Experiencing a little deja vu? Yes, you’ve seen this recipe for Maple Granola, Apple, and Cheddar Stuffed Pork Chops before. In July, I entered the Golden Girl Granola Blogger’s Challenge. When the granola arrived in the mail, I was so excited, I dove right into creating a savory, meaty main and a healthier version of my all-time fall favorite sweet potato casserole, bypassing the directions. It was a dessert I signed up to make, not pork chops and sweet potato casserole. Remember when I used to be an English teacher?! Yeah, I don’t either or that Rule #1 is ‘Read the instructions’. Oy.
All turned out well–including the dessert I cobbled together at the very last minute. So did this stuffed Pork Chop which is far more fitting to share in the fall anyway. It is heartily sweet and savory (you know I love when those two flavors marry) and the almonds, in this particular granola, hold up to their crunchy end of the bargain. I’m 100% confident that granola will be in 100% of my meat stuffings from now on.
Note: I haven’t tried it yet, but I’ve got a hunch this stuffing would be turkey’s phenomenal flour-free BFF.
- 4 boneless pork chops
- 3 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
- 1 granny smith apple, peeled and cut into ½ inch cubes
- ½ Vidalia onion, finely chopped
- 1 cup Golden Girl Forest Maple Granola
- 1 cup extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 tsp. thyme
- salt and pepper to taste
- Kitchen twine to hold the pork chops together
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In a cast iron skillet (or oven proof pan), heat 1½ TBSP oil over medium heat. Add the onions and apples, stirring to coat with oil. Add the thyme, a pinch of salt and pepper, and stir again. Let sautee for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the onions are slightly translucent. Remove from heat to let cool for a few minutes.
- Meanwhile, butterfly your pork chops by running a knife through the long side of the pork chop, making sure to stop before you cut all the way through. The pork chop should open like a book. Note: If you don't have kitchen twine, run a sharp knife blade through the top of the pork chop, creating a little pouch for the stuffing.
- Drizzle the chops with EVOO and season with salt and pepper inside and out.
- Once the apple-onion mixture has cooled, transfer to a mixing bowl. Add granola and cheddar cheese to the bowl and stir to combine.
- Stuff each pork chop with the granola stuffing. If using the butterfly method, tie a piece of kitchen twine around the top third and bottom third of each pork chop so the stuffing does not come out while it cooks.
- Place a cast iron (or oven proof) pan over medium high heat and add remaining olive oil to pan. Once oil shimmers, add pork chops. After 2-3 minutes, flip the pork and put in the oven immediately. The top of each should be nice and golden brown.
- Bake butterflied chops for about 20 minutes. If you used the pouch method, cook for about 25 minutes. Make sure the thickest part of the meat is cooked to 145 degrees and twine is removed before serving.