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The best way to bake pork chops

The best way to bake pork chops according to our test kitchen

The best way to bake pork chops – Cook pork chops in the oven for a quick and delicious dinner. Get all the best tips from our test kitchen, including how long to bake pork chops and the ~juicy~ details for making baked breaded pork chops.Boneless and boneless pork chops are delicious cooked any way: broiled, broiled, fried, and baked.

Baked Pork Chops can be stuffed, breaded, served with dips or sauces, the options seem endless. One of our test kitchen’s favorite ways to cook pork chops happens to be in the oven, and it involves an unexpected technique.

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Follow our step-by-step guide on how to bake pork chops, and then put together some amazing pork chop recipes for your next home-cooked meal.

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Step 1: Trim Fat From Chops
Keep dinner lean and free of unpleasant fatty morsels by trimming visible fat from pork chops before cooking. Simply use a sharp knife to cut off any excess white fat around the edges of the chops.

Step 2: Seasoned Dry Pork Chops
For better browning and to help the seasonings adhere to the pork chops, pat the pork chops down with paper towels. It seems that most recipes get better with the addition of a little salt and pepper. Baked pork chops are no exception. Add a pinch of salt and pepper (and, if desired, fresh herbs or other spices) to the pork chops.

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Step 3: Brown the pork chops before baking
The real key to irresistible baked pork chops is to brown them in a skillet first. In an extra-large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat. Add 2 bone-in chops or up to 4 boneless pork chops. Cook for 6 minutes or until the tops are wonderfully golden brown.

Flip chops as needed for even browning. Doing this step before baking makes a big difference because of the Maillard reaction it causes, which creates additional flavor and deliciousness.

Step 4: Bake Pork Chops
If you are using an oven-safe pan, place it directly in the oven. If your skillet is not oven safe, transfer the seared pork chops to a 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Bake the pork chops uncovered first (more on timings below) at 350°F. Once they’re done (safe internal temperature is 145°F), remove and cover with foil. Let chops rest 3 minutes before serving.

How long to bake pork chops

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Bake pork chops about 1¼-inch thick at 350°F for 14 to 17 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer registers 145°F. If you are concerned that the baking time will vary because the chops are boneless or bone-in, stop worrying. Our test kitchen tried both, and as long as the thickness is the same, the cook time is the same for boneless pork chops and bone-in pork chops. If using pork chops thinner than 1¼-inch thick, reduce baking time. No matter the thickness, pork chops are baked when they reach 145°F.

Your Favorite Baked Pork Chops Recipe

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Here is the detailed recipe for our Easy Baked Pork Chops:

• 4 bone-in pork loin chops, cut 1¼-inch thick (about 3 pounds total) or 4 boneless pork loin chops, cut 1¼-inch thick (about 2½ pounds total)
• ¼ teaspoon of salt
• ¼ teaspoon black pepper
• 1 tablespoon olive oil

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1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Trim fat from chops. Pat the chops dry with paper towels. Sprinkle chops with salt and pepper.

2. In an oversized skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add 2 bone-in chops or all boneless chops. Cook about 6 minutes or until browned, re-browning evenly. Transfer chops to a 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Repeat with remaining chops if necessary.

3. Bake the chops for 14 to 17 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the chops registers 145°F. Cover and let stand for 3 minutes.

Breaded Pork Chops: For a different take on baked pork chops, try this classic breaded baked pork chops recipe. We call them oven-fried because they still get that delicious golden outer coating that you get when you fry them thanks to the breading, but baking them keeps them healthier.

Stuffed Pork Chops – Now that you’re a pro at baking pork chops, try stuffing them with our recipes for Baked Pesto Stuffed Pork Chops and Apple Walnut Stuffed Pork Chops. To make stuffed pork chops, cut a small pocket in the side of a pork loin chop to create a space for the stuffing. Pour in your filling and bake.

How to choose a pork chop

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Pork chops come from the loin (upper back) section of the pig. Here are some of the more common cuts you’ll find at the grocery store butcher:
• Tenderloin Chop (bone-in) – Also called a porterhouse pork chop, this chop looks like a T-bone beef steak
• Top Loin Chop (Boneless) – Also called New York Pork Chop or Center Cut Chop
• Sirloin chop (usually bone-in)
• Rib Chop (bone-in) – also known as a ribeye pork chop

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How to Test the Doneness of Pork Chops

To check the temperature, insert an instant-read thermometer into the thickest part of the chop (making sure to avoid the bone if using bone-in pork chops). The thickness of a pork chop will determine its final cooking time, regardless of whether it’s boneless or bone-in. Chops are typically ¾-inch to 1½-inch thick.

The USDA updated its cooking guidelines in 2011, noting that pork cooked to 145°F (followed by a 3-minute rest time) is just as safe as pork cooked to 160°F. At this point of doneness, the pork is pinker than many people are used to, but the meat is juicier and more flavorful. If you prefer, you can always cook your pork chop to the old standard of 160°F.

Keep your pork chop cravings satisfied beyond the oven. Allow your pork chops to get super tender with some of our favorite slow cooker pork recipes. Or get light and flavorful pork chops with these air fry pork recipes.

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