Interview: Grilling with marinades

Interview: Marinade Magic
Updated: Aug. 1, 2023 at 4:30 PM CDT
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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - Jena DeMoss, a Registered Dietitian with Hy-Vee in Eau Claire, shares ideas for using marinades in summer grilling.

She says making marinade magic is more than just searching your cupboard for a few ingredients. Marinade ingredients have a purpose and including all 3 components below will ensure a perfect protein every time:

1. Acid

2. Flavor - to keep things healthy I’ll talk through some ways without adding salt or fat

3. Timing - Make Sure the Magic Happens!

Sesame-Orange Beef Kabobs

Serves 4

All you need:

· 1 (1 lb) Hy-Vee Choice Reserve boneless beef top sirloin steak, 1- to 1¼-inch thick

· ¾ cup bottled Asian toasted sesame salad dressing

· ¼ tsp orange zest

· ¾ cup fresh orange juice

· 2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

· 1½ tsp Hy-Vee crushed red pepper

· 1 (1 lb) container Hy-Vee Short Cuts summer squash and zucchini

· 1 small red onion, cut into 1½-inch pieces

· Green onions, sliced for garnish

· Toasted sesame seeds for garnish

· Orange wedges, grilled, for serving

All you do:

  • Pat steak dry. Cut steak into 1- to 1¼-inch cubes. Place beef cubes in a large resealable plastic bag.

2. Combine salad dressing, orange zest and juice, cilantro and crushed red pepper in a small bowl. Set aside ½ cup of mixture; cover and refrigerate until ready to grill. Pour remaining mixture over beef. Seal bag; turn to coat beef with marinade. Refrigerate for 2 to 8 hours; turning bag occasionally.

3. Preheat a charcoal or gas grill for direct cooking over medium heat. Meanwhile, drain beef; discard marinade. Thread beef, squash coins and red onion onto 4 (12-inch) metal skewers.

4. Grill kabobs for 8 to 10 minutes or until beef is medium-rare (130 degrees), turning and brushing with reserved marinade halfway through.

5. Transfer kabobs to a platter. Brush with remaining reserved marinade. Sprinkle with green onion slices and sesame seeds. Serve with orange wedges.

Recipe source:

Optional: Other recipes to put up on website

Alaskan Maple Cedar Plank Salmon

Serves 8

All you need:

1 (15x7-in.) grilling cedar grilling plank

¾ c. dark amber pure maple syrup

3 tbsp. Hy-Vee apple cider flavored vinegar

3 tbsp. Canadian whisky

1 tbsp. smoked paprika

1 tbsp. Hy-Vee less sodium soy sauce

1 ½ tsp. coarsely ground Hy-Vee garlic pepper, plus additional for serving

1 (2-lb.) Fish Market center-cut, skin-on wild Alaska sockeye salmon fillet, ½ to ¾ in. thick

Green onions, for garnish

Lemon slices, grilled; for garnish

All you do:

1. Soak cedar plank in water for 1 to 2 hours.

2. Meanwhile, combine maple syrup, vinegar, whisky, smoked paprika, soy sauce and 1½ tsp. garlic pepper in a small saucepan. Gently boil, uncovered, over medium-high heat for 5 to 7 minutes or until reduced to ¾ cup, whisking constantly.

3. Pat salmon dry with paper towels. Brush salmon with ¼ cup syrup mixture. Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

4. Preheat a charcoal or gas grill for direct cooking over medium-high heat (400 degrees). Place soaked plank on hot grill for 2 to 4 minutes or until lightly smoking and charred, turn once.

5. Place salmon, skin side down, on cedar plank. Grill for 8 minutes; brush with ¼ cup syrup mixture. Grill for 5 to 10 minutes more or until salmon flakes easily with a fork (145 degrees.) If necessary, use a spray bottle filled with water to put out flare-ups.

6. Remove plank with salmon from grill. Garnish with green onions and grilled lemon slices, if desired. Serve with remaining syrup mixture and additional garlic pepper.

Recipe source: Alaskan Maple Cedar Plank Salmon | Hy-Vee

Citrus Marinated Drumsticks

Serves 4

All you need:

· Zest and juice of 1 orange

· 1/3 cup Hy-Vee honey

· 2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

· 1 clove garlic, crushed

· ¼ tsp Hy-Vee salt

· ¼ tsp Hy-Vee black pepper

· 8 chicken drumsticks (about 2½ lbs)

· Hy-Vee Original Blue Ribbon Chef Seasoning, to taste

· 1 orange, sliced

· Fresh parsley, for garnish

All you do:

  • In a medium bowl, combine orange zest and juice, honey, red pepper flakes, garlic, salt and black pepper. Transfer to a large resealable plastic bag. Add drumsticks to marinade and toss to coat evenly. Marinate chicken in refrigerator at least 2 hours or overnight, flipping bag occasionally to coat all drumsticks.
  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Remove chicken from marinade and place on large rimmed baking pan; discard marinade. Season chicken with chef seasoning. Arrange orange slices around chicken.

3. Bake drumsticks 40 to 45 minutes or until internal temperature of chicken reaches 165 degrees.

4. Garnish chicken with parsley before serving.

Recipe source:

Smoked Yogurt Marinade

All you need:

1 cup plain low-fat yogurt

Juice of 1 orange (or 2 lemons), freshly squeezed

Zest of orange or lemon

2 tbsp canola or avocado oil

3 cloves crushed and minced garlic

1 tbsp kosher salt

1 tbsp smoked paprika

2 tsp dark chili powder

2 tsp onion powder

1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

All you do:

1. Zest the orange or lemon before squeezing.

2. Combine all the ingredients together and mix well.

3. Use to marinate meat while refrigerated for a minimum of 2 hours or overnight.

Recipe source: adapted from

Mexican Marinated Chicken

Serves 4

All you need:

· 1 lb Hy-Vee boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces

· 1 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt

· ¼ cup lime juice

· 4 tsp Hy-Vee chili powder

· 1½ tsp minced garlic

· 1 tsp Hy-Vee ground cumin

· ½ tsp dried oregano

· ¼ tsp Hy-Vee salt

· Assorted vegetables such as onions, zucchini, tomatoes, etc.

All you do:

1. Place chicken in a large resealable plastic bag. Combine Greek yogurt, lime juice, chili powder, garlic, cumin, oregano and salt in a bowl. Pour over chicken; seal bag and marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

2. Spray a grill rack with nonstick cooking spray. Preheat charcoal or gas grill for direct cooking over medium-high heat. Drain chicken; discard marinade. Thread chicken and, if desired, assorted cut-up fresh vegetables onto metal skewers. Grill 8 to 10 minutes or until chicken is done (165 degrees).

Recipe source: