HomeALL RECIPESPorkCast Iron Skillet Pork Chops (with Veggies and Apples)

Cast Iron Skillet Pork Chops (with Veggies and Apples)

Cast iron skillet pork chops is an easy and quick weeknight meal made in one pan with apples, veggies, thyme and a light sauce. Simple, yummy comfort food.

Serve it over mashed potatoes, rice or noodles. Or just on its own.

pork chops and veggies in skillet

If you like flavorful pork chops and you like the idea of a dinner made in one skillet in 20-30 minutes, you’ll like this recipe. Tender pork chops snuggled in healthy veggies and a flavorful pan sauce.

The pan sauce is simple and light, consisting of chicken broth, apple cider, a pinch of sugar (or maple syrup) and some thyme. I thicken it slightly with some cornstarch.

Tips

  1. Juicy, tastiest pork chops – use bone in rib chops at room temperature for even cooking.
  2. For extra flavor: The best way to enhance the flavors of this recipe are:
    • Brine the chops in a salt-water solution if you have time. I can’t say enough how brining amps up the flavor of bland pork chops and makes then juicier too.
    • Season the chops and sauce – fresh herbs are great boost
    • Use a good broth for the sauce. I use an undiluted chicken broth like Campbell’s full strength broth in a can. Alternatively, use a chicken broth base (Better than Bouillon is excellent) with water, adding a little extra base than the instructions call for. 
  3. Don’t over cook the chops (#1 tip). Timing will depend on the thickness of the chops. For thicker chops, finish the cooking at a lower temperature. When pan frying, sear at a higher temperature first, then flip the chops a few times until done. Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. Don’t cram the chops into one skillet (they should have a little space around them) or they will steam and not get a good sear. If you have a smaller pan, do two batches.

Best side dishes for pork chops

Since you are making a main dish with vegetables in one pan, you don’t need a lot of sides.

A side of mashed potatoes or root vegetable mash is a great way to soak up the sauce. Rice, cauliflower rice (for a lighter option) or noodles would be perfect too.

To bulk up the meal, you could add a side of green beans with panko crumbs, roasted zucchini or a citrus salad.

How to make this skillet pork chop recipe

pork chops, apples, asparagus, broth, apple cider vinegar, oil, onion, pepper, salt, pepper
Ingredients: pork chops, apples, asparagus, broth, apple cider vinegar, oil, onion, red pepper, salt, pepper, cornstarch, spinach
cut up asparagus, apples, peppers, onions on cutting board
Roughly chop or slice vegetables and apples. No need to peep apples.
4 pan seared pork chops on paper towel
Season pork chops and pan fry them in oil in the cast-iron skillet until golden brown on both sides. Don’t over cook them or they will be dry. Timing will depend on thickness of the chops.
veggies and sauce in cast iron skillet
Set pork chops aside and loosely cover to keep warm while you saute the apples and vegetables. Add sauce and cook until slightly thickened, 2 minutes.
pork chops and veggies in skillet
Add chops back to cast iron pan, spoon sauce and veggies over them and heat through.
one pork chops with veggies and sauce over rice on white plate
Serve with a side of mashed potatoes, rice or noodles if you like.
pork chops and veggies in skillet p

Tailor To Your Taste

Here are several substitutes you can use.

  • Pork chops:
    • I prefer bone-in chops (more fat and flavor). My favorite are rib chops. Center cut pork chops and loin chops (leaner) are good too. If you prefer boneless pork chops, use those. Here’s a pork chops cut guide to help you choose.
    • Thick or thin? Thinner chops will take less time to cook, but can easily dry out if you cook them too long. Use what you prefer.
    • If you don’t eat pork, you can make this recipe with boneless, skinless chicken breasts (pound to an even 1 inch/2.5 cm thickness)
  • Vegetables: Try mushrooms or cauliflower florets or fresh spinach instead of peppers and asparagus.
  • Seasoning: Use rosemary, thyme, sage or Italian seasonings. Or your favorite pork rub.

Shortcuts

  • You can skip the sauce, but it’s delicious with rice or potatoes. (Ok, it’s true, I like sauce with everything)
  • Just use onions and apples and skip the peppers and asparagus.
  • Omit the brine step for the chops if you don’t have time.

Make ahead and store

  • Store leftovers in an airtight container for 2-3 days.
  • Reheat in a microwave on medium-low power for 3-4 minutes or until warmed through.
  • Freeze for up to 2-3 months.
pork chops and veggies in skillet
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5 from 8 votes

Cast Iron Skillet Pork Chops (with veggies and apples)

Cast iron skillet pork chops is an easy and quick weeknight meal made in one pan with apples, veggies, thyme and a light sauce. Simple, yummy comfort food.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time12 mins
Total Time22 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 3
Author: Cheryl

Equipment

  • cast iron skillet (large)

Ingredients

  • 4 bone-in pork chops, room temperature, Note 1 (about 2 pounds/0.9 kg)
  • seasoning: kosher salt, black pepper, garlic powder (or 2 tablespoons pork rub)
  • 4 teaspoons vegetable oil or olive oil, divided (plus a bit more if needed)

