Baked Ham with Brown Sugar Glaze

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Baked Ham is my kids’ all time favorite meal!  They’d pass up a turkey dinner any day of the week (or any holiday) for ham.

This easy baked ham is moist, tender and delicious inside while the outside is brushed with a brown sugar glaze and caramelized for a hint of sweetness. We serve this baked ham for special occasions (like Easter and Christmas) but it’s simple enough to make any time of year!

Sliced ham on a plate cut from our favorite baked ham recipe and brushed with brown sugar glaze.

I’m not going to lie, I love turkey dinner (mostly I just love stuffing) but I’m kind of outnumbered around here because everyone else votes ham.  While I make Crock Pot Ham quite frequently since it’s so easy, I have to admit I truly love the roasted flavor that comes from making a deliciously glazed baked ham!

Baking a ham is not hard, you just need to watch the temperature to make sure it heats through without over cooking.  Adding a brown sugar glaze to baked ham takes it to the next level without being overly sweet.

How to Bake  a Ham

Most of the time when you purchase ham, it’s been smoked which means it’s cooked.  Be sure to check the package of your ham to see if it says fully cooked (and it should let you know the temperature to cook your ham to).

A fully cooked ham needs to be cooked to 140°F (basically just to heat it) where as a “cook before eating” ham needs to be cooked to 160°F.

When cooking ham, you’ll want to preheat your oven and place the ham cut side down. Brush with the brown sugar ham glaze before baking.

Cover the ham in foil and crimp the foil around your roasting pan (I use a 9×13 pan) to seal it.

Baked ham with brown sugar ham glaze ready to be sliced

How long to Cook a Ham

This recipe uses a bone in ham since bone-in ham produces the best flavor and very tender meat (plus we like to have a leftover ham bone to make our favorite Crock Pot Ham and Bean Soup).

For this recipe a bone-in fully cooked ham cooks for about 12-14 minutes per pound (a 9lb ham will take about 2 1/4 hours).

It is easy to overcook ham so to really make a perfect baked ham, I suggest using a thermometer like this one.

I have one and I simply leave in the ham while it cooks and monitor the temperature for perfect results. (I use if for everything from steaks to perfectly cooked Pork Tenderloin). They cost less than $20 and I think it’s truly a small investment to be able to produce perfect results when cooking (and to never have overcooked meat again)! You should also see a cooking guide on the package of the ham you buy for cooking times but a thermometer is most accurate.

Brushing brown sugar ham glaze on a ham in a baking dish

How to make Brown Sugar Glaze for Ham

In this recipe I add my favorite Brown Sugar Glaze for ham using, of course, brown sugar and a bit of pineapple juice (orange juice works great too). The glaze is flavorful without being too sweet and adding a delicious sticky coating to the outside of the ham.

I take the extra step (about 4 minutes of extra time) to thicken the glaze slightly because this makes it adhere to the ham much better.  You can use dark or light brown sugar in this recipe but dark brown sugar has a bit more flavor.

As with anything that is high in sugars, the brown sugar glaze can burn if left too long in the oven so it is just added for the last 15 minutes.

Once the brown sugar glaze is thickened and cooled, the ham is removed from the oven and the heat is cranked up high.  Brush the glaze over the ham and pop it back into the oven.  The high heat will make the most gorgeous golden glaze in just a few minutes!

Before carving your baked ham, let it rest 15 minutes to help keep it perfectly juicy.

How much ham per person

If you’re using a bone in ham, you’ll want about 3/4 pound of  ham per person and a bit more if you want leftovers (for Ham and Corn Chowder or Cheesy Ham and Potato Casserole). An 8lb ham should feed about 9 people.

What to Serve With Glazed Ham

This beautiful brown sugar ham is most often served at Christmas dinner or Easter dinner at our house! We serve it with our favorite sides for the perfect meal!

4.5 from 4 votes
Review Recipe

Baked Ham with Brown Sugar Glaze

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 35 minutes
Servings 12 Servings
Author Holly Nilsson
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Baked ham is moist, tender and delicious inside while the outside is brushed with a brown sugar glaze and caramelized for a hint of sweetness.


