This deliciously decadent fall meal is perfect for cozying up to on fall evenings. Apple Cider Brined Pork Chops are perfectly tender and drenched in a rich apple cider cream sauce.
Apple Cider Brined Pork Chops
These Apple Cider Brined Pork Chops are unbelievably tender. When prepared using this simple process where the meat is brined the pork chops soak up the brine which helps to break down the think fibers. Accompany this with a quick sear in a hot skillet, which is then transferred to the oven to finish cooking and you’ll get perfectly tender pork chops.
The delicious apple cider cream sauce only heightens the flavor of these perfectly cooked chops. Slightly seasoned and super creamy it’s the perfect fall-flavored sauce to pour over this meat.
Ingredients in Apple Cider with Apple Cider Cream Sauce
At a quick glance it seems like there are a bunch of ingredients in this recipe, however, this is a VERY quickly made dish. There are only 4 main steps to preparing these apple cider brined pork chops that take almost no time to do.
Apple Cider Brine:
To achieve a perfectly tender and juicy pork chop you’ll need to let the pork chops sit in the brine for a minimum of 30 minutes and up to 4 hours.
- Water: you’ll bring 1 cup of water to a boil and then pour in a large bowl to mix with the chilled apple cider.
- Apple Cider: pouring the apple cider into the bowl with the boiling water makes the base of the brine.
- Salt: part of brine is adding a large amount of salt that aids in the brining process.
- Seasoning: Whole peppercorns and whole cloves add a tad more flavor to the brine. These are optional though.
- Pork Chops: I recommend using bone-in pork chops, however, I just as often use boneless. Bone-in pork chops help ensure the meat is extra juicy.
- Spices: Salt, Pepper, and Italian Seasoning are all simple.
- Garlic: adding garlic to the cream sauce brings a nice flavor that balances the others.
- White Wine: pouring the white wine in the pan helps to deglaze it and scrape the tasty charred bits off the bottom. If you prefer not to use wine try vermouth or chicken broth.
- Flour: placing a couple of tablespoons of flour into the sauce will cause it to thicken perfectly.
- Apple Cider: by adding additional apple cider to the cream sauce you increase the fall flavor.
- Chicken Broth: as part of the cream sauce the recipe needs a small amount of broth to mix with both the apple cider and cream.
- Heavy Cream: both heavy cream and whole milk will work for this delicious cream sauce, but using a thick cream will work best.
How to Make Apple Cider Pork Chops
Preparing apple cider brined pork chops is easy and it makes the most flavorful and juicy pork chops.
- Brine the pork chops: bring the water to a boil and add the salt, peppercorns, and cloves, stirring to dissolve the salt. Pour into a large bowl and add the apple cider to slightly cool. Place the pork chops into the brine, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes
- Sear the pork chops in the skillet: carefully remove the skillet from the oven and place over medium-high heat on the oven.
- Finish cooking in the oven: Place the pork chops into the skillet to sear until they’re golden brown for about 3 minutes. Flip the pork chops over and transfer the skillet back to the oven to roast until they’re cooked through. Cook them for 6 to 10 minutes depending on the thickness of the pork chops.
- Prepare the sauce: return the skillet to the stove set to medium-high heat. Add the garlic and white wine to deglaze the pan. Scrape any bits off the bottom. Once the wine has cooked down to half add the flour and whisk it into the mixture. Pour in the apple cider, chicken stock, and heavy cream. Increase the heat to high to let the mixture cook down.
Equipment Used in this Recipe:
What to Serve with Pork Chops
- Scalloped Potatoes with Caramelized Onions
- Parmesan Roasted Brussel Sprouts
- Garlic Sauteed Spinach
- Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole
- Brown Butter Mashed Potatoes
Can I leave off the cream sauce?
Yes. You do not have to make the apple cider cream sauce at all, however, I highly recommend trying it out. It adds a delicious flavor to the pork chops.
Do I have to brine the pork chops?
It is not absolutely necessary to brine the pork chops, this method for cooking them will still work. Placing the pork chops in brine will help ensure their tenderness.
Consider Trying the Apple Cider Recipes:
- 1 cup Water
- 3 tablespoons Salt
- 1 teaspoon Whole Peppercorns
- 1 teaspoon Whole Cloves
- 2 cups Apple Cider cold
- 4 Center Cut Bone-in Pork Chops 3/4-inch to 1-inch thick
- 1/4 teaspoon Salt
- 1/4 teaspoon Pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
- 1/2 medium Onion chopped
- 2 Garlic Cloves minced
- 1/4 cup White Wine
- 2 tablespoons Flour
- 1/2 cup Apple Cider
- 3/4 cup Chicken Stock
- 3/4 cup Heavy Cream
- In a small saucepan bring the water to a boil and add the salt, peppercorns, and cloves, stirring to dissolve the salt. Pour into a large bowl and add the apple cider to bring the water to room temperature.
- Place the pork chops into the brine, making sure the pork chops are covered by the brine. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to 4 hours.
- Place the rack in the middle of the oven and set the temperature to 400ºF. Put a 10-inch or 12-inch oven-safe skillet into the oven to heat.
- Remove the pork chops from the brine and pat dry with a paper towel. Rub both sides of the pork chops with 1 tablespoon of olive oil then season with salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning.
- Using oven mitts, carefully remove the skillet from the oven and place over medium-high heat on the oven. Turn on a vent fan.
- Place the pork chops into the skillet to sear until they're golden brown for about 3 minutes.
- Flip the pork chops over and transfer the skillet back to the oven to roast until they're cooked through. Cook them for 6 to 10 minutes depending on the thickness of the pork chops. Check the pork chops at 6 minutes to see if they register 140ºF to 145ºF, continue to check every two minutes until this temperature range is reached.
- Transfer the pork chops to a plate and return the skillet to the stove set to medium-high heat. Add the garlic and white wine to deglaze the pan. Scrape any bits off the bottom.
- Once the wine has cooked down to half add the flour and whisk it into the mixture. Pour in the apple cider, chicken stock, and heavy cream. Increase the heat to high to let the mixture cook down for about 5 minutes.
- After the sauce has thickened pour it over the pork chops.