Apricot balsamic pork chops are going to be in your weeknight dinner rotation after your first bite of this sweet and tangy dish! The sauce is versatile and full of flavor! You’ll be blown away by how incredibly easy this dish is to put together.
The verdict is in. These apricot balsamic pork chops are a new favorite in our house!
I also posted this recipe in my private Facebook group, The Community Table, two weeks ago and guess what? I have had at least four people make it already and they RAVED about it.
So there you go. I hope that is enough to convince you that you need to grab the ingredients for this dish and make it as soon as you can!
My favorite part of this recipe is the apricot balsamic glaze that is made right in the pan.
It reduces down and gets all thick and creamy and coats the pork chops so nicely!
How I came up with this apricot balsamic pork chop recipe!
I always get asked how I come up with recipes and to be honest, I get inspiration from a lot of places.
Magazines, definitely. Sometimes when we watch Netflix shows of food (ha, because what else would I be doing, right?) and I want to try to recreate what the show ate or something similar.
But my favorite thing to do is to walk around grocery stores and look at ingredients and come up with dishes that way.
I know that not everyone is as food-oriented as me and can just think of a recipe from an ingredient but hey- that’s why you’re here right?
I practically live at the grocery store so the other day, when I was there for probably the third time that week, I was in the jam and jellies aisle.
This particular jar of apricot preserves was standing out at me because 1. I’m a marketer’s dream, and 2. cute packaging sucks me in 100% of the time.
So anyway, long story short is that whenever I cook with jams or sweet ingredients, I love adding in some sort of tang and/or bite.
Balsamic vinegar (which I don’t really get why I have four bottles of in my pantry, haha) sounded like an amazing pairing to go with my beautiful jar of apricot preserves.
Also, I like buying cute jars of jams because once you’re done with them, you can wash the jars out and reuse them for things like planting succulents or using them to store other liquids.
And they look cute on the shelf!
What kind of pork chops should I get?
I used boneless pork chops.
You can definitely use bone-in pork chops but they’ll take a bit longer to cook because the meat near the bone will be harder to cook through.
When looking for pork chops, I like looking for ones with not a lot of fat on the edges.
I’ve definitely seen some at the butcher where it was a really thick edge! You’re paying for that too and you don’t really eat it.
Sure, fat gives it more flavor but I also think it’s unnecessary because you typically use pork chops in a dish because they’re leaner.
Plus, the butter and apricot balsamic sauce in this dish is creamy and rich.
Can I substitute any other jams or preserves? I don’t like apricots/I can’t find apricot preserves.
Yes! Peach would be an excellent substitution.
Other jams and jellies just won’t work in this because they’re going to overpower the dish and it’ll be too sweet.
And that’s not really the flavor I’m going for. Hopefully you like either peach or apricot preserves!
Tips on cooking pork chops
I thought I’d offer up some tips on cooking pork chops because I know not everyone cooks it all the time.
- If your pork chops have a lot of fat, trim some of it prior to cooking.
- Use a large, heavy pan. I love using my 12-inch cast iron skillet for dishes like this. You can get it screaming hot and it will give the meat a nice crust on the outside (which means more flavor from the pan drippings).
- With that said, high heat is going to be your friend because you want to sear all sides and get a nice crust.
- Don’t squash the pork chops constantly with your spatula! You squeeze out all the juice and it doesn’t yield a tender or juicy pork chop!
- Buy a reliable meat thermometer if you want to be 100% sure your pork chops are cooked all the way through. It can be hard to eyeball sometimes and not everyone is great at the whole, “touch the meat” test.
Side dishes to serve with apricot balsamic pork chops:
In the above photos, you’ll see that I threw in roasted potatoes and roasted asparagus.
I roasted those separately while the pork chops were cooking then I threw them into the skillet when everything was done so everything could get coated in the luscious sauce.
- Our favorite way to roast potatoes
- Roasted garlic brussels sprouts
- Roasted vegetables
- Roasted parmesan broccoli
- Smoky parmesan roasted cauliflower
Apricot Balsamic Pork Chops
- 1/4 cup apricot preserves
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp. dijon mustard smooth, not grainy
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 pounds boneless pork chops
- Several sprigs of fresh thyme
- In a medium bowl, whisk together apricot preserves, balsamic vinegar, mustard, red pepper flakes, garlic, water, and chicken stock. Set aside.
- In a large (12 inch) cast iron skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of butter and turn the heat onto high.
- Season pork chops with salt and pepper then place into hot skillet and brown both sides.
- Remove pork chops (you'll finish cooking it later) then cut the heat and move the skillet to another burner that hasn't been on.
- VERY CAREFULLY pour the sauce into the skillet. It will hiss and bubble and spit so be extremely careful. You can choose to wait to do this if you're scared.
- Place back onto medium-high heat and add the pork chops back in along with sprigs of thyme. Simmer in sauce until fully cooked through and sauce has thickened, about 12-15 minutes, depending how thick your pork chops are.
- Serve with generous sauce on top!