  • 1 spiral cut ham with bone-in approx 7-9 lbs
  • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup pineapple juice or orange juice
  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice or orange juice
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch

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  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Combine dijon mustard and pineapple juice. Brush over ham.
  3. Place in a roasting pan and cover tightly with foil. Roast 12-15 minutes per pound (or according to package directions).
  4. Meanwhile, combine glaze ingredients and bring to a boil. Turn heat down and simmer 2-3 minutes. Cool.
  5. 15 minutes before ham is done, remove from the oven and turn the oven up to 425°F.
  6. Brush with glaze and return to the oven until the glaze is caramelized and the ham has reached the safe cook temperature.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 690, Fat: 44g, Saturated Fat: 15g, Cholesterol: 164mg, Sodium: 3200mg, Potassium: 795mg, Carbohydrates: 11g, Sugar: 10g, Protein: 57g, Vitamin C: 1.5%, Calcium: 30%, Iron: 2.5%

(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)

Keyword baked ham, brown sugar glaze, glazed ham

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Brown Sugar Glazed Baked Ham is the perfect Sunday dinner. Tender and juicy on the inside and perfectly caramelized on the outside! #spendwithpennies #ham #bakedham #glazedham #easterdinner #hamdinner

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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!

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    1. What type of ham are you using? Most ham recipes will come with times on the package however I very strongly suggest a meat thermometer. I use one for almost all of my meats to ensure they are cooked without drying out.

    1. A smoked ham with bone should take about 2.5hrs (give or take a little bit). You’ll want to ensure the temperature reaches 140°F (as long as it’s a cooked/smoked ham).

  1. Baked ham is also my family’s favourite!
    In fact, I usually make the sugar glaze in any fried dishes. They always goes awesome!
    Yum yum, this ham is perfect ingredient for my morning salad xD

  2. This recipe calls for covering the ham while baking. The apple glazed ham, also on this sight, call for the ham to be uncovered while baking. As far as I can see the only difference is the type of glaze…….can you explain why one is uncovered and the other covered? Thank you!

    1. The other recipe you’re referring to uses a whole ham that is not spiral cut. I find a spiral cut has better results if covered so the slices don’t dry out.

  3. Thought I would share my mom’s Baked Ham recipe.  Everyone in our town raves about it and when our church had a ham dinner it was my mom who cooked the hams!   In her day, they didn’t have those spiral cut hams.  Even today, I won’t buy one.  I like my ham cut about 1/2 inch thick so it’s nice and moist.  Spiral hams are cut too thin and dry out.  Mom always bought the shank portion of the ham if it was for us;  thechurch slwsys bought semiboneless wholehams.  A good size shank will feed between 6 and 12 people depending on how big their appetites are!   She would rub the whole price with ground cloves and put it in the pan cut side down.  Then she’d add 1 cup of warm water and 1 cup of pineapple juice.  Then she’d pour 1 cup of pure maple syrup over the top.  Then she’d wrap the pan in two layers of foil, tightly.  No steam was to escape!   After about 1 1/2 hours at 350 degrees, she’d take it out, uncover, and carefully trim away the outer layer of fat— leaving a good 1/4 to 1/3 inch layer on the ham.  Another sprinkling of ground cloves and another 1/2 cup of maple syrup over the top, covered again, and back in the oven for 1/2 to 3/4 hour!   Removed from the oven and foil removed, the ham got a covering of sugar —preferably maple sugar but brown would do it maple couldn’t be found.   Back in the oven, under a low broiler until browned and crunchy.  Watch it or it will burn!!!! Sometimes she would decorate with pineapple slices with cherries in the middle and whole cloves stuck in the fat. My dad didn’t like the whole cloves so she often left them off!   I make this several times a year when ever Ham is on sale!

    1. Hi Victoria – your mom’s recipe sounds really good.  I would like to try it some time.  Should the ham be pre-cooked or uncooked for this recipe?