How to Heat Up Leftover Pork Chops & Make Them Tender

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You can use the oven, microwave and stovetop to reheat pork chops.

Nothing says comfort food like a plate of juicy pork chops with a side of apple sauce and mashed potatoes. But if you don't have hours to spend in the kitchen, consider making a large batch ahead of time, then all you have to do is reheat pork chops when you're ready to eat.

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You can use the oven, microwave and stovetop to reheat pork chops.

How to Reheat Pork Chops

Reheating leftovers is a simple and effective way to get a meal on the table in under 20 minutes. Before you set the oven temperature, make sure the leftovers you plan to heat have not exceeded the storage time. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics says to eat leftovers stored in the refrigerator within three to four days and within three to four months if stored in the freezer.

The secret to making any leftover taste fresh is choosing the best method for reheating. Fortunately, if you need to reheat pork chops, you have at least three ways to get the job done, including the oven, stovetop and microwave.

Claudia Sidoti, head chef and head of recipe development at HelloFresh, shares the steps to heat leftover pork chops in the oven, so they are tender and juicy.

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Add 2 tablespoons of water or broth (chicken, beef or vegetable) to an oven-safe pan.
  3. Place the pork chops in the pan.
  4. Cover the pan with aluminum foil
  5. Reheat in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the meat is thoroughly heated.
  6. Use a food thermometer to check for internal temperature. Although the safe internal temperature for uncooked pork is 145 degrees F, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reheating leftovers requires an internal temperature of 165 degrees F before they are ready to serve.
  7. Remove from the oven and serve warm.

Read more: How to Cook Pork Chops in the Oven

Reheat Pork Chops in Microwave

Although it's not the preferred method to reheat pork chops, the microwave is still an option, especially when you're crunched for time. The key to a great meal from the microwave is to use the right power setting. For pork chops, the ideal setting is 50 percent power. Anything higher than this, and Sidoti says you'll dry out the meat.

  1. Place the pork chops in a single layer on a microwave-safe plate.
  2. Cover with a damp paper towel.
  3. Heat on 50 percent power for approximately 30 seconds.
  4. Check the temperature by touching the pork chops with your finger. If they are still cool, put them in for another 30 seconds.
  5. Continue with 30-second cycles until the meat is warm at the center and edges.
  6. Use a food thermometer to check for internal temperature. Leftover pork chops are ready when they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
  7. That said, you need to allow for a resting time, often three minutes, before checking the internal temperature and determining they are safe to serve, according to the USDA.

Read more: Why Grilled Pork Chops Are a Healthier Way to Get Your Protein

Other Ways to Reheat Pork

If you want a method that is faster than the oven but tastes better than leftovers from the microwave, then the stovetop is for you. In fact, this is Sidoti's preferred method to reheat pork chops since you can easily add moisture to prevent them from drying out.

  1. Use a skillet large enough to fit the pork chops.
  2. Add a splash or two of water, broth (chicken, beef or vegetable) or oil to the skillet.
  3. Place pork chops in the skillet.
  4. Cover and simmer until the pork is hot, flipping at the three-minute mark.
  5. Add more liquid if it is getting absorbed. Pork is ready when it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.

If you need to reheat pork tenderloin, Sidoti says the best way to keep this cut of meat tender and tasty is to use the oven.

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Put the pork tenderloin on a sheet pan and place in the oven.
  3. Reheat pork tenderloin for about 10-15 minutes. If pork is sliced, only reheat for about five to eight minutes.
  4. Use a food thermometer to check for internal temperature. Leftover pork tenderloin is ready when it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
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