Orange Molasses Pork Chops

$7.39 recipe / $1.23 serving
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.67 from 3 votes
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These might be the easiest pork chops I’ve ever made. …and the most tender. …and maybe they might be tied with the Glazed Pork Chops for best tasting.

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

orange molasses chops plated on plate with orange slices

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Orange Molasses Pork Chops

4.67 from 3 votes
A sweet and tangy marinade makes these orange molasses pork chops succulent and addicting.
Author: Beth - Budget Bytes
Servings 6
Prep 2 hrs
Cook 15 mins
Total 2 hrs 15 mins

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs 6 chops thick-cut pork chops ($6.19)
  • 1/4 cup molasses ($0.60)
  • 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)
  • 1/2 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil ($0.08)

Instructions 

  • 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.
  • 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!

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Nutrition

Serving: 1ServingCalories: 320.58kcalCarbohydrates: 11.87gProtein: 32.65gFat: 15.05gSodium: 283.78mgFiber: 0.08g
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Top view of a plate of orange molasses pork chops with orange slices

Step By Step Photos

orange molasses marinade ingredients mixed in bowl (jars of ingredients in background)
First stir together the ingredients for the marinade: molasses, orange juice concentrate, apple cider vinegar, dijon mustard, garlic powder, and salt.

whole pork roast in packaging
My grocery store was out of thick cut pork chops, so I bought this center cut loin roast and cut it into chops myself.

roast cut into 7 chops
I cut the roast into 6 slices (plus one end piece), each about 1.25 inches thick.

pork chops and marinade placed in zip lock bag
Place the pork chops and marinade into a bag and seal it up tightly. Let it marinate for a few hours in the refrigerator.

marinated raw pork chops placed in skillet on stove top 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.

pork chops cooking 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.

thickening sauce in pan of pork chops
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.

thickened orange molasses sauce and cooked pork chops in skillet
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.

orange slices added to cooked pork chops in skillet
If you want, you can garnish with some orange slices. These chops are super tender and juicy!

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Comments

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    1. Unfortunately, it’s too difficult to guess without testing it since orange marmalade and orange juice concentrate are quite different in both flavor and texture.

  1. Really delicious! I didn’t have quite two hours to marinate them, but they were tasty, I could see how they would become even more flavorful the more time you have to marinate. These made for a great Valentine’s dinner paired with roasted asparagus.

  2. You used to have a recipe for Chipotle Orange Pork Tacos, they were so delicious but somehow I lost my copy of the recipe and cannot find it on here any more? Can you help me find it?? Thank you so much!

  3. Definitely delicious and a big hit with all 5 fuss buckets at my house! Had everything in except the apple cider vinegar so subbed balsamic instead. Making them with the apple cider vinegar tonight for supper; bet they turn out great again …

  4. I made this with the following tweaks and it turned out awesome:

    1. Skip the marinade, it’s pretty much unnecessary since we are glazing. Instead, dry brine your pork chops by giving them a good sprinkling with kosher salt and black pepper.
    2. Heat oil in a large heavy pan, stainless steel or cast iron, until shimmering and not quite smoking (just under 500F).
    3. Sear the pork chops, get them nice and brown on both sides, internal temp should be about 110F
    4. Remove pork from pan, deglaze with a splash of chicken stock, approx 1/4 cup. Add 1/2 of the marinade recipe and whisk to combine. Add pork back into pan.
    5. Remove pork when it reaches your desired doneness and let it rest (I pulled at 135F), sauce should now be thick, if it is not, cook it until it is, and pour it over the pork.

  5. Do you think these could be baked instead of sauteed? Have you ever tried them like that? The recipe sounds good!