These Lemon Pepper Pork Chops are savory, delicious, and come together in less than 20 minutes.
When it comes to a delectable and satisfying meal, lemon pepper pork chops are an amazing choice that seamlessly blends zesty lemon, bold pepper, and succulent pork.
These mouthwatering chops offer a burst of taste that will leave your taste buds dancing with joy. The best part? It takes 20 minutes to make.
Are Pork Chops Healthy?
Pork chops are a rich source of protein, vitamins, and minerals, making them a valuable addition to a balanced diet.
They provide essential nutrients like iron, zinc, and B-vitamins, which contribute to energy production, immune function, and overall well-being. Opting for lean cuts and mindful cooking methods like baking or air frying can further enhance the healthiness of your pork chops.
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Can Pork Chops Be Pink?
Yes, pork chops can have a slight pink hue, especially when cooked to a safe internal temperature.
The outdated belief that all pork must be thoroughly cooked until there’s no pink left is no longer necessary. The USDA guidelines recommend cooking pork chops to an internal temperature of 145°F (63°C), followed by a three-minute rest, allowing the residual heat to finish the cooking process while keeping the meat tender and juicy.
How Do Pork Chops Look When They’re Done?
The appearance of cooked pork chops depends on the cooking method you choose. When baked, air fried, or cooked in a cast iron skillet, pork chops should have a golden-brown crust on the outside.
The internal meat should be slightly pink and incredibly juicy, signifying that they’re perfectly cooked. Using a meat thermometer to ensure the correct internal temperature is crucial to achieving this balance between safety and taste.
What Pork Chops Are The Best?
When it comes to making lemon pepper pork chops, bone-in pork chops are often preferred. The bone adds flavor and helps the meat retain moisture during cooking, resulting in a tender and succulent final dish. Choosing cuts like rib chops or loin chops ensures a good balance between tenderness and meatiness.
Why Do You Butterfly Pork Chops?
Butterflying pork chops involves making a cut through the center of the chop horizontally, essentially creating a pocket that can be filled with various ingredients.
This technique not only allows for even cooking but also provides a perfect opportunity to infuse flavors like lemon pepper, garlic powder, and lemon thyme.
When the pork chop is butterflied, it creates a larger surface area for the seasonings to penetrate, resulting in a more flavorful and aromatic dish.
Creating Lemon Pepper Pork Chops: A Step-by-Step Recipe
- Bone-in pork chops
- Lemon pepper seasoning
- Lemon thyme
- Garlic powder
- Lemon zest
- Cooking spray
- Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
- In a small bowl, combine lemon pepper seasoning, a pinch of salt, freshly ground pepper, lemon thyme, onion powder, and garlic powder.
- Butterfly the pork chops by making a horizontal cut through the center, creating a pocket for the seasonings.
- Rub the lemon zest onto both sides of the chops.
- Sprinkle the seasoning mixture generously onto both sides of the chops, pressing it gently to adhere.
- Heat a large skillet, preferably a cast iron skillet, over medium heat. Once hot, lightly coat it with cooking spray.
- Sear the pork chops for about 2-3 minutes on each side until they develop a beautiful golden-brown crust.
- Transfer the seared pork chops to a baking dish and place them in the preheated oven.
- Bake for approximately 10-15 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 145°F (63°C), ensuring a juicy and tender outcome.
- Once cooked, let the pork chops rest for a few minutes before serving. This rest period allows the juices to redistribute within the meat.
- Serve your delectable lemon pepper pork chops alongside your favorite sides for a complete and satisfying meal.
Lemon Pepper Pork Chops
- 4 bone-in pork chops
- 2 tbsp lemon pepper seasoning
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- 1 tbsp onion powder
- 1 tbsp neutral oil
- Preheat oven to 375 F. (If using a thick chop).
- In a small bowl, combine lemon pepper seasoning, garlic powder, and onion powder and mix to combine.
- Rub the chops with some of the oil. Sprinkle the seasoning mix over the chops, gently pressing it in. Sprinkle both sides of the chops generously with salt.
- Heat a skillet over medium high heat. Once hot, add oil and add your chops to the skillet. Sear until a golden crust develops on each side, about 2 – 3 minutes each.
- If you are using a thin pork chop (~½ inch thick), remove from heat and allow to rest. If using a thicker chop, bake for 10 – 15 minutes or until the internal temp reaches 145 F.
- Remove and rest