Panko-Crusted Thin-Cut Pork Chops

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OK, so this isn’t diet food. This is a fried pork chop. And it’s just about one of the best things I’ve had in a long time.

These pork chops are dipped in a mixture of garlicky buttermilk and egg, coated in fluffy, Japanese panko breadcrumbs, then shallow-fried in a bath of pure olive oil ’til they’re golden brown and crispy.

This recipe starts with super-thin, center-cut pork chops. (Don’t try this with regular pork chops, as the crust will likely burn before the meat cooks through.) A quick, shallow fry practically guarantees they’ll stay moist and juicy.

Since they’re so thin, they cook through by the time they’ve developed a good crust. The meat is juicy and succulent, and just the tiniest bit tangy from the buttermilk.

Panko-Crusted Thin-Cut Pork Chops: A note on ingredients

Panko are Japanese breadcrumbs.

They’re made from crust-less white bread, and are larger and coarser than regular breadcrumbs.

They make a fabulous breading for fried foods, and produce a deliciously crunchy crust.

I found my panko at the grocery store in the international foods section. If you can’t find them, you can also order them online.

For the olive oil, use pure olive oil, which is better suited for frying.

Panko-Crusted Thin-Cut Pork Chops

2 lbs. center-cut, thin-cut pork chops
2 jumbo eggs
1/4 cup buttermilk
1 Tbls. garlic powder
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. white pepper
1 Tbls. dried parsley
2 cups panko breadcrumbs
pure olive oil
kosher salt for sprinkling

Using two gallon-sized zip-top bags makes the prep on these quick and easy. If you don’t have them, you can totally also use large, shallow bowls for the egg and panko instead.

Line a sheet pan with wax paper or aluminum foil and set aside.

Panko-Crusted Thin-Cut Pork Chops: Prep your meat

Grab your pork chops.

They’re about a quarter- to a half-inch thick each. Mine had the bone in them, but you can use thin, boneless pork loin, too.

Put the pork chops in a gallon-size zip-top bag.

Set them aside while you whisk up your egg.

Panko-Crusted Thin-Cut Pork Chops: Mix up the egg

Crack your eggs in a medium-sized bowl.

Whisk them together.

Add the buttermilk to the eggs.

Whisk the eggs and buttermilk together to combine.

Add the garlic powder, kosher salt, white pepper, and parsley flakes to the egg mixture.

Whisk together to combine.

Panko-Crusted Thin-Cut Pork Chops: Coat the chops with the egg mixture

Pour the egg mixture into the bag and over your pork chops.

Seal the bag tightly. Smoosh it around with your hands to coat the pork chops with egg.

Panko-Crusted Thin-Cut Pork Chops: Bread the chops

Next, measure out your panko.

Put the panko in another gallon-size zip-top bag.

Take one pork chop out of the bag with the egg and drop it into the bag with the panko.

Seal the bag and shake it up until the pork chop is well coated with breadcrumbs.

Put the pork chop on your lined sheet pan.

Repeat the breading process with the rest of the chops. I like to do them individually to ensure each gets coated in crumbs really well.

Panko-Crusted Thin-Cut Pork Chops: Shallow fry the pork chops

Set a large frying pan on the stove. I use a double-burner non-stick pan for maximum frying real estate.

Fill it with about a quarter-of-an-inch of olive oil. Set the heat to high. Wait a minute or two for the oil to heat up.

After a minute or two, check the oil to see if it’s hot enough. Dip one end of a pork chop into the oil. If bubbles immediately start to form around it, the oil is hot enough.

If you don’t see any bubbles, wait another minute, then test the oil again.

When the oil is hot enough, carefully place all your pork chops in the pan.

The oil should immediately begin to bubble up around them.

Fry them for 2-3 minutes on this side.

While they’re frying, toss the wax paper or aluminum foil that was on your sheet pan. Line it with fresh paper or foil, so you have somewhere to put your pork chops when they come out of the hot oil.

After 2-3 minutes, grab a pair of tongs. Lift up one side of a pork chop and peek underneath it. When it’s golden brown and crusty, flip all your chops over.

