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Marinade Injected Beef Roast at

I had great success injecting marinade into pulled pork in a prior post. Why not do it with beef? You could get more flavour and that is usually a good thing.

There is a reason why not. If you inject beef in several places you run the risk of moving pathogens (germs for us uneducated) into the centre of the meat. Therefore, you have to cook it to an internal temperature of at least 155 F to be food safe. If you want it rare, you’re out of luck.

As She Who Must Be Obeyed likes her meat at least medium, this was not a problem for her and I was willing to give it a try so I fired up the Louisiana Grills pellet smoker and gave it a go.

I picked up a nice 1.1 kilogram (2 1/2 pound) top sirloin roast. I mixed the injection ingredients together and used an injection syringe to put the liquid in both sides of the roast. I would push the syringe into the beef and slowly pull it out while injecting. I injected every inch or so on both side. Do this in a pan as there will be some injection fluid leak out.

Then I rubbed the surface with Louisiana Grills Chophouse Steak Rub. If you don’t have that, use any steak spice you have. Montreal Steak Spice would be great.

Injected Beef Roast 1

I put the roast on the pellet smoker, preheated to 270 F with a temperature probe inserted so I could keep track of the internal temperature. Remember, you must cook it to 155 F. You could also use a 325 F oven for about 50 minutes but it won’t have that nice kiss of smoke.

It took just under two hours to get to 155 F.

Injected Beef Roast 2

I brought the roast in and let is rest for 10 minutes and carved it.

Injected Beef Roast 3

We served it with She Who Must Be Obeyed’s wonderful potato salad and broccoli salad.

Injected Beef Roast 4

The Verdict

Love it. the texture of the beef wasn’t affected at all. Love it. The ingredients in the injecting marinade all have a umami taste that enhances the beef taste without overpowering the beef taste. Love it. It tasted like well seasoned beef. Love it. The smoke from the pellet smoker added an extra complexity. Love it.

Did I mention I love it.

The Old Fat Guy

Marinade Injected Beef Roast

Yield: 6 servings

Marinade Injected Beef Roast


  • 1.1 kilogram (2 1/2 pound) beef roast
  • 15 ml (1 tablespoon) Montreal or other steak spice or rub.
  • Injecting Marinade:
  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) beef stock
  • 15 ml (1 tablespoon) soy sauce
  • 15 ml (1 tablespoon) Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 ml (1/2 teaspoon) onion powder
  • 3 ml (1/2 teaspoon) garlic powder


  1. Mix together the injecting marinade.
  2. With an injecting syringe, inject the marinade every inch of both sides of the roast.
  3. Spread the steak spice over the surface of the roast.
  4. Put in a smoker preheated to 270 F. You could also use an oven but would not get a smoke taste.
  5. Cook to an internal temperature of 155 F or higher. Due to the injecting process, it is not safe to cook it less.
  6. Let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
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42 Responses

  1. Looks as good as a prime rib, nice job as always, and cooking it to 155 to be safe is a great idea, it still looks on the rare side to me. I’m going to guess that you loved it!!!

  2. If the injected marinade was boiled before being injected, would that be safe for cooking rare or medium?

    1. Sadly, no. It is not the marinade that introduces the pathogens. They may be present on the surface of the meat. This is usually not a problem as the outside of the meat gets cooked to a high temperature that kills them. However, when you push a syringe into the meat several times, you run the risk of transporting the pathogens from the surface to the interior. If you only cook the interior to 125 F (rare) that is not hot enough to kill the germs.

      1. If you did this and then used Sous Vide at 131f you could easily reach pasteurization without over cooking. It will take a few hours holding at that temp but it will still be very much on the rare side and safe. Stick the roast in a hot oven or use a grill to sear the outside and you’re done!

        1. I use sous vide , why is 133 temperature ok in sous vide and not okay when smoked? Would rinsing the meat first help to reduced bacteria?

          1. Sous vide brings the food to temperature over a longer period of time and then holds it at that temperature. You can cook safely to lower temperatures in sous vide if you keep the meat at that lower temperature long enough. The longer exposure to the heat kills the bacteria. The USDA has charts that show how long to keep the meat at temperature for lower temperatures.

            As for rinsing the meat, it wouldn’t eliminate all bacteria. I do know some who cut a thin slice off the surface but I question that safety. I also have friends who inject and then cook to rare and have never had any problems but there is a risk to that. I am not willing to take that risk.

        2. I did this for 18 hours and then let it rest in the fridge (cool down) overnight. Next day, smoke it on the green egg to an internal 150 degrees. Remove, rest, chill slightly and slice 1.5mm thin. Serve with horseradish sauce.

        3. This was what I was wondering, because I’m doing one today. From my research prime rib is best under sous vide at 137 degrees for 6 hours, and you get lots of juice! I thinking I’m going to use this marinade, but instead of onion and garlic powder I’ll throw some whole garlic and thick slices of onion, and a few sprigs of rosemary and thyme in the bad as well, then sear it out on my kamado grill!

