Chuck Roast or Steak Marinade for the Grill

"My Mother made this for decades growing up........ summer recipe at the cottage in Northern Michigan. I'm 52, so it has stood the test of time. Made it several years ago for the daughter of a retired butcher on our 2nd date, and two weeks later I was doing 2 roasts at her folks house for Mother's Day. Entire family was there, and I had never never met them. Major pressure!! But the recipe never fails."
photo by jwalenta photo by jwalenta
photo by jwalenta
Ready In:
24hrs 30mins




  • Mix all ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl or measuring cup. Microwave for about a minute. Stir to dissolve the sugar. Let cool.
  • Put your chuck roast or steak in a gallon size zip-loc bag. Add marinade. Close the bag, but suck out all the air before completely closing bag. Put in fridge and marinate for 24 hours. Turn the bag a few times during that period. You can marinate the day of, or give it a couple days. 24 hours seems to work quite well.
  • Heat your grill until it is as hot as possible. I have a Weber gas grill, and it takes a good 20 minutes to get that thing smoking hot. My Weber has a thermometer and I'm guessing the grill hits 700 degrees. Get the meat and toss it on the grill. I use a timer -- 3 minutes to sear side one, flip, sear side two for another 3 minutes. If your roast is over 2" thick, go 4 minutes per side. You really do want to sear the meat -- black and smoke is not your enemy -- lots of flavor comes from that. After searing, shut the center burner off and set the others to medium (indirect cooking method for charcoal people). Grill temp should settle down to about 350. At this point I do stick a remote grilling thermometer in the roast/steak. I pull a roast or steak from the grill when it hits about 132 degrees for medium rare. So if the thermometer reads 82 after I sear it, there are 50 more degrees to go, or 25 per side. So I do flip it again when it hits 107 degrees. If you don't own a remote grilling thermometer, buy one.
  • When it hits 132 degrees pull it off the grill, put it on a plate and put it in the microwave. I say put it in the microwave for 2 reasons -- 2 Labrador Retrievers who will steal a perfectly cooked piece of meat off the counter in the blink of an eye. At any rate, let the meat sit for 10-15 minutes, which gives you time to do the grilled asparagus, corn, garlic bread, etc.
  • This recipe will never fail. Sometimes the cut of meat fails, but no matter what, it will have amazing flavor. For decades I have only used this with a chuck roast on the grill, but gave it a whirl with a thick cut ribeye. Wife said it was the best steak she ever had.

Questions & Replies

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  1. I used a 2 1/2 lb. roast. After searing 3 min on each side, I checked the internal temp with a meat thermometer every 4 min, holding my grill temperature at 450, flipping the roast every 4 min until the internal temp hit 325. Fabulous! Wonderful marinade!
  2. I made this with a 2 1/2 lb chuck roast. It was really good but the meat was chewy. Everyone who tried it said it was really good. I think the next time I try this recipe it will be with a ribeye. I seared the meat like the recipe said to .I'm wondering if I had put it into the oven for about an hour and a half at 225 if it would have been more melt in your mouth tender. I wouldn't change the flavor. With every chew it was bursting with juices
  3. This marinade recipe was great. I did not have 1/2 cup pineapple juice at home so I subbed with 1/4 cup orange juice and 1/4 cup mango nectar. Highly recommend mixing up the fruit juice as long as you sub with high acidity fruit juices.



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