These superbly simple Cast Iron Pork Chops are a go-to recipe in my house for perfectly caramelized pork chops that are intensely flavorful, tender, and juicy!
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Whether you use bone-in or boneless pork chops, the simple stovetop method is a tried and true method that will not disappoint!
CAST IRON SEARED PORK CHOPS
Pork chops cooked in a cast iron skillet on the stovetop are always a hit. Each bite is enhanced by the supreme juiciness and caramelized crust.
Pork chops are always appealing when you’re not in the mood for steak or chicken.
These cast iron pork chops are tender and flavorful, and they’re always a family favorite.
Your mouth is probably already watering! And the aroma will be intoxicating once you start cooking!
With this cast iron recipe, you can use boneless or bone-in pork chops, and both are delicious. With restaurant-quality results at a fraction of the cost, you’ll be making these at least once a week!
This recipe’s simplicity is what makes it such a welcoming go-to, especially when you don’t have much time to devote to cooking on busy nights.
This meal should take you no more than 20 minutes to prepare from start to finish.
Alternative video: How to cook Cast Iron Pork Chops
WHAT YOU’LL NEED?
As you gather the ingredients listed below, you’ll notice that there aren’t many needed to make this pork chop dish stand out.
Get some good quality pork chops from your local grocery store or butcher, grab a skillet, and you’re ready to go!
- Pork Chops (boneless or bone-in, 1-inch thick cuts) – Choose a nice-looking thick-cut or ask your butcher for a recommendation. Now is not the time to be frugal, so indulge yourself!
- Season with salt and pepper, seasoning sparingly at first and adding more as needed. You don’t want to mask the natural flavor of the pork chops. Enhancing is the way to go!
- Paprika – A dash of heat adds a subtle kick. Furthermore, the paprika aids in the perfect caramelization of your pork chops!
- If possible, use olive oil instead of another type of oil. The EVOO is smooth and rich, making it ideal for the pork.
- Garlic – “Date night” may be devoid of kisses, but your tummy will be soothed! To improve the flavor of the cooking oil, use fresh garlic cloves. In a pinch, however, jarred minced garlic works well.
- Parsley – A garnish of freshly chopped parsley adds a gourmet touch as well as a fresh flavor. You can substitute chopped thyme for the parsley.
- For the best results, use rich European butter. The drippings are out of this world!
WHAT IS THE BEST PORK TO USE?
Purchase frenched, bone-in center-cut pork chops that are 1 to 12 inch thick. Depending on the size of the chop, the cooking time will vary.
The bone adds flavor to the meat and keeps the protein from cooking too quickly and drying out.
The marinade and thick-cut pork chops result in the juiciest pork chops you’ve ever tasted!
PORK CHOP BASICS
- Pork chops can be boneless or bone-in. Because they are easier to work with, I prefer thick cut pork chops:).
- Remove your pork chops from the refrigerator and set them aside for 20 minutes to come to room temperature before cooking. This ensures that they cook on the inside and that the center reaches the ideal temperature.
- Season your pork chops liberally because the pork chop crust is essential for flavor. Seasoning liberally will result in a delicious and flavorful pork chop crust.
- To ensure that the pork chops are properly cooked, use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature rather than relying solely on cooking time.
- Allow the pork chops to rest for 10 minutes on a plate – they will continue to cook and the residual heat will bring them to the recommended 145 F degrees.
- The cooking time will vary depending on the thickness of the pork chops.
HOW TO TELL IF THE PORK CHOP IS DONE?
Not sure how to tell if a chop is done? The pros go by feel, and a medium-cooked steak or chop should have a slight resistance when pressed with your finger but not feel hard and solid.
Using a meat thermometer is the simplest way to determine whether the pork chop is done.
They are finished when their internal temperature reaches 135 degrees Fahrenheit.
Remove them from the skillet and set them aside for 10 minutes to rest, during which time they will continue to cook with the residual heat and reach 145 F degrees.
Keep in mind that the cooking time will vary depending on the thickness of the pork chops.
HOW TO COOK PORK CHOPS IN A CAST IRON SKILLET?
This is the simplest way to make perfect pan-seared pork chops! Cast-iron skillets’ even heating results in excellent caramelization, color, and seating for anything cooked in them!
