The Best Steak Marinade

5 from 14 votes

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A recipe for the best Steak Marinade giving you tender, juicy and flavorful meat every time. A fail-proof, easy recipe that works on just about any cut of beef. One of my favorite things to make every summer.

So happy to be sharing this steak marinade recipe with you today! It is based on a recipe I remember my mother-in-law making one summer afternoon before a big family BBQ. I think I added in a few extra items that I thought would add great flavor and mama mia, I was right! Super tender, salty yet slightly sweet meat that got a little smokey from the grill. Perfect main dish to go with those favorite summer sides: macaroni salad, potato salad or the classic iceberg wedge.

marinated steak kebobs

The Best Steak Marinade

I love this versatile and easy marinade recipe so much! Whether I’m making flank steak, skirt steak or marinating ribeye like I did for this particular recipe, everything you add to this only makes it better! These pictures show the meal I made for Gordon for our belated Father’s Day dinner after he returned from some Army trainings. That man loves his steak and man, what a difference a steak marinade can make. {I made this for dessert too.}

Anyways, there’s a rhyme and a reason I cut up the ribeye steak into cubes and used every.single.ingredient for this steak marinade and I’m going to break it down for ya right now.

Steak Marinade Ingredients

All of these listed ingredients are important for different reasons. Try not to skip any if possible. Don’t forget increments and specific directions are listed in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

  • Coca-Cola {the real stuff!!} – this adds the sugar we need to give sweetness to this marinade and it also helps the meat caramelize on the grill. You won’t get the same effect or taste using diet soda. In a pinch you can use Root Beer or Sprite.
  • Soy Sauce – salty!
  • Lemon Juice – the acid helps break down the meat which tenderizes it like crazy.
  • Canola Oil – helps the meat not stick to the grill as much; canola oil has a high smoke point. Vegetable or peanut oil would also be fine substitutes.
  • Worcestershire Sauce – for umami and depth of flavor!!
  • Garlic – {lets pretend I didn’t forget to add that into this photo, shall we?} More flavor!! Plus I love garlic.

If you’re not into steak try grilling up these great recipes: Classic Homemade BurgersGrilled Honey Garlic Shrimp RecipeGrilled Corn Salsa RecipeGrilled Cilantro Lime Chicken Skewers.

Steak Marinade Ingredients

How to Marinate Steak

So as with most marinades, you throw some ingredients together, add meat and let it sit in the fridge. This recipe is no exception.

  1. Whisk all the marinade ingredients together. I used a 9×13 baking dish because it had a tight fitting lid, but any large ziploc bag would be fine. Just be sure to set the bag on a plate or in a bowl to make sure it doesn’t leak into your fridge.
  2. Add in your meat and stir to coat. I cut my ribeye into cubes to create more surface area. More surface area means more flavor! No need to cut up a flank or skirt steak.
  3. Refrigerate 24 hours. Of course you don’t need to wait the full 24 hours, but the longer you let it sit the more delicious the meat becomes. 8-12 hours is acceptable too.
  4. Skewer your meat and prepare for the grill. I like letting my meat sit out for an hour or so. This will help it stay tender.
  5. Grill or cook your meat. Use a meat thermometer to take the internal temperature for accuracy. (I love this instant read one. It’s insanely accurate.)
  6. Once the meat is finished cooking, rest 10-15 minutes covered in foil, then serve and enjoy.

Steak Marinade

How long to marinate steak?

I used about 3 pounds of Ribeye steaks, trimmed off the excess fat and cut it into large cubes. Then I marinated it all for 24 hours. Technically 26 hours, but who’s counting. Tri-tips would also be awesome for this, but feel free to use any cut of beef you have.

I know a lot of you had a heart attack when you read I used *that much* rib eye because “what a waste” and “it doesn’t need to be marinated” and “it’s delicious as it is“. But I’m telling you, that ribeye can be even more delicious after being marinated. And that goes for ANY meat, not just beef.

Do I have to only use beef?

No, this marinade works for chicken and pork! Best applications are with boneless, skinless chicken breasts (bone-in ok, but will take longer to cook) and 1/2-1-inch thick pork chops.

Be aware, they will look a little discolored after they have been marinating for several hours, but this is totally normal thanks to the soy sauce and soda. Once you get the meat on the grill, it will look more ‘normal’. Just be sure to use that meat thermometer for doneness.

