Sous Vide Apple Pork Chops with Hard Cider Marinade

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sous vide pork chops with apples

What’s up, Hungry People!

Ever had a craving for something a bit out-of-the-ordinary but super tasty? Well, you’re in for a treat today! My mind has this funny thing; whenever I think about cooking pork, Angry Orchard hard cider is the first thing that pops into my head. No kidding! I’ve played around with this apple-flavored elixir as a marinade before, and let me tell you, it works like a charm for an extraordinary brine.

hard cider pork chops

The Beauty of Sous Vide

So, I got my hands on an immersion circulator recently, and let’s just say I’ve been having some real fun experimenting. This got me thinking, why not elevate the humble pork chop with some sous vide action and hard cider? Yep, I thought it was a brilliant idea too!

A Word of Caution: Alcohol-Based Marinades

First things first, a little heads-up for those considering the marinade. Traditional sous vide doesn’t really call for a marinade ahead of time. And since we’re using hard cider, remember that alcohol doesn’t evaporate in the sous vide process. If you’re avoiding alcohol, no worries! Apple cider vinegar mixed with water in a 1:1 ratio will get the job done just as nicely.

ingredients for hard cider pork chops

Here’s What You Need

  • Pork chops: The star of the show. Provides a tender, juicy base that pairs well with sweet and savory elements.
  • Apple: Adds a natural sweetness and a slight tartness, balancing the savory flavors of the pork and spices.
  • Hard cider: Used for marination; it tenderizes the pork and adds a unique, fruity flavor.
  • Brown sugar: Contributes sweetness and caramelization, enhancing the overall depth of flavor in the dish.
  • Garlic: A dual-purpose ingredient; used in the marinade for flavor and in the apple sauce for aroma and taste.
  • Lemon juice: Adds acidity to the marinade, helping to tenderize the meat and brighten the dish’s flavors.
  • Onion powder: Provides an oniony background note without the texture or moisture of fresh onions.
  • Paprika: Adds a smoky, mild heat to the marinade and apple sauce, complementing the sweetness.
  • Garlic powder: Reinforces the garlic flavor in both the marinade and the apple sauce, but in a less aggressive form than fresh garlic.
  • Salt & Pepper: Basic seasonings that enhance all the other flavors, making the pork chops more savory and delicious.
pork chops with garlic and apple

Let’s Cook!

Time to get those pork chops ready! Vacuum-seal two chops in each bag along with garlic, paprika, onion powder, brown sugar, and garlic powder. I splash about a quarter cup of Angry Orchard into each bag and save the rest for our apple topping later on. Just a quick tip—don’t flood the bags with liquid, or you’ll end up wrestling with your vacuum sealer.

vacuum sealed pork chops

Cooking Time!

Set your immersion circulator to a steady 190°F. In my case, my trusty Anova did the job flawlessly. Submerge those pork chop bags and let them cook for two hours. I won’t lie; I totally zoned out and forgot to take pictures during this phase. But hey, that’s the beauty of sous vide—it’s a set-it-and-forget-it deal!

Finishing Touches: Angry Orchard Apple Topping

About 15 minutes before your chops are ready, get going on that apple topping. Sauté your chopped apples in a skillet, toss in the remaining garlic and paprika, and pour in about a half cup of your reserved hard cider. Let it simmer until the apples soften up and most of the liquid is gone.

I also gave my pork chops a quick sear on a grill pan for that picture-perfect finish. Totally optional, but if you’re about that foodstagram life, it’s worth the extra effort.

And there you have it! Drizzle that apple goodness over your pork chops and dig in. Enjoy!

searing apples

Tips for Perfect Pork Chops

  • Marinade Time: The longer you marinate, the better the flavor. However, avoid going over 24 hours to prevent the meat from getting too mushy.
  • Cider Alternatives: If you’re not into hard cider, you can use apple juice for a non-alcoholic version but expect a sweeter profile.
  • Sealing Issues: If you’re having trouble vacuum-sealing the bags because of excess liquid, try freezing the cider in ice cube trays first and then adding them to the bags.
  • Temperature Control: Make sure your immersion circulator is calibrated or use a separate thermometer to confirm water temperature. Even a small variance can affect texture.
  • Apple Texture: If you like your apples more on the crunchy side, reduce the simmer time in the apple sauce step.
  • Vacuum Bags vs Ziplock: If you don’t have vacuum seal bags, a Ziplock bag can work. Just use the water displacement method to remove as much air as possible.
  • Grill Pan Substitutes: No grill pan? A standard skillet will work just fine for the optional searing step.
  • Sauce Thickness: If your apple sauce is too thin, you can thicken it with a cornstarch slurry (1:1 cornstarch and water).
  • Leftover Cider: Don’t waste the remaining hard cider; use it in other recipes or as a base for a delicious sauce or vinaigrette.
  • Don’t Rush It: Sous vide is a ‘low and slow’ method. Rushing the process can lead to unevenly cooked meat.
apple pork chops recipe

And that’s how you master the art of these sous vide apple pork chops, Hungry People! We’ve gone through each ingredient and its role, spiced things up with some pro tips, and cooked our way through a recipe that’s just begging to be the new star of your dinner table. Don’t be a stranger to your kitchen gadgets; grab that immersion circulator and show those pork chops some love. Enjoy!


Sous Vide Apple Pork Chops

The Starving Chef
Master the perfect pair of sweet and savory with these sous vide apple pork chops, marinated in hard cider and served with homemade apple sauce.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Course Dinner, Sous Vide
Cuisine Beer, Pork
Servings 4



  • Bring your water to 190°F using an immersion circulator or a closely monitored candy thermometer.
  • In a bowl, stir together 1/4 cup minced garlic, brown sugar, lemon juice, and half of the onion powder, paprika, and garlic powder. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Spread the garlic mixture over the tops of each pork chop. Place the chops in vacuum bags (two per bag). Then add a quarter cup of hard cider to each bag. Be cautious not to overfill. Carefully vacuum seal the bags.
  • Place the bags in the water bath and set a timer for one hour and forty-five minutes.
  • When the timer goes off, start the apple sauce. Peel and chop the apple, then add it to a hot skillet with the remaining 2 tablespoons of minced garlic. Add the remaining halves of the spices (onion powder, paprika, garlic powder). Pour in a half cup of hard cider, then simmer for about fifteen minutes, or until most of the liquid has evaporated.
  • Remove the pork chops from their bags. Discard any remaining liquid.
  • Optional step: Quickly sear the pork chops on a grill pan over high heat for added texture and flavor.
  • Pour the apple sauce over the pork chops. Serve immediately and enjoy!
Keyword apples, cider, pork
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