Marinades for Grilling

Marinades can significantly reduce the carcinogenic compounds formed in grilling or cooking meats at high temperatures. Even marinating meat for as little as 40 minutes seems to reduce these compounds by over 90 percent. It is not known specifically why marinades are so protective but it may be due to the antioxidants found in the marinade ingredients or the simple cooling effect of marinades on meat.

Marinades can be easily created by any cook. Every marinade contains an acid, often an oil, and seasonings in the form of spices, herbs, garlic, onions, chives, etc. The acid might be a type of vinegar, a citrus juice, wine, or soy sauce. If you're in a hurry, a bottled oil and vinegar salad dressing with spices can be an quick solution. Below are a few examples of tasty marinades.

About 1/2 cup of marinade is needed for each 1 pound of food. It is best to marinate meat in the smallest container possible so the meat will be totally immersed in the marinade. You may need to stir or turn the meat during the marinating process in order to have the liquid cover all surfaces of the meat.

Mediterranean marinade - Great for beef or lamb or chicken kabobs.

1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 Tbs. chopped parsley
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. crushed oregano
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced

Shrimp marinade:
1/2 cup pineapple juice
2-4 Tbs. soy sauce
1/2 cup canola oil

Teriyaki marinade:
1/2 cup light soy sauce
5 Tbs. brown sugar
1/4 cup water
2 Tbs. vegetable oil
1/2 tsp. minced fresh ginger (or ground)