Brine ingredients (optional)

  • 4 cups water, 4 tablespoons salt, 1 tablespoon sugar. Extras if you like: 1 garlic clove, 1 tablespoon fresh herbs like rosemary or thyme (or 1 tsp. dried)

Vegetables/Fruit, Note 2

  • 1 apple, sliced e.g. Cortland 路 Empire 路 Fuji 路 Gala 路 Golden Delicious 路 Granny Smith聽
  • 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed of woody ends, cut into 2-3 inch/5-8 cm pieces (about 1 lb/450 grams)
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, cut into pieces
  • 1 small onion, roughly chopped

Light Sauce

  • 1 1/2 cups (355 ml) chicken broth, Note 3
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup (or sugar)
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme or rosemary

Instructions

  • Note on total cooking time: The time for this recipe will increase if: a) you choose to brine the pork chops (recommended for great flavor), b) you are using thicker pork chops and c) you need to cook the pork chops in two batches.
  • BRINE PORK CHOPS (OPTIONAL): Place brine ingredients in a large zipper locked bag. Massage for a few seconds to dissolve salt and sugar. Add pork chops. Seal and brine for 1-2 hours in the fridge (even 30 minutes if chops are thin). Let them sit on the counter for the last 30 minutes to come to room temperature. Remove pork chops, rinse and pat dry with paper towels.
  • PREPARE SAUCE MIXTURE: Mix together all sauce ingredients in a measuring cup or small bowl. Set aside.
  • SAUTE PORK CHOPS: Season chops with salt, pepper and garlic pepper (use less salt if chops were brined). Heat 1/2 tablespoon oil in large skillet to medium-high heat. Saut茅 pork chops in hot pan for 2-3 minutes per side (or a bit more if chops are thicker) until internal temperature reaches 140F/60C using a meat thermometer. (If too smoky, reduce to medium heat). Pan fry pork chops in two batches if pan is not large enough. Remove pan-fried pork chops to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.
  • SAUTE VEGETABLES/APPLES AND MAKE SAUCE: Add a teaspoon or two more oil if needed. Add onions, peppers, apples and asparagus to pan and stir. Saut茅 for 3-4 minutes until onions are translucent and vegetables/apples are tender (they don't have to be soft). Add sauce mixture and stir for a minute, scraping up the bits from the bottom of the pan. Sauce will thicken. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Add pork chops to warm through. If pork chops are thicker and not quite done (some pink is fine), cover and finish cooking for a 2-3 minutes. Spoon sauce and vegetables on top. Serve immediately with rice, noodles or potatoes if desired.

Notes

  1. Pork chop options:
    • Type: I prefer bone in chops, particularly rib chops (fattier and more flavorful). Center cut pork chops and pork loin chops (leaner) are good too. Or use boneless pork chops.聽Here’s a pork chops cut guide to help you choose.
    • Thickness: Thinner chops will take less time to cook, but can easily dry out if you cook them too long. For this recipe, I like to use chops 1/2-3/4 inch/1.8-1.9 cm), but thicker pork chops up to 1.5 inches/3.8 cm are fine if you cook them longer.聽
    • Substitute: If you don’t eat pork, you can make this recipe with boneless, skinless chicken breasts (pound to an even 1 inch/2.5 cm thickness)
  2. Vegetable options: Use what you have on hand. Mushrooms and cauliflower are good alternatives. Or fresh spinach added at the end to wilt, once chops and sauce is ready.聽
  3. Broth: I use an undiluted chicken broth for extra flavor like Campbell’s full strength broth in a can. Alternatively, use a chicken broth base (Better than Bouillon is excellent) with water, adding a little extra base than the instructions call for.聽
  4. Shortcuts
    • skip the sauce
    • use onions and apples only
    • use thinner pork chops that will cook more quickly
    • skip the optional brining step (if you really don’t have time).
  5. Make ahead and store:
    • Store leftovers in an airtight container for 2-3 days.
    • Reheat in a microwave on medium-low power for 3-4 minutes or until warmed through.
    • Freeze for up to 2-3 months.
Nutrition Values are estimates for bone-in pork chops and do not include optional brining which would increase sodium/salt value.聽

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Cast Iron Skillet Pork Chops (with veggies and apples)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 512 Calories from Fat 108
% Daily Value*
Fat 12g18%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol 211mg70%
Sodium 1395mg61%
Potassium 1651mg47%
Carbohydrates 29g10%
Fiber 6g25%
Sugar 18g20%
Protein 72g144%
Vitamin A 2434IU49%
Vitamin C 65mg79%
Calcium 125mg13%
Iron 6mg33%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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2 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I will never cook pork chops any other way! This recipe is amazing. The brine made all the difference -tender and full of flavor. Next time will saut茅 the peppers and onions a bit before adding the apples and asparagus. 5 stars for sure!

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