Molasses Marinated Pork Chops to Make Ahead and Freeze
Grilled molasses marinated pork chop.
Don't tell anyone that your marinade has molasses in it! Just let them savor the sweet and tangy sauce that glazes the pork chops they are devouring. Yes...this is another favorite recipe from our meal assembly kitchen.
First, take note of some background information about molasses. (It can serve as table talk once your guests acknowledge just how tasty the marinade is!) Molasses is a by-product of the process to make sugar crystals. The process involves crushing sugar cane, extracting the juice and boiling it to make the sugar crystallize. The syrup that remains after the crystals are removed is called molasses. Each time the juice is boiled, additional sugar is extracted and the remaining syrup is less sweet.
There are several types of molasses defined by the stage of processing:
- Light molasses is what remains after the first processing of sugar. It is generally unsulphured and is the lightest and sweetest type.
- Medium or dark molasses remains after the second processing of sugar. It is not quite as sweet as light molasses but is not as strong as blackstrap either.
- Blackstrap remains after the third extraction of sugar. It is a dark color, has a strong, bittersweet flavor and is the least sweet variety. This type is noted for being a relatively nutritious sweetener that is a good source of iron, calcium, copper, manganese, potassium and magnesium.
All three types of molasses work well in this recipe. The light and medium varieties will result in a sweeter marinade. The blackstrap variety also works nicely due to the brown sugar that is added.
A Guide for Cooking Pork
The recipe below suggests a cooking time for pork chops that are about 3/4 inch and can be bone-in or boneless. The National Pork Board website has a terrific chart that identifies the cooking times and temperatures for various cuts of pork as well as different cooking methods. Baked pork chops are an option! Use this guide as you experiment and make this recipe your own.
Ingredients for Molasses Marinated Pork Chops
Gather the following ingredients in one place before you begin assembly. If you want to use up an entire jar of 12 ounce molasses (the typical size you will find in the grocery store,) then plan on the following amounts:
- Molasses 2/3 cup
- Brown sugar 1/2 cup
- Cider vinegar 2 Tablespoon
- Allspice 1/2 teaspoon
- Red pepper flakes 1/2 teaspoon
- Dried onion 2 teaspoons
- Salt 1/2 teaspoon
- Pepper 1/2 teaspoon
- Pork chops - 6 boneless or bone-in, approximately 3/4 inch thick, 4-6 ounces each
This will yield enough marinade for about six servings.
Marinated pork chops before they are grilled.
When you discover how flavorful this marinade is, you will want to make a large batch and divvy it among containers in amounts that fit your family's needs. There are two ways to assemble this recipe:
- Combine everything in a large bowl, stir well and then pour the marinade into freezable containers. If you freeze the sauce by itself, then you will have more options. You can use it with different cuts of pork or chicken.
- On the other hand, if you freeze the sauce over the pork chops, then the marinating process is complete when you are ready to start cooking and there is no bowl to clean up!
The following instructions were used by our customers to assemble the entree in ziplock bags. The recipe yields six servings, but the ingredients can be "split" as indicated.
1. Place an empty ziplock bag in a cylinder. Use two cylinders if you will be splitting the meal. Add the following ingredients to the empty ziplock bag(s):
Red pepper flakes
Recommended Brands of Molasses to Purchase:
2. Seal the ziplock bag(s) and gently massage the contents to combine the ingredients or gently stir with a spoon.
3. Pierce each pork chop with a fork several times on each side and then lift the number of pork chops desired into each bag.
4. Seal the bag tightly, removing excess air, and turn to coat the pork chops with the marinade.
5. Follow cooking directions below to cook this entree now. (Marinate pork chops for at least an hour or overnight for a deeper flavor.)
6. For portions you plan to freeze, place the ziplock bag with the pork chops coated in marinade inside another ziplock bag for extra protection from freezer burn and leakage.
7. Label with cooking instructions below.
8. You're finished.
Print and Cut Cooking Directions
Molasses Marinated Pork Chops
Instructions: Thaw pork chops in refrigerator for 24-36 hours. Discard excess marinade. This entree may be grilled or broiled. Grill for approximately 4-5 minutes on each side over medium heat. If broiling, position the broiler pan 3-4 inches from heating element and broil 4-5 minutes on each side. Meat will be slightly pink in the center. Internal temperature should register 160F.
Serving Suggestions: Serve with creamy mashed potatoes or sweet potato fries and your favorite salad.
- This marinade works great on pork tenderloin and chicken too!
- We suggest that you consume this entree within two-three months of freezing for the best results. It does freeze well!
- Use a meat thermometer to cook the pork chops perfectly. Pork today is very lean and is easily overcooked.
- Coat the measuring cup for molasses with cooking spray before you use it and it will slide right out and make clean up easier.
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