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Apples, ground ginger, cinnamon, and pork chops combine to create a main meal component that is as quick and easy as it is delicious.
Baked Pork Chops with Apples
Goodness, this is a really delicious dish. It’s one of those meal components that is silly simple and quick to make but steals the show every single time it’s served. Sweet, crunchy apples pair with juicy, rich pork chops for a flavor combination that is hard to resist!
Why do pork and apples go together?
It’s no secret (or it won’t be once you’ve tried this recipe, at least!) that pork pairs exceptionally well with apples. The subtle sweetness of fresh apples cuts through the full, rich flavors of the pork so perfectly, and the result is a delicious finished product that will convert even the biggest of pork (or pork and apple) skeptics among us!
Ingredients for Pork Chops with Apples
The ingredient list is pretty basic — you’ll of course need pork chops, apples, plus a few extra flavor-boosting ingredients:
- Pork Chops – to start, you’ll need 2 bone-in pork chops.
- Salt and Pepper – because of all of the really delicious, bold flavors in this recipe, the seasoning for the pork chops is super simple. You’ll just need 2 teaspoons of sea salt and a ¼ teaspoon of ground pepper.
- Butter – 3 tablespoons of salted butter will help caramelize the apples and get a good sear on the pork chops.
- Apple – go ahead and add 1 apple to your grocery cart too, and once you’re home, chop it into bite-sized pieces!
- Spices – to the buttery sauteed apples, you’ll add a ¼ teaspoon of ground cinnamon and a ¼ teaspoon of ground ginger…YUM!
- Lemon – 1 lemon (cut into 4 wedges) will head into the cast-iron skillet to brighten everything up!
While this recipe is really delicious as written, it can absolutely be modified for different dietary needs! Here are a few ideas that we know will work great:
- Make it dairy-free: to make this recipe dairy-free, simply swap the butter for ghee or olive oil.
- Swap the fruit: if apples aren’t your thing, try making this recipe with chopped-up pears or whole cranberries. If these fruits aren’t in season (i.e. if you’re making this in a summer month), try peaches!
What are the best apples to use with pork chops?
I’m personally partial to a Honeycrisp apple, but truly, almost any apple will work here. The only ones I’d steer clear of are green apples (they’ll be super sour) or red apples (they’ll be overly sweet). A nice middle-of-the-road (in both flavor and color) apple is best.
Can other meats be substituted for pork chops in this recipe?
Pork is definitely the preference with this flavor combination, so if you don’t have pork chops, you may try using a pork loin roast or a pork tenderloin instead.
How to make Apple Pork Chops with Cinnamon
For being such a flavorful, impressive main meal component, the process here is actually super simple. Here’s how you’ll bring it all together:
- Prep – first, preheat the oven to 400°F, season your pork chops on both sides with salt and pepper, and get the butter heating in a cast-iron skillet on the stovetop over high heat.
- Add the apples, ginger, and cinnamon – add the bite-sized apple chunks to the hot, buttered skillet, followed by the ground ginger and cinnamon, and toss everything around in the skillet. Let the apples cook for 2-3 minutes, until slightly softened, tossing occasionally.
- Add the pork chops – once the apple chunks are softened, push them to the outside of the skillet, making space for the pork chops in the middle. Then, place the pork chops into the cast-iron skillet, and sear them on one side for about 3 minutes, being careful to not move the pork chops around in the skillet while they sear.
- Flip, add the lemon wedges, and transfer to the oven – after about 3 minutes, flip the pork chops, toss the apples around, add the lemon wedges, and transfer the entire skillet to the oven for about 10 minutes, until the internal temperature of the pork reaches 145°F.
- Serve and enjoy!
FAQs for Baked Pork Chops with Apples
The cooking time will likely vary based on the thickness of your pork chops. Because of this, it’s best to use an in-oven thermometer (rather than a specific time) to know exactly when your pork chops are ready to be pulled out of the oven.
They don’t. The oven-cooking time is pretty short here (about 10 minutes), and because of that, the outside of your pork chops isn’t likely to burn or get too crispy.
The key to cooking ANY meat (but especially pork) without drying it out is to use a thermometer. THIS one actually goes into the oven with your pork chops and will alert you when they’ve reached the desired internal temperature (145°F) — if you use this, you don’t even need to set your oven timer!
Can Apple Cinnamon Pork Chops be made ahead of time?
They can, but because pork tends to dry out pretty easily, I actually recommend enjoying these right away (vs. making ahead and reheating).
How to Store and Reheat Cinnamon Apple Pork Chops
Store any leftover pork chops you have in an airtight container in the refrigerator. As far as reheating goes, I recommend enjoying your leftovers in a totally different form rather than as a whole, standalone pork chop. One of my very favorite ways to do this is to chop my cold leftover pork chops up, and reheat in a pan with some butter or ghee until crispy. Then, I serve that over rice with a veggie!
How long will this pork chop apple recipe last in the fridge?
Stored properly (in an airtight container in the fridge), any leftover pork chops you have will stay good for up to 5 days.
What to serve with this Apple Pork Chop Recipe
My absolute FAVORITE thing to serve these yummy cinnamon apple pork chops with is a creamy, delicious parsnip mash and simple sauteed green beans.
- 2 pork chops bone-in
- 2 teaspoons sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 apple chopped into bite-sized pieces
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 lemon cut into 4 wedges
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Salt and pepper the pork chops on both sides.
- Heat the butter in a cast iron skillet at high heat.
- Chop the apples into bite-sized pieces and add them to the hot skillet. Add the ground ginger and cinnamon to the skillet and toss everything around in the skillet. Let the apples cook in the skillet for about 2-3 minutes until slightly softened, tossing occasionally.
- Once softened, push the apples to the outside of the skillet, making space for the pork chops in the middle.
- Place the pork chops into the cast iron skillet, and sear them on one side for about 3 minutes, being careful to not move the pork chops around in the skillet.
- Flip the pork chops, toss the apples around, add the lemon wedges into the skillet, and transfer the entire skillet to the oven for about 10 minutes, until the internal temperature of the pork reaches 145°F.
- Serve and enjoy!
How thick are the pork chops you use for this recipe?
Brandi Schilhab says
About an inch thick, Patti. Any chops will work, though — just use an in-oven thermometer so you know when they’re ready to come out of the oven!
Marilyn LaBarbera says
What if you don’t have a cast iron skillet & don’t intend to buy one?
Melissa Guevara says
Hi Marilyn! Any oven-safe skillet will work for this recipe. If you do not have an oven-safe skillet (that can transfer from stove to oven), you can also preheat a baking sheet in the oven while you start cooking the potatoes and sear the pork chop in a skillet, then transfer the pork and apples to the preheated baking sheet in the oven to finish cooking. You may not achieve the same level of caramelization/sear, but should still taste delicious! ~Melissa