 18 hours

 

The information in this post is adapted from The Spruce.