Grilled Iowa Pork Chops with Foil Potatoes and Strawberry Spinach Salad

Dave and Sarah Eickelberg —  April 11, 2011 — 6 Comments

The weather in Iowa was so incredible yesterday! The grill beckoned to us and we were right there to answer the call. After making our Hawaiian Chicken Kebabs, we knew our next grilled meal was going to have to be Iowa Chops. If you aren’t from Iowa, you may not know just how glorious these bad boys are. They are so stinking thick! Other pork chops fall to their knees at the mere mention of the Iowa Chop. I mean, we seriously had a minor league hockey team named after this cut of meat! How awesome is that?

We decided to pair the chops with a side that both of our dads always made on the grill when we were growing up — potatoes, carrots and onions (or foil potatoes as we now call them). The potatoes get all crispy and golden brown. Yum!

We also wanted a light salad, so Sarah threw together a really healthy strawberry spinach salad with an amazing homemade dressing.

Grilled Iowa Pork Chops
Prep Time: 15 minutes

Thick Cut Iowa Pork Chops
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper

Heat your grill to high

Brush each side of the pork chops with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.


Place pork chops on the grill and grill until golden brown and slightly charred, 7 to 8 minutes. Turn over and continue grilling until the pork chops are cooked through, 7 to 8 minutes. Note that the cooking time listed is for thick cut, bone-in chops. If using thin, boneless chops you’re cooking time will be almost cut in half.


Remove pork chops from grill. Tent with foil and let rest, 3-4 minutes.


Foil Potatoes
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Serves: 4

4 medium sized russet potatoes
8 oz baby carrots
1 small yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper

Place the potatoes in a pot of cold, salted water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and let simmer until the potatoes are tender, about 7 minutes. Drain and let cool.

Line a small baking sheet with two sheets of foil, letting the foil extend over the ends of the baking sheet.


Drizzle the pan with olive oil.Slice the potatoes into 1/4 inch slices. Place on the baking sheet with the carrots and sliced onions. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.


Top the baking sheet with another sheet of foil. Fold in all sides of the foil, forming a seal all around.


Place on the grill and grill 23 t0 25 minutes.


Strawberry Spinach Salad
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 4

8 cups baby spinach
1 1/2 cup sliced strawberries
1/2 cup toasted walnuts
2  oz light feta cheese, crumbled

2 tablespoons white wine viniger
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon poppyseeds
Juice of 1/2 orange
Pinch of salt
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Whisk all dressing ingredients, except the olive oil, together in a large bowl. Once mixed, slowly whisk in the olive oil. Add the spinach to the bowl and toss to coat with the dressing. Top with the strawberries, walnuts and feta cheese.


This was honestly one of the best meals that we have had in awhile, and it really caught us by surprise. We just wanted a simple, quick dinner. The pork chops and the potatoes are seasoned with only olive oil and salt and pepper. That’s it. No fancy rub or spices. Just simple and incredibly good. How in the world could you turn down this bite?!


There is no way that bite is getting dipped in any steak sauce! The biggest surprise of all was that we could not keep enough food on our kids plates! They loved this meal so much. Marley said she loved the pork chops more than watermelon (which is a huge deal for her since she could eat an entire watermelon). And we also got her to enjoy her first potato that was not a french fry. Gavin kept throwing his fists in the air and declaring, “more stuff please!” We consider this a huge victory since we’ve had our share of dinner battles in the past.


What did you do to enjoy the weather yesterday? Did you dust off your grill?


6 responses to Grilled Iowa Pork Chops with Foil Potatoes and Strawberry Spinach Salad

  1. YUM! That right there is about as yummy as it gets! It’s the meal (with all kind of variations and versions) that we eat ALL spring and summer! Love that there’s no sugar in the salad dressing! A little honey sounds perfect! Going to make that salad this week!

  2. oh and i think we were separated at birth because i have the same dishes as you. lemongrass, tangerine, and peacock.

  3. Oh, yes, the weather was so wonderful this weekend. We grilled, too — Saturday night was steak and Sunday it was pizza!

    Can’t wait to try that salad!

  4. Kristin from MN April 11, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    The salad looks amazing! Mmmmm! Have you figured the calories in the dressing? Would you consider it low-calorie dressing?

    • We calculated that there are about 270 calories total in the dressing. The salad serves four, so if you really eat 1/4 of the salad and 1/4 of the dressing, it would be about 67 calories. So yes, we would consider it low calorie. :)

      Each serving of the salad, with the dressing is about 227 calories. 100 of those calories are from the walnuts. Walnuts are super good for you, but if you are watching calories you could reduce the amount of walnuts.

  5. Oh, goodness! This looks like one of my favorite summer meals! Potato packets are the best! I’m definitely going to borrow this salad recipe too!

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