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Cast Iron Pork Chops

Cast Iron Pork Chops are a delightful and easy-to-make dish that’s perfect for a weeknight dinner or a special occasion. This recipe features succulent pork chops seared to perfection in a cast iron skillet, creating a beautiful golden crust and locking in all those juices for a flavorful and tender result. Here’s how to make Cast Iron Pork Chops

Ingredients

For the Pork Chops:

  • 4 bone-in pork chops (1 inch thick)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary

For the Pan Sauce

  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • Chopped fresh parsley for garnish

Instructions

  1. Preheat the Oven: Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Season the Pork Chops: In a small bowl, mix the salt, black pepper, garlic powder, paprika, dried thyme, and dried rosemary. Season both sides of the pork chops with this mixture.
  3. Sear the Pork Chops: Heat your cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and heat until it shimmers. Place the pork chops in the skillet and sear for about 3-4 minutes on each side or until they develop a golden-brown crust. Once seared, remove them from the skillet and set aside.
  4. Prepare the Pan Sauce: In the same skillet, add minced garlic and cook for about 30 seconds until fragrant. Stir in the chicken broth, heavy cream, and Dijon mustard. Allow the mixture to simmer and reduce for about 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Return the Pork Chops: Place the seared pork chops back into the skillet with the pan sauce. Spoon some of the sauce over the pork chops.
  6. Bake: Transfer the skillet to the preheated oven and bake for about 10-15 minutes or until the internal temperature of the pork reaches 145°F (63°C). Make sure not to overcook the pork, as it can become dry.
  7. Rest and Serve: Remove the skillet from the oven and let the pork chops rest for a few minutes. The internal temperature will continue to rise slightly, and the juices will redistribute. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley.
  8. Serve: Plate the pork chops and drizzle with the pan sauce. They pair wonderfully with mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables, or a fresh salad.

Cook’s Notes:

  • Make sure to use an oven-safe cast iron skillet for this recipe.
  • You can customize the seasoning mix with your favorite herbs and spices.
  • Adjust the cooking time to achieve your preferred level of doneness for the pork

Variations and Sides

  1. Variations:
    • Apple Glaze: For a sweet and savory twist, consider adding a drizzle of apple glaze over the pork chops. To make the glaze, simmer apple cider, brown sugar, and a touch of apple cider vinegar until it thickens. Spoon it over the chops before serving.
    • Mushroom Cream Sauce: If you’re a fan of mushrooms, sauté some sliced mushrooms in the skillet after cooking the pork chops. Once they’re browned, add cream, garlic, and thyme for a luscious mushroom cream sauce.
    • Herb Butter Finish: After removing the pork chops from the oven, add a pat of herb butter (a mixture of softened butter and fresh herbs like thyme, rosemary, and parsley) on top of each chop for extra flavor.
  2. Side Dishes:
    • Mashed Potatoes: Creamy mashed potatoes are a classic pairing with pork chops. The creamy texture of the potatoes complements the juicy pork and rich pan sauce.
    • Roasted Vegetables: Roasted carrots, asparagus, or Brussels sprouts make a healthy and flavorful side. Toss them in olive oil, salt, and pepper, and roast in the oven while the pork cooks.
    • Crispy Brussels Sprouts: For a twist on the traditional roasted veggies, make crispy Brussels sprouts. Coat the sprouts in olive oil and roast until they’re crispy and caramelized.
  3. Keto and Low-Carb Version:
    • To make this dish keto-friendly or low-carb, you can replace the heavy cream in the pan sauce with a keto-friendly alternative like almond milk or coconut cream.
    • Serve the pork chops with a side of steamed or roasted low-carb vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, or zucchini.

Cast Iron Pork Chops are a fantastic choice for a satisfying and flavorful dinner. Whether you prefer them with a classic pan sauce, a unique glaze, or served alongside your favorite sides, these pork chops are sure to impress. The cast iron skillet helps achieve a beautiful sear and keeps the meat juicy. Feel free to get creative with your seasonings and accompaniments to make this dish your own. Enjoy your homemade Cast Iron Pork Chops!

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