Grill it Like a Steak!
It’s grilling season, and nothing beats a juicy pork chop sizzling on the grill. Prized as one of America’s most loved and versatile cuts, grilled pork chops are quick and easy to prepare. Just grill it like a steak! From a weeknight dinner solution to a weekend cookout with friends, and with a variety of seasonings and side dish options, your grill will be busy all summer long. The best part of preparing grilled pork chops? The recommended cooking temperature is 145° F, which only takes 8-9 minutes on the grill!
Cooking DIRECTIONS: 145° F is where it’s at!
Regardless of your cut of choice, bone-in or boneless, all pork chops cook the same. The length of cooking time depends on the thickness of your chop and the temperature of your grill. The best way to ensure peak deliciousness is to cook by temperature with a digital meat thermometer. The USDA recommends that pork chops are best enjoyed when cooked to an internal temperature of 145° F followed by a three minute rest. The National Pork Board suggests the range of 145° F to 160° F optimal flavor.
PORK CHOP CUTS
First things first, pick your cut! All pork chops come from the pork loin. Some common chops you’ll see in the meat case or counter include:
- Ribeye Pork Chop: Originates from the center of the loin in the rib area. Can be purchased bone-in or boneless. These are sometimes referred to as a “rib chop.” It is incredibly tender and lean.
- New York Pork Chop: Sometimes called “Center Cut Chops,” or “Top Loin Chops,” these chops are one of the most common cuts available. It is the leanest chop and the boneless version is perfect for stuffing.
- Porterhouse Pork Chop: Derived from the lower back, these chops contain a piece of the loin and tenderloin, separated by a T-shaped bone. They are often regarded as the most tender and flavorful cuts.
- Sirloin Pork Chop: These come from the area around the hip and often include various muscle groups and a piece of the hip bone. This cut is often tougher than the others. Try marinating before grilling.
Pork Chop Grilling Tips
- Don’t be afraid to ask your butcher for advice picking out the best chop for the occasion!
- Bone-in chops often provide the most flavor. There is fat (flavor!) found around the bone, and the bone does a lot to keep the meat from drying as it’s cooked.
- Avoid using sharp utensils to pierce the meat when flipping, which would allow valuable juices to escape.
- Don’t overcook your chops! Pork is best enjoyed (and safe!) when cooking to 145° F followed by a 3 minute rest.
Grilled Pork Chops Recipes
Pork chops are one of the least intimidating cuts to cook because of their simplicity. A simple salt and pepper seasoning is sometimes all you need! The National Pork Board has many recipes to explore a variety of delicious tastes this summer though. Get grilling!
- Sweet Fire Porterhouse Pork Chops
- Basil-Garlic Porterhouse Pork Chops
- Smokey Hot Chops with Cool Cucumber-Tomato Salad
- Thai Ribeye Pork Chops
- Grilled Lemon-Basil Pork Chops with Lemon-Basil Orzo