Best Ever Tex-Mex Marinade

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Introducing the BEST EVER Tex-Mex Marinade. Combining a variety of spices with olive oil, Worcestershire sauce, and fresh lime juice – this marinade will be your go-to for all your Tex-Mex recipes.

An overhead shot of the Tex-Mex spices in a white dish, the olive oil and Worcestershire sauce in measuring cups, and a green lime - all placed on a gray backdrop.

I’m a Tex-Mex girl, since living in Texas for the last 25 years. Give me all the tacos and burritos and guac and margaritas.

I use this marinade so often, that I decided to create a separate recipe card. I use it for many of my Tex-Mex recipes, including:

  • Grilled Chicken Burrito Bowls. That meal we make TOO often, according to our youngest son. Poor kid. He never gets a variety of meal choices in my kitchen. 😀
  • Flank Steak Fajita Salad. The marinade gives the steak a perfect smoky flavor with a touch of heat. Not too spicy though, I promise.
  • We also use it in a variety of meats for a variety of Tex-Mex dishes. If you can wrap it in a tortilla or put it on a chip, it will taste great using the BEST EVER marinade.

Overhead shot of marinade in a white dish with a wire whisk, and squeezed lime beside it.

The ingredient list is simple.

  1. olive oil
  2. Worcestershire Sauce
  3. lime juice
  4. garlic powder
  5. chili powder
  6. cumin
  7. red pepper flakes
  8. salt & pepper
  9. sugar

Make sure you let the meat marinate for several hours, or even overnight. I always use a resealable bag, and place it in a pan in the refrigerator. The marinade is BRIGHT orange, and will make a huge mess in your fridge if it’s not sealed correctly. Trust me. I’ve made a few orange messes in my kitchen.

When observing the calories in this marinade, keep in mind that most of it will be tossed after placing the meat on the grill, or other cooking method.

Overhead of the spices, lime, measuring cups and spoons, and all ingredients listed on top of a gray backdrop.

Make this Tex-Mex recipe next: Mexican Beef Stuffed Peppers


Please let know if you try this recipe. Be sure to comment and leave a review on the blog so I can see what you think.


Overhead shot of marinade in a white dish with a wire whisk, and squeezed lime beside it.

Best Ever Tex-Mex Marinade

The BEST Tex-Mex marinade, for chicken, steak, pork, and shrimp. Marinate for several hours to get maximum flavor!
4.25 from 8 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: best marinade, tex-mex marinade
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 1 recipe (for 3-4 pounds of meat)
Calories: 1106kcal
Author: Sue Ringsdorf


  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3 Tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 Tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 Tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • 1 large lime - freshly squeezed


  • Combine marinade ingredients. Place meat in a storage bag, pour marinade over top, massage the bag, and store in refrigerator.


  1. We use this marinade for chicken, beef, pork, and shrimp. It makes the best marinade for any Tex-Mex dish.
  2. You can marinate the meat for up to 24 hours in the refrigerator.
  3. This can also be combined with meat, and frozen up to three months.
  4. When observing the calories in this marinade, keep in mind that most of it will be tossed after placing the meat on the grill, or other cooking method.


Calories: 1106kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 110g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Sodium: 3003mg | Potassium: 746mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 3040IU | Vitamin C: 6.6mg | Calcium: 137mg | Iron: 9.2mg



  1. Jan Bancarz says:

    Outstanding! Chicken is so tender and flavorfull! Even our son commented on how good it was! Thanks!

    1. Suebee Homemaker says:

      We love it too! Thanks for your feedback, Jan!

  2. Beth Whisler says:

    Have you ever used lemon instead of lime? Lime isn’t my favorite🤷‍♀️ I even use lemon instead of lime for guacamole

    1. Suebee Homemaker says:

      I actually prefer lime, especially on guac!

  3. Rob Reding says:

    Love, love, love this marinade. Put this in chicken breasts and flank steak. Outstanding! Nice job SueBee.

    1. Suebee Homemaker says:

      Thanks Rob! I’m so glad you enjoy the marinade. We do too! 🙂

  4. I am sorry, but this was one of the most flavorless marinades I’ve ever tried. I followed your recipe exactly, let it sit overnight, and apart from the spicy after taste that burns your mouth, it doesn’t taste like anything. I consider myself to have an eclectic palate and enjoy spicy food but this was just awful. My entire family hated it and I felt like I wasted food. Very perplexed by the 5 star ratings here. I ended up throwing about 1-1/2 pounds of chicken away. What a waste.

    1. Suebee Homemaker says:

      Gosh, I’m so sorry you had a bad experience with this marinade, Jason. It IS one of our favorites, and I’ve been using it on all things Tex-Mex for years. My family loves it too!

  5. how much meat can we use for this recipe?

    1. Suebee Homemaker says:

      You can use it for about 3 pounds of meat. Good luck!

  6. I make this regularly! It’s so yummy and easy!

    1. Suebee Homemaker says:

      Thanks Jessica! I’m so glad it’s a regular for you! 🙂

  7. Can you use marinade afterwards? Boil it down and reduce. Use as a sauce?

    1. Suebee Homemaker says:

      I don’t normally do that, but if you boil it, I believe it’s ok to use. I often just make extra and reserve some sauce.

  8. This marinade looks so easy and delicious!!! Definitely giving this a try.

    1. Suebee Homemaker says:

      Thanks Sheenam! Let me know if you do! 🙂

  9. Letting the meat marinate makes a huge difference. Thanks for the tip! Love it!

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