How to Cook Thick Pork Chops (Perfect and Juicy). Learn how easy it is to cook 1 ½ to 2-inch thick pork chops that are perfectly juicy, tender, and moist. Seasoned with a special dry rub to add extra flavor, pan-seared, and finished in the oven- this will be your new go-to pork chop recipe!
How To Cook Juicy and Tender Pork Chops
My dad makes the BEST pork chops! This recipe is inspired by his juicy pork chops that make everyone run to the table for Sunday dinner. They are seasoned with a fantastic dry rub and cooked perfectly. They are first seared on the stove and then baked in the oven for even cooking and optimal juiciness.
If you are worried about overcooked pork chops, follow this guide to achieve the perfect juicy pork chops! It is a recipe any home cook can follow and achieve success.
- How To Cook Juicy and Tender Pork Chops
- Simple Ingredients
- Types of Pork Chops
- Best Pan Seared and Oven Baked Thick Pork Chops
- How to Cook 2-inch Pork Chops Perfectly
- How to Cook Thick Pork Chops Perfectly Step-by-Step Photos
- Best Equipment for Cooking Thick Pork Chops
- Top tips
- How to Store Leftover Pork Chops
- How to Reheat Pork Chops
- What to Serve with Perfectly Juicy Thick Pork Chops
- How to Cook Thick Pork Chops (Perfect and Juicy)
- Pork chops
- Olive oil
- Salt and Black Pepper
Dry Rub for Pork Chops
- Garlic powder
- Brown sugar
- Chili powder
- Fresh thyme, finely chopped
- Fresh rosemary, finely chopped
See the recipe card for quantities.
Types of Pork Chops
You will find different kinds of pork chops at your local grocery store, or local butcher chop. You can buy bone-in pork chops or boneless chops. The cooking time for bone-in chops is slightly longer, but as
- Loin Chops or Porterhouse Chops: Center-cut loin chops with a T-shaped bone; the loin is on one side of the bone, the tenderloin on the other. Great for grilling, baking, or broiling.
- New York or Center-Cut Pork Chops: Boneless, top loin chops. Try frying, stuffing, or baking your New York chops.
- Sirloin Chop: A less expensive cut from the back end of the loin. By comparison, a tougher cut; a great choice for slow braising. I do not recommend this recipe.
- Rib Chops: Tender, center-cut thick chops with a curved bone on one side. Great for quick-cooking methods like pan frying, grilling, and broiling.
Best Pan Seared and Oven Baked Thick Pork Chops
Pan-searing and oven-baking thick pork chops is a popular cooking method that allows you to create a beautifully seared crust on the outside of the meat while keeping it moist and juicy on the inside. Here are a few reasons why this cooking method works:
- Adds Flavor: Pan-searing a pork chop creates a delicious crust outside of the meat that adds flavor and texture to the dish. Oven-baking the pork chop after searing it helps to cook it evenly and creates a tender and juicy interior.
- Retains Moisture: Pan-searing a pork chop before oven-baking it helps to seal in the juices and keep the meat moist and tender.
- Shortens Cooking Time: Oven-baking thick pork chops from start to finish can take a long time and result in a dry and overcooked chop. Pan-searing the pork chop helps shorten the cooking time and ensures the meat is cooked correctly.
- Versatile: Pan-searing and oven-baking pork chops can be easily customized by adding a variety of seasonings and spices to the dry rub or marinade to suit your tastes.
Pan-searing and oven-baking thick pork chops is an excellent cooking method for creating a delicious and juicy pork chop with a crispy crust outside. It's a versatile cooking technique that can adapt to your tastes and preference!
How to Cook 2-inch Pork Chops Perfectly
This recipe is for thicker pork chops, 2 inches thick. Thinner pork chops will work you will need to adjust the cooking time. The cooking time for thick pork chops can vary depending on a few factors, such as the thickness of the chop, the cooking method, and the desired level of doneness. The secret in this recipe is to pan-sear and then oven-bake!
1 ½ inch pork chops may take 2-4 minutes less. That is why it’s essential to use an instant-read thermometer.
You will also love my Pan Seared Steak Recipe.
How to Cook Thick Pork Chops Perfectly Step-by-Step Photos
You will achieve the best pork chops with these simple steps. They really are the best pork chops!
Thoroughly pat the meat dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper.
Mix the dry rub ingredients in a small bowl.
Mix the dry rub to combine.
Apply the dry rub to both sides of the pork chops, making sure to rub it into the meat. Let the pork chops sit for 30 minutes to an hour before cooking to allow the flavors to meld. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Heat the cast iron skillet or large oven-safe pan over medium-high heat until hot, then add the olive oil, swirling to coat the pan. Sear chops on each side for 2-3 minutes until they are nice and golden brown.
Add one pat of butter on top of each pork chop. Transfer the skillet with pork chops to the preheated oven and bake the chops until an internal temperature of at least 145° F—about 20-25 minutes. Remember that the meat will rise in temperature an additional 5 degrees after resting.
Total cooking time will be variable due to the pork's exact thickness, doneness preference, and starting temperature. See recipe notes and use a meat thermometer.
Remove pork chops to a plate and loosely cover with aluminum foil. Let rest for 10 minutes.
Serve with the butter pan drippings on top of the pork chops. Serve with potatoes, rice, and vegetables or a green salad. Enjoy!
If you want to adapt this recipe for an outdoor grill, here are the guidelines:
Gas Grill method for thick pork chops:
- 1-inch thick chop: Cook for 3-4 minutes per side for a total of 6-8 minutes over high heat. Internal temperature should reach 145°F (63°C) for medium-rare, 160°F (71°C) for medium, and 170°F (77°C) for well-done.
