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All-Purpose Beer Marinade for Grilling (meat or veggies!)

The first brewery I ever visited was in Ireland when I was in college. I’d taken a flight to Dublin, landing blurry-eyed and confused early on a Thursday morning.

Diageo Beer Company USA, sponsored this post. Partnerships with The Beeroness and outside companies only occur when the company’s products are ones I use and enjoy myself. All ideas, words, and opinions are my  own.

As I stood outside the airport, my heavy pack weighing down my small frame, I tried to form enough of a thought to figure out which way to walk to get to my hostel. A passerby stops in front of me. An older man, a few inches shorter than me, clad in a wool cardigan over a plaid button-down, his eyes even bluer than mine asks me if I’m lost. I tell him that I think my hostel is just down the road but I’m not sure which way to walk. When he asks for the name of the place I’m staying, I tell him it’s called The Brewery hostile and it’s right next to the Guinness brewery.

His eyes light up, “I’ll take you there! Any excuse for a good pint!” He walks me to my destination and pauses only briefly before making his way to that taproom for a pint. The next day, I followed suit. It was the first time I’d ever heard a brewer talk, and the closest I’d ever been to brewing equipment. It left a mark.

I left that trip with two souvenirs that have stayed with me: how proud the Irish are of the Guinness brand and its history, and the love that brewers have for their craft. I’d learned that Guinness signed a 9,000-year lease on the space they still occupy, that they were one of the first companies in the world to offer employee benefits (some people even credit them with starting the trend), and one of my favorite beer facts ever:

Since the 1960’s the Queen gives out an award every year for technological achievement. In 1991 this award was given to the Guinness nitro widget (that tiny ping pong sized ball in the cans of Guinness that make them taste like draft). What came in #2 to the Nitro widget? The internet. THIS is how adored Guinness is, and that love is infectious.

To this day, I still drink Extra Stout. It’s a great beer, smooth and mellow, and it’s perfect for cooking. This summer is just kicking off and I’m not slowing down on my consumption of Guinness any time soon, it’s smooth and mellow enough for even hot weather and it’s the perfect beer to use when marinating meat or veggies for the grill.

All-Purpose Beer Marinade for Grilling (meat or veggies!)

5 from 4 votes


  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup Guinness Extra Stout Beer
  • 3 cloves garlic grated with a microplane
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons salt


  • Stir together all ingredients.
  • Add the meat, fish or vegetables to the marinade (gallon sized Ziploc bag works well).
  • Marinate for 2 to 12 hours.
  • Remove from marinade and grill as desired.

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Kevin G. June 22, 2019 um 11:15 am

5 stars
I love how your recipes don’t use the whole bottle of beer and leave some to drink! Guinness is the best!


Crystal H Brooks March 22, 2020 um 6:53 pm

5 stars
This was wonderful on our steaks!!


Crystal H Brooks April 28, 2020 um 10:43 am

5 stars
One of the BEST marinades I have ever had, especially on steak!!


Jackie April 28, 2020 um 11:04 am

Oh good! Glad you like it!


Robert Reidy December 6, 2020 um 5:07 pm

5 stars
Used some Oatmeal Stout I haven’t been drinking in place of Guinness and marinated a piece of flank steak for about 9 hours. Will be using this marinade again when it’s warm enough to grill the steak for fajitas.


Meg October 30, 2021 um 3:32 pm

Omitted the brown sugar because of burning. It turned out great!


Substitutes For Beer In Cooking And Baking Exploring Alternatives For Delicious Dishes – SanctuaryBrewCo February 24, 2023 um 12:32 am

[…] content reacts with the starch in the flour to create a dough that rises and leaves the dough. Beer marinades, in addition to breaking down the fibers in your meat, help it become more tender. Beer is the […]


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