You might not think a meat with a reputation for being dry makes for a great freezer option. But the pork chop has been given short shrift. But between the brine, the bone, and the initial sear, this recipe allows for you to just shove the chop in the oven from frozen and pull it out without another thought. I know it seems hard to believe, but with the right forward planning for the brining and searing, you can have pork chops straight from frozen any day of the week.–Ali Rosen
Cinnamon Rosemary Pork Chops
- 1/2 cup Greek yogurt, preferably full-fat
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 to 2 tablespoons cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 4 (2 lbs) bone-in pork chops
- 1 tablespoon mild vegetable oil, for frying
- In a large bowl, combine yogurt, rosemary, cinnamon, and salt. Mix thoroughly. Add pork chops, turning to fully coat in the cinnamon-rosemary mixture. Refrigerate and marinate for at least 8 hours and up to overnight.
- Preheat oven to 400°F (205°C).
- Place an oven-safe skillet on the stove over medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot, add the oil to the pan, then the pork in a single layer. Cook, without moving, until one side has browned, 2 to 4 minutes.
- Turn chops over. Slide skillet into the oven and cook until the internal temperature has reached 135°F (57°C) to 145°F (63°C), about 15 minutes.
- Remove from oven and let pork rest for at least 3 minutes before serving.
Can I freeze cooked pork chops?These easy pork chops were developed as a make-ahead freezer meal. You can enjoy them immediately, but if you want to make a batch and stash them in the freezer, simply prepare through step 3, then let cool to room temperature. Wrap each chop in foil, then stash in a freezer bag or container, and store in the freezer until ready to use. Remove the frozen pork from the bag or container and bake (directly from frozen) at 400°F (200°C) until cooked through, 30 to 45 minutes.
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Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
Wow! These cinnamon rosemary pork chops were moist and delicious. I wasn’t sure how the cinnamon would work in this but it helped develop a deep, rich flavor without tasting like cinnamon toast (i.e., what I had feared). They browned really beautifully as well.
I thought this brine mixture would make something like a paste, but it didn’t come together that way for me. It was thick but not well-integrated. I used a knife to smooth the coating on all of the chops and even them out, à la frosting a cake. Regular, non-strained yogurt might have been easier to blend with the other ingredients. Otherwise, I might try just coating the chops in Greek yogurt with a knife or offset spatula and then dragging through a plate with the combined other ingredients.
The pork chops were served as part of a meal with roasted red creamer potatoes with dill, buttered green beans, and a green salad.
Based on my previous experience, I decided to combine the ingredients in my mini-prep processor. I chopped the rosemary first and, once I had the right amount, added that back in with the other ingredients. This proved more satisfactory than doing this part by hand. The brine turned out more paste-like this way, and I applied it to the chops with a silicone brush. The ingredients were still not fully incorporated, however, and there were puffs of cinnamon in the air. (Kitchen smelled great, though.)
The Finale: They cooked just fine out of the freezer into a 400ºF oven. They were done at 45 minutes and very moist, once again. These are delicious and very much worth making.
I was intrigued by the recipe for cinnamon rosemary pork chops due to the combination of cinnamon and rosemary. I imagined this going one of two ways, either surprisingly good or totally strange. Fortunately, it was the former with both ingredients truly complementing each other.
The dish was very easy to prepare with just a few ingredients and most of the cooking taking place in the oven. The even heat of the oven cooked the pork perfectly. I recommend aiming towards 135ºF internal temperature to yield the most tender and moist pork.