If you're looking for an easy, flavorful alternative to pan-friend or grilled pork chops, consider baking them with mandarin oranges and other seasonings to serve up a moist and delicious dinner. Pork chops are all cut from the pork loin, the meat running from the shoulder of the pig to its hip. Avoid ending up with dry pork chops by choosing chops that are 1 to 2 inches thick, as thinner chops will cook too quickly and lose moisture.
Select pork loin rib chops, which are also commonly called center cut pork chops, if you can find them. These loin chops are they best cut for baking since they're less prone to drying out than pork loin sirloin chops and loin end chops, which are more suited for pan frying or braising.
Set your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and begin preheating it.
Place the pork chops in a baking dish that's been greased or sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Add a little salt and pepper on top of each chop.
Peel and slice fresh Mandarin oranges or open a can of Mandarin oranges. If you're using canned oranges, add the oranges and the juice to the pork chops. If you're using fresh ones, buy one or two extra oranges and squeeze them, adding the juice to the pan. If you want your pork chops to be glazed, you can add a spoonful of orange marmalade on top of each chop. As the chops bake, the marmalade will coat them, making an effortless glaze that complements the flavors of the Mandarin oranges.
Add any additional seasonings to the pan. This can be as simple as a little salt and pepper to enhance the flavor, or additional seasonings such as fresh or dried herbs, ginger, onions or garlic. After seasoning the dish, cover it tightly with aluminum foil.
Bake for 20 to 60 minutes, or until a meat thermometer reads at least 145 degrees Fahrenheit. Take the pork chops out of the oven and serve.