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How to Marinate any Food

by Nita Holleman

Being prone to forget to turn meat, or anything for that matter, that I attempted to marinade, I decided one day that there had to be a better, simpler way! I put on my trusty 'thinking cap' and decided that perhaps science (which I never studied until college) might be helpful here. I decided to try displacing the air in a zip type plastic bag with the liquid marinade. It worked!

Place the food you want to marinade along with the prepared marinade of choice in a large, heavy-duty Ziplock (R) Bag -- or any good heavy-duty zip sealing bag. By the way, it takes much LESS marinade solution to do it this way!

Have ready a deep container filled with water. Holding the top of the bag out of the water with both hands, gently place the bag in the water up to about an inch from the top of the bag. Do NOT allow water to get into the bag. Most of the air will automatically be expressed by the water pressure on the sides. Holding the bag with one hand, gently express remaining air from the bag while zipping the top shut. Check to be sure it is completely sealed in the zip track. Place the bag with your food and marinade in it in a bowl or pan to prevent any spills from a possible leak. I have never had this to happen.

Place the container in the refrigerator for at least an hour or for the recommended time. You may turn once, but you don't need to turn if the air has been evacuated from the bag. The liquid will cover the food since fluid will seek its own level.

If you are grilling, lightly oil your grill rack to prevent the food from sticking. Using tongs, or your hands, holding the marinade bag upright, transfer the food from the marinade bag to the rack. If it is meat, place it on the grill with the skin or fat side up. Rezip the bag and you will have it ready to baste again. Baste with the marinade and turn the meat or food as directed, basting each time you turn. Do NOT baste during the last few minutes because the marinade solution has had RAW food in it. You don't want to risk food-poisoning.


Nita Holleman
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