Homemade Honey Ham Glaze
Updated: Mar 10
I love a good baked ham. The first time I prepared one, I made my own glaze by just throwing in a bunch of ingredients that sounded yummy to me. My husband and family loved it, so I wrote down the ingredients and tried again with measurements; it was equally delicious.
You can buy prepared hams, of course. At certain holidays, I've heard there's a line out the door at a certain store that sells ham baked in honey. Being skeptical about the ingredients used in this commercial operation, I prefer to make my own glaze, and it's not really that difficult to bake a ham as long you have a roasting pan and an oven.
I generally choose a good quality precooked, bone-in, uncured ham with no added water, juices, or spices--just ham! Spiral sliced hams are convenient, though they can be prone to drying out; if you take care to follow the directions in this cooking method, though, it shouldn't be a problem. Please note that if your ham is a "country ham," meaning uncooked, you'll want to use a different cooking method but this glaze will still be delicious on it!
Homemade Honey Ham Glaze
This is a flexible recipe. If you don't have an ingredient, you can leave it out and substitute more of another one! The ingredients are quite sweet, which is what I like; if it's still not sweet enough for you, of course you could add more honey, more maple syrup, or even throw in some sugar.
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup orange juice, bottled or fresh-squeezed
1/4 cup applesauce or apple juice
2 tablespoons brown mustard
scant tablespoon molasses
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
pinch of cloves
In a small saucepan over medium low heat, combine the liquid ingredients.
Add the spices and zest; stir to combine.
Heat until combined, then turn off the burner.
Use the glaze on your ham whenever your cooking method requires!
Baked Ham Directions:
This is the method I use to bake my uncured, precooked spiral sliced ham. I got this method from The Kitchn, which is a website that really comes in handy when I want a basic cooking method for something.
Preheat oven to 275 degrees; make sure only the bottom rack is in place.
Have a roasting pan ready. (I use my cast-iron dutch oven to keep the bottom of the ham in its juices, so I don't use a rack.)
Take note of how many pounds your ham weighs.
Unwrap your ham and put it cut-side down in the roasting pan.
Using a sharp knife, make a crosshatch pattern in the skin of the ham (just the skin, not the meat). This step is optional, but I think it helps the glaze adhere to the ham.
Cover the pan with aluminum foil* and seal around the edges so that all the steam and liquid will stay inside.
Put the ham in the oven. The ham will need to remain in the oven for 20 minutes per pound.
While the ham is baking, make the glaze above.
When the ham is nearing the end of its baking time, check the internal temperature. Once it has reached 120 degrees, it's time to glaze the ham. Remove the ham from the oven and turn the oven to 425 degrees.
Carefully remove the foil from the ham and glaze it with a brush. Save half the glaze for the next step.
Place the ham back into the oven uncovered for 10 minutes.
Remove the ham and turn the oven to Broil. Glaze the ham one last time, using all your glaze, and put it back in the oven under the broiler for 3 to 5 minutes. Watch carefully!
Your ham is ready to remove from the oven; slice and eat!
* I don't usually cook with aluminum foil, but haven't found a good alternative for this application so I make an exception the once or twice a year that I bake a ham.
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