It doesn't get any easier than these Baked Herb Lemon Pork Chops! Tender and absolutely delicious, serve these up with rice and veggies, or on a salad.
Baked Herb Lemon Pork Chops Recipe
Sometimes you land on a recipe that you instantly know will become a regular on the weekly meal plan. These Herb Lemon Pork Chops are smack dab in the middle of that category. While this may be a 30-minute meal, there are only about 5 minutes of hands-on prep time.
Tips for making this recipe
- Marinate and Rest: After coating the raw pork chops with the herb and lemon mixture, allow them to rest for at 15 minutes. This allows the allows the salt to seep into the meat and the acid of the lemon juice to tenderize the meat.
- Broiling time: Overcooked, dry pork is a thing of the past! Cook the pork to an internal temperature of 145 degrees F. The pork continues to cook for a few minutes after it’s removed from the oven, so take this into account when judging doneness.
- Pork Chop Thickness: I used chops that were about ¾-inch thick. If using thicker chops, adjust the cooking time accordingly. Truth be told, I was looking for the bone-in version for this recipe, but they were out of them at the store. I was unwillingly thrust into the world of boneless chops. And it turned out brilliantly!
Ingredients and substitutions
- Pork Chops: I use boneless pork chops, about 5 ounces each. Bone-in pork chops can be substituted, but be sure to adjust the cooking time because they typically take a little longer to cook.
- Garlic: Peel and mince the garlic cloves.
- Salt and pepper: Use kosher salt and ground black pepper.
- Paprika: Paprika adds both flavor and color. Smoked paprika can be substituted, though the flavor is a little stronger and – of course – smokier.
- Oregano: Use dried oregano.
- Thyme: Use dried thyme.
- Rosemary: Use dried rosemary. I like to use crushed dried rosemary, rather than the whole needles. If you can’t find crushed in a bottle, use the regular dried rosemary and crush it in your palm before using.
- Lemon juice: Fresh lemon juice is the way to go! Avoid the lemon juice in the plastic containers and grab a real lemon from the produce department. I use a handy-dandy citrus juicer.
- Parsley: Garnish the cooked chops with minced flat-leaf parsley.
See recipe card below for full ingredients list & recipe directions.
How to make lemon pork chops
- Prep the pork: Trim an excess fat from the pork chops. Place them in a large bowl with the minced garlic.
- Herbs and lemon: In a small bowl, stir together the oregano, thyme, rosemary, paprika, salt and pepper. Add the lemon juice and toss to coat the pork.
- Let them rest: Let the pork chops rest for 15 minutes to allow the flavors to soak into the meat.
- Prep the oven: Preheat the broiler, with the rack set about 5 inches from the element. Line a baking sheet with foil.
- Cook: Cook the pork chops under the broiler for 4 to 5 minutes per side until they are cooked, with a bit of pink in the center (more on that in a second). Take care not to overcook, as the meat tends to dry out quickly.
Should pork chops be pink in the middle?
- Times have changed and it's no longer recommended that pork be cooked until every iota of flavor is scorched out of it. Hallelujah!
- The USDA and the National Pork Board recommend cooking pork chops to an internal temperature of 145 degrees F for a medium-rare, 150-155 degrees F for medium, 155 to 160 degrees F for medium-well and 160 degrees F for well done, with a 3-minute rest time after cooking.
- I prefer cooking my pork closer to 145 degrees F. At this temperature, the pork chops will be a bit pink in the middle, which means that the pork will be perfectly juicy and flavorful.
Make-Ahead and Storage
Storage: If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They can last for 2-3 days. Slice the pork and serve it cold in a salad or reheat it.
Reheating: To reheat, gently warm the pork chops in an oven or toaster oven to maintain their tenderness. Avoid overheating to prevent dryness.
Dinner salad option: These chops are fantastic straight out of the oven, but also work really well served cold. The second time I made these, I did so first thing in the morning, then stored the pork chops in the fridge for the day. When dinner time rolled around, I thinly sliced the chops and served them on top of a green salad with some quinoa, crumbled feta cheese and a balsamic vinaigrette.
Other pork recipes
Easy Baked Herb Lemon Pork Chops
- Trim any fat from the pork chops. Place the pork chops and garlic in a large bowl. In a small bowl, stir together the salt, pepper, paprika, oregano, thyme and parsley. Sprinkle the salt mixture over the pork chops and garlic, and turn to coat.
- Squeeze the lemon juice over the pork chops. Let rest for 15 minutes.
- Preheat the broiler. Line a baking sheet with foil. Lightly coat with cooking spray. Place the pork chops on the baking sheet.
- Broil the pork chops until just cooked through, about 4 to 5 minutes per side. See Notes for cooking temperatures.
- Sprinkle the pork chops with parsley. Serve.
This post was originally published on March 2, 2017, and was updated on February 8, 2024.
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