Grilling Frozen Pork Chops: What’s the Best Way?

Grilling frozen pork chops can be pretty tricky. It’s easy to do it the wrong way, without you even knowing it!

So how do you grill frozen pork chops quickly and safely? But most importantly, how to do it without ruining the final result after you grill it?

There are a few things to consider before grilling a thick cut of frozen meat.

Easy Guidelines for Grilling Frozen Pork Chops

There’s nothing quite like grilling a thick cut of meat, but not everyone has time to let their pork chops defrost in the fridge overnight before cooking them.

Here are the steps to follow when grilling frozen pork chops:

  1. First, frozen meat can cook more unevenly than unfrozen meat because it starts out with a lower internal temperature.
  2. Be sure always to preheat your grill before cooking, and brush the grate clean.
  3. If your pork chops are still partially frozen after they’ve been on the heat for a few minutes, be sure to flip them over.
  4. You’ll also need to watch your chops closely as they grill so you can crank up or shut off the flames as required.
  5. And don’t forget to let them rest for a few minutes once they’re done

Grilling a thick cut of frozen meat is not that much different from grilling fresh meat. It just takes a bit more time and attention to ensure even cooking and avoid burning any parts.

Grilling frozen pork chops can be tricky
Source: bitslammer (Flickr.com)

What is the Best Way to Grill Frozen Pork Chops

There are many ways to grill frozen pork chops. In my opinion, this is the most guaranteed way to grill a frozen pork chop.

1. Defrost first

If you’re using a gas or electric grill, be sure to thaw your pork chops in the refrigerator first.

This takes several hours; plan accordingly. After they’re fully defrosted, pat dry with paper towels and season as desired.

You might want to add more seasoning at this point than you would if the pork chops are still frozen.

You can also marinate them now to give the flavors plenty of time to soak into the meat while it thaws.

If you don’t have time for a marinade, try adding more fresh seasonings right before you put your pork chops on the grill.

2. Preheat your grill

Whether you’re using gas or charcoal doesn’t matter. Just be sure that you preheat it to somewhere between 400 °F and 450 °F.

Any lower will result in unevenly cooked meat. On the other hand, cooking at anything higher will likely burn your chops before they have a chance to cook through.

3. Start ’em direct

When grilling frozen meat, it’s best to start them off over direct heat so they can get some good browning action going on one side.  

You can move them to indirect heat once they are thoroughly seared if you want them to cook more evenly. But you run the risk of them cooking too much before searing if they’re over direct heat for too long.

4. Flip ’em up

If your pork chops are still partially frozen after a few minutes on the grill, be sure to flip them over so they can finish cooking evenly on both sides.  

You may also need to adjust the temperature so it’s not as hot or turns down any burners if they start to char quickly. Just keep an eye on them and be prepared to make adjustments as needed.

5. Let them rest

Once your pork chops are cooked through, take them off the grill and let them rest for a few minutes so the juices can redistribute.

To do this properly, you can check their internal temperature with a good instant-read thermometer.

Slicing them open right away will result in meat that’s dry on the inside and out, not to mention they’ll lose all of their delicious juices when you cut into them.

What Temperature are Pork Chops Cooked

Pork chops are cooked when the internal temperature reaches 145 °F for medium or 160 °F for well done.

If you don’t have a meat thermometer, you can also peek slightly under the chops with your tongs to see if they are opaque all the way through.

If not, just give them another minute or two and check again.

Just be sure that you do not overcook your pork chops beyond medium. They will become dry and tough to eat if cooked too long past this point.

This is because pork loses moisture as it cooks through various temperatures. So, be sure to avoid overcooking them at any point, or they will become dry and lose their flavor.

Source: Edsel Little (Flickr.com)

How Long it Takes to Grill Frozen Pork Chops

It should take about 6 to 10 minutes on average to grill frozen pork chops. Though this will vary depending on the thickness of your meat and how hot you have your grill set.

Pork chops can take anywhere from 4 to 20 minutes to cook 1-inch thick pork chops at 400°F.

If you’re cooking 2-inch thick pork chops, start checking for doneness after 7 to 12 minutes.

As a rule of thumb, indirect heat and medium-low temperatures will take longer to cook the meat through. Direct grilling over higher heat will result in faster cooking times.

Grilling frozen pork chops takes about the same amount of time as when they are thawed (about 6 to 10 minutes on average). But you’ll need to add anywhere from 2 to 5 minutes extra if your chops are still partially frozen when you put them on the grill.

This is because it can take several minutes for ice crystals in frozen meat to melt and release steam during the searing process.

Conclusion

Grilling frozen pork chops takes a bit longer than thawed ones, but it’s an easy task to accomplish with a bit of patience and a nice hot grill.

Source: osseous (Flickr.com)

Just be sure to preheat your grill to the correct temperature before cooking for best results.

Always check the internal temperature of your meat using an instant-read thermometer to make sure they are cooked through without overcooking them.

If you don’t have time for a marinade, try adding more fresh seasonings right before you put your pork chops on the grill. Also, along with adding any sauces when the chops come off.

Charring can remove most if not all of their flavor in one brushing.

After grilling both sides of your chops until browned, move them to indirect heat if they are still partially frozen, or move them away from direct heat if they are beginning to char.

Also, be sure that you don’t close the lid of your grill while cooking for this exact reason. Just keep an eye on your pork chops and make adjustments as needed until they are cooked through.