Baked Pork Chops

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My favorite baked pork chops recipe — easy to make, nice and juicy, and easy to customize with your favorite seasonings.

Baked Pork Chops Recipe

Next up in our back-to-the-basics series this week about how to bake proteins in the oven — my go-to method for how to make juicy, tender, flavorful oven baked pork chops.

(Pssst, this one’s a bookmark-er!)

I don’t know about you, but pork has always been the most challenging meat for me to cook perfectly in the oven.  When cooked properly, a nice thick pork chop can be an incredibly delicious, tender, juicy, and versatile cut of meat.  But when overcooked — which can happen in a matter of seconds — pork regrettably becomes the meal that you’re going to wish was over, chop-chop.  Oof.  Nobody likes a dried out pork chop.

Here’s the great news though — it’s actually surprisingly easy to cook pork chops perfectly.  And since “the other white meat” happens to also be one of the most affordable and versatile and lean proteins at the store, it’s definitely worth the effort to learn!  All you need is this simple basic method plus a few important tips.  I’ll show you. 

BAKED PORK CHOPS | 1-MINUTE VIDEO

How To Brine Pork Chops

Baked Pork Chops Ingredients & Cooking Tools:

To make this baked pork chops recipe, you will need:

  • Thick-cut pork chops: When it comes to purchasing pork chops, there are three important qualities to look for that I highly, highly recommend:
    • Thick-cut: Ideally, between 1 to 1.5 inches thick.  Thick-cut pork chops much easier to cook correctly than their thinner counterparts.  If your grocery store only offers really thinly-cut chops, just go to the meat counter and ask if they can double-cut them (cut them a bit more thick) for you.
    • Bone-in: I much prefer bone-in pork chops (specifically, rib chops or loin chops) because they have the most flavor.  But if you prefer the leaner boneless pork chops, those will work too.  Just be extra-careful not to overcook them.
    • Fresh: Be sure to also buy the freshest pork that you can find.  In general, you want to look for pork that is a deep reddish-pink or reddish-purple color, not grayish or white.  And the fat should be white and creamy, not dotted with dark spots.  It should also be pretty firm, and not soft and squishy.
  • Olive Oil: Or whatever your preferred cooking oil may be.
  • Kosher Salt: An essential ingredient in our brine, and also to season the pork.
  • Seasonings: I typically like to use a simple garlic powder, salt and black pepper seasoning blend with pork.  And then serve it up with lots of fresh lemon slices, to brighten up the flavors.  But feel free to use whatever other dry seasonings you like.

You will also need (affiliate links included):

  • An oven-proof skillet: I absolutely recommend a cast-iron skillet (or a cast-iron Dutch oven) if you have one, which will hold heat and cook the pork more evenly.  But if not, any oven-proof skillet that can sustain high heat will do.
  • Tongs: These will be essential for flipping the pork as it is searing.  I recommend these 12-inch tongs from OXO.
  • An instant-read thermometer: I really feel like this is a must with this recipe.  A cooking thermometer is the best way to ensure with 100% accuracy that your pork is not over- or under-cooked.  And it is just as helpful with cooking many other proteins besides pork too.  I recommend this:
    • Instant-read cooking thermometer: which I have owned and used for years when cooking pork, which retails for about $9.99 on Amazon. (Only downside is that it cannot be used inside the oven.)
    • Dual-probe wireless meat thermometer: which I also own and love because it can be used inside of a hot oven (especially helpful for baking pork, salmon, steak and chicken), which retails for about $24.99 on Amazon.

Oven Baked Pork Chops Recipe

How To Make Baked Pork Chops:

As much as I would love to say that you can make perfectly baked pork chops by just popping them directly in the oven, I’ve just never had good luck with that method.  Instead, I’ve learned over the years that the secret is taking an extra 15 minutes (at least) to brine the pork.  Then giving it a quick sear on the stove before roasting it in the oven.  And then, as I mentioned above, using the help of a cooking thermometer to measure the internal temperature of the pork and ensure that it has reached the magical 145°F (62°C).  It may sound complicated, but I promise you — it’s easy peasy.  Simply:

