This orange molasses marinade was a total experiment and it turned out pretty good. I can tell that it's a recipe that I'm going to keep tweaking and taking in new directions. This might not be my final version, but it is one helluva start and I wanted to share it with you anyway. The flavor isn't super "orangey", but I think the orange juice concentrate added an important layer of flavor, sweetness, and acidity. I had some oranges in my fridge, so I sliced one up as a garnish, but they aren't required for the recipes. It does make a nice presentation, though, if you're trying to impress!
I cooked these chops on my stove top, but they'd also be great for the grill. Now that the weather is warming up and weekend cooking is moving outdoors, I'd highly recommend giving these sweet yet savory pork chops a shot!
Orange Molasses Pork Chops
Total Recipe cost: $7.39
Servings Per Recipe: 6
Cost per serving: $1.23 (1 chop each)
Prep time: 15 min. Marinate time: 2 hrs. or more Cook time: 15 min. Total: 30 min. plus marinating time
|2 lbs (6 chops)||thick-cut pork chops||$6.19|
|1/4 cup||orange juice concentrate||$0.33|
|1 Tbsp||apple cider vinegar||$0.06|
|1 Tbsp||dijon mustard||$0.11|
|1/4 tsp||garlic powder||$0.02|
|2 Tbsp||vegetable oil||$0.08|
STEP 1: Make the marinade by stirring together the molasses, orange juice concentrate, apple cider vinegar, dijon mustard, garlic powder, and salt. Place the marinade in a bag, add the chops, and seal tightly. Place in the refrigerator for at least two hours or longer if desired.
STEP 2: When you're ready to cook the chops, heat 2 Tbsp of vegetable oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is very hot (it will look wavy in the pan), add the chops. Cook for about 7 minutes on each side or until cooked through and the marinade has reduced to a thick sauce. No need to pour all of the marinade into the skillet, the amount that comes off of the chops as they cook will be plenty to make a nice sauce. Discard the extra marinade from the bag. Serve hot!
Step By Step Photos
First stir together the ingredients for the marinade: molasses, orange juice concentrate, apple cider vinegar, dijon mustard, garlic powder, and salt.
My grocery store was out of thick cut pork chops, so I bought this center cut loin roast and cut it into chops myself.
I cut the roast into 6 slices (plus one end piece), each about 1.25 inches thick.
Place the pork chops and marinade into a bag and seal it up tightly. Let it marinate for a few hours in the refrigerator.
When you're ready to cook the pork chops, heat a couple tablespoons of vegetable oil in a large, heavy skillet until very hot (medium-high heat). When the oil is good and hot (but not smoking), add the chops. I didn't pour the extra marinade from the bag into the skillet, there was plenty that came off of the chops as they cooked.
Cook the pork chops for about 7 minutes on each side or until they are fully cooked through and the marinade reduces to a thick sauce.
I don't know if you can see, but the sauce is beginning to thicken... You can flip the chops a few times during cooking, just as long as they cook through. It shouldn't take long over such high heat.
And then finally, after about 15 minutes, the sauce is nice and thick. I had to turn the heat off to make it stop bubbling so that it was visible.
If you want, you can garnish with some orange slices. These chops are super tender and juicy!