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What Cooks Faster: Bone-In or Boneless Pork Chops?

by Ellen Douglas

The thickness of the cut, rather than whether a bone is present, determines how long it takes to cook pork chops. No matter what the cut or the cooking method, a food thermometer is crucial for determining whether the pork is safely cooked. Pork chops should register at least 145 degrees Fahrenheit before you remove them from the heat source. After chops finish cooking, let them rest for about 3 minutes.

Know Your Chops

Bones in pork chops lend juiciness to the cooked product, but you may find it easier to cut and serve a boneless chop. Loin and rib chops are the best quality for both bone-in and boneless chops and are the only cuts you'll usually find for boneless types. Bone-in arm and blade steak chops are the toughest and least expensive, responding best to slow cooking. Medium-range on the tenderness and cost scales are the bone-in top loin, loin blade and sirloin pork chops.

Pan Preparations

Sautéing takes 6 to 8 minutes for both bone-in and boneless pork chops, depending on the thickness. Heat a small amount of oil on medium-high in the pan so that the chops sizzle when placed in the pan. For best results, don't overcrowd the chops in the pan. Each pork chop side needs 3 to 4 minutes to cook, so that both sides turn golden-brown. One optional step: while the chops are resting for their 3 minutes, stir wine or vinegar into the drippings, then simmer to make a sauce for the chops.

Broiling/Grilling Guidelines

When grilling or broiling, 3/4-inch bone-in and boneless chops take 8 to 9 minutes, while a 1 1/2-inch-thick boneless chop cooks in 12 to 16 minutes. The broiler pan should be preheated or the grill already hot before you cook the chops. The pork chops need to be turned once during cooking. Estimate about 4 minutes each side for 3/4-inch bone and boneless chops and 6 to 8 minutes per side for thick boneless chops.

Braising Basics

Bone-in or boneless chops can be done in as little as about 8 minutes with the braising technique, but the optional step of browning them adds an additional 6 minutes. It's traditional to sauté vegetables in the pan before browning, which can add about 10 minutes, depending on the vegetable. To brown your chops first, cook them in the pan with a small amount of oil on medium heat, 3 minutes per side. Then add up to 1 cup cider, wine or stock and simmer the chops, covered, for an additional 8 minutes, turning the chops once during the braising step.

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