  1. Brine the pork.  In a large mixing bowl, combine warm water and kosher salt (about 1 tablespoon per cup of water) and stir until the salt is dissolved.  Submerge the pork chops in the saltwater and soak for at least 15-30 minutes, or up to 4 hours.  Remove the pork chops and rinse them off with cold water.  Then pat them dry with paper towels and place on a clean plate.
  2. Season the pork.  Brush the pork chops on both sides with olive oil.  Then sprinkle with your desired dry seasonings.  (I like a mixture of garlic powder, kosher salt and black pepper.)
  3. Pre-heat your skillet. Meanwhile, as you’re seasoning the pork, heat your skillet over high heat for about 5 minutes, until it is super-hot.  Once your pork is seasoned and your skillet is ready…
  4. Sear the pork on one side.  Place the pork chops in the hot skillet (carefully, so that the oil doesn’t splatter).  Then give the tops of the pork chops a gentle press down with a spatula, so that the full bottom surface of the pork chops makes contact with the pan (instead of accidentally curving up).  Cook for 2-3 minute, or until the bottom of the pork chops are golden.  Then flip the pork chops over to the other side, and quickly…
  5. Transfer pan to the oven and bake.  Carefully use an oven mitt to move the entire pan to the oven, where the second side of the pork will continue to sear.  Then bake for 3 minutes, flip.  And continue baking for 3-5 minutes more, or until the pork reaches an internal temperature of 145°F (62°C).  Remove the pan from the oven, and transfer the pork to a clean plate.  Use a pastry brush to brush any of those extra juices in the pan onto the pork chops (that’s where so much of the flavor is hiding!).  Then tent the plate with aluminum foil and…
  6. Rest the pork.  Let the pork rest for 3-5 minutes, to lock those juices in.  Once the pork is ready to go…
  7. Serve warm!  And enjoy!

Once the pork has been baked, it can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.  Or you can freeze it for up to 3 months.  (<– I recommend shredding, dicing or slicing the pork before freezing for easier use.)

**Also, one important note — the pork chops will definitely be pretty smoky as they are cooking!  So be sure to turn on an exhaust fan above your stove (if you have one) or open a window.

The Best Baked Pork Chop Recipe

How To Season Baked Pork Chops:

Similar to chicken, pork does a brilliant job of adopting whatever flavors you choose to use in your seasonings. I’m a big fan of the simple garlic powder/salt/pepper mix in the recipe below, which goes with just about any cuisine.  But if you’d like to mix things up, feel free to sub in any of your favorite dry seasoning mixes, such as:

And of course, feel free to also toss the baked pork chops with your favorite finishing sauces as well.

Easy Baked Pork Chops Recipe

Side Dish Recipe Ideas:

Looking for some side dishes to serve with this baked pork chops recipe?  Here are a few of my faves:

How To Make Baked Pork Chops

Other Baked Protein Tutorials:

Be sure to check out our other baked protein tutorials here on the blog.  (More coming soon!)

Enjoy, everyone!

Print
Baked Pork Chops Recipe

Baked Pork Chops

  • Prep Time: 28 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x

Description

My favorite baked pork chops recipe — easy to make, nice and juicy, and easy to customize with your favorite seasonings.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 4 bone-in, thick-cut pork chops (ideally about 1 to 1.5-inches thick)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • optional: lemon wedges, for serving

Instructions

  1. To brine your pork chops, fill a large bowl with 1 quart of warm (not hot) water and 1/4 cup kosher salt.  Stir to combine until most of the salt is absorbed.  Add the pork chops and let them sit in the mixture to brine for 15 minutes.  Or you can also also cover the bowl and refrigerate for up to 6 hours.  Remove the pork chops from the brine, rinse with cold water, then pat them dry with some paper towels.
  2. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  3. Brush the pork chops on both sides with olive oil
  4. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the salt, pepper, and garlic powder until combined.  Sprinkle the mixture evenly on both sides of the pork.
  5. Meanwhile, heat a cast iron skillet (or oven-safe sauté pan) on the stove over high heat for 5 minutes.  Once the pan is super-hot, add the pork chops and use a spatula to press them evenly into the pan, so that the entire bottom surface of the pork chops makes contact with the pan.  Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the under-sides of the pork chops are golden brown. Carefully use tongs to flip the pork chops.  Then use an oven mitt to carefully transfer the skillet to the oven.  Continue baking for 3 minutes.  Then flip the pork chops once more, and continue baking for 3-5 minutes more, or until the pork reaches an internal temperature of 145°F (62°C).
  6. Once the pork is ready to go, immediately remove the pan from the oven, and transfer the pork to a clean plate.  Brush any of the pan juices onto the pork chops.  Then loosely tent the plate with aluminum foil and and let the pork rest for at least 3 minutes.
  7. Serve warm.  Or, refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.