Be careful when you flip them, as they might splatter a little bit when the moisture from the top of the chops hits the hot oil.

Once you’ve flipped your chops over, you might need to turn the heat down a smidge, if they look like they’re frying too quickly.

Sprinkle the tops with kosher salt now if you like.

Fry them for 2-3 minutes on this side, until the bottoms are equally browned and crispy. (Peek underneath again to check.)

When the bottoms of the pork chops are brown and crusty like the tops, transfer them to your sheet pan. Sprinkle with a little kosher salt now if you like.

Panko-Crusted Thin-Cut Pork Chops: Serve and enjoy!


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Jessie Cross is a cookbook author and creator of The Hungry Mouse, a monster online food blog w/500+ recipes. When she's not shopping for cheese or baking pies, Jessie works as an advertising copywriter in Boston. She lives in Salem, Massachusetts with her husband and two small, fluffy wolves.

23 COMMENTS

  1. Well that's just about the best darn looking pork chop I've seen in a long time! Me and the little carnivore would love them, and like you, probably eat too many of them, but husband would not. He's not a 'fried' anything kind of guy- me? I love a good crispy indulgence once in a while and I LOVE Panko! We use them for a lot of different applications, esp. seasoned toasted bread crumbs for topping pasta
  2. I buy thin cut pork chops all the time and always end up overcooking 'em...this looks to be a good solution that'll keep the inside nice and juicy :) gotta love panko! -emily ChicagoDining Examiner
  3. Aaaaaa! Another wicked post from Jessie that leaves me drooling! Jessie - you convinced me to put Panko bread crumbs on my next grocery list. I heard many good things about it - and now it's time to actually try it! Thanks for an excellent post!
  4. OMGosh, these are absolutely the BEST pork chops I have ever made in my entire life!!! My hubby loves pork chops, but the ones I made were always dry and quite tasteless. These pork chops are so moist and tasty and can I tell you how much I love the crispy crust the panko makes. This will be my one and only recipe for pork chops. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU.
  5. These are the best chops ever! They come out soo moist. I had thick chops and I fried them and finished them off in the oven for 15mins. Came out perfect. Thank you so much for sharing this reciepe, it earned a place in my reciepe box! :)
  6. Impromptu dinner and in a panic because my grocers pork chops were a leetle on the thick side. Not terrible, but definitely too thick for the 2-3 minute sear. To combat this, I cooked as directed in the recipe ( BEAUTIFUL golden crust) and baked them for what turned out to be about 15ish minutes. I was worried about them drying out but they turned out perfectly. Soul food was the request by my guests so I sided it with Parmesan crusted Mac and cheese and my bacon laden collard greens. Ha! No weight watching last night! Thanks for the recipe, I will definitely use it again!!!
  7. [...] Panko-Crusted Thin Cut Pork Chops as Pork Parmesan with Spaghetti and Tomato Sauce- (Again???) Yes, it’s been there for 3 weeks, I think.  It’s just so easy and adapted well to a pork version of Chicken Parmesan.  Add sauce and cheese, then heat in oven to melt the cheese.  We used white cheddar – good budget buy at our local store and has a nice sharp flavor. [...]
  8. LOVE Panko...tried these last night. I didn't change a thing in the recipe and they turned out great! Have saved this and will make again...thanks!
  9. YUM! I just made this for dinner and it was delicious! I didn't have any buttermilk so I substituted with mock buttermilk (milk + a little white vinegar) and it worked out fine I marinated the chops in the 'buttermilk', egg & herb mixture (I added oregano and basil along with parsley) for about 30 minutes, then breaded them with the panko breadcrumbs to which I added the same herbs as the marinade as well as some parmesan. 3 minutes per side and YUMMY. Incredibly moist and flavorful. This will be my go to method from now on. Thanks for the springboard!
  10. I made these for dinner tonight and my kids devoured them!! I can't wait until my husband gets home to see what he thinks! I am thinking this recipe will work with chicken and Turkey cutlets too. Definitely a keeper!

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