When brainstorming this recipe, I was feeling really good about the flavor combo. Pork Chops with Apples, Cabbage, & Fennel; It’s not something revolutionary or even original, but it’s so, so good.
Sheet Pan Pork Chops with Apples, Cabbage & Fennel
What I wasn’t sure about was how it would all work on a sheet pan. After all, flavor is only part of the equation, and it doesn’t matter how good the flavors are when you’re pairing them with dry, rubbery pork chops.
I did a little research about cook times for all of the ingredients involved, and did my best to structure the recipe for the best end result. What I didn’t want was for the pork chops to get overcooked, or the apples to get too soft, or the appearance of the pork chops looking less than appealing because of not enough browning.
The key to this recipe’s success, I found, was a two part process. It’s still one pan, low maintenance recipe- don’t start drafting hate mail to me just yet.
Here’s the cliffs notes: You season some pork chops and set them aside to get their flavor on, and roast the cabbage and fennel to perfection.
And then since Pork chops are better when cooked with high, direct heat methods, broiling those will yield a much better result than just baking them with the cabbage and fennel.
Make sure to adjust your oven racks before preheating, it’s much easier to do when they’re cold!Print
One pan, One complete Fall meal with tons of flavor.
For the Chops:
- 4 bone-in pork chops (about 1 inch thick)
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon mustard powder
- 1 teaspoon avocado or light olive oil
For the Veg:
- 1 small head cabbage (about 1.5 pounds cut into 8 wedges)
- 1 medium fennel bulb (about 1/2 pounds cored and cut into 8 wedges)
- 1/4 cup avocado or light olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds (or caraway seeds)
- 2 large or 3 small apples, (cored and cut into 10–12 wedges)
for the sauce:
- 2 tablespoons dijon or spicy brown mustard
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- Arrange your oven racks so one is in the center and one is 4-5 inches beneath the broiler. Preheat the oven to 425ºF.
- In a dish that will fit the pork chops, combine the 1 teaspoon of salt, paprika, garlic powder, mustard powder, and teaspoon of oil. Add the pork chops and season with the mixture on both sides. Set aside. (It’s okay for them to be at room temp while you proceed with the recipe. You can also do this step up to a day ahead and cover and refrigerate)
- On a rimmed baking sheet, coat the cabbage and fennel with the 1/4 cup of oil and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Roast on the middle rack for 20 minutes, and then remove from the oven and flip. Sprinkle on the fennel seeds and roast for another 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, mix the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl.
- Remove the vegetables from the oven and transfer to a platter. Cover with aluminum foil to keep warm.
- Switch the oven to broil. Arrange the pork chops on the baking sheet and broil on the upper rack for 8-10 minutes. Remove from the oven and flip the chops, and add the apples to the pan. Broil for another 8-10 minutes, or until the pork is just cooked through*
- Add the pork chops and apples to the platter with the cabbage and fennel and drizzle with the sauce.
*The amount of time it takes will depend on the thickness of your chops and the distance from the broiler. If using thinner chops, start with 6-8 minutes.
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