Sometimes the best food is the simplest. This is very true about pork chops. In our family we like to try different ways of preparing pork chops, like the Southern Fried Pork Chops, Broiled Pork Chops or Smothered Pork Chops, but simple salt and pepper pan-fried boneless pork chops are our favorite by far. This recipe is also one of the healthiest pork chop recipes. It's low carb, or practically zero carb and fat is kept at a minimum.
They are super quick to prepare. Ten minutes or less, really. All you need to do is sprinkle the chops with some salt, pepper and maybe some other seasonings if you feel like it, then quickly fry them over fairly high heat. This is the best way to cook pork chops if you ask me.
Quick cooking works the best for all cuts of pork loin. Unless you are roasting the whole loin, cooking should be done in a matter of minutes. Pork chops are just like steaks - the quicker you brown them and get them off the heat, the better they will be.
Unlike fattier cuts of pork, pork loin doesn't have fat pockets to keep it moist during cooking. For cuts like this higher heat cooking like roasting, grilling, frying, pan-frying and sauteing works the best. However, braising, stewing or slow cooking doesn't work well at all.
If you give pork chops a good sear they will acquire a lot of color and flavor as a result of Maillard reaction. That's why I like to add minimal seasonings to these pan-fried pork chops. Salt and pepper is all that's required. But I like adding some granulated garlic and powdered onion as well as they add a lot of nice flavor. Sometimes I like to change things up and use other spices but always seem to come back to the basic mix of salt, pepper, garlic and onion. If you are curious, among my other favorites to use with pan-fried pork chops are coriander, marjoram, cumin, ginger, rosemary and caraway.
- 4 boneless pork chops cut 3/4" to 1" thick
- Kosher salt (to taste)
- Freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
- A pinch of powdered/granulated garlic per side
- A pinch of powdered/granulated onion per side
- 2 Tbsp grapeseed oil (or other high smoke point oil)
- Season the meat evenly with salt, pepper, garlic, and onion.
- To a large cast iron pan, add just enough oil to fully cover the bottom of the pan. Heat over medium-high heat until it's hot enough to sear meat, about 375F.
- Sear the pork chops on one side for about 3-4 minutes, until the side is deep golden brown. Flip and continue frying for another 3-4 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 145F.
- Let the chops rest for 3 minutes then serve with you favorite side dish.