Cast Iron Skillet Pork Chops are a quick and delicious way to serve a satisfying gourmet meal. The meat is coated with a garlic herb mixture before cooking and a hot pan creates a gorgeous sear.
This easy skillet pork chop recipe is your new go-to fancy weeknight supper. Thick-cut pieces of bone-in pork are first marinated with olive oil, fresh herbs, and garlic to infuse more flavor into each bite. It cooks in just 10 minutes for a fast and flavorful main dish.
Cast Iron Skillet Pork Chops
Center cut bone-in pork chops are lean and tender, with a very mild flavor. This makes them perfect for adding a simple herb marinade right before cooking.
The fragrant natural oils in the thyme and pungent garlic flavor infuse into the olive oil so the pork cooks with a bouquet of aromas that transfers to the meat. The actual cooking time is less than 15 minutes, so you can quickly start to feast!
What is the best pork to use?
Shop for frenched, bone-in center-cut pork chops that are 1 to 1 ½-inches thick. The cooking time will vary depending on the size of the chop. The bone provides extra flavor to the meat and prevents the protein from cooking too fast and drying out. The marinade and the thick-cut give the juiciest pork chops you’ll ever taste!
How do you make Cast Iron Skillet Pork Chops?
- Combine garlic, olive oil, thyme, parsley, salt and pepper in a bowl.
- Coat the pork chops with the herb marinade, 30 to 60 minutes.
- Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat, then add oil.
- Add pork chops and sear 1 minute per side, to create a golden crust.
- Reduce heat to medium, cook the pork, flipping every minute until it reaches 135ºF.
- Turn off heat, add the thyme and butter.
- Baste the pork with melted butter.
- Rest the pork for 5 minutes before slicing.
The herb marinade
A simple and fast marinade can be made with just a handful of ingredients. I like to combine roughly chopped garlic, thyme, parsley, salt, and pepper. That’s it. I find that not skipping this step makes lean proteins so much more flavorful, like for my chicken marinade.
The pork gets a generous coating of the paste before cooking. Marinating the pork also benefits the taste, by adding more salty notes down into the meat, plus keeps it juicy.
Cooking the pork chops
After a brief 30 to 60-minute marination, the pork is ready to pan-fry. A cast-iron pan is my equipment of choice. It retains heat really well, which transfers straight to the surface of the pork to develop a beautiful golden sear.
The pork in flipped several times for even cooking, and to keep it moist and tender. A butter bastes right at the end adds a lovely richness to the dish.
Make sure to rest the pork before slicing to retain those flavorful juices!
Looking for some side tasty dishes to serve with the pork? Try these!
Cast Iron Skillet Pork Chops
- 2 bone-in pork chops about 1 ¼ pound, 1 to ½ -inches thick (or 4 medium-sized chops)
- 1 tablespoon roughly chopped garlic
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons chopped thyme
- 2 teaspoons chopped parsley
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 5 thyme sprigs
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- In a small bowl combine garlic, 2 tablespoon olive oil, thyme, parsley, salt, and pepper.
- Rub the herb paste evenly over both sides of the pork chops. Marinate at room temperature for 30 to 60 minutes. Refrigerate if marinating the pork for over an hour.
- Scrape off some of the chopped garlic off of the pork so it does not burn in the pan.
- Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add 2 tablespoon olive oil to the pan, once hot add the pork chops.
- Lightly press the pork chops down into the pan to get a nice sear, cook 1 minute.
- Flip and sear the other side, 1 minute.
- Cook the sides of the pork chops to render the fat, 1 minute.
- Turn heat down to medium, cook the pork chops until the internal temperature reaches 135ºF, 4 to 6 minutes depending on the thickness of the chops, flip every minute for even cooking.
- Turn off the heat and add the thyme springs and butter to the pan.
- Once the butter is melted tilt the pan and pour the butter over the top of the pork chops several times to baste.
- Transfer pork to a cutting board and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving for carving.
All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.