Slow Cooker Pepper Pork Chops

Total Time:
14 hr 40 min
20 min
8 hr
6 hr 20 min

4 servings

  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons black peppercorns, slightly crushed
  • 1 pound ice
  • 4 (1 to 1 1/2-inch thick) bone-in pork chops
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 3 ounces dried apple slices
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, julienned
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

Combine the vegetable broth, 1/2 cup kosher salt, brown sugar and peppercorns in a medium saucepan and set over medium-high heat. Cook just until the salt and sugar dissolve, then remove from the heat and add the ice. Place the pork chops into a 2-gallon zip-top bag along with the mixture and seal. Place in a plastic container and refrigerate overnight.

Remove the chops from the brine, rinse, and pat dry. Season on both sides with the kosher salt and set aside

Place the apples in the slow cooker.

Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a 12-inch stainless steel saute pan over medium-high heat. Saute the pork chops on both sides until golden brown, approximately 5 to 6 minutes per side. Once browned, place the pork chops into the slow cooker atop the apples.

Add the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil to the pan followed by the onions and saute until they begin to brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the chicken broth to the pan to deglaze. Add the black pepper and thyme and stir to combine. Transfer this to the slow cooker, set to high, cover and cook for 1 1/2 hours. Decrease the heat to low and continue cooking for another 4 hours and 30 minutes or until the pork is tender and falling away from the bone.

