These brown sugar pork chops are the easiest and most delicious way to transform pork chops into something incredible!

This is fast becoming one of my go-to dinners. It’s easy enough for a weeknight, but it also tastes special enough to serve guests. Follow me!

close up overhead shot of brown sugar glazed pork chops in pan

Brown Sugar Glaze For Pork

As I was developing this recipe, I was really conscious that it didn’t end up too one dimensional i.e just pork and brown sugar. Whilst pork takes on sweetness incredibly well, I wanted to create a few more layers and develop some more depth of flavour, whilst keeping the sugar the star of the show.

Brown Sugar Glaze Ingredients

  • Brown Sugar – Light brown sugar works best for its subtle caramel-like flavour, which adds gorgeous flavour to the glaze.
  • Soy Sauce – The saltiness from the soy sauce balances out the sweetness of the sugar.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar – This cuts through both the sweet and salty tones of the glaze.
  • Worcestershire Sauce – Offers some depth of flavour.
  • Dijon Mustard – Adds some more complexity to the glaze. Plus pork and mustard is a match made in heaven!
  • Water – Just thins the sauce out a little (it will evaporate once simmered).

The glaze is incredibly easy to prepare; just whisk it all together, then quickly whisk again before adding it to the pan.

Process shots: add ingredients to small bowl (photo 1), whisk (photo 2).

3 step by step photos showing how to make brown sugar glaze for pork

Pan-Fried Pork Chops

Pork chops get a bad rep, but if you treat them right they’re truly delicious. Here I use boneless chops, but you can use bone-in if you’d prefer.

Preparing the pork chops

  • Room Temp – I like bringing the pork close to room temp to help relax the meat before frying it.
  • Seasoning – The glaze is great, but you’ll want to give the pork some layers of flavour too. Here I use smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
  • Fat – If the strip of fat on the pork is quite thick, I recommend scoring it with a sharp knife to prevent the chops curling up in the pan.

Cooking the pork chops

In general, you don’t need to fry pork chops for as long as you think you do. The main thing is forming a crust on both sides to develop flavour. It’s also just as important to rest the pork after you’ve cooked it. If you slice straight in the juices are all going to pour out. You’ll also want to sear the fat to render out all that liquid gold!

Process shots: score fat (photo 1), add seasoning (photo 2), rub into meat (photo 3), add to pan (photo 4), fry (photo 5), sear fat (photo 6).

6 step by step photos showing how to pan fry pork chops

Brown Sugar Pork Chops

Once you’ve rendered down the fat, use it to start off the sauce (bonus flavour!). Alongside the glaze we mixed up, you’ll want to add some butter to the pan. This adds a savoury tone to the sauce and adds another layer of flavour. It also helps create that gorgeous glossy glaze.

Once you’ve simmered the sauce into a glaze, just add the pork back in alongside the resting juices – don’t waste that extra flavour!

Process shots: melt butter (photo 1), pour in sauce and simmer (photo 2), add pork (photo 3), coat in glaze (photo 4).

4 step by step photos showing how to make brown sugar pork chops

Serving Brown Sugar Pork Chops

Here I’ve served with rice and Green Beans, but any sort of carb will work (Mashed Potatoes are also great!).

Alrighty, let’s tuck into the full recipe for these brown sugar glazed pork chops shall we?!

spoon drizzling brown sugar glaze over pork chop on white plate with rice and green beans

How to make Brown Sugar Pork Chops (Full Recipe & Video)

spoon drizzling brown sugar glaze over pork chop on white plate with rice and green beans

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Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Chops

These brown sugar pork chops are the easiest and most delicious way to transform pork chops into something incredible!
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Western
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 363kcal
Cost £2 / $2.50

Equipment

  • Small Bowl & Whisk
  • Large Pan & Tongs
  • Wooden Spoon

Ingredients

  • 75g / 1/3 cup Light Brown Sugar
  • 2 tbsp EACH: Light Soy Sauce, Water
  • 1.5 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 tsp EACH: Dijon Mustard, Worcestershire Sauce
  • 4x 5oz/150g boneless Pork Loin Chops, brought close to room temp (see notes)
  • 1/2 tsp EACH: Smoked Paprika, Garlic Powder, Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Black Pepper
  • 3 tbsp / 45g Unsalted Butter
  • drizzle of Olive Oil

Instructions

  • In a small mixing bowl whisk together brown sugar, soy sauce, water, apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Place to one side.
  • Coat the pork chops in salt, smoked paprika, garlic powder and black pepper.
  • Add a drizzle of oil to a large pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, add in the pork chops and fry both sides for around 3 minutes, or until they've built up a crust on both sides and are just about cooked through the centre. Stack them on top of each other with the strips of fat aligning, then sear for a few mins until deep golden with the fat rendered down. Rest the chops to one side and lower the heat to medium.
  • Melt in the butter, then give the sauce a quick whisk and pour it in. Stir and simmer for 4-5mins, or until it thickens to a thin caramel consistency. Pour in the resting juices from the pork and simmer for a further 30 seconds to re-thicken, then add the pork chops in.
  • Coat in the glaze then serve up with more glaze drizzled on top. Enjoy!

Video

Notes

a) Pork Chops – I recommend getting the pork chops out of the fridge 30mins or so before needed, just to help relax the meat and ensure it cooks through evenly. If the strip of fat is quite thick I recommend scoring it with a sharp knife. This will help prevent the chops curling up in the pan.

b) Cooking Times – This is dependent on how thick the chops are. In general, they probably don’t need as long as you think. They’ll carry on cooking slightly as the rest and when added back to the pan. For reference, the safe internal temp for pork is 63C/145F.

c) Serving – Here I’ve served with rice and Green Beans, but any sort of carb will work (Mashed Potatoes are also great!).

d) Calories – Whole recipe divided by 4 with no sides assuming 1/2 tbsp olive oil for frying.

Nutrition

Calories: 363kcal | Carbohydrates: 19.76g | Protein: 34.54g | Fat: 15.58g | Saturated Fat: 7.532g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.097g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5.835g | Trans Fat: 0.386g | Cholesterol: 122mg | Sodium: 655mg | Potassium: 664mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 18.45g | Vitamin A: 417IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 1.22mg

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