Inspiration for this Moscow mule brined pork chops dish comes from when I got caught accidentally spilling my beverage and covering it up by calling it a marinade.
When I got to thinking about it, the Moscow mule cocktail has almost all of the ingredients required for making an amazing brine. So a Moscow mule brined pork chop would be a great way to add both moisture and flavor to an otherwise average dish.
This Moscow mule brined pork chop recipe makes the juiciest pork chops you have ever tasted. You’ll need to plan ahead to make these—they need to marinate in their cocktail marinade for at least 8 hours.
What cut of pork chop works best for this recipe?
For this recipe, I use a thick-cut boneless chop which is actually taken from the pork loin. The pork loin is a wonderful cut of meat because it's inexpensive and you get a lot of pork for your buck.
This recipe would also work well with a rib chop, shoulder or blade chop, or a sirloin chop.
How thick should my pork chops be?
You can really go with any size chop for this dish. If you are using thin-cut pork chops they can cook quite quickly so take extra effort to prevent them from being overcooked by using an instant-read thermometer to check doneness.
What internal temperature should I cook them to?
The USDA recommends cooking pork to a minimum temperature of 145F. My preferred method would be to cook the pork close to 140F and then allow the meat to rest for 10-15 minutes covered in foil. This will allow the temperature of the meat to carry over to the 145F as recommended
Can I make this recipe without an air fryer?
This dish can be made in an oven, on a grill, griddle, or however you prefer to normally cook pork chops.
I cook the Moscow mule brined pork chops in the Ninja Foodi Grill XL with the smart cook system but you can get similar results with other indoor grills and air fryers. Using the SearNSizzle insert by GrillGrates gives my pork a deliciously flavorful texture and stunning sear marks.
Ninja Foodi Grill Recipe: Moscow Mule Brined Pork Chop
- 1 14-ounce bottle spicy ginger beer (such as Bundaberg or Cock ’n Bull)
- 2 ounces 1⁄4 cup vodka
- 3 cups ice cubes
- 2 medium limes
- 1 cup boiling water
- 1 ⁄4 cup garlic salt
- 4 fresh kaffir lime leaves
- 2 12-ounce thick-cut pork chops
- 2-3 tablespoons of your favorite pork seasoning to taste
- Make the brine
1 In a medium bowl, make a Moscow mule cocktail by combining the ginger beer, vodka, and ice. Cut the limes into wedges and squeeze the juice into the cocktail mixture, then add the juiced wedges as well.
- 2 Remove the boiling water from the heat and add the garlic salt; stir to dissolve. Bruise the kaffir lime leaves by folding them a few times; place in the hot garlic water. Set aside to steep for 5 minutes and then add the entire mixture to the cocktail, stirring to combine.
- Brine the pork chops3 Using a sharp knife, trim any excess fat from the exterior of the pork chops to ¼ inch. Place your pork chops in the Moscow mule brine mixture, making sure they are well covered with the liquid. Refrigerate, covered, for 8 to 24 hours, rotating the chops in the brine every few hours.
- Prepare the Ninja Foodi Grill
4 Set up your Foodi Grill for cooking with the grill plate and preheat to 375°F.
- Prepare the pork chops for grilling
5 Remove the chops from the brine and pat dry with paper towels.
- Season generously with the pork rub on both sides.
- Insert a probe thermometer into one of the chops from the side. If the chops have a bone, insert the probe so that it goes through the meat toward the bone but doesn’t touch the bone.
- Cook the pork chops
6 Place the chops on the preheated grate and grill.
- Flip occasionally to promote browning and even cooking.
- Typically they are done in 10 to 15 minutes—but cook to temperature, not time.
- When the pork chops reach an internal temperature of 142°F, remove them from the grill and loosely tent with foil.
- Allow them to rest for 10 minutes before serving.
Don't skip the resting step of this recipe. When you remove the meat from the heat it will continue to cook due to carryover cooking.
If you slice in straight away the juices don't have a chance to redistribute and make the meat more delicious. You've spent time brining the pork to make it juicy so take advantage of that.
While the meat rests, consider making yourself a delicious beverage to enjoy with dinner. Perhaps a Moscow mule?
If you're looking for inspiring recipes for the Ninja Foodi Grill this pork shoulder dish may be perfect for you.
Some of our favorite air fryer recipes are listed in this post with plenty of ideas about what you should be cooking next.