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Pairs Well With
Pinot Noir

Delicate, floral red wine

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    206 Reviews
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    Holy Moley was this ever good. Tender, pepper-forward as advertised but well-balanced. Mine was a little salty, probably as a result of my chops being a little thinner -- I'd use less or even no salt after the brine. I also subbed fresh Granny Smiths. They disintegrated but left their flavor behind. I'll do that again, in part because I don't generally have dried apples. Finally, I converted from slow cooker to a Dutch oven at 325 with a ratio of 1/2 the indicated time on high and 1/4 the indicated time on low for a total of 1 hour, 50 minutes. That was perfect.
    Amazing! One of the tastiest meals! Only changes I would make: I would use 2 onions instead of 1 : I did not use ANY additional salt on the chops : my chops were done in 4 hrs on low : I thickened about 8 oz of the juice for a gravy. Honestly, the best pork chops I've ever had!
    Time consuming but well worth it. Delicious!
    Truly outstanding. My kids never really cared for pork chops ( usually too dry -grilled) , but this is on a whole different level. These were tender and succulent . Wow.
    Excellent. Due to time constraints, I only brined for 3 hours and cooked on high for 3 hours. Cut the salt considerably. They still came out moist and tender. My Hubbin loved them! Thanks AB
    Really good. I cooked on low for 7 hours instead of cooking on high and then changing to low.
    This is my second time making this. The first time I did add the kosher salt after drying the chops from the brine and I found them to be way too salty. I omitted the kosher salt this time before browning and they were perfect. Such a delicious recipe!
    VERY tender and moist. I was nervous about some reviews saying they were too salty so did not rub them with salt before browning. The cooked a LOT faster than the recipe indicated - only 1.5 on low after turning down the heat. Good thing I checked otherwise we would have had pork mush. I thickened the juice and added mushrooms to make gravy. Family loved them. 
    Our two boys are very picky. 15 and 18 year olds. Not a fan of pork anything. First bite they said, wow, I don't think I ever heard them say it before. anyways its easy and excellent. I would serve it for dinner party. 
    Marblehead, MA 
    I also used fresh apple since that's all I had. Delicious. All I would change is to add a bit of cayenne to spice it up a bit and at least double the onions, I love onions with pork. Simple to make and makes the house smell delicious!
    I cannot believe how tasty this dish is! I never write reviews, but after serving this to my family with major compliments, I had to! The flavor is wonderful. The only thing I changed was using fresh apple instead of dried apple. This is a winner! Thanks Alton!
    Absolutely delicious! After reading the reviews I didn't add the additional salt. 
    Couldn't find dried apples so used Granny Smith s instead. We all loved it! Would recommend and am definitely going to make again 
    Delicious, moist, tender. 
    -After thoroughly rinsing off the brine & drying, I sprinkled on only a pinch of salt. The end results were pushing the salty threshold, but not unpleasantly imo. 
    -Low on black, substituted 2Tbl green peppercorns 
    Got away with: 
    -No apple, fresh apricots instead (3oz after split to remove pit, & sprinkled 1Tbl sugar on them to make up for the sugar that'd be concentrated in dry fruit. Could spread the apricots like paste over finished chops (looks rather fancy-shmacy.  
    -No ice. Used ~13c cold water & put in fridge to cool b4 adding chops.  
    -No bag for brine--used a 14c, sealable plastic container (the chops floated enough to have space between them, but not enough to float to the top 
    -Cooked on low the entire time 
    Recommendation: DO NOT reduce salt in the brine--brine won't be able to do its job. Rinse the brine off well & reduce/eliminate the other salt, but if you think meat on the salty side is unpalatable, don't make this recipe! 
    LOVED this dish. Possibly, those of you who felt it was too salty didn't use Kosher salt and rinse the pork chops properly or maybe brined it too long. I used 1 1/2 inch bone in as the recipe called for and dried apples. My crock pot cooks a little fast so I checked the pork chops at 3 hrs once on low and they were done to my taste. This was a winner for me!
    Loved this. Used thickish boneless loin chops; brined as directed; rinsed; no more added salt. Used fresh apples. Served with mashed rutabaga (yellow turnip and put sauce over turnip. Next time will use lots more onions and apples to have more sauce. Yum. Nice and peppery.
    My husband is a very meat and potatoes type of guy and this is one of his favorite recipes! The first time I made it, I used thinner cut bone in pork chops and they were very flavorful. Recently, I started using very think about 1 1/2 inches think, and they don't absorb as much flavor. I personally would go back to the thinner 1/2 inch ones, but my husband prefers the thicker cut. All in all, it is an EXCELLENT recipe!
    This is one of my all-time favorite weekday meals! A little bit of prep is well worth this yummy, hearty dinner. Well done, Alton and team!!
    Caught the comments on the salt. Be sure to rinse the meat and don't put salt on prior to browning. I used 1 1/2 inch boneless pork chops and cooked low for 6 hours in the crockpot. They were tender and moist. Next time I will double the apples and the onions so I can have some in every bite with the meat. I won't use the thyme. It over powers the other flavors.
    I made this last week, it was so good the family requested it again. Both times, I've used boneless pork loin chops and doubled (or more the number of chops. For those who find it too salty, are you using kosher salt? It's course and less salty than table or sea salt and there really is no substitute. I also found that rinsing under cool running water while rubbing each chop with fingers until the slipperiness rinses off is key. I didn't add any more salt at all. We really liked the apple flavor so much that, this time, I replaced the chicken broth with an equal amount of apple cider. Absolutely fantastic with rice (to pour some of the cider-y broth over and a side of steamed broccoli.
    This is my favorite food hands down now. I don't know why people would give this less then five stars because it is perfect. I take the liquid it was cooking in turn it into gravy for the chops and mashed potatos
    This recipe is wonderful !! I have made it with boneless country style style pork ribs.My daughter made it for her family and even her 8 year old loves it There are endless possibilties on what meat you could use. I want to try it with a beef and pork roast together. I didn't have dried apples so I used chunks of red delicous . Thank you so much
    Outstanding! My husband and I were delighted.
    I forgot to rinse the porkchop after brining and still used the full amount of salt but 1/2 tbsp of pepper. For us the salt was just right because we ate it with rice. Next time, I will try 1 tbsp of pepper. 
    I baked it cover at 350 for 2 hours and it turn out good.
    If you are at all sensitive to salt, ditch the 2 tbsp before browning completely. Pork is naturally salty and the brine does an excellent job of adding flavor and moisture. 
    I did go with the 1 tbsp pepper and we had no problems with heat/spice level. Maybe double check that your grinder is on course. 
    I have a variable cook pot rather than a slow cooker which did a grand job of going to far on my apple and onion caramelizing next time I'll just roast in the oven at 350 for 1.5 hrs and then 200 for 3-4 hours. 
    Will probably also try for super thick cut but boneless porkchops. The flavor was great but we don't have a local butcher and our local meat counter, not so great.
    Really disappointing. I followed the recipe to the letter except I used boneless pork loin chops instead of bone-in because that's all I had. The chops turned out very stringy, tough and dry and virtually flavorless. I think Alton is focusing on more healthful recipes which is all well and good, but these chops are a loser. The only way we could tolerate the leftovers was to add barbeque sauce to give them some flavor.
    Absolutely excellent! I have a lap band, and getting in enough protein is tough - and so were my pork chops until today. I did cut the salt in half based on other reviewers who claimed it was too salty, and I also cut the pepper in half because I'm just not a big fan of pepper. I also used fresh apples as suggested by another reviewer. The big difference is that because of time constraints, I did not use the crock pot. I put the chops on top of the apples in a corningware baker with a lid and baked them for 1.5 hours at 300 degrees. Tasty AND tender enough for me to eat them without them getting stuck in my band! Thanks, Alton!
    Sorry Alton, this one was a miss. The chops were too salty to eat. I wasted four beautiful bone in chops :(
    This recipe was relatively easy and the flavors were pretty good, the salt completely overwhelmed the dish. By the time it was done cooking, these chops tasted almost like ham because of the extreme amounts of salt. While I think Alton's great and love his show, I probably won't be trying this recipe again soon.
    Delicious. My 13 year old daughter...very picky eater said "This is the best dinner we've had this year" (and I am a pretty good cook
    These were awesome! Based on the reviews, I cut the salt and pepper for the marinade in half. I also used low-sodium broth. The meat was NOT dry, very very tender and delicious, but because it is pork and tends to be a drier type of meat, I decided to make a gravy from the leftover juices in the crockpot. I took the chops out and put the juices in a pot and added a cornstarch and water mixture to it once I got it boiling. The pork with the gravy was just amazing. Will definitely make again. Oh and one other thing, I cooked it on LOW the entire time and never switched to high because I wanted to make sure the meat stayed tender.
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    Slow-Cooker Meals