Raise your hand if you’re a huge fan of simple, healthy slow cooker recipes! These Whole30 and keto slow cooker pork chops check all the boxes for a nutritious weeknight dinner. Easy and delicious thanks to simple ingredients like apples, onions, and sauerkraut.
I’m starting to realize that I absolutely don’t bust out my slow cooker enough. While I usually prefer my dutch oven, I can’t deny the ease of a slow cooker. Set it and forget it, right?
So I hoisted out my slow cooker for these crock pot pork chops, ready to try something a little out of my wheelhouse. Of course, I grabbed at my favorite cold weather flavor pairings for pork: thinly sliced granny smith apples, tangy sauerkraut, and the sweetness of onions.
How to make slow cooker pork chops
I typically choose dutch ovens because it’s so easy to dry out meat with slow cookers. But I’ve found a few tips and tricks to help you make amazing, tender pork chops in your crock pot!
- Adjust cook time based on the thickness of your pork chops. The pork chops available to me are just over an inch thick — but the thicker, the better in my opinion! Grab thick cut chops if you can.
- The type of pork chops matters. If you can find them, get pork shoulder chops or pork sirloin chops. Boneless pork chops are not the best in slow cookers, because they’re lean. Fatter, marbled meat works better for slow cooking. However, the only sustainably-sourced pork chops I could find are boneless pork chops — and they worked just fine!
- Cook it low and slow! I don’t recommend adjusting this recipe for cooking on high. Low and slow is imperative to tender crock pot meat!
Prepping pork chops for the slow cooker
Like many slow cooker recipes, you can certainly toss all the ingredients into the crock, cover it, and let it cook.
But if you really want to kick it up a notch, you’ll do 10 minutes of extra prep.
For truly spectacular slow cooker pork chops, I always recommend searing the pork chops before slow cooking. Just like steak! It seals in the flavor and you get those wonderful-looking seared outer edges.
To sear pork chops, just preheat a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pork chops and cook for 3 minutes on either side.
If you do that step, though, why not take it one step further and sauté the onions before adding them to the pot?
Again, this is entirely optional and is likely just my personal tastes — I love the sweet buttery flavor or sautéed yellow onion, and that just won’t happen if you throw them raw in the slow cooker.
Once you’re done searing the chops, reduce heat and add a little olive oil. Scrape up any bits from the pork chops. Add the onions and cook, stirring frequently, for 3-5 minutes or until softened.
THEN add everything to the crockpot and cook accordingly.
Like I said, optional…but worth it!
More paleo pork recipes
- Macadamia-Crusted Pork Chops with Bacon Brussels Sprouts
- Dry-Rubbed Crockpot Pulled Pork
- One Skillet Pork Chops with Apples & Onions
- Pork Belly Stir Fry
Simple and tender, these slow cooker pork chops with apples, onions, and sauerkraut make an easy weeknight meal! Spend a few minutes more to sear the pork chops and sauté the onions before adding them to the slow cooker for best results.
- 2 thick cut pork chops
- 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon thyme
- 1/8 teaspoon celery seed
- 16 ounces sauerkraut (I use Bubbies)
- 1 granny smith apple, cored and thinly sliced
- OPTIONAL: Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pork chops, searing for 2-3 minutes on each side. Transfer to plate and reduce heat to medium. Add 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil to the skillet. Add the sliced yellow onions, sautéing for 3-5 minutes or until softened and slightly translucent.
- Add sauerkraut to the slow cooker. Combine garlic powder, oregano, black pepper, thyme, and celery seed in a small dish. Sprinkle pork chops with spice mixture. Add pork chops, apples, and onions to the slow cooker. Cook on low for 4 hours (adjust as necessary for the thickness of your pork chops).
Keywords: slow cooker pork chops