Notes

I first learned how to make these baked pork chops years ago using The Kitchn’s recipe, which I have adapted slightly since.

Baked Pork Chops Recipe with Lemon, Roasted Broccoli and Potatoes

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106 comments on “Baked Pork Chops”

  1. 5 stars
    Absolutely delicious

  2. What temperature for the oven.. You don’t mention it

    • it does say preheat oven @ 375 so I would leave it at that.

    • Exactly my thoughts.. It wasn’t mentioned till the very end. I was reading all the junk to buy. I’m surprised a recommended stove wasn’t listed

  3. Best pork chops ever.

  4. I made this recipe last night and it was delicious. Very juicy and tasty. I brined 2 chops in 2 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of Kosher Salt for only 30 min. I switched the EVOO for Avocado oil and oh my! So so good.

  5. I’ve now done chicken, salmon and pork chops and they’ve all been wonderful. Thank you for sharing!

  6. I am 63 and have been labeled a great cook by my family and friends through the years. However, there were a few meats that I loved, like pork chops, that I never really got the knack to make to my satisfaction.
    I resorted to Shake N Bake for pork. Ugh..
    I followed your recipe and they came out delicious! I made them last night along with my grandson’s sweet girlfriend and we had so much fun. I did not have kosher salt, I used regular salt. My old cast iron skillets are long gone so we used a casserole dish. When we seared them and pressed them down into the pan on each side, they were beautiful, nice and brown. The only thing was, when they finished baking in the oven in the casserole dish, they didn’t stay nice and brown, just lighter brown. And I like my pork cooked well, but did not want to overcook so I extended the baking time, each side to about 10 minutes. They were thick.
    They were tender, juicy and delicious! So THANK YOU very much!
    I guess I will have to go buy a cast iron skillet!
    Rebecca

  7. I am 63 and have been labeled a great cook by my family and friends through the years. However, there were a few meats that I loved, like pork chops, that I never really got the knack to make to my satisfaction.
    I resorted to Shake N Bake for pork. Ugh..
    I followed your recipe and they came out delicious! I made them last night along with my grandson’s sweet girlfriend and we had so much fun. I did not have kosher salt, I used regular salt. My old cast iron skillets are long gone so we used a casserole dish. When we seared them and pressed them down into the pan on each side, they were beautiful, nice and brown. The only thing was, when they finished baking in the oven in the casserole dish, they didn’t stay nice and brown, they were a lighter brown. And I like my pork cooked well, but did not want to overcook so I extended the baking time, each side to about 10 minutes. ( They were thick.)
    They were tender, juicy and delicious! So THANK YOU very much!
    I guess I will have to go buy a cast iron skillet!
    Rebecca

  8. Amazing recipe , loved it.

  9. Excellent

  10. This recipe is super good! I have to favorite it !

  11. Love this recipe. I had almost given up on trying to cook pork chops. My husband and I loved this. Thank you s I much.

  12. Delicious! And easy… I did have to cook the chops a bit longer, as they were very thick. My husband said they were the best chops he’s tasted.!!!

  13. I do not eat pork (no reasons, just don’t care for the taste) and, therefore, never really learned how to cook it. My family, however, loves pork so I am always trying things in the hopes of finding something they LOVE. THIS is it!!! They all RAVED about the pork chops even though I messed up and didn’t really sear them well enough. Even my picky eater was impressed and she doesn’t eat anything. 🤗 She said it was the ‘best pork of her life’. I just know that when I actually do it correctly next time, it’ll knock their socks off! This recipe is definitely a keeper and will now be my go-to for pork chops. Thanks for making me look even better in the kitchen! 😎

  14. Very moist, great flavor, easy recipe!

  15. During self-quarentine (Covid-19) I had to use what I had vs going to the market for 1″ thick chops. Had boneless, 1/2″ thick chops so thats what I worked with… reduced time for both the sear and bake and the outcome was still very good. Juicy, fairly tender but went over ideal temp. Should have been even more conservative… When I pulled them from oven they’d hit 158 degrees and upon a few minutes rest (while I finished Brussel sprouts) the temp creeped up to 165. 😫 Great color, wonderfully moist, good taste following recipe just too thin!