      2. If you cook it slower on the back end it will kill them. 170 instant. Less heat takes some time to kill. Look up the chart. Pink juices are not blood. Low and slow will do it also.

    2. No, the problem with the germs reaching the internal part of the meat is not the marinate. It is the germs getting on to the needle doing the injection of the meat contaminating the internal parts of the meat. That said, if you were to sear (brown) the meat on all its sides and then inject the marinates into the roast this would kill off the germs on the outer surface of the meat and prevent spreading germs to the internal parts of the meat.


      1. I agree it is the needle pushing pathogens in but do not agree with the searing first if you are smoking. I find if you sear first, the meat doesn’t take on as much smoke flavour. However, if you are doing it in an oven, that may be an option.

    3. No, it’s not the liquid that’s a problem, but the stuff on the outside of whole muscle meat, that you don’t want to put inside the meat

      1. Mike is right. As I say in the post “If you inject beef in several places you run the risk of moving pathogens (germs for us uneducated) into the centre of the meat.”

    4. No because the outside of the injector needle would still have to pass through the outside of the roast, where pathogens are located. It is better to stick the roast in a 450 degree oven for 15 mins, then inject and cook to any temperature you want. The surface pathogens will be dead already.

  3. Ok…I don’t want to start an argument but…
    Our food safety guy says if you use good sterilization procedures on your injector and boil the injection liquid for several minutes then cool it in the fridge before injection there’s literally a zero chance of contamination…
    He is a safe food instructor at the professional level and has worked for various health departments and said there has never been a case of food born illness traced to contamination through injection when proper procedures were followed.
    The myths surrounding inserting a meat probe thermometer into cold meat causing contamination for the same reason(s) stated in this article have largely been debunked in meat smoking circles.

    1. I, too agree with you. All of the injection needles and syringes should be properly cleaned and boiled in clean water for at least 20 minutes to insure proper sterilization. I do not recommend the use of any type of chemical sterilization (chlorine, alcohol, peroxide, etc.).

  4. I am going try this on a leg of lamb. I am going to put the meat in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes. Take it out and then inject the marinade. This should kill any surface contamination.

  5. Gonna try this on a Prime Rib that we are cooking on my ‘old guy”s rotisserie but my favorite part of your post is where you refer to the ‘she’ in your life as the She Who Must Be Obeyed. Nice …. gonna make my husband refer to me as that from now on.

    1. Har! I hope you like it. It should be great on a rotisserie, the make such a moist meat! I should explain that the reason She Must Be Obeyed is that she is beautiful and spoils me rotten. I obey so I don’t mess a good thing up!

    1. I don’t know if you could cover the whole surface. I will tell you a lot of people have made this recipe to rare and told me they had no problems. I am just a coward when it comes to possible contamination

  6. I always cook on a clean grill, wash my hands obsessively before and while cooking anything, especially meat, rinse Brisket, Pork Ribs and Pork Shoulder Butt thoroughly in a clean sink under tap water, then wash with vinegar, then pat dry with paper towels, then inject, then rub, then smoke over Mesquite low and slow. No problem in 40 years.

    I appreciate that above marinade recipe is not sweet as most injection marinade recipes are ruined with apple juice or other sweet concoction.

    1. I totally agree with everything you say. I have many friends who inject and cook to rare. However, I have read about the possible dangers and I felt the need to report them.

      I also don’t like sweet in my beef injections. I prefer to try and increase the umami flavours.

      Thanks for your comment!

  7. Here’s an experiment you may consider to inject and keep the pathogens at bay… Take a roast that you would sous vide for 24 hours at say 131 degrees Fahrenheit . Sous vide it for 2 hours (or whatever time it takes to kill the pathogens) then interrupt the cooking , take your roast out and inject your flavoring. Since by that time (theoretically), you wouldn’t be spreading the pathogens around (since they’re already dead) . Now put it back… Whatever pathogens you introduce now, will be shortly dead…. and no worries…. unless I’ve missed something

    1. An interesting idea. I am no expert on food pathogens but it is my understanding that the reason sous vide is safe cooking at such low temperatures is that it cooks for many hours. Grilling or roasting relies on increasing the temperature of the food to a high enough temperature to kill the pathogens. Sous vide relies on a lower temperature for a long period of time. It is the application of heat for a long time that kills the pathogens. I really don’t know if a couple of hours sous vide would sterilize the surface. This document gives a great description of that.

      It notes that raw meat needs to be brought to an internal temperature of 130 F for almost 2 hours to pasturize. That would suggest that the surface of the meat would be safe after 2 hours of exposure to 130 F water but I don’t know if the water maintains that temperature.

      In short, it sounds like it would work but I really don’t know if it would be safe.

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