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While cooking pork chops, people tent to brine them first. But some people still wonder should pork chops be brined? Will that make them taste better after cooking? Let’s find out the answer with BestLifeTips in this article.
Should pork chops be brined?
Brine helps the meat to draw in moisture and salt adding tons of flavor, especially to lean meats like pork and poultry. So obviously you should brine the pork chops to have dishes as desired.
Should pork chops be brined too long?
It is important to not brine too long than not long enough. While some cuts of pork can handle days in a brine, even a relatively small amount of time can be helpful. Pork takes a long time to get the full effect, but with smaller cuts, even 3 or 4 hours is enough.
- Pork Chops (about 1 to 1 1/2 inches thick): 12 to 24 hours.
- Whole Pork Tenderloin: 12 hours.
- Whole Pork Loin: 2 days.
Pork tenderloin takes less time to brine by weight than do pork chops because the long-running grain pulls the brine into the meat.
Do you rinse pork chops after brining?
Rinse pork twice after removing it from the brine solution and discard the brine. If you are not ready to cook at the end of the brining time, remove and rinse the meat. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Salt brine for pork chops
- 4 cups of water
- 1/4 cup kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 1 dried bay leaf
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 4 pork chops
Salt brine making
Add water, kosher salt, sugar, peppercorns, bay leaf, and rosemary in a pot.
Bring it to a simmer over high heat. You do not need the water to boil rapidly but you need to make sure the salt and sugar have dissolved in the water.
Remove the pot from the heat and cool completely. Once the brine is cool, add the pork chops to a large zip-top bag and pour in the brine.
Let the pork brine in the refrigerator for 2-4 hours.
Rinse and pat dry before cooking.
How to cook pork chops
How to cook pork chops in the oven
- 4 boneless pork chops 1 inch thick
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
Step 1: Preheat an oven to 400°F. Lightly grease a baking sheet. Rub each pork chop with olive oil.
Step 2: Mix salt, pepper, paprika, and onion powder together in a bowl. Season all sides of the pork chop with this mix. Place seasoned pork chops onto the prepared baking sheet.
Step 3: Bake in the preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until pork chops reach an internal temperature of 145°F (which will depend on how thick the pork chops are).
How to cook pork chops in air fryer
- 2 center-cut, bone-in pork chops, 1 1/2–2 inches thick
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon ground mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1–2 tablespoons olive oil
Step 1: Preheat the air fryer to 400°F.
Step 2: Rinse pork chops with cool water and pat dry completely with a paper towel.
Step 3: Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl.
Step 4: Coat the pork chops with olive oil and rub in the mix. Rub it in well and liberally. Use most of the rub mix for the 2 pork chops.
Step 5: Cook pork chops in air fryer at 400°F for 12 minutes, flipping pork chops over after 6 minutes.
How to cook pork chops on the grill
- 6 cups cold water
- 1/3 cup Diamond Crystal kosher salt, or 1 3/4 ounces other kind of salt
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar (optional)
- 4 boneless or bone-in pork chops (at least 1-inch thick)
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper or salt-free spice or a dry rub
- Optional brine flavorings: 4 strips citrus peels, 4 smashed garlic cloves, 1 teaspoon dried or fresh herbs or whole spices, or 2 bay leaves
Step 1: Make the brine. Place 6 cups cold water, 1/3 cup kosher salt, and 3 tablespoons granulated sugar and flavorings if using in a large bowl. Whisk until the salt and sugar are dissolved.
Step 2: Brine for 30 minutes to 2 hours. Add 4 pork chops and make sure they are completely submerged. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours.
Step 3: Heat the grill about 20 minutes before you’re ready to cook. For a charcoal grill, arrange the lit coals over one half of the grill and leave the other side empty. For a gas grill, heat all burners to high (at least 450°F).
Step 4: Dry and season the chops. Remove the chops from the brine and discard the brine. Pat the chops dry with paper towels. Season all over with 1 teaspoon black pepper or spice rub.
Step 5: Sear the chops over high heat. Scrape the grill grates clean if needed. Place the chops on the hotter side of the grill, cover, and cook until grill marks appear on the bottom, about 3 minutes per side.
Step 6: Finish cooking over medium heat. Move the pork chops to the cooler part of the grill. Cover and cook, flipping every few minutes, until the thickest piece reaches 145°F on an instant-read thermometer, 4 to 7 minutes more depending on the thickness of the chops.
Step 7: Rest the pork chops for 5 minutes. Transfer the pork chops to a serving platter, cover loosely with aluminum foil, and let rest at least 5 minutes before serving.
How to cook pork chops on the stove
- 4 thick pork chops
- Italian seasoning
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tbsp olive oil for searing
Step 1: Pat chops dry with the paper towel and sprinkle them with Italian seasoning, salt and pepper.
Step 2: Heat your skillet to medium high and add the olive oil. When it’s shimmering hot, add your chops.
Step 3: Sear on one side, without moving them at all, until they turn into golden brown on the first side, about 3-5 minutes. Flip and sear the other side until browned.
Step 4: Check if the pork chop is done by using a meat thermometer. When they reach an internal temperature of 135°F, they are done.
Step 5: Remove them from the skillet and let them rest on a plate for 10 minutes. During this time, they will be continue cooked with the residual heat and will eventually reach 145°F.
Do remember that cooking time can vary based on the thickness of the pork chops.
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Hope that after read this article, you’ll know should pork chops be brined and find the way to cook them perfectly. Come back to BestLifeTips to get more tasty recipes.