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Apple Cider Glazed Pork Chops

Apple Cider Glazed Pork Chops 4.000

Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post; food styling by Bonnie S. Benwick/The Washington Post

Sep 19, 2018

Thin pork chops are easy to overcook, but "poaching" them in this cider-based glaze keeps them moist and adds lots of flavor. Searing them first on one side will yield an appealing, golden brown crust.

The original recipe from America's Test Kitchen called for thick boneless chops, but we thought this method was especially well suited to thin bone-in chops. (Either rib or loin chops will work, although we found it easier to fit 4 rib chops in the skillet at once.) We tweaked the sauce a bit to mirror one from J. Kenji López-Alt, so you can use it in this recipe or the related recipe that calls for thick boneless chops and a cooking method that takes the pork from the oven to the skillet.

If your chops are on the thinner side, check their internal temperature after the initial sear. If they are already at the 140-degree mark, remove them from the skillet and allow them to rest for 5 minutes, tented with aluminum foil. Then add the platter juices and glaze ingredients to the skillet and proceed with the glaze reduction. If your chops are closer to 1 inch thick, you may need to increase the time the chops cook in the glaze ingredients.

You'll need an instant-read thermometer for monitoring the meat.

To read the accompanying story, see: How to cook the best pork chops, through thick and thin.


When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 4 servings

  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened apple cider
  • 1/2 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
  • Pinch ground cinnamon
  • Pinch ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
  • 1 medium shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 1 cup)
  • Four 5- to 7-ounce bone-in pork chops, 1/2- to 3/4-inch thick
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

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Combine the cider vinegar, apple cider, brown sugar, cinnamon, cloves, thyme, shallot and apple in medium bowl; mix thoroughly.

Use a sharp knife to score through the fat and silver skin of the pork, making two cuts about 2 inches apart in each chop (do not cut into meat of chops). Pat the chops dry with paper towels; season lightly with salt and pepper on both sides.

Heat the oil in a heavy, 12-inch skillet (stainless-steel or cast-iron) over medium-high heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the pork to the skillet and cook for 4 to 6 minutes until well browned (check internal temperature of thin chops; see headnote). Turn the chops over and cook for 1 minute longer. Transfer to a plate and pour off any oil/rendered fat in the skillet.

Reduce the heat to medium. Return the chops to the skillet, browned sides up, and add the cider vinegar mixture; cook for 4 to 7 minutes, until the center of the chops registers 145 degrees on an instant-read thermometer. Remove the skillet from the heat. Transfer the chops to a clean platter, tent with foil and let them rest for 5 minutes.

Once the chops have rested, add any accumulated juices to the skillet along with the butter, over medium-high heat. Cook for 2 to 6 minutes, stirring constantly with a spatula, to form a thickened glaze that is the color of dark caramel. (The spatula should leave a wide trail when dragged through the glaze.)

Return all the chops to the skillet, and turn to coat both sides with the glaze. Transfer the chops back to the platter, browned sides up, and pour the remaining glaze over the chops. Serve hot.

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Recipe Source

Adapted from recipes by America's Test Kitchen and cookbook author J. Kenji López-Alt.

Tested by Becky Krystal.

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Avg. Rating (9)

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Nutritional Facts

Calories per serving: 420

% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 18g 28%

Saturated Fat: 7g 35%

Cholesterol: 100mg 33%

Sodium: 150mg 6%

Total Carbohydrates: 33g 11%

Dietary Fiber: 0g 0%

Sugar: 31g

Protein: 33g

*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

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