- 1.5-inch thick chop: Cook for 4-5 minutes per side for a total of 8-10 minutes over high heat. Internal temperature should reach 145°F (63°C) for medium-rare, 160°F (71°C) for medium, and 170°F (77°C) for well-done.
- 2-inch thick chop: Cook for 5-6 minutes per side for a total of 10-12 minutes over high heat. Internal temperature should reach 145°F (63°C) for medium-rare, 160°F (71°C) for medium, and 170°F (77°C) for well-done.
Best Equipment for Cooking Thick Pork Chops
Here is the equipment you need to cook pork chops on the stove.
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- Cook your meat at room temperature- not right out of the fridge. Take the meat out about 30 minutes before cooking.
- Pat dry – use paper towels to pat the steaks dry to get a perfect sear and reduce oil splatter.
- Don't overcrowd the pan. This will keep the temperature consistent, and the pork chop will cook evenly.
- Make sure the pan is sizzling HOT when you first add the thick pork chop to the pan. This will prevent sticking and create a perfect sear and nice crust.
- Let your pork chop REST! After going through all the trouble to cook the perfect pork chop, this is an essential step. Allow it to rest for 10 minutes after cooking (under loosely tented foil to keep it warm). This way, the juices can redistribute throughout the pork, making the pork chop more tender and juicy.
Yes! Pan-searing and oven-baking is a popular cooking method for thick pork chops that helps to create a crispy crust on the outside while keeping the meat juicy and tender on the inside. Sear the pork chops in a hot skillet and then transfer them to a preheated oven to finish cooking. This is precisely what we do in this recipe, and it is a tried and true method.
For a 1.5-inch to 2-inch thick pork chop, the internal temperature and corresponding doneness preferences are:
- 145°F (63°C) for medium-rare
- 155-165°F (71°C) for medium, medium-well
- Anything cooked longer risks a dry pork chop
It's important to note that pork should be cooked to at least 145°F (63°C) to ensure it's safe to eat. Use a Good Meat Thermometer to check the internal temperature of the pork chop to ensure it reaches the desired doneness level.
The best way to know when your thick pork chops are done is to use a meat thermometer. Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the pork chop and check the temperature. The safe internal temperature for pork is 145°F for medium-rare and 160°F for medium.
How to Store Leftover Pork Chops
Store your leftover pork chops in 3 easy steps:
- Allow the pork chops to cool to room temperature before storing them. This will help prevent condensation from forming inside the storage container, which can make the meat soggy.
- Store the pork chops in an airtight container or wrap them tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil. This will help to prevent air from getting in and keep the meat fresh.
- Store the pork chops in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. If you need to store them for longer, you can freeze them for up to 2-3 months.
How to Reheat Pork Chops
To reheat the leftover pork chops, you can either reheat them in the microwave, in a skillet on the stove, or in the oven. Be sure to heat them to an internal temperature of at least 165°F to ensure they are safe to eat. Enjoy!
What to Serve with Perfectly Juicy Thick Pork Chops
The perfect pork chops deserve outstanding side dishes. Here are a few ideas: Roasted green beans, Brussels sprouts, Creamy Cauliflower Bake, Crispy Potatoes, Italian Mashed Potatoes, or Easy Green Beans and Pinenuts. Make sure to get some crusty bread for the sauce!
More dishes to serve with these tender, thick pork chops:
More ideas in this What to Serve with Prime Rib Roast.
Make sure to leave a ⭐️star rating on the recipe card and comment below if you make the recipe. I love to connect with you through my recipes.Print
- 3 pork chops 1.5 - 2" thick each
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons of butter, divided into 3 pieces
- Salt and Pepper
Dry Rub for Pork Chops
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- ¾ teaspoon paprika
- ¾ teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
- ½ teaspoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- Thoroughly pat the meat dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper.
- Mix the dry rub ingredients in a small bowl and then apply the dry rub to both sides of the pork chops, making sure to rub it into the meat. Let the pork chops sit for 30 minutes to an hour before cooking to allow the flavors to meld. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Heat the cast iron skillet or large oven-safe pan over medium-high heat until hot, then add the olive oil, swirling to coat the pan. Sear chops on each side for 2-3 minutes until they are nice and golden brown.
- Add one pat of butter on top of each pork chop. Transfer the skillet with pork chops to the preheated oven and bake the chops until an internal temperature of at least 145° F—about 15-20 minutes. Remember that the meat will rise in temperature an additional 5 degrees after resting. Total cooking time will be variable due to the pork's exact thickness, doneness preference, and starting temperature. See recipe notes and use a meat thermometer.
- Remove pork chops to a plate and loosely cover with aluminum foil. Let rest for 10 minutes.
- Serve with the butter pan drippings on top of the pork chops. Serve with potatoes, rice, and vegetables or a green salad. Enjoy!
Pork Doneness Guide
Take the meat out of the oven 5 degree below your desired doneness as it continues to cook during the 10 minutes of resting.
|Cooked Pork Level||Internal Temperature||Comments|
|Rare||less than 145°||Not recommended.
Not safe per the USDA
|Medium-Rare||145°-150°||A touch of pink|
|Medium||150°-155°||Pink disappears, a little dryer|
|Medium-Well||155°-160°||Starting to dry significantly|
|Well Done||160°+||Not recommended.
Getting very dry
For pork chops, pork loin, and pork tenderloin.
- Prep Time: 10 min
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Category: Savory
- Method: American
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: pork chops, pan-seared pork chops, how to cook pork chops, perfect pork chops