Pan Seared Pork Chops

These juicy pan seared pork chops basted with garlic thyme butter are perfect for a quick and easy weeknight dinner.

Pan Seared Pork Chops with garlic and thyme.

Ingredients needed

  • Pork chops. I used bone-in pork chops with a bit of a fat cap. Boneless pork chops can be used but the cooking time will need to be reduced slightly.
  • Extra-virgin olive oil.
  • Salt and black pepper.
  • Butter.
  • Whole garlic cloves.
  • Fresh thyme. Other fresh herbs like rosemary, sage, parsley or oregano are all delicious with pork and can be substituted for the thyme.
Ingredients for seared pork chops.

How to pan sear pork chops

Pat the pork chops dry with paper towels and heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Season the pork chops (as per the recipe below) then add to the pan, pressing down on the chops with a spatula then allow to cook for 2-4 minutes per side, depending on the thickness of the chops.

Add the butter to the pan with the garlic cloves and fresh thyme. Baste the pork with the butter for the last 2 minutes of cooking. Remove the pork from the pan and pour over all of the butter. Allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Can I make this ahead?

Pork chops are definitely best served immediately after cooking. However, you can season the chops and place them in the fridge overnight. This is pretty much dry-brining and will result in an even juicier, more tender pork chop once cooked. Leftovers can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Pan Seared Pork Chops in cast iron skillet

Serving suggestions

Pork chops are delicious served with a variety of side dishes. Mashed potatoes and vegetables like green beans, asparagus or broccoli are our favorites. A simple sauce like our creamy mushroom sauce will be delicious too.

  1. Garlic Parmesan Mashed Potatoes
  2. 10-minute Sautéed Broccolini


How do you cook pork chops without drying them out?

By cooking pork chops at high heat, you allow the meat to caramelize and turn golden brown on the outside while the inside stays juicy and tender. Thinner chops will only require 1-2 minutes per side while thicker chops will need 3-4 minutes per side. Pork is safe to serve medium but if you want to be 100% sure your juicy pork chops are cooked to perfection, using a meat thermometer to measure the internal temperature is ideal.

How do you prepare pork chops before cooking?

For this pan seared pork chop recipe, I prefer keeping it simple only seasoning the meat with salt and pepper. Basting the chops with butter flavored with fresh thyme and garlic adds all the flavor you need to make this a delicious dinner.

How do you keep pork chops from curling when frying?

Cutting through the fat and the membrane attaching the fat to meat in a few spots along the fat cap on the pork chop will prevent the chop from curling while cooking. With a sharp knife, cut into the sides of the pork chop, through the fat, 1-inch (2cm) apart along the fat cap.

Pork Chop Recipes

  1. Creamy Mushroom Pork Chops
  2. Easy Grilled Pork chops
  3. Greek Pork Chops
  4. Easy Broiled Pork Chops
Pan Seared Pork Chops

Pan Seared Pork Chops

These juicy pan seared pork chops basted with garlic thyme butter are perfect for a quick and easy weeknight dinner. 
5 from 6 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: bone-in pork chops, Pan seared pork chops
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes
Calories: 335kcal
Author: Alida Ryder
Servings: 4


  • 4 5oz/150g bone-in pork chops I prefer thicker pork chops to ensure a juicier end result
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 4 garlic cloves peeled
  • 4 sprigs thyme


  • Pre-heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Pat the pork chops dry with paper towels then season generously on both sides with salt and pepper.
  • Once the pan is hot, add the pork chops, pressing down with a spatula to ensure the full chop is making contact with the hot pan.
  • Cook for 2-3 minutes per side, depending on thickness, until golden brown.
  • Add the butter, garlic and thyme to the pan and baste the pork chops for a minute or two until done to your preference.
  • Remove from the pan, pour over the butter and aromatics and allow to rest for 5 minutes then serve.


Calories: 335kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 104mg | Sodium: 1350mg | Potassium: 572mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 0.03g | Vitamin A: 426IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 1mg

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  1. Really enjoyed this. Simple and fast. Took the chops straight out of the fridge, so I had to lower the temp and cover the pan after searing and adding the aromatics so it could get up to temp.