While summer is a time when many of us prioritize travel, there are just too many countries to visit and not enough vacation days! But thankfully, we can bring the tastes and smells of global destinations into our own homes through regional cuisines. And with plenty of opportunities in the summer to grill, we’re always looking for new flavor inspiration to mix things up.
We gathered 4 different marinade ideas inspired by ingredients from around the world. They’re great for meats, vegetables, tofu… the options are endless. And thankfully, marinades are as adaptable as they are versatile – feel free to add in or remove different spices that better suit your tastes.
Best of all, each one of these uses our delicious extra virgin olive oil. Using olive oil in your marinade has the unique ability to help pull the fat-soluble flavors out of some ingredients like garlic and shallots and help impart them into the meat or vegetable you’re marinating. When using extra virgin olive oil, you’ll get the added benefit of even more flavor from the oil itself!
Making these marinades is easy. For each recipe, simply combine in the ingredients with a whisk or in a food processor. Then add along with your protein or vegetable of choice to a glass baking dish. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour (or overnight), and throw on the grill! Any extra marinade (that didn’t come into contact with raw meat) can be used to as extra sauce to serve.
JAPANESE – SOY GINGER
great on: fish, tofu, vegetables
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
- 3 tbsp. soy sauce
- 3 tbsp. chopped fresh ginger
- 2 tbsp. sugar
MEXICAN – CILANTRO LIME
great on: steak, chicken
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 1 large clove of garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp. Mexican oregano
- 1/2 tsp. cumin
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 1/4 tsp dried chipotle powder
- 1 tsp. paprika
- juice of 1 lime
- handful of cilantro leaves
ITALIAN – LEMON HERB
great on: lamb, shrimp, vegetables
- 2 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
- 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- 2 tbsp. finely chopped oregano
- 1 small shallot, minced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
THAI – SWEET CHILI
great on: pork, fish, tofu
We hope you enjoy these simple olive oil marinade recipes, and we wish you happy grilling from everyone at California Olive Ranch. Try adding your own spin to these recipes and make them your very own!