Raw Steak Kebobs

A few notes about Grilling Steak

  • To grill, soak wooden skewers in water for 1 hour, then skewer meat onto wet sticks. This is to ensure they don’t burn and break through the cooking process.
  • Of course metal skewers work just as well and require no prep time whatsoever.
  • I own a really great gas grill that is easy to control temperatures with. If you’re using charcoal, you’ll want to keep that thermometer handy. Generally, the beef takes anywhere from 1-6 minutes per side, depending on your preferences and how hot your grill is.
  • If it’s winter time or you don’t own a grill, check out my basic tutorial for how to cook steak on a stove.
Grilling the Steak with Marinade

What to serve with a grilled & marinated steak:

Oh, the possibilities are endless and just about anything tastes delicious with steak 🙂 Here are some of my favorites:
Close Up of Kabobs
5 from 14 votes

The Best Steak Marinade Recipe

A recipe for Steak Marinade giving you tender, juicy and flavorful meat every time. This is seriously the best steak marinade recipe.
servings 6 servings
Prep Time 1 d
Cook Time 12 mins
Total Time 1 d 6 mins


  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 18 oz. Coca-Cola I used the mexican version made with cane sugar and would recommend to not use diet soda for this. Ever ever ever
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 3 lbs meat I used ribeye steaks that I trimmed the extra fat from and cut up into cubes; tri tips would also be great!


  • In a large a Tupperware container, whisk together all ingredients of meat marinade. Add in the meat and stir to coat all of it in the marinade. Cover tightly with a lid and marinate 24 hours.
  • To grill, soak wooden skewers in water for 1 hour, then skewer meat onto wet sticks. Grill anywhere from 1 minute to 6 minutes per side, depending on how hot your grill is and how you like your meat cooked. Remove from the grill to a clean plate, cover with foil and rest 5-10 minutes before serving.


Calories: 487kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 52g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 145mg | Sodium: 2482mg | Potassium: 982mg | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 70IU | Vitamin C: 7.8mg | Calcium: 30mg | Iron: 2.2mg
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: best steak marinade, grilling steak, marinade, steak, steak marinade

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Recipe Rating

90 Responses
  1. Kelly

    These look so yummy!!! Do you have any suggestions on how they could be done in the oven? I don’t have a grill 🙁


    1. Barb

      I would broil them turning them once halfway through. They cook up quick. That will give them a kind of grilled effect but will not have the same smoky flavor you would get from a charcoal grill. If you want the smoky flavor you might try adding a little, (a little goes a long ways) liquid smoke to the marinade. If you have a cast iron grill pan you could do these on top of the stove. I have an indoor smokeless grill and will try this recipe on there adding the liquid smoke…

  2. Jerri

    Sounds dellish but too salty. Do you have any suggestion to substitute for 1 cup of soy sauce? Even lower sodium soy sauce is rather high, considering that one cup is being used?

  3. SaraLily

    Yum yum! My boyfriend and I love grilling steak in the summer time – we will definitely be trying this marinade ASAP! It sounds AWESOME!

  4. Trudie

    Lauren, I understand and accept, although I regret your decision to grow your business, and accept corporate money in exchange for promotions and ads.
    Do you have to let them include ads in the printed version of recipes? They are totally unnecessary. They are always in color, and require so much more, and unnecessary, ink wastage.

  5. Janey

    This comment is for Trudie and everyone else annoyed by the ads: When you print one of Lauren’s recipes, choose PDF and save to your desktop, then add to searchable recipe files you create on your computer. When you need the recipe, open the file, copy and paste the recipe (without the ads) onto a new page and print that out. I understand the ads too, why they are necessary, but hate how they make the page jump around. I guess if you look at them while reading the page, they have served their purpose.

  6. Mel

    My kids and husband dubbed this “the best steak” they have EVER had!!!! They told me to hold on to this recipe—thank you, Lauren!!! love your blog and recipes!!! 🙂

  7. Crystal

    I usually don’t grill skewers because they always turn out tough. I’m going to use my meat thermometer and see if that helps. Great recipe!!

  8. Dani Rannow

    On this cold winter’s day, I am day dreaming about trying this marinade at the lake waching my toddler splashing and swimming with daddy!

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  10. Jen D.

    When you say to grill it “per side” do you mean you flip it 4 times since the meat is in squares? Or just flipped twice?

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  12. Zainab

    5 stars
    My family are all Bbq lovers and our summers are filled Bbq recipes! When I saw this on your blog last year, I made it instantly and it was amazingggg! The only thing I changed was I added some extra chillies! Thank you for sharing your recipes and your family blogs! Love reading!!