Make this Top Selling Instant Pot Sweet ‘n Sour Pork Chops Recipe. Tender, Juicy Pork Chops drenched in a deliciously appetizing sweet and sour yummy sauce. Add this pressure cooker pork chops to your easy weeknight meal plan!
We’re thrilled that readers have been loving our Refreshing Instant Pot Lemon Chicken inspired by my Dad’s Chinese Restaurant.
So how can we miss out recreating yet another Classic Favorite – Sweet and Sour Pork 咕嚕肉!! 😀
Love those satisfying mouthfuls of tender pork bites bursting with beautifully balanced deeply sweet and addictively sour sauce.
Every time we eat Sweet & Sour Pork, I’d stealthily pick out & eat up as many of those juicy pineapple chunks as I could without being scold for no table manners. hehe~ shh… 😛 I absolutely adore that burst of intense yummy sauce!
In this Instant Pot Recipe, we’re keeping it simple by skipping the dicing & frying. So we can easily satisfy our comfort cravings on weeknights with just simple pork chops. 🙂
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Make this Top Selling Instant Pot Sweet 'n Sour Pork Chops Recipe. Tender, Juicy Pork Chops drenched in a deliciously appetizing sweet and sour yummy sauce. Add this pressure cooker pork chops to your easy weeknight meal plan!
Tenderize Pork Chops: Use the backend of a heavy knife or meat tenderizer to pound both sides of pork chops with all your might (see below photos as reference).
Marinate Pork Chops: Marinate with ½ tsp white sugar, ¼ tsp salt, ¼ tsp sesame oil, and 1 tbsp soy sauce for at least 30 minutes. If you are marinating for 1 1/2 - 8 hours, place them in the fridge.
Prepare Instant Pot Pressure Cooker: Heat up pressure cooker over medium heat (Instant Pot: use Sauté Normal Function). Ensure your pot is as hot as it can be (Instant Pot: wait until indicator says HOT). This prevents pork chops from sticking to the pot.
Brown Pork Chops: Add 1 tbsp (15ml) peanut oil. Ensure to coat oil over whole bottom of the pot. Brown 2 marinated pork chops for roughly 75 - 90 seconds per side (don’t constantly flip them). Remove and set aside. Repeat for remaining pork chops.
Sauté Onions & Garlic: Add chopped onions, a pinch of kosher salt and ground black pepper if desired. Cook onions for roughly 1 minute until softened. Add minced garlic cloves and sauté for another 30 seconds until fragrant.
Deglaze: Add ⅔ cup (188ml) cold water and deglaze by scrubbing all the flavorful brown bits off the bottom.
Pressure Cook Pork Chops: Add ¼ cup (60ml) ketchup, ¼ cup (60ml) white vinegar, 1.5 tbsp (21g) white sugar, 1 tbsp (15ml) soy sauce, 1 tbsp (15g) tomato paste, and 1 tsp (5ml) Worcestershire sauce. Stir and mix well. Place pork chops + all meat juice in the pot. Pressure cook at High Pressure for 1 minute, then 10 minutes Natural Release.
Make Sweet & Sour Sauce: Remove pork chops. Press Cancel button, then Sauté button to heat up the sauce. Add ⅔ cup (100g) pineapple chunks and chopped green/red pepper. Stir and cook for a minute.
Thicken Sauce: Mix 2.5 tbsp (22.5g) cornstarch with 3 tbsp (45ml) cold water. Mix it in one third at a time until desired thickness. Taste the sweet ‘n sour sauce and season with more salt, sugar, or vinegar. For reference, we added 2 pinches of kosher salt. Turn off the heat. Add pork chops back in and coat them with the delicious sauce.
Serve: Drizzle sweet ‘n sour sauce over pork chops, then enjoy!
Prepare Ingredients for Instant Pot Sweet ‘n Sour Pork Chops.
*Pro Tip: For best results, use well-marbled pork chops!
The Making of Tendered Instant Pot Pork Chops
I inherited this traditional Chinese method from my grandma.
To tenderize, use the back-end of a heavy knife or meat tenderizer and pound on the pork chops with all your might. Don’t worry about using too much power as pork chops are very resilient to force.
