These cranberry stuffed pork chops are so good, you’ll add them to your regular rotation. They’re easy too.
Cranberry Stuffed Pork Chops: Different But Delicious
I’ve always loved stuffed pork chops because it makes them less boring. Especially when they aren’t fancied up with sauces and other ingredients.
This time I wanted to try something a little different than just my standard soft-bread stuffing and again, just like it was with my Mushroom Asiago Chicken, the answer literally dropped on my foot.
There was some whole-berry cranberry sauce left over from Thanksgiving. It probably would have ended up in the back of the fridge and forgotten if it hadn’t fallen out onto my foot. I figured I try that because then I would use it up. Also since pork and poultry can use similar herbs, I figured cranberry sauce would taste as good with pork.
I wouldn’t recommend using jellied cranberry sauce in this because it’d just melt. You need the whole-berry variety.
However, you could probably substitute Craisins for the whole-berry sauce. The dried cranberries certainly would add pretty nice texture. Mind you, I haven’t tried this, but I offer it as a pretty decent substitution.
Raisins might work as well, but you wouldn’t get the slight acidity you get with the cranberries. It’s the slight acidity that gives these chops their oomph.
Is Baking Necessary?
This question could be up for debate. The chops would likely cook enough with the browning process. However, the oven offers at least a couple of pros.
I know nowadays they say that pork is OK to eat if there’s pink in it and I don’t dispute experts. I, however, just cannot eat it that way. Even though rare pork might be safe to eat, it’s not as tender rare as it is well done. It’s a weird meat for that reason alone. So if you’re like me and just can’t do any pink, then the oven is necessary to completely cook.
The baking also crisps up the exposed stuffing and toasts it slightly. That’s great flavor there!
Lastly, make sure you use an oven-proof skillet. I use cast iron which is the best choice!
- 6 boneless center-cut loin pork chops (at least 1-inch thick)
- 2 tbs olive oil
- 2 cups fresh soft breadcrumbs (see NOTES)
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 tbs chopped fresh parsley -OR- 1 tbs dehydrated parsley
- ¼ cup (1/2 stick) butter
- 1-2 tsp poultry seasoning
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- ¾ cup whole berry cranberry sauce
- Preheat oven to 350℉
- Cut a deep pocket in each chop.
- Mix the breadcrumbs, parsley, poultry seasoning, salt and pepper in a medium bowl.
- Melt the butter in a large heavy ovenproof skillet and saute the onion until they begin to get soft; about 3-5 minutes.
- Add the entire contents of the skillet (onions & butter) to the breadcrumb mixture. Toss until all the bread is coated with butter; stir in the cranberry sauce.
- Stuff each chop with the stuffing (you may not use all the stuffing, but it can be frozen for future use). Secure pocket opening with toothpicks if desired.
- Heat the olive oil in the same skillet used for the onions.
- Brown chops well on each side, about 5 minutes each side.
- Place the skillet with the chops in preheated oven. Bake for 20-30 minutes.