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Red Wine Marinade for Steaks - Southern Style

Updated on January 1, 2013
Try my steak marinade!
Try my steak marinade! | Source

BBQ Cooking - Grilling Tips

Looking for some grilling tips for beef? I have some specifically for steaks, and I'm sharing them here with you. I really like BBQ cooking steaks. A nice thick T-bone, ribeye, Porterhouse, filet, or New York strip on the grill is my idea of a great meal! I like mine Pittsburg rare – a little charred on the outside and red on the inside. Yum! Of course, the problem is the price. Choice steaks are expensive these days. The grocery stores around here often have lower grades of meat at reasonable prices, but it’s hit or miss with them. Sometimes you end up with a tender, juicy piece of beef, and sometimes you end up with cheap steaks that are veritable shoe leather. You could always go with inexpensive cuts of beef, too, but you run into the same inconsistency. Sirloin, round steak, flank steak, eye of round, and eye of chuck can be wonderful on the grill or practically inedible. So what’s a savvy consumer to do? How do you make cheap steaks tasty? Read on to find out!

Steaks on a Charcoal Grill - yum!
Steaks on a Charcoal Grill - yum! | Source

Marinade for Steak

My answer to this dilemma is to use a great marinade for steak, and it just so happens that I came up with one last year that’s the best beef marinade I’ve ever used. I bought some cheap T-bones with little marbling, at a big discount. I knew the steaks would be tough, so I set out to tenderize them. They turned out to be the best steaks we have ever eaten. Ever! And believe me, I’ve eaten a lot of steaks. I used to be married to a cattle rancher, and I know my beef. I also know that cheaper steaks might need a little help in order for them to turn out tender, juicy, and tasty.Steak marinades supply that extra boost.

Most steak marinades include some type of oil and some type of liquid that is acidic in nature. Obviously, the oil helps keep the beef moist, while the acid helps to make the meat more tender by partially breaking down muscle tissues. For this steak marinade recipe, the Italian dressing supplies the oil, along with some vinegar, which is acidic. The red wine adds more acid and flavor. I love onions and garlic, so I use both in this beef marinade. The black peppercorns impart even more flavor.Try my method for tenderizing meat and my marinade recipe. I think you’ll like it!

Marinate Steaks in a food bag or in a glass or plastic container.
Marinate Steaks in a food bag or in a glass or plastic container. | Source

Red Wine Marinade

This is the best steak marinade I've ever used. I've tried it on all sorts of steaks with great success - T-bones, ribeyes, flank steak, sirloin, and strips. Heck, I've even used it on roast beef, and it was great! Don't add salt to your marinade for tough meat, as it can make the meat even tougher. You can always sprinkle on some salt once the meat is done.

Rate my recipe. Thanks!

4.7 stars from 3 ratings of Red Wine Marinade for Steak

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min
Ready in: 10 min
Yields: enough marinade for 4 steaks


  • 4 steaks
  • commercial meat tenderizer
  • 1/2 cup bottled Italian dressing
  • 1 1/2 cups red wine
  • 1 red onion, sliced thinly
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns


  1. Rinse steaks. Pierce all over with a fork, on both sides. Generously sprinkle meat tenderizer on the meat. Rub the dressing into the meat. Do this on both sides.
  2. Let steaks sit at room temperature for 15 minutes.
  3. Place steaks in a plastic or glass container or in a food bag. Pour wine over the steaks.
  4. Add the onion rings, the garlic, and the peppercorns. Cover bowl or close bag.
  5. Refrigerate overnight, turning steaks occasionally.
  6. Remove steaks from marinade and discard the marinade. Grill steaks over medium-hot coals, to desired doneness.


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    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 8 years ago from Georgia

      Mama, try it - you'll like it! Thanks for reading!

    • Mama Sez profile image

      Mama Sez 8 years ago from Canada

      Oh Habee,looks like you are a great cook! The recipe is simple but guaranteed mouth-watering satisfaction.

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 8 years ago from Georgia

      Hi, Wood. I use the Montreal seasoning sometimes on a good steak. For the cheapos, though, I have to tenderize them some. Looking forward to your BBQ hub!

    • woodamarc profile image

      Marc Woodard 8 years ago from Portland, Oregon

      I love steak. T-bone and ribeye is my favorite. The only way I cook these are on the grill with montreal steak seasoning. The flavors are spectacular. I know what you mean about the cheap cuts of steak. My wife did a little marinade using spices of the orient on some tender loin. Well, I told her I didn't think it could hurt them. I was skeptical on taste. We broiled these in the oven. To my surprise very tasty. Typically, I don't like marinading anything (ususally too starchy for me). But your Italian dressing, meat tenderizer, etc., 15min, is something I'll have to try. I liked your article, because I too love a good steak. I think you just inspired me to write an article on outdoor barbeque.

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 8 years ago from Georgia

      Hi, Ethel. Thanks for reading!

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 8 years ago from Georgia

      Thanks, Bpop!

    • ethel smith profile image

      Eileen Kersey 8 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

      More yummy food hmmm

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 8 years ago

      Habee, This recipe rocks. Thanks!

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 8 years ago from Georgia

      I'm sorry, HH! It's an addiction!

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 8 years ago from London, UK

      I told you ages ago to stop but would you listen, no. Here you are with another great recipe.

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 8 years ago from Georgia

      Oh, thanks, E! I like to read recipes, too - even if I'm not planning on cooking them!

    • ehern33 profile image

      ehern33 8 years ago

      I always look forward to these dishes you prepare. I may not cook them but they sure tingle my senses. Truthfully since my daughter is the cook, AI always mention these to her. She has a good memory for recipes. Yum YUm YUm..

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 8 years ago from Georgia

      Okay. Give me directions. I know how to get to Richmond Hill. Ha! Scared ya, didn't I?? You wouldn't like me - I'm fat! Too much good cookin'. I'd make you fat, too!

      Won't I have to fly to get to the Casbah??? I don't really like flying. Could we cruise instead?

    • Hmrjmr1 profile image

      Hmrjmr1 8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      habee - ditch that other guy and run away with me to the Casbah!! I love your cookin!!