These apple stuffed pork chops are SO easy! Filled with a savory apple mixture, baked on a sheet pan with a side of butternut squash, they’re sure to become one of your favorite weeknight fall dinner recipes…
This recipe was created in partnership with the Ohio Pork Council; all opinions and text are my own. Thanks for supporting me and the brands I love!
Apple Stuffed Pork Chops
Happy Fall, Y’all! I’m coming at you today with a fantastic pork chops and apples fall dinner recipe that’s both easy to make AND simple to clean up…
Like the sound of that? Don’t we all! I’m not afraid to admit that I’m a bit of a tornado in the kitchen, making messes at every turn. So any recipe that cuts down on cleaning up is destined to become one of my faves.
Besides easy cleanup, I also love this apple stuffed pork chops recipe, because it includes a side dish of roasted butternut squash baked on the same sheet pan! Pork and apples are such classic fall flavors, and when you add in a little butternut squash, it’s like the ideal fall trifecta… Cue all the heart eyes now!
Pork Chops With Apples
For a long time I shied away from sheet pan meals. I simply didn’t think they would work for my larger-than-average family… Well, DUH!!! It finally occurred to me that I could just make TWO sheet pans’ worth, and it’s worked out perfectly.
This pork chops with apples and butternut squash recipe makes plenty for a family of four and would easily work for a family of five with smaller children, as well. If your family is on the larger side, like mine, simply make two sheet pans. Any leftovers are perfect for the next day’s lunch!
Best Apples To Use For Apple Pork Chops
Not all apples are created equal when it comes to baking. It’s very possible that your favorite snacking apple will turn out mushy and bland when baked. And of course, we don’t want to stuff our pork chops with blah, mushy apples!
So what are the best apples for baking? Generally, you can’t go wrong with a Granny Smith apple. Their firm texture holds up well when baked, and they retain some of their tart flavor, making them ideal for both sweet and savory recipes. Other good apples for baking include: Jonagold, Braeburn, Crispin, Pink Lady, and my favorite, Honeycrisp.
Tips For Baked Pork Chops With Apples
As with all simple recipes, the quality of your ingredients counts! As does paying attention to the little details in a recipes, so here are some specifics that will help you turn out the very best baked pork chops with apples:
- Save money by butterflying your pork chops yourself. Simply buy some thick boneless pork chops, and slice through horizontally with short strokes until you can lay them out flat.
- Trim the visible fat from the pork chops. While not totally necessary, it does help prevent unsightly globs of fat from accumulating around the chops while baking. Because we eat with our eyes first!
- Dice your choice of baking apple into small 1/4″ pieces. Keeping the pieces uniform allows them to cook evenly with the short cooking time. Ditto for the butternut squash — 1/2″ to no more than 3/4″ cubes are ideal to keep their cook time in line with the apple stuffed pork chops.
- Use the same mixing bowl to prep both the apples and the butternut squash. Any spices left in it from the apples only serves to season the squash.
- Extra apple filling can simply be spooned around the pork chops and mixed in with the squash after baking for added flavor!
Since I’m sharing this as a weeknight recipe, I’m keeping things super simple. Spoon the apple filling into the butterflied pork chops, fold over, and then season them with a sprinkle of cinnamon, salt, and pepper. Toss the butternut squash with olive oil, salt, and pepper (in the same bowl you used for the apple filling), and sprinkle the cubes around each pork chop. Then bake!
How Long To Bake Pork Chops
If you’re making this recipe for a classier occasion, you could take the time to sear the pork chops on each side in a skillet, and then transfer them to your baking sheet. You may want to tie them closed with some bakers’ twine if you go this route. Also, keep in mind that this will reduce the baking time, so you may need to remove them from the sheet before the squash is cooked through to keep them from getting dry and tough.
And speaking of cooking time, I get asked often how long to bake pork chops… The easy answer is until they reach an internal temperature of 145 degrees — which is what’s recommended by my friends at OhioPork.org. If you don’t have a digital meat thermometer, I seriously can’t recommend this one enough. It’s definitely one of my essential kitchen tools!
How long exactly IS that, though? Well, for this recipe it takes between 20-25 minutes. Start checking the chops about 18 minutes into the cooking time, and you’ll never have to worry about dry, overcooked pork again! If the squash isn’t quite tender, pull the chops off, cover them with some foil, and pop the squash back in for a few additional minutes.
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