If you don’t have a cast-iron skillet, don’t worry! To transfer heat as efficiently as possible, use a skillet or nonstick frying pan with a heavy bottom.
- To prepare your pork chops for cooking, gently pat away any excess moisture with a paper towel. Heat the extra virgin olive oil in a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.
- Season the tops of your pork chops with salt, pepper, and paprika. Make sure to get all the way to the edges so that every bite is well-seasoned.
- Set the pork chops in the cast iron skillet with the seasoned side facing down once the olive oil begins to shimmer or slightly smoke. Season the skillet’s upward-facing side. 4 minutes in the oven *Before this time, do not move the pork chops. No need to double-check! This will disrupt the essential sear and prevent you from getting that caramelized crispness that keeps those succulent juices in.
- After 4 minutes, flip the pork chops with tongs, searing the edges in the skillet as you do so. While the second side is cooking, add the garlic cloves (and herbs if using – otherwise, garnish with them before serving). Cook for an additional 4 minutes, being careful not to disturb the pork chops during this time.
- After 4 minutes, add the butter and remove from the heat. Spoon the melted butter liberally over the pork chops, then set them aside in the skillet for 5 minutes before serving.
- Plate your cast iron pork chops with the pan juices drizzled over top and a sprinkle of fresh chopped parsley or thyme on top.
HOW DO YOU KEEP PORK CHOPS MOIST WHEN FRYING?
- First, preheat your cast iron skillet so it is hot before adding the pork chops. Next, coat the pan with olive oil, ghee, or grass-fed butter.
- After the butter has melted and the pan has heated up, add the pork chops.
- You’ll want to sear all sides quickly to get them golden brown on the outside, then reduce the heat to finish cooking the pork chops to ensure they’re cooked all the way through.
- The quick sear followed by the lower heat will keep the inside moist. Also, keep an eye on the pan and add more olive oil or butter if it begins to dry out!
STORING LEFTOVER PORK CHOPS
If you have any leftovers from this dish, storing them is a breeze. Wrap the pork chops in foil or store them in an airtight container.
For the best texture, I recommend reheating in the oven rather than the microwave.
Cubed pork chops can be tossed over a spinach salad, added to pasta, or served on a bun as a quick sandwich.
If you can’t wait until lunch, serve the leftovers with eggs instead of bacon or sausage in the morning.
When stored properly in the fridge, leftovers should last for about 2-3 days.Print
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does it take to sear pork chops?
Heat the olive oil in a skillet (I recommend a cast iron skillet) over medium high heat. Add your chops when it’s shimmering hot and not a second before. Sear on one side, without moving them at all, until the first side is nice and golden brown, about 3-5 minutes.
How do you keep pork chops from drying out when cooking?
A high-heat frying sears them to a golden brown, while a moderately hot oven (400 degrees F) bakes them gently enough to keep them from drying out. This “sear-roasting” method is excellent for baking pork chops: fry one side until golden brown, then flip and place the chops directly in the oven.
Do you have to sear pork chops before baking?
The secret to irresistible oven-baked pork chops is to sear the pork chops first in a skillet. Add up to 4 boneless pork chops or 2 bone-in pork chops. Cook for 6 minutes, or until the edges are beautifully browned. To ensure an even sear, flip the chops as needed.
How can you tell if pork chops are done?
The meat is fully cooked when a thermometer probe inserted into the thickest part of the pork chop registers 145 degrees Fahrenheit. The pork should be springy and firm at this temperature.
More Cast Iron Pork Chops alternatives to try:
Cast Iron Pork Chops Boneless
The best and simplest way to make Pan Fried Boneless Pork Chops is to sear them in a hot cast iron skillet with oil, butter, and a few key spices.
Your main course for dinner will be ready in less than 10 minutes. Add a side salad and cubed potatoes for a complete meal that the whole family will enjoy.
Cast Iron Pork Chops with Sauce
This cast iron skillet recipe is for you if you want perfectly cooked pork chops.
Pan-seared bone-in chops are caramelized on the outside and juicy in the center. A five-minute pan sauce elevates them to new heights. This is a recipe that anyone can learn.
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