Honey Garlic Pork Chops are an easy, flavorful recipe for pork loin chops. Made with a simple 4 ingredient marinade, these lean pork chops are infused with flavor and then grilled, baked or pan-fried to tender, juicy perfection!
This healthy pork chop recipe is ANYTHING but boring. Filled with sweet and savory notes and cooked to the perfect temperature, these Honey Garlic Pork Chops are absolutely delicious. Pair with Instant Pot Sweet Potatoes, Pineapple Rice, or an Asian Noodle Salad, for an easy, healthy meal.
Pork chops can get the reputation of being dried out or flavorless.
And that is very true….. but only when they are not prepared the RIGHT way. Otherwise, pork chops are a lean, economical, delicious alternative to chicken breasts or chicken thighs.
Just like chicken, as long as you season the meat well and don’t overcook, your pork chops will be tender, juicy, and flavorful.
My secret to perfect pork chops is a simple Honey Garlic Marinade and cooking just to temperature.
Pork Chop Marinade
Made with honey, garlic, soy sauce, and pineapple juice, this honey garlic marinade has sweet, savory, and salty notes that compliment the mild natural flavors of the pork.
While the pineapple juice may seem like an odd addition, trust me on this one. Just like my Instant Pot Chicken Breast Recipe, and Teriyaki Chicken Packets, pineapple juice is my secret weapon in this marinade that helps to make delicious, slightly sweet meat without adding processed sugars. Not only does the pineapple juice work to season the pork chops, but it also works as a natural tenderizer.
Marinating the pork is as easy as seasoning the pork chops with salt and pepper, and then placing the pork chops into a sealable storage bag. Whisk together the marinade and pour over the pork. Close the bag, removing excess air, and then toss to coat, using your hands to massage the marinade into the pork.
How Long Should You Marinate Pork Chops?
Every marinade requires a different amount of time. For my Lemon Greek Yogurt Marinade, you don’t want to leave in the marinade for more than 4 hours due to the high acidity of the marinade.
For my Honey Garlic Pork Marinade, you can marinade the pork chops (or chicken if you like), for up to 24 hours as it has less acidity than most marinades. I recommend marinating the pork loin chops for a minimum of 2 hours and a maximum of 24 hours.
Cooking Pork Chops
Once your pork chops are seasoned well, it all comes down to cooking.
You can grill, bake, or pan-fry these marinated pork chops, but the key is to not overcook the pork.
Pork chops are juiciest when cooked to medium-rare, or 145 degrees Fahrenheit and this is the recommended temperature by the Pork Council. However, you can prepare your pork chops to the desired temperature based upon your preferences. Well done is between 160 and 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
Grilled Pork Chops
I prefer to grill my pork loin chops whenever possible. I just love the crispy edges from where the sugar from the honey caramelizes on the pork.
It is best to sear your pork chops quickly over direct heat and then allow to cook more slowly over indirect heat. Don’t worry, this is NOT as complicated as it sounds.
- Preheat one side of the gas grill to medium-high heat and the other side to medium-low. If using a charcoal grill, place heated coals on only one side of the grill.
- Place marinated pork chops on direct heat for 1-2 minutes per side, or until seared nicely and able to flip easily. If the pork is resisting being turned, give it a minute longer before flipping.
- Once the meat is seared move the indirect side of the grill, cover and cook for 4-6 minutes longer, or until pork chops reach 145 degrees or desired temperature.
- Remove from grill and let rest 5-10 minutes before serving.
Baked Pork Chops
Baking marinated pork chops is an easy method and perfect for rainy or cold days when you don’t feel like grilling.
- To bake Honey Garlic Pork Chops, preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
- Remove pork loin chops from marinade a place in 9×13 baking dish and bake until pork reaches the desired temperature. This is about 15-18 minutes for 145 degrees.
- It is very important to rest your pork chops on a cutting board or plate for 5-10 minutes so they can retain their juices.