  16. Absolutely amazing!!! I can NEVER get pork chops tender much less melt in your mouth delicious and that’s what this recipe will get you!!

  17. Excellent! So juicy and tender! I’ll be trying chicken and maybe steak the same way. And it was so easy!

  18. Another scrumptious recipe

  19. Thank you for posting your method for cooking pork chops in the oven. I have always struggled getting the pork tender. This recipe accomplished that and it was delicious. I used my house seasoning, fresh garlic, olive oil, and pepper on the pork chops.

  20. I tried out this recipe today and the pork chops were incredible. For my spices I just used Montreal Steak Seasoning. thanks for a fantastic suggestion.

  21. Thanks for your yummy recipe

  22. Started off with some very nice bone-in chops. This recipe was really delicious and I ended up with perfectly cooked pork chops. My husband insists they were better than any restaurant pork chop he’s had. Thanks so much.

  23. We have dried out our share of chops….these were perfect thank you!

  24. Excellent recipe,chops are moist ,tender and tasty!!!!!!Never have been able to bake a good pork chop and I’m considered an excellent cook,finally I am now able to do just that.I had to cook them 2 minutes more in the oven because the pork chops were thick,save the liquid-it’s so tasty!!!!!Thank you.

  25. This is my husband’s absolute favorite!! (and mine) SO delicious!!!

  26. Have never been happy with any pork chop recipe I’ve used until THIS ONE. Best ever and really quite simple. The brine step is the greatest forM making them tender and juicy. Who knew? Can’t wait to try the other recipes including the side dishes.

  27. Thank you so much for a recipe for the best pork chops I have ever made! Sooooo juicy and tender! YUM!!

  28. So easy and delicious. Perfect to make after a hard day of stressing over the Covid-19 pandemic. Thank you!!! What a delicious relief…

  29. Great!

  30. Could you kindly tell me the nutritional information for 1 serving? Still learning how to log my meals. Thanks!

  31. Mediocre. Followed recipe to the letter and chops were dry and tough, yuck. But the dog enjoyed the addition to her meals!

  32. Made them with chilli and roasted pepper seasoning. Amazing and so very tender and delicious. Thanks so much for this!

  33. Awesome recipe.. juicy scrumptious pork loin chips!!!

  34. I see lemons in the photo but the recipe does not state when to add the lemons, do you do that when you sear or when baking or after cooking?

  35. Excellent juicy pork! Just threw out mom’s recipe I’ve been using for decades. Didn’t want the smoke detectors going off again, so I used bbq grill like stove & then lowered temp & closed lid.
    Perfect!

  36. This will work as a foundational recipe (brine/sear/bake) with your favorite seasonings. We loved it. Bone-sucking good! We made ours with herb roasted potatoes. The recipe for those is
    https://freshaprilflours.com/roasted-herbed-red-potatoes/ The potatoes are fabulous and go perfectly with the pork chops. Happy chefing!

  37. Delicious, the only way to cook pork chops!

  38. Just wanted to say thanks. This is the best pork chop I ever made. :)

  39. Delicious and moist!!

  40. There will be no other way to cook chops going forward. Thank you for sharing this simple secret. I brined them four hours so I did not season with salt afterwards. It was never missed. I did use garlic powder, pepper & rosemary for seasoning. Perfectly delicious!

  41. This recipe was soooo easy and the result was fantastic! I will definitely use this again! Thank you! The pork chops were flavorful, juicy, and tender!

  42. Good Day,
    Thank you for the recipe. I am a vegetarian, living in a conovourous household. My son said he remembers tasting, swallowing and asking for more…’the flavor and meal was delicious. The meat was super juicy and flavorful” I complimented the pork chips w/ macaroni and cheese and green beans. It was a simple recipe, my 8y/o old daughter also enjoyed making the dinner w/ me, which the involvement allowed for added joy.

    Thanks

  43. Best pork chops recipe ever. Simple and delicious. Made it with the bone in chops as directed and surprised with the great flavor. Definitely my to go recipe from now on!

  44. I’ve always struggled with cooking pork chops. They’ve always been dry and chewy. Not with this recipe!!! They were spot on and cooked perfectly!!

  45. EXCELLENT CHOPS!!!!