Sous Vide Pork Chops
With sous vide cooking, because you are cooking at the exact temperature at which you are planning on serving your meat, timing is much more forgiving. Temperature is by far the overriding factor. By adjusting the temperature of your Precision Cooker, you can cook your pork chops anywhere from a pink, juicy rare (130°F / 54°C) to a firm but still moist well-done (160°F / 71°C). Bear in mind that the hotter you cook, the more moisture you’re going to squeeze out of the pork.The time and temperature below is given for pork chops that are around 1 1/2-inches thick. Add 15 minutes to the minimum time for each half inch if you have thicker double-cut chops.Rare: 130°F / 54°C, 1 to 4 hours - Tender, juicy, and a little slippery. Medium-Rare: 140°F / 60°C, 1 to 4 hours - Tender, juicy, and meaty (my favorite).Medium-Well: 150°F / 66°C, 1 to 4 hours - Quite firm and just starting to dry out.Well Done: 160°F / 71°C, 1 to 4 hours - Firm, a little dry and tough, but still moist.
J. Kenji López-Alt
J. Kenji López-Alt is the Managing Culinary Director of Serious Eats, author of the James Beard Award-nominated column The Food Lab, and a columnist for Cooking Light. He lives in San Francisco. A New York native, Kenji cut his cooking chops the old-fashioned way by working his way up through the ranks of some of Boston's finest restaurants. With an education in science and engineering and as a former Senior Editor at Cook's Illustrated and America's Test Kitchen, Kenji is fascinated by the ways in which understanding the science of every day cooking can help improve even simple foods. He earned a James Beard award for his first book, The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science, which he released in September 2016. It is available for purchase from Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Prep Time: 00:15
Recipe Time: 01:00
140F / 60C
- 2 Pork Chops
- Salt & Pepper
- Aromatics (Rosemary, Thyme, etc. - optional)
- 1 tbsp / 15 ml Vegetable, Canola, or Rice Bran Oil
- 1 tbsp / 15 g Butter
- Set the Anova sous vide precision cooker to 140ºF / 60.0ºC
- Season the pork generously with salt and pepper on all sides. If you are planning on leaving the un-cooked pork in their bags for more than a few hours before cooking, skip the seasoning step and instead season them just before searing.
- To bag pork chops, start by folding the top of a vacuum-seal or zipper-lock bag back over itself to form a hem. This will prevent juices from getting on the edges of the bag which would interfere with the seal or provide vectors for contamination. Slide the pork chops into the bag along with any aromatics such as fresh herbs (if using). Unfold the edge before closing the bag.
- Seal the bag either using a vacuum sealer or, if using a zipper-lock bag, by using the displacement method. To do this, slowly lower your bagged pork chops into a pot of water, letting the pressure of the water press air out through the top of the bag. Once most of the air is out of the bag, carefully seal the bag just above the waterline.
- Drop the bag in the water bath, making sure not to block the intake or output sections of your Precision Cooker. If properly sealed, it should sink. Cook according to the timing charts included here and in the app.
Finishing Steps - Stovetop
- Remove the pork from the bag, discard any aromatics (if using) and place it on a paper towel-lined plate. Pat it dry very carefully on both sides.
- Place a heavy cast-iron or stainless steel skillet with 1 tablespoon / 15 ml of vegetable, canola, or rice bran oil and 1 tablespoon / 15 g of butter over high heat. Swirl until the butter is melted and starting to brown.
- Carefully place the pork chops into the skillet, laying them down away from you in order to prevent accidentally splashing oil up.
- Carefully lift and peek under the pork as it cooks to gauge how quickly it is browning. Let it continue to cook until the crust is deep brown and very crisp, about 45 seconds.
- Once you’ve flipped the pork chops, you can continue to cook them until browned on the second side, or for more flavor, add another tablespoon of butter along with some thyme, rosemary, garlic, and/or shallots. Spoon the butter over the pork chops as they cook.
- The exterior of the pork will pick up some nice flavor from the aromatics.
- When the pork is browned, pick them with a pair of tongs and make sure to brown the edges as well.
- Transfer the cooked chops to a rack set in a rimmed baking sheet and let them rest for just a couple of minutes. Just before serving, reheat the drippings in the pan until sizzling hot, then pour them over the chops in order to re-crisp their exteriors.
- Serve the pork chops as-is, or slice them off the bone with a sharp knife for a more elegant presentation.