This Honey Cranberry Glazed Ham is super juicy! Coated in a sweet and tangy glaze made with honey, fresh cranberries and more spices and flavours that add an extra zing — this is the perfect centrepiece for your Christmas dinner table!
Today we have a nice and juicy holiday ham on the menu! I’ve been waiting to share this recipe with you guys since October! Now that it’s officially December, a.k.a Holiday Season, I can finally provide you guys with the best foods/desserts for your menu!
Honey Cranberry Glazed Ham
This Honey Cranberry Glazed Ham recipe is sweet, slightly tangy, smoky and packed with flavour! This is the first time I’ve ever baked a ham, so I can tell you with full confidence that it’s super easy to do, so if you’re intimidated (like I was), don’t be! These big and beautiful hams are sold fully cooked, so all you need to do is make the glaze, coat the ham and heat it up. So simple!
I’ve also done a ton of research and watched plenty of videos to help me learn how to bake the perfect ham. I’ve even gathered some of my own tips & tricks I learned from experience that I’m more than happy to share with you to ensure you bake the most perfect juicy and tender ham ever!
I know there’s a million different ham recipes out there, and brown sugar glazed hams are without a doubt the most popular. However, since it’s the holiday season, we need to have a unique, Christmas flavoured ham. So switch out the brown sugar glaze this year for some fresh cranberries!
Best Type of Ham
With it being the holiday season, there’s probably plenty of hams at your local grocery store, all different shapes, sizes and types.
For this recipe you’re gonna want a ham that’s already cooked all throughout. This doesn’t mean warm and ready to eat and serve. The packaged hams at the grocery store are gonna be cold, but they’ve all been pre-cooked so it’s safe to eat straight from the package.
But just because you could doesn’t mean you should.
Bone-In and Spiral Sliced
I recommend buying a ham with the bone-in. Bone-in hams are far more flavourful than boneless hams and have a way better texture.
Now I used a spiral-sliced ham, but you don’t have to if you don’t want to. A spiral-sliced ham is a ham that has already been pre-sliced but it’s still a full ham attached to the bone. It basically makes cutting easier because after you bake it, you just have to take the slices off.
Spiral-sliced hams are sliced pretty thin, so if you’re someone who likes thick slices of ham, you may want to buy a ham that is not pre-sliced. That way you can control the thickness of your slices. Spiral-sliced hams are also easier to dry out if you’re not careful or if you over-bake it, so if you’re worried about that, then get a non-sliced ham.
Oven Temperature + Baking Time
Even though they’ve already been pre-cooked, hams need to be baked for quite a long time so it can be warm all throughout. AND we want the flavours of our glaze to completely mold with the ham, but we don’t want it to dry out so we need to bake it at 325°F.
As far as baking time, this really varies depending on the size of your ham. Some people say 14 minutes per pound, others say 18-20 minutes per pound. I went with about 18 minutes per pound and my ham weighed 10 pounds, so it was in the oven for about 3 hours.
But please check the weight of your ham before you begin! Unless your ham weighs the same as mine, it won’t take the same amount of time. If it weighs less, it’ll need less time to heat up, if it weighs more, it’ll need more time.
So it is very important to calculate the weight of your ham with the time per pound — so 10Ib. x 18 minutes = 180 minutes = 3 hours. Simple math. Just replace the 10Ib. with the weight of your own ham, and you’ve got your baking time.
Prepping Your Roasting Pan + Pre-Baking Ham
Ok so now that you’ve got your ham, let’s discuss the baking part. Hams are typically supposed to be baked in a roasting pan, but really all you need is the rack. My roasting pan was too big for my oven so I put the rack in a large rectangle cake pan instead and it worked great!
To prep the pan, I added 2 whole star anise and a handful of whole cloves, then poured in 2 cups of water. Not only does the steam from the water help create a super moist ham, but because of the star anise and cloves, it also helps flavour the meat from the bottom!
Alright now let’s discuss actually pre-baking the ham. I removed my ham from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for a few hours. That way the ham is the same temperature on the inside as it is on the outside, so we don’t have to worry about over baking until the middle is warmed.
If your ham is wet and slimy, pat it dry. Then score it, loosely cover with foil and place face down onto the wire rack. Pre-bake in the oven for about 30 minutes to an hour while you prepare the cranberry glaze.
