Last Updated on May 17, 2023
There are many ways you can make pork chops, but have you ever considered brining the pork for more flavorful chops? This is a great recipe for AIP pork chops that the whole family will love.
AIP Pork Chops
When you are on the autoimmune protocol it’s easy to get bored with basic ways to cook meat. Have you ever tried brining your pork chops? You can whip up a quick dinner with a little planning that mixes it up. My family loves pork! My AIP pulled pork is another favorite (if you miss BBQ, check it out!).
I love to brine my pork chops because brining brings moisture into the meat and helps it to stay nice and juicy. It’s easy peasy to do, as you can see in the gluten free pork chop recipe below.
Choosing Your Chops
When shopping at the grocery store for a cut of pork, you might be wondering if you should buy boneless pork chops or instead opt for a bone-in pork chop. For this easy recipe we will be using pork chops with the bone in.
There are different types of pork and they don’t all match in quality. Some of the more high quality pork comes from Berkshire Pork and Iberico Pluma. If your store has a high quality pork chop you can afford, go for that.
Pork Chop Brine
Brining pork chops before you cook them imparts a ton of flavor and helps to keep them juicy and tender.
If your chops are thick and have the bone-in the you will want to brine them for at least one hour, but longer is better. I like to prepare the brine in the morning and start the marination process. This makes for a super flavorful and tender pork chop.
Rub the brine off the pork chops with your hands and then pat dry with paper towels before cooking. The brine used in this AIP pork chop recipe is super easy to make.
Pork Chop Brine Ingredients
- crushed garlic cloves
- bay leaves
- kosher salt or sea salt
- coconut sugar or honey
- pepper (omit for strict AIP)
How to Brine Pork Chops
1.) Start by pouring salt and coconut sugar (or honey) into a large bowl.
2.) Next, add water and stir until salt and sugar are dissolved.
3.) Then, divide the sliced onion, smashed garlic and bay leaves between two gallon-sized zip-top bags.
4.) Lastly, place pork chops into bags and then divide the brine between the two bags. Seal bags and place in the fridge for several hours. (I do this step in the morning.)
How to Cook AIP Pork Chops
After you pat dry your pork chops, it’s best to let them sit for a bit to come to room temperature. If your pork is too cold it might not produce the best crust on the exterior.
To cook your chops you will need a couple tablespoons of cooking fat, such as coconut oil or avocado oil. It’s not great to use olive oil because you need to get an even sear at a relatively high heat before transferring to the hot oven.
Coconut oil is my preference for cooking these AIP pork chops because it lends itself well to the ingredients.
Searing Pork Chops
Start by heating a medium cast iron skillet (or other large skillet) and then add oil to your hot pan.
Cook the pork chop on the first side and then flip so each side is a nice golden brown. Make sure your pan is hot enough or you won’t get that nice sear.
A medium heat should do, but don’t be afraid to turn up the temperature if you need to. You don’t want to boil the pork chops in their juices!
Oven Baked Pork Chops
After you get a nice crust on the outside, transfer your oven-safe pan to the pre-heated oven. Cook the pork until the internal temperature reaches 145F.
The cook time will vary based on how thick your chops are, so an oven-safe meat thermometer will help make sure you don’t overcook them. If you are looking for the best result, then be sure to let your pork chops rest 10-15 minutes.
AIP Pork Chop Recipe
Here’s a recipe for pork chops with my big fat twist. I love to eat these pork chops with applesauce as the natural sweetness from the pork chop brine really compliments the tartness of apples. Normally we serve these pork chops with sweet potatoes and roasted brussel sprouts, compliant with an AIP diet.
Feel free to garnish with some fresh herbs (a sprig of fresh rosemary, for instance) for some color.Print
Simple Brined Pork Chops (Paleo, GAPS, SCD, AIP)
- 4 pork chops (make sure you get the thick, center cut with the bone in)
- 1/2 onion, thinly sliced
- 4 garlic cloves, smashed
- 4 bay leaves
- 1/2 cup kosher salt
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar or honey
- 8 cups water
- pepper, to taste (omit for strict AIP)
- coconut oil, or fat of choice
- Prepare the Brine: Pour salt and coconut sugar (or honey) into a large bowl. Add water and stir until salt and sugar are dissolved. Divide the sliced onion, smashed garlic and bay leaves between two gallon-sized zip-top bags. Place pork chops into bags and then divide the brine between the two bags. Seal bags and place in the fridge for several hours. (I do this step in the morning.)
- When ready for dinner, preheat oven to 325F.
- Remove chops from the bags and rinse well under cold water. Use your hands to rub the brine off of the meat, (trust me on this) then pat dry. Sprinkle with pepper.
- Heat a cast iron skillet (or any oven-proof skillet) to medium. When hot, add coconut oil. Sear chops on both sides just to brown.
- Move skillet to oven and cook until internal temperature reaches 145F.
- Remove the chops and allow to rest. (they will continue to cook)