Pan-Fried Pork Chops
- Preheat a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add in 1 tablespoon oil and remove pork from marinade and wipe off excess marinade, using a paper towel.
- Cook until browned one side (2-3 minutes per side).
- Turn pork chop over, cover, and reduce heat to medium.
- Cook for approximately 4-6 more minutes or until the pork loin chop reaches 145 degrees or desired temperature.
- Remove from skillet and let rest 5-10 minutes before serving.
Storage and Meal Prep Suggestions
If you want to get a jump start on meal prep, and don’t we all, purchase a large pork loin and have your butcher cut into 1-inch slice chops. Make a large batch of Honey Garlic Marinade and then freeze the pork chops right in the marinade.
- Make enough marinade for as many pounds of meat you intend to freeze. Each recipe is enough for 1 pound of meat.
- Place one pound of pork loin chops in a freezer-safe bag (use as many bags as you need).
- As soon as you pour the marinade over the pork loin chops, tightly seal the bag and place directly into your freezer.
- When ready to make Honey Garlic Pork Chops, place the frozen bag of marinated pork in the fridge to defrost overnight. As the pork chops defrost, the marinade works to flavor the pork.
- Grill or bake as recipe directs.
More Pork Loin Recipes
- Slow Cooker Apple Pork Roast
- Skillet Tuscan Pork Chops
- Crock Pot Pork and Sauerkraut
- Instant Pot Pork Chops
Whether you decide to bake, grill, or pan-fry these Honey Garlic Pork Chops, I think you will agree, the flavor is spot on!
Honey Garlic Pork Chops
- 1 pound pork loin chops or pork loin roast cut into 1 inch slices
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup pineapple juice
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce reduced sodium
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
For Honey Garlic Marinade
- Whisk together the honey, pineapple juice soy sauce and garlic until well combined.
To Marinate Pork Chops
- Place pork chops in a storage bag or sealed container. Add in pork chops and marinade. Seal shut and shake to coat.
- Marinate the pork loin chops for a minimum of 2 hours and a maximum of 24 hours, turning once in marinate half way through.
Grill Pork Chops
- Preheat one side of the grill to medium-high heat and the other side to medium-low. Place marinated pork chops on direct heat for 1-2 minutes per side, or until seared nicely and able to flip easily. If the pork is resisting being turned, give it a minute longer before flipping. Once the meat is seared move the indirect side of the grill, cover and cook for 4-6 minutes longer, or until pork chops reach 145 degrees, or desired temperature. Let rest 5-10 minutes before serving.
Bake Pork Chops
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Remove pork loin chops from marinade a place in 9x13 baking dish and bake until pork reaches desired temperature--this is about 18 minutes for 145 degrees. Let rest 5-10 minutes before serving.
Pan-Fry Pork Chops
- Preheat a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. Add in 1 tablespoon oil and remove pork from marinade and wipe off excess marinade. Cook until browned one side (2-3 minutes per side) Turn pork chop over, cover, and reduce heat to medium. Cook for approximately 4-6 more minutes or until the pork loin chop reaches 145 degrees or desired temperature. Let rest 5-10 minutes before serving.
- Pork Chops are juiciest when cooked to medium, or 145 degrees. Feel free to up to 165 degrees, or well done--just remember the pork chop will not be as juicy.
- Medium Rare: 145 degrees
- Medium: 150-155 degrees
- Well: 160-165 degrees
- If you need these Honey Garlic Pork Chops to be soy-free, omit the soy sauce and add 1 teaspoon kosher salt to the marinade or replace with Braggs Amino Acids
- I love to use pineapple juice in the marinade, but apple juice or chicken stock works as well.
- If you want to cook bone-in pork chops, the recipe will remain the same if the pork chops are still 1 inch thick.
- It is very important to rest your pork chops for 5-10 minutes so they can retain their juices.
- Money-Saving Tip: Ask the butcher to cut a pork loin up for into 1-inch pork loin chop--this is typically cheaper than purchasing pork chops in a package.