Honey Cranberry Glaze
The glaze is super simple to make and comes together in just minutes! To make it, start by combining the cranberries, honey, water and orange juice in a medium saucepan. Cook over the stove until the mixture boils and the cranberries pop. Congrats, you just made homemade cranberry sauce! Now let’s turn it into a delicious glaze.
Add some orange zest, cayenne pepper, dijon mustard, red wine vinegar and brown sugar to the cranberry sauce and continue to cook and stir until the mixture has thickened. Then either using an immersion blender, regular blender or a food processor, blend the glaze until completely smooth.
How to Bake the Ham
Once ham has finished pre-baking, remove it from the oven, take off the foil and brush it with its first coat of glaze. Return the ham to the oven, uncovered, and continue to glaze every 18-20 minutes. Again, the baking time is 18-20 minutes per pound. The internal temperature should be about 130°F - 140°F.
When you reach the final 20 minutes of baking time, glaze the ham again, but also spoon some of the juices that dripped into the pan back over the ham. This adds a ton more flavour to your ham!
After the ham has finished baking, brush with a final coat of glaze then transfer to a bed of kale and fresh cranberries for a beautiful Christmas table centrepiece.
So from my kitchen to yours, enjoy this Honey Cranberry Glazed Ham!
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- 1 large bone in spiral-cut ham (8-10 pounds)
For the Roasting Pan:
- 2 whole star anise
- Handful of whole cloves
- 2 cups water
Honey Cranberry Glaze:
- 12 oz. fresh or frozen cranberries
- ¼ cup honey
- ¼ cup water
- ¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 tsp orange zest (optional)
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
- 2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar
- ¾ cup light brown sugar, packed
- Fresh cranberries
For Pre-Baking the Ham:
- Remove your ham from the refrigerator and allow to sit at room temperature for 2-3 hours so it can warm up.
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Make sure oven racked is at the bottom. Remove the rack from the roasting pan and add the star anise and a handful of whole cloves to the pan. Fill with an inch of water. Place rack back in.
- If ham is wet and slimy, gently pat dry with a paper towel. Using a sharp knife, score the ham diagonally. Place ham flat face down onto the rack and tightly cover with a sheet of aluminum foil.
- Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the glaze.
For the Honey Cranberry Glaze:
- Add cranberries, honey, water and orange juice to a saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring occasionally until most cranberries pop and mixture begins to boil, about 5-6 mins.
- Add orange zest (optional), cayenne, mustard, vinegar and brown sugar and stir until smooth.
- Allow to cook for another 3-5 mins or until sauce thickens up. Either using an immersion blender, a regular blender or a food processor, blend sauce until it’s nice and smooth. Set aside.
For Glazing and Baking the Ham:
- Once the ham has finished pre-baking, remove from the oven and remove the foil. Brush the entire ham with a coat of glaze, return to the oven and bake for another 20 minutes.
- Continue to re-glaze the ham every 20 minutes until it’s finished baking. Make sure the internal temperature is around 130°F - 140°F. The baking time is 18-20 minutes per pound, so baking times may vary. See information in post above for more details.
- For the last 20 minutes of baking, glaze the ham one final time, and spoon some of the fat and clove flavoured water over the ham.
- Once ham has finished baking, remove from oven and spoon more of the juices on top and brush with more glaze.
- Loosely cover the ham with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 15-20 minutes.
- Spoon some more juices on top and brush with a final coat of glaze. Transfer ham to a serving platter with a bed of kale and fresh cranberries. Serve and enjoy!
- I baked my ham for a total of 2 and ½ hours but you may need to bake yours for less or more time depending on the weight.
- If you are using an internal thermometer, stick it into the thickest part of the ham and be sure not to touch the bone.
- Remember that the ham has already been pre-cooked so it’s best not to over-cook it in the oven. If you think it’s cooked long enough and it’s under the baking time, just remove it from the oven so it doesn’t dry out.
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Calphalon Classic Hard Anodized 16-Inch Roasting Pan with Nonstick Rack
Utopia Kitchen 2 Quart Nonstick Saucepan with Glass Lid - Multipurpose Use for Home Kitchen or Restaurant
Set of 2 Pastry Brushes, 1-Inch and 1 ½-Inch Width Natural Boar Bristle Pastry Brushes, Lacquered Hardwood Basting Brushes, Cooking / Baking Brushes
DOWAN 14-inch Porcelain Oval Platters/Serving Plates - 2Packs, White, Stackable
