Pesto Stuffed Pork Chops

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Happy Hump Day everyone. I love Wednesdays! Well maybe I don’t love Wednesdays as much as I love this Wednesday. Why do I love this Wednesday so much? Well I am glad you asked. The sun is actually shining here in Western Washington and this morning I got to spend some time with my son Seth and his girlfriend Heather. They both work nights and it feels like I never see them, but they stayed up so we could have coffee together and chat a bit. It is strange to live with people but never get to see them. It also makes me sad because I rarely get to cook for them any more. I have seriously been thinking about inviting random people over just so I have people to cook for!

This night was one of those nights when I actually got to cook for them. I had some of my homemade pesto left over and was wondering what to do with it. Kevin had mentioned a while back that he wanted me to make some stuffed pork chops. He is a pork chop fanatic, but I just kind of put it on my list of things to make and forgot about it. I know, bad girlfriend right? But since everyone loved the pesto I made so much I immediately knew What I wanted to do with it. Pesto stuff pork chops, yesssss! I was so happy to find thick cut pork chops at the store, the butcher probably wondered what medication I was one (or needed to be on) since I did my happy dance right there in front of the meat counter.

I have stayed away from pork chops for quite some time because the only way I ever made them was to pan fry them and even then I had trouble with them coming out dry. So instead of trying to conquer my “fear” I just turned my back and ignored it. Give me a pork roast, or really any other cut of pork and I am good to go but after I made the Roasted Garlic Pork Chops and Rice and it came out tender and juicy, I decided pork chops were back in my life and away I went with no fear, OK well maybe a little fear, but not much.

Well the fear of the chop is no longer here. I have developed my pork…chops….OK bad joke. Anyway, I think you will really love this recipe. The pesto adds tons of flavor but doesn’t overwhelm the flavor of the pork. Serve it with a nice green salad and a glass of white wine, you will be happy I promise!!

Pesto Stuffed Pork Chops
4 thick cut boneless pork chops
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander 
Pesto, fresh or store bought
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, thinly sliced
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
In a small bowl, mix all of the spices and set aside. Carefully cut each pork chop about 3/4 of the way in, making sure not to cut all the way through, creating a pocket for the pesto. Rub the outside of each pork chop with the spice mixture. Fill each pork chop with pesto, about 1 to 2 tablespoons.
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large oven safe skillet over medium heat, add the onions and saute. Stir them occasionally for 10 minutes. Push the onions to the side and add the other tablespoon of olive oil and the pork chops. Cook the chops for 1 to 2 minutes per side, just enough to brown them. Remove the pan from the heat and place it in the oven. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes (depending on the thickness of the chops). Remove to a platter, or individual plates and top with pesto.

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About Bobbi Burleson

Mom to 2 kiddos and one little Westhighland Terrier. A So Cal girl at heart, I now live with my boyfriend/sous chef in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. I am a writer, recipe developer, photographer, and lover of wildlife, the out of doors, and scrapbooking. My philosophy is to hold those you love close and enjoy each and every moment you can. Oh, and eat mac and cheese, you can never have too much mac and cheese!

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