These juicy Skillet Pork Chops are crusted in a tart apple cider glaze and topped with tender sautéed apples and onions. With a perfect golden-brown sear on the outside, these restaurant-quality pork chops explode with fresh fall flavor.
Looking for an even quicker way to prepare your pork chops? Try this recipe for the juiciest Air Fryer Pork Chops you’ve ever had!
Juicy Skillet Pork Chops With Apples & Onions
Pork and apples make a classic flavor combination, bringing savory and sweet together in perfect balance. In this recipe, incredibly tender pan-seared pork is infused with a tangy apple cider glaze. The beautiful golden-brown char on the meat really locks in the flavors.
The tender caramelized onions and apples in this recipe add texture and flavor to pork that practically falls off the bone. But the addictive taste isn’t the only thing these skillet pork chops have to offer. They’re also healthy, low in calories, gluten-free, and made with just a handful of fresh ingredients.
What You’ll Need
All the ingredients for this pan-seared pork are fresh and healthy. Scroll down to check out the recipe card for exact amounts.
- Pork Chops: Make sure you choose 1/2-inch thick cuts with the bone in, or else the cooking time will be off.
- Fresh Sage: Minced.
- Salt and Pepper
- Olive Oil
- Apples: Thinly sliced.
- Yellow Onion: Sliced thinly so it caramelizes.
- Fresh Rosemary: Chopped.
- Fresh Thyme: Shredded.
- Apple Cider: The drink, not the vinegar.
What Cut of Pork is Best?
I like to use rib cut pork chops because of the leanness of the meat. Another option for bone-in pork chops is center cut. Both of them include a rib bone and meat that comes from the loin area of the pig. When we hear the word loin, we usually think of the leg, but in the world of pork cuts the loin actually comes from the pig’s back.
How to Make Pan-Seared Pork Chops
Since it all comes together in 30 minutes or less, this pork dinner is the perfect meal for a busy weeknight. Follow these simple steps to get restaurant-quality chops in no time.
- Prep Your Ingredients: Rub the pork chops thoroughly on all sides with a mixture of chopped sage, salt and pepper, then set them aside on a board. Heat a large cast-iron skillet on the stove over high heat and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
- Sear the Pork: Add your seasoned pork chops to the skillet and sear them evenly on both sides, which should take about 4 minutes per side. Once they’ve reached an even golden brown, remove them from the skillet and set them aside.
- Sautée the Apples and Onions: Add the remaining olive oil and stir in the apples and onions. Season them with the chopped rosemary and thyme along with some more salt and pepper. Cook them over medium-high heat for 4 to 5 minutes, or until they turn tender and start to brown. Stir in the cider and scrape the bottom of the pan to release any browned bits and add flavor.
- Finish Cooking the Pork: Return the pork chops to the skillet with the onions and apples. Cover the pan and continue to cook them for another 5 minutes, turning each pork chop once, or until they’re cooked through.
- Serve: Remove the pan from the heat, let the meat rest for 5 minutes, and serve it.
Tips for Success
These pork chops come together very quickly, and the flavors blend so well. Here are a few quick tips to get them cooked to perfection.
- Let Them Rest: This step is super important, so make sure you don’t skip it. Like steak, letting pork rest allows the flavor of the glaze to really sink in, keeping the meat tender and juicy.
- Use Bone-In Pork: Pork with the bone still in it will always be juicier than a cut that has the bone removed. The lean fat surrounding the bone keeps the meat from drying out.
- Take the Pork Out Early: Instead of cooking your pork chops fresh out of the fridge, let them rest on the counter at room temperature for about 20 minutes first. This makes them cook more evenly and helps the flavor sink in.
- Season and Spread Out: Really, this is more like two tips in one, but both will help you get a nice sear on your pork. Make sure to season the meat really well on all sides, so that you get a flavorful crust along the outside as it cooks. Also be sure that you don’t crowd the pan, since this will make the skillet less hot and mess up the sear on the meat.
This dish pairs so well with these buttery Mashed Sweet Potatoes, which taste even better with some of the onions and apples spooned on top and a little juice from the bottom of the pan mixed in. For some extra vitamins and minerals, add a side of tangy veggies like Lemon Butter Green Beans. And if you’re looking for some fresh greens, try this Avocado and Feta Kale Salad, which will add a nice creamy texture to your meal.
Storage and Reheating
You can store any leftover pork in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days. When you’re ready to cook it, add a tablespoon of butter to a cast iron skillet and let it melt over medium-high heat. Add the pork chops to the skillet and cook each side for about 4 minutes. Pour the apple mixture into the skillet and cook it until everything has heated through.
Can I Freeze Cast Iron Pork Chops?
This recipe is totally freezer-friendly! You’re going to want to store the apple and onion mixture separately from the pork chops. Just make sure to wait for everything to cool completely before sealing the food tightly in a pair of double-lock freezer bags. Move both bags to the fridge the day before you plan to eat your leftover pork, and wait for it to thaw completely before you reheat it.
Skillet Pork Chops
- 4 1/2-inch-thick bone-in pork chops (4 ounces each)
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
- salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 apples, thinly sliced
- 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
- salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
- 3/4 cup apple cider (NOT vinegar)
- Rub pork chops on all sides with prepared sage, salt, and pepper.
- Heat a large cast-iron skillet over high heat and add 1 tablespoon olive oil.
- Add pork chops to the skillet and sear on both sides; about 4 minutes per side.
- Remove pork chops from skillet and set aside.
- Add the remaining olive oil and stir in the apples and onions; season with rosemary, thyme, salt, and pepper.
- Cook over medium-high heat for 4 to 5 minutes, or until tender and lightly browned.
- Stir in the cider and scrape the bottom of the pan to release any browned bits.
- Return pork chops to the skillet; cover and cook, turning once, for 5 minutes, or until cooked through.
- Remove from heat; rest for 5 minutes and serve.
- To Store: Store leftover pork in an airtight container in the fridge up to 2 days.
- To Freeze: Freeze apple and onion mixture separately from pork chops. Let cool completely before sealing in double-lock freezer bags. Thaw both bags in fridge overnight 1 day before reheating.
- To Reheat: Add 1 tablespoon butter to a cast iron skillet and melt over medium-high heat. Add pork chops to skillet and cook each side for 4 minutes. Pour apple mixture into skillet and cook everything until heated through.
Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.