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!
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.
Cover the ham in foil and crimp the foil around your roasting pan (I use a 9×13 pan) to seal it. Brush with the brown sugar ham glaze before it finishes baking.
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.
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!
- Homemade Mac and Cheese Casserole
- Copy Cat Cracker Barrel Hashbrown Casserole Recipe
- The BEST Mashed Potatoes
- Fresh Green Bean Casserole
- Scalloped Potatoes Recipe
- Classic Deviled Eggs Recipe
Baked Ham with Brown Sugar Glaze
- 1 spiral cut ham with bone-in approx 7-9 pounds
- 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
- ¼ cup pineapple juice or orange juice
Brown Sugar Glaze
- ½ cup pineapple juice or orange juice
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- Preheat oven to 325°F.
- Combine dijon mustard and pineapple juice. Brush over ham.
- If your ham has a plastic disk on the bone, this should be removed and discarded. Place the ham, flat side down in a roasting pan, and cover tightly with foil. Roast 12-15 minutes per pound (or according to package directions).
- Meanwhile, combine glaze ingredients and bring to a boil. Turn heat down and simmer 2-3 minutes. Cool.
- 15 minutes before ham is done, remove from the oven and turn the oven up to 425°F.
- Brush with glaze and return to the oven until the glaze is caramelized and the ham has reached the safe cook temperature.
Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.
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My first time doing ham with a glaze. My husband enjoyed it but I felt the mustard taste stood out too much
Used this recipe this Easter weekend both for a large spiral bone in ham and also for a simple Schneiders precooked ham. Both were delicious and so easy!
I’m making this recipe yet again for Easter today, and I’m so thankful for you sharing it! The glaze thickened with cornstarch was transformational for me, as all too often the glaze just ends up on the bottom of the baking dish. Yours actually stays on the ham and I love the agrodolce that the sugar and the vinegar in the dijon brings to baked ham.
Hi! I’ve made your recipes before and they never disappointed! I would like to make this ham for my sons’ birthday party this weekend. I will provably need a 15lb ham to feed 20 people. Do I need to make more glaze for that? please advice – OH! I’m making your Italian Pasta Salad as one of the sides :)
That sounds like a delicious pairing, Liz! We hope everyone loves it. As for the glaze, I would maybe double it to ensure that there is enough to brush over the entire ham and get that carmelized goodness in every slice.
Ok I will. Thank you so much for the response! I will try to remember and post the outcome :-)
This was an amazing and delicious recipe. I used a boneless fully cooked ham, followed the package instructions and followed the instructions for this recipe. It came out just as wonderful and just as juicy.
Thank you for another amazing recipe. I didn’t have a spiral ham, but it still came out great. I prepared just as the recipe said. The only difference is that I cooked it in a bag. Before putting the glaze on, I took it out of the bag. My husband said it was the best ham he ever had.
I want to make this tonight however can not find anywhere the instructions on how to make the glaze including when to put the cornstarch?
Hi Christi, We combine all glaze ingredients in Step 4, including the cornstarch. Hope that helps!
Can i make in crock pot?
To make Crock Pot ham I would follow this Crock Pot ham recipe Cindy. Enjoy!
This was delicious!!! Great recipe!!
I made this glaze today for our Christmas Ham and I have to say it is simply amazing!!! I did however had to put in All Purpose Flour in place of the Cornstarch but it didn’t change it at all this glaze tastes fantastic! I will be making this from now on! Thanks for the recipe my family and I love it! **Just a note that I done when I took the pineapple juice from the can to reserve for this glaze I took the pineapples and put into the bottom of the pan and also on the ham it’s self I put in a cup of water and covered tightly with foil and cooked it for 4 1/2 hours on 325, the last 20 minutes is when I put the glaze on the ham** Hope these little notes may help someone that may have questions when they are looking for the right answers or need a substitute!
dumb question, does it have to be a spiral cut ham? We always get the non-cut one and hoping I can use this recipe for it.
This will work just fine with any cooked ham. You’ll want to score the ham so the glaze can get into the meat. Enjoy!
You never mentioned a cook temp for the ham or the glaze!!!
Step 1 says “Preheat oven to 325°F.” Enjoy the ham Stanley!
Do you cover the ham with foil again after you put on the glaze?
We cook the ham uncovered when the glaze is added.
We are preparing a KUROBUTA HALF BONE-IN HAM (6-7 lbs) for Christmas. It says it is fully cooked, so cook until 40 degrees. My question to you is will this glaze affect the drippings, because I like to make the gravy with it? Thank you!
Hi Valerie, yes the glaze does affect the drippings. The flavors of the glaze will be reflected in the drippings.
An absolutely great glaze recipe! Sometimes simple is the way to go! Since I am not a fan of spiral cut hams, I had a 15 lb bone in ham. I roasted in preheated 325 oven for 1 hr 30 mins. After applying finishing glaze I used my cooking torch to caramelize instead of returning to a high heat in the oven. After slicing, I placed in WARM, not hot, crockpot & took to a family post Thanksgiving gathering! Let me tell you, not a sliver left! FYI! The center was cool but the ham is already cooked, so no worries! The WARM crockpot evened the temperature without overcooking the ham.
Do you have any recommendations for replacing the mustard, or could I just leave that part out? I can’t stand it or any of the common replacements like horseradish.
The mustard adds a little bit of spice/tang. You can leave it out if it’s not a flavor you like or add a tiny bit (maybe a teaspoon) of cider vinegar. Let us know how it goes!
I’m planning to make this tonight! I’ve never made a ham before but knew brown sugar glaze is perfect for it. I however do not have pineapple or orange juice, could I use lemon? If so how much would you say?
Lemon has more tang than orange/pineapple so I’d add just a tablespoon or so and then just enough water to make a glaze. You could also try apple juice.
can i cook this ham the day before Thanksgiving? …and heat up before dinner?
Sure, that should work well, David.
It’s Thanksgiving day here in Canada. Instead of making the usual Turkey dinner I’m using your recipe for baked ham which is in my oven at this very moment. Have to say I’m a wee bit disappointed you left out your directions of placing the ham face down in the pan in the print version of your baked ham as well as what temperature to cook it to. Information which I now see was a step that should have been done now that I’m back on your site rechecking your complete post on the ham as well as seeing what temp. to cook it to.
My bone in butt ham was placed on it’s side where the fat and parts of the ham are uppermost which I’m assuming was not the right way to place the ham. Nonetheless, I’m hopefully when my ham is cooked to temperature and time to add the brown sugar glaze, the ham meat itself won’t be dried out.
Just a friendly reminder maybe next time add all the info needed in your print version as it makes people nervous when they realize, hey some instructions are missing!
Happy Thanksgiving to all my fellow Canadians who might be perusing Holly’s Spend with Pennies site!
Happy Thanksgiving Jocelyn! I hope the ham is delicious and as long as it reaches the correct temperature, it should be just fine on its side too. Thank you for your feedback, while our newer recipes have all of the notes included in the printable version, we are working on adding the notes to existing recipes. I have updated the recipe here and appreciate the feedback!
How many ounces, grams is a serving size? I want to make this, but my wife tracks her food in a macro thing. Thank you
Hi Kevin, a serving is approximately ½ pound. For more accurate nutrition information we recommend inputting your actual ingredients into a nutrition calculator like MyFitnessPal or something similar. Hope that helps!
First you tell us to buy a thermometer but don’t tell us what temperature to bake it to.
You can find this information in the post, it can vary slightly based on the kind of ham you buy. A fully cooked ham needs to be cooked to 140°F (basically just to heat it) whereas a “cook before eating” ham needs to be cooked to 145°F.