Make the cross patterns as shown in above photo and do the same for both sides. Plus, you will get a nice workout for your arm. 🙂
Marinate the Pork Chops
Before cooking the pork chops in the Instant Pot, marinate the chops with 1/2 tsp (2.3g) white sugar, 1/4 tsp (1.25g) kosher salt, 1/4 tsp (1.25ml) sesame oil, and 1 tbsp (15ml) regular or Chinese light soy sauce.
This will give the chops more flavor.
Give it a quick mix and let the pork chops marinate for at least 30 minutes. If you are marinating the pork chops for 1 1/2 – 8 hours, place them in the fridge.
Prepping the Onions and Bell Peppers
If you had Sweet and Sour Pork in a Chinese restaurant, you’ll notice the bell peppers and onions are usually cut into uniform shapes. This is not only for presentation.
*Pro Tip: Uniform cuts are important in a quick & high-temperature cooking environment such as the wok. If one of the ingredients are cut much larger than the rest, the larger ingredient can be undercooked while the rest is done.
Browning the Pork Chops
Press Saute button to heat up your Instant Pot using Sauté Normal function. It will switch to ON on the screen.
Wait until it says HOT on the screen. It will take roughly 8 minutes.
Add 1 tbsp peanut oil (or olive oil) into the Instant Pot’s inner pot. Ensure the whole bottom is coated with the oil.
Place 2 marinated pork chops in Instant Pot and brown for roughly 75 – 90 seconds per side.
*Pro Tip: You don’t want to brown them for too long as the marinade has sugar and soy sauce. Don’t let them burn!
This is the color you are looking for. Set aside the pork chops and repeat this step for remaining pork chops.
Saute Onions & Garlic
Add chopped onions, and season with a pinch of Kosher salt and ground black pepper. Saute the onions for roughly a minute until softened. Add minced garlic cloves and saute for another 30 seconds until fragrant.
Pour in 2/3 cup (188ml) cold water and deglaze by scrubbing all the flavorful brown bits off the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon. Give it a quick mix.
Add in Sauce Mixture Ingredients
Add in 1/4 cup (60ml) ketchup, 1/4 cup (60ml) white vinegar, 1.5 tbsp (21g) white sugar, 1 tbsp (15ml) soy sauce, 1 tbsp (15ml) tomato paste, and 1 tsp (5ml) Worcestershire sauce.
Give it a quick mix with a wooden spoon to make sure all the ingredients have broken down.
Pressure Cook Pork Chops
How to Make Tender, Flavorful, & Juicy Instant Pot Pork Chops?
No one likes overcooked, rubbery dry and tough pork chops…yet Instant Pot Pork Chops cook in a flash. So we’ve done multiple pork chops experiments to find the optimal pressure cooking method.
We were most satisfied with the pounded/tenderized pork chops pressure cooked at High Pressure 1 minute, then 10 minutes Natural Release in Instant Pot Pressure Cooker. These Instant Pot Pork Chops were flavorful, tender, moist, and juicy..oh yes!
Add the 4 browned pork chops and all the meat juice back into the Instant Pot.
With the venting knob on the venting position, close the lid and turn the venting knob to the sealing position.
Pressure Cooking Method: Pressure cook at High Pressure for 1 minute and natural release for 10 minutes.
If the floating valve doesn’t drop after 10 minutes, turn Venting Knob to Venting position to release remaining pressure.
Open the lid carefully.
Make Sweet ‘n Sour Sauce
Set aside the pork chops in a serving plate. Press Cancel button, then Sauté button to heat up the sauce.
Add in 2/3 cup (100g) pineapple chunks and chopped green/red pepper. Stir and let them cook for a minute.
Thicken Sauce & Season
Mix 2.5 tbsp (22.5g) cornstarch and 3 tbsp (45ml) cold water together in a small mixing bowl. Add the cornstarch mixture one third at a time to thicken the sweet and sour sauce until desired thickness.
Give the sweet ‘n sour sauce a taste and season with more salt, sugar, or vinegar if necessary.
*Pro Tip: The idea is to achieve the ultimate harmony between the flavors. For reference, we added 2 pinches of kosher salt.
Add Pork Chops & Serve
Turn off the heat and add pork chops back to the Instant Pot.
Try to coat each of the Instant Pot Pork Chops with the delicious sauce.
Your Instant Pot Sweet ‘n Sour Pork Chops are ready to be served! Serve it with your favorite side dishes or eat them on their own 🙂