Butter-Basted Pork Chops with Thyme

Pan seared thick bone-in pork chops get bathed in lots of butter and fresh thyme before finishing off in the oven for another great restaurant quality meal you make at home.

I would love to continue the healthy, eating lighter salad fest I have been on over the past few days, however my meat and potato loving husband needs some manly-man type food. I spotted two gorgeous, almost 2 inch thick bone-in pork chops and decided that they would sooth his meat craving. To add to these monster chops: some potatoes browned up in a skillet and fresh asparagus.

This dinner could be welcomed by the special Dad in your life on father's day. The chops get a nice sear and the butter with the flavors from the garlic and thyme that is basted over the chops on the stove top give a wonderful taste to the outside of the chops. A finish in a hot oven and you end up with juicy and ever so delicious pork.

Tips for making these utterly delicious chops:
  • Find chops with grains of thin fatty white throughout. They will be more tender and have more flavor.
  • A cast iron skillet works really well - but any large heavy skillet will do.
  • Remove the pork from the refrigerator at least 30 minutes prior to cooking.
  • Cut into the fat on the side (especially if it's thick fat) in several places - your pork won't curl. That holds true for thinner chops.
  • Spend time spooning the butter over the chops as directed in the instructions.
  • Have a meat thermometer handy to check your pork.
  • Let the pork rest for at least 10 minutes before cutting.
  • As this goes from the stove top to oven, be sure to have your oven preheated to 400°.
  • 2 bone-in pork chops (almost 2" thick)
  • 2 large cloves garlic
  • 1 stick butter
  • 4-5 sprigs fresh thyme
  • kosher salt to taste
  • black pepper to taste
  1.  Peel your garlic and slice the large cloves in half.
  2. Heat your skillet over medium high heat for a few minutes. Let it get really hot.
  3. Season one side of your chops with salt and pepper just before you are ready to place them in the skillet.
  4. Add 1/3 stick of butter to the pan and let melt and it may turn slightly brown, but that's okay.
  5. Add the chops in - seasoned side down. Immediately season the top side. Turn the heat down to medium. Add the rest of the butter, the garlic and sprigs of thyme.
  6. Sear for about two minutes and flip them over using tongs.
  7. Begin basting the chops. Keep basting. Tip the skillet slightly to get the butter on a spoon and spoon over the chops. Keep basting (it's important to do this).
  8. Turn the chops back over after two minutes and sear the other side for about 2 minutes and keep basting. Turn the heat off and let the pan sit on the stove top for about 2 more minutes. Keep basting. Flip the chops over one more time before hitting the oven.
  9. Place the skillet in the oven and set a timer for 15 minutes. Check the pork when 12 minutes has passed. The temperature should read 135-138°. If not, pop back in for another 3 minutes and re-check.
  10. You want the pork to come out at about 138° and let it rest. While resting it will rise to the 145° for pork.

Pan searing and butter basting is a technique used in many restaurants to cook pork chops and steaks. The pan is super hot which puts a nice sear on the chop or steak; however it's the butter basting that keeps searing the outside to make a nice buttery crust with the enormously hot butter that's in the pan. It also adds flavor to the outside from any herbs or garlic that you've added to the butter.

Don't be scared of the amount of butter as much of it is left in the pan. With that being said you could use a fat separator and skim the fat and take the small amount of juices and whip up a lovely pan sauce to spoon over the chops.

We both enjoyed this dinner immensely. Neither of us (at our ages) could consume the entire pork chop. One probably would have been sufficient as they were super large and meaty! Consider doing these for the father you are celebrating this coming Sunday. He will not be disappointed!

Other Restaurant Quality dishes and dressings you can make at home:

Steakhouse Potato Gratin
With this recipe I discovered the secret to non-watery potato gratin. This one's rich, decadent and we absolutely adore it.

Restaurant-Style Broccoli and Garlic
No more mushy broccoli, just the right amount of snap and nutrition in each bite. The garlic - well that's a plus!

Steakhouse Barbecue Shrimp Orleans Style
Life is great when Steakhouse Barbecue Shrimp Orleans Style is in your house! It's rich, it's delicious and the flavor is amazing!

Thousand Island Dressing
From the original Chart House Restaurant, this Thousand Island Dressing is the best I have ever had! It's easy to make and it's marvelous! Aside from salad it makes a great sandwich spread, a fish or chicken dipper sauce. Just so versatile.

The BEST Bleu Cheese Dressing 
Again, this recipe is a Chart House original. It is indeed the most incredible of bleu cheese dressings which is why I chose to use BEST. Great for salads, those Buffalo Wings, a vegetable dip, etcetera.

And last, but not least are these wonderful Butter-Basted Pork Chops with Thyme which is what this post has featured. They are if I might say, one of the BEST pork chops I've ever eaten.


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