Iowa Stuffed Pork Chops
It rained most of the Memorial Day weekend. Instead of a cook-out, we had a cook-in — and baked Iowa chops stuffed with corn, bread, apple and onion and glazed with honey mustard. The chops weren’t the only ones who were “stuffed.”
I have a confession to make. I have lived in Iowa all of my life, and I have never stuffed a pork chop before. I also have never slopped a hog, detasseled corn — or lived on a farm. Prior to college, all I knew about farming came from reading Charlotte’s Web and visiting the Iowa State Fair to see the biggest pig — who was not named Wilbur.
Whenever I travel outside of Iowa, I am surprised to meet people who think all Iowans are farmers. During my first trip to Texas, I met someone who, after discovering I was from Iowa, asked me, “Is that the potato state?” I explained that was Idaho, not Iowa. Then they asked, “What is Iowa known for?” I had to admit it was pigs and corn.
Iowa is the top state in pork production, raising 30 million hogs every year. Iowa is also the top corn-producing state, producing more than 2 billion bushels annually. Here are a few other fun facts about Iowa’s claims to fame:
- There are six pigs for every person in Iowa.
- The “Corn Belt” is not a fashion accessory. It is several states, including Iowa, known for growing corn.
- The biggest pig ever at the Iowa State Fair weighed 1,259 pounds.
- There really is a “Corn Palace,” but it isn’t in Iowa. It’s in South Dakota.
- Iowa even had a hockey team called the Iowa Chops for a while.
- The “Field of Dreams” in Dysersville, Iowa, could be yours for $5.4 million.
About The Recipe
This recipe for Iowa Stuffed Chops is from the Best of Iowa cookbook. You can find a similar recipe on the Taste of Home website. The only difference between the two is the chops are stuffed before they are browned in a skillet in the Best of Iowa version.
The Cast of Characters
Recipe: Iowa Stuffed Chops
Summary: Huge pork chops stuffed with corn, apples, onion and bread — and glazed with honey mustard
Ingredients & Instructions
Baking time (duration): 60 minutes
Number of servings (yield): 2
Meal type: dinner
- Selecting Your Chops: If you don’t live in Iowa and don’t have Iowa chops, don’t worry. Any thick pork chop will do. Make sure it is about 1 ½ to 2 inches thick so you have room for stuffing.
- Cutting a Pocket: Place the chop on a flat surface, and hold it steady with the palm of your hand. Insert a paring knife into the fatty side of the chop to make a slit, running the knife parallel with your hand. Cut a “pocket” for placing the stuffing inside the chop.
- Stuffing with a Spoon: Use a metal spoon to scoop the stuffing into the chop. You also may need to use your fingers to push in the stuffing. You will be amazed at how much stuffing fits in these chops.
- Cooking with Cast Iron: I recommend using a cast iron skillet. That way you can brown the chops on the stovetop and bake them in the oven using the same pan. That also means fewer pans to wash.
- Baking Until Done: Test the chops with a thermometer to make sure they are done. You can either bake them to 145 degrees, now that the USDA has lowered the cooking temperature for pork, or continue to bake them to 160 degrees. I still cook mine to 160.
Here are a few other stuffed pork chop recipes that look interesting too.
- Apple Cranberry Stuffed Pork Chops from Allrecipes
- Italian Sausage Stuffed Pork Chops from Food Network
- Pork Chops Stuffed with Feta and Spinach from My Recipes