Apple Cider-Brined Pork Chops


Apple cider-brined pork chops are the perfect way to say farewell to summer and hello to fall. This easy pork chop recipe only needs a few minutes on the grill after it marinates all afternoon!

Apple Cider-Brined Pork Chops
Photo: Andy Lyons
Prep Time:
30 mins
Marinate Time:
6 hrs
Grill Time:
7 mins
Total Time:
6 hrs 37 mins


  • 2 cup cold water

  • 1 cup kosher salt

  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar

  • 2 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed, or 2 sprigs fresh thyme

  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

  • 1 teaspoon whole cloves

  • 4 cup unfiltered apple cider

  • 2 cup ice cubes

  • 4 boneless pork chops, cut 3/4-inch thick (about 1-3/4 pounds)

  • Olive oil

  • Miniature sweet peppers (optional)

  • Sliced French bread (optional)


  1. For brine, in a large saucepan bring the water, salt, brown sugar, thyme, peppercorns, and cloves to boiling over medium heat. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until sugar and salt dissolve, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in apple cider and ice cubes. Stir until ice cubes melt and brine is cool.

  2. Place pork chops in a large resealable plastic bag set in a shallow dish. Pour cooled brine over chops in bag; seal bag. Refrigerate for 6 to 12 hours, turning bag occasionally. Drain chops, discarding brine. Pat chops dry with paper towels. Lightly brush chops with olive oil.

  3. For a charcoal grill, grill chops on the rack of an uncovered grill directly over medium coals for 7 to 9 minutes or until chops are slightly pink in center (160 degrees F), turning once halfway through grilling. (For a gas grill, preheat grill. Reduce heat to medium. Place chops on grill rack over heat. Cover; grill as directed.)

  4. If desired, brush peppers and bread slices with olive oil. Add peppers to grill rack with chops. Grill about 8 minutes or until tender, turning occasionally. Add bread to grill rack during the last 2 to 4 minutes of grilling, turning once. Serve chops with peppers and bread.

Test Kitchen Tip

For a good all-purpose brine, use a ratio of 2 cups kosher salt per 1 gallon (16 cups) of liquid. If using table salt, which is denser than kosher salt, cut the amount in half.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

214 Calories
6g Fat
5g Carbs
33g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 214
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 6g 8%
Saturated Fat 2g 10%
Cholesterol 105mg 35%
Sodium 1481mg 64%
Total Carbohydrate 5g 2%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 33g
Calcium 20.2mg 2%
Iron 1.3mg 7%
Potassium 541mg 12%
Vitamin B-12 0.6mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.8mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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