Lunch / Dinner
Planked Pork Chops with Strawberry BBQ Sauce
Plank cooking isn’t just for salmon. Smoky flavor is within reach when you smolder planks on your grill to infuse all types of meat with the taste and aroma of wood and smoke. This recipe planks thick-cut pork chops, smothered in a sweet-and-spicy strawberry BBQ sauce. Forget about using a commercial brand of barbecue sauce here. Instead, make this homemade BBQ sauce — it’s so simple, and so good, it may become your new go-to favorite.
FOR THE SAUCE, HEAT:
FOR THE PORK CHOPS, ARRANGE:
Test Kitchen Tip
Cedar put plank cooking on the culinary map, but it isn’t the only wood that can be used. Any traditional smoking wood, like apple, cherry, oak, maple, and hickory work very well, too. Each one has its own nuances that enhance the flavor of foods. Avoid any woods that are soft, like poplar and birch, or resinous, such as pine or fir. And make sure to use only wood that has not been treated with chemicals.
Soaking planks is important. Besides preventing the planks from catching fire, soaking gives you the smoke you’re after. At the very least, the planks should soak for one hour. A good six hours, or overnight, ensures well-saturated wood. But any longer really isn’t necessary and may cause the planks to be waterlogged.
Prepare grill for two-zone grilling, heating one side to medium-high heat to maintain a temperature of 450–500° and keeping the other side unlit.
For the sauce, heat oil in a saucepan over medium. Add onion and garlic; sweat until softened, 3 minutes. Stir in ketchup, jam, brown sugar, lime juice, mustard, and Tabasco. Cook sauce until jam dissolves, 3–4 minutes; season with salt and pepper.
For the pork chops, arrange soaked planks on grill over outer burners until planks begin to smoke, 3–4 minutes. Flip planks and arrange over center burners.
Cook pork chops on planks, covered, until a thermometer inserted into centers of chops registers 135°, 10–15 minutes.
Brush chops with sauce. Flip chops to outer burners and grill until marks appear, 1–2 minutes per side. Transfer chops to a platter, tent with foil, and let rest 5 minutes.
Serve pork chops with remaining sauce.
To keep the planks submerged in the water, weight them down with something heavy.
Place the soaked planks on the hot grill to dry them out — this step brings out the smoky, wood aroma.
To prevent planks from burning up, move them to low heat in the center of the grill, then add the pork chops.
To finish cooking and to add grill marks, move the pork chops from the planks to the outer burners.
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 20g 30%
Saturated Fat 6g 30%
Cholesterol 191mg 63%
Sodium 612mg 25%
Carbs 26g 8%
Fiber 0g 0%
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.