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Author Notes: The moment it starts to get cold I crave two things: red wine and these pork chops. They're so easy/amazing and the cider pan sauce makes them the perfect ratio of sweet to savory. The extra sprinkling of sugar helps the pork get a nice sear, and then they finish cooking in the oven for foolproof, juicy pork chops. —Look Cook
boneless pork chops – 1" thick
teaspoons kosher salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
teaspoon white sugar
tablespoon vegetable oil
tablespoons shallots – minced
tablespoon sage – minced
cup apple cider
tablespoons unsalted butter
- Preheat your oven to 400°F. Pat the pork chops dry with paper towels, then evenly sprinkle each side with 1/4 tsp of kosher salt, a few turns of pepper, and sprinkle 1/4 tsp of sugar on one side.
- Grab a cast iron skillet and let it heat up on medium high. Add 1 tbsp of vegetable oil, then both pork chops sugar side down. Sear for 4-5 minutes until deeply browned, then flip them over and pop the skillet in the oven for another 3-5 minutes. The pork chops will be done when they reach about 140°F – it's ok if you slice one open and it's a little pink! Well done pork chops = dry pork chops.
- Remove the pork from the skillet, then set the heat to medium. Add the minced shallots and sage, stirring until softened, then pour in 3/4 cups of cider. Cook until the liquid has reduced slightly, about 3-5 minutes.
- Once the sauce has done its thing, turn the heat down to low and stir in the butter, remaining 1/2 tsp of kosher salt, and any juices leftover from the pork you set aside earlier. Add the pork chops to coat with the sauce, then thinly slice them with your knife at a 45 degree angle (totally optional, but looks pretty). Divide onto 2 plates, pour the remaining sauce on top, and serve with whatever you want.