Pork Chops Smothered in Cranberry-Maple Sauce

Every Christmas my mom would put out cranberries, from a can…I would always pass by them.  The other thing that would get passed by is the sweet potatFreash-cranduryo. Can you believe it? I used to pass by the sweet potato! I love sweet potato now. L.O.V.E. I.T. I still hadn’t developed a love for cranberries though. Maybe it is because this is what the cranberries looked like at Christmas….


Seriously…my dad actually made that sign…seriously…love my dad, he is highly successful but can not spell to save his life.

Back to the cranberries.  I see the fresh cranberries in store and think it must be time for me to expand my horizons. I’m an adult. Plus, they have to be better fresh than that canned stuff, right?

The other half to this story is that my mom is the worst cook when making pork chops. I always thought that pork chops were meant to be dry and impossible to cut. Not so! My mom just cooked the crap out of them.

So what I learned after making this recipe…both cranberries and pork chops are delicious. And delicious together.


4 bone in pork chops (about 1″ thick)
2 t. chopped fresh thyme (divided)
1.5 T. olive oil
1 c. fresh cranberries (or frozen)
1/2 c. chicken broth
1/2 c. pure maple syrup
2 t. apple cider vinegar
2 t. dijon mustard
salt and pepper

  1. Season both sides of the pork with salt, pepper and 1 t. fresh thyme.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a 12″ skillet over medium heat. Add pork chops and cook without moving until the edges are browned. Dont be tempted to try to pry the pork chops off the pan, they will release as some of the fat is rendered. About 4 minutes. Flip and cook for another 4-5 minutes. The chops should be firm to the touch.
  3. Transfer the chops to the plate and cover loosely to keep warm.
  4. In the same skillet, add the cranberries, chicken broth, maple syrup, vinegar and dijon mustard. Plus the 1 t. of thyme left. (All the remaining ingredients).
  5. Raise the temperature to medium-high and whisk to incorporate the mustard and yummy browned bits.
  6. Cook until the cranberries have slightly imploded (or softened but imploded sounds more fun) and the sauce becomes thicker. About 7 minutes.
  7. Add the pork chops back into the pan.  Turn to coat both sides. Serve the pork chops with the sauce. Deliciousness!

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