Summertime is such a sweet season in Minnesota. Everyone is outside, the trails are hopping, and people just seem to be in great moods. Who can be in a bad mood when the sun is shining and we’re not all buried in parkas?!
After living in Minnesota for 8 years, I’ve come to know that we have to really savor this time of year – it doesn’t last long! I just can’t believe we are in mid-August and it’s getting close to back to school time! And (dare I say it?) pumpkin season! I may or may not have a pumpkin recipe ready to post at the end of this week…
Anyways! Although I really do appreciate every season for what it offers, none of them really beat summer. One of my favorite parts of this season? Grilling!
As a mom, I love taking advantage of cooking outside because the boys can play in the backyard while I cook dinner and we are all enjoying the fresh air.
I’m excited to share with you my newest grilling recipe Ancho Chili Lime Pork Chops with Avocado Corn Salsa, because it was a huge hit at our dinner table! The pork chops are super flavorful and the avocado corn salsa is a delicious complement to the ancho chili flavor.
What is Ancho Chili Powder?
You might be wondering what the difference between ancho chili powder and regular chili powder is, and you’re not alone! The two chili powders have distinctly different flavors as they are made from completely different peppers.
Ancho chili powder is made from ancho peppers which are very mild in heat and a little sweeter than regular chili powder. It’s also commonly used in traditional Mexican dishes. The chili powder that you may be used to is made from a variety of peppers and typically has other spices blended in such as cumin and garlic.
These ancho chili lime pork chops get marinated in a combination of ancho chili pepper, cumin, garlic, onion powder, salt, lime juice, lime zest, and olive oil and are SO full of flavor. You can marinate them anywhere from 30 minutes to 8 hours.
As always I highly recommend using a meat thermometer when cooking pork (and chicken!) on the grill. This ensures that they are cooked to a safe temperature, and I don’t have to play the dreaded guessing game. Plus, no one likes being served a piece of meat that’s been cut into five times to check the doneness.
Also, the cooking time is going to vary depending on the thickness of pork chops. I’ve seen pork chops ranging from super thin to pretty thick and it will also depend on if you choose bone-in or boneless. The USDA recommends cooking your pork chops to 145-160 degrees F, so I take mine off around 150-155 degrees F and let it sit for five minutes before cutting.
I served these ancho chili lime pork chops with grilled veggies and grilled bread, for a meal entirely cooked on the grill. Is there anything better than a grilled dinner in the summertime?!
Like this recipe? Check these out, too!
Grilled Pork Chops with Cumin Orange Marmalade from Girls Can Grill
Apple Cider and Thyme Grilled Pork Chops from The Chunky Chef
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- 4 bone-in pork chops boneless will also work
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- Juice from 1 lime
- Zest from ½ lime
- 1 tablespoon ancho chili powder
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon salt
Avocado Corn Salsa:
- 1 ½ cups frozen corn thawed
- 1 avocado diced
- ½ small red onion finely chopped
- 1 jalapeno diced
- ¼ cup cilantro chopped
- Juice from ½ lime
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon salt
- In a bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, lime zest, ancho chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, oregano, and salt.
- Brush the marinade over the pork chops and refrigerate for 30 minutes, or up to 8 hours.
- To make the corn salsa, combine all of the salsa ingredients in a bowl, stirring well to combine.
- To cook the pork chops, preheat your grill over medium-high heat.
- Once hot, place the pork chops on the grill and cook for 7-8 minutes on each side, until a meat thermometer reaches 145-160 degrees F.*
- Serve the pork chops topped with the avocado corn salsa.