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Sweet tea makes the best brine for tender, juicy pork chops

Meagan Wied is the author of the food and lifestyle blog, A Zesty Bite. She likes to recreate old classics and develop new recipes that the whole family will enjoy. When she isn’t busy in the kitchen, she is playing with her toddler. In...

Brine your pork chops in sweet tea for a little taste of the South

Try adding a little sweetness to your next meal with the help of everyone's favorite Southern drink: sweet tea.

Pork chops remind me of growing up in the country. We were definitely a meat-and-potatoes type of family, and I probably still lean that way today. A good home-cooked meal to me is meat, vegetables, starch and a nice hot, buttery roll that just came out of the oven. This screams "home" to me.

Sweet tea brined pork chops

My local grocery store was advertising pork chops this past week, and I couldn't pass on a good marinaded pork chop. Sweet tea reminds me of the summer, so pairing it with these gorgeous-looking chops was the only way to go.

Sweet tea-brined pork chops recipe

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 quart sweet tea
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons agave nectar
  • 1 cup ice cubes
  • 2 pork chops
  • Extra salt, for seasoning
  • Olive oil
  • Thyme, for garnish

Directions:

  1. In a large pot, bring the tea, salt, bay leaves, garlic and nectar to a boil. Remove from the heat, and allow to cool. After 10 minutes, add in the ice cubes, and transfer the marinade to a gallon-size Ziploc bag. Add the pork chops, and chill them in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours.
  2. Remove the pork chops from the bag, and set them onto a plate for 20 minutes before cooking them. Season both sides with salt.
  3. To an iron skillet over medium heat, add some olive oil. Place the pork chops into the skillet, sear them for 2 minutes, and then flip them over. Sear them for an additional 2 minutes, and then place the heat on low-medium. Cook for 15 to 18 more minutes or until done.
  4. Garnish with thyme when ready to serve.

More lip-licking pork chop recipes

Cherry pork chops
Asian pork chops
Apricot-glazed pork chops

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