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You can make these healthy, delicious pork chop recipes in just 30 minutes

It’s time to look beyond beef, chicken, and fish during your next trip to the grocery store. There’s a protein option you may be overlooking that packs a healthy dose of nutrition and should be a big part of your regular eating routine: pork. 

Pork is an excellent choice for tasty, low-calorie appetizers, lunches, and dinners. As pork needs to be thoroughly cooked, some roast pork recipes may take a bit more time than you can handle on a busy weeknight. The more manageable size pork chops you buy, the faster they will cook, making them a practical choice for any day of the week. Here are some of our favorite healthy pork chop recipes that you can make in 30 minutes or less that will have you and your family feeling satisfied.

Why you should eat pork

Pork contains many important nutrients, and it is a source of high-quality protein. Although it is often called “the other white meat,” pork is actually a red meat, and, like all red meats, it should be consumed in moderation. Pork is relatively low in calories (a 3.4-ounce portion contains just 297 calories) and is a good source of:

  • Niacin
  • Vitamins B6 and B12
  • Iron
  • Zinc
  • Phosphorous
  • Thiamine

Finally, according to WebMD, “the selenium in pork is essential for proper thyroid function. A six-ounce pork chop has more than 100% of the recommended daily allowance of selenium.”

Healthy pork chop recipes

Balsamic-plum glazed pork chops

Balsamic vinegar, combined with port wine and plum preserves, creates a sweet and savory glaze that elevates a simple pork chop into something extraordinary. These pork chops are done in a matter of minutes and just 281 calories per chop. Add a healthy grain like quinoa or couscous, along with your favorite fresh veggie, to create the perfect meal.

Low-calorie smothered pork chops

Before the word “smothered” scares you off with visions of heavy, fattening sauces, relax — this pork chop recipe is smothered with a healthier sauce. The mix of chicken stock, low-fat buttermilk, and Dijon mustard perfectly complements the natural flavors of the pork. The cooking part of this recipe only takes about 15 minutes. However, to get the most flavor and moistness from your pork chops, you should season the chops on both sides with salt, pepper, and a bit of cayenne, then put them back in the fridge for about an hour before cooking. You’ll love the rich flavor and tender goodness, and at just 260 calories per serving, this is one recipe you don’t have to feel guilty about.

Lean pork chops with honey glaze

After one bite of these honey-glazed chops, you’re going to want to make this recipe a regular part of your meal rotation. With lots of layered flavors and just 300 calories per serving, the chops are cooked on the grill for three to four minutes per side (depending on thickness). For a perfectly cooked pork chop, your meat thermometer should read 140 degrees F when inserted into the thickest part of the chop.

Thai-inspired red curry pork kebab recipe

While not a pork chop recipe, this delicious pork meal still cooks up in a matter of minutes. These red curry pork kebabs are loaded with flavor, and the amazing Thai coconut milk curry sauce is absolutely addictive. Fire up the grill, grab some skewers and a few chunks of pineapple, and get ready to devour your soon-to-be favorite meal. Just 240 calories per skewer? Yes, please!

Vietnamese-style pork noodle salad

Looking for a healthy pork recipe for weight loss? This is it. This deconstructed spring roll salad is perfect for dinner tonight and leftovers for lunch tomorrow! The salad is a refreshing mix of rice noodles and crisp veggies with a sweet and spicy vinaigrette, topped with savory stir-fried pork. Done in under 25 minutes, it has just 250 calories per serving. 

Greek-style pork chops

Believe it or not, this flavorful pork chop recipe with creamy Greek yogurt and a tomato-cucumber salad is just 233 calories. But the taste will have you saying “Opa!” Add a side of toasted pita wedges by cutting the pita into quarters and toasting. Make a little extra, and eat it for lunch the next day. 

It is possible to eat healthily, lose weight, and still get your dinner on the table in a matter of minutes by cooking with pork. When it comes to taste, these healthy pork chop recipes are loaded with flavors but not calories, so you’ll enjoy every single guilt-free bite.

Editors' Recommendations

Kim Renta
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Kim has written for Bloomingdales, Movado, and various e-commerce wine sites. When she's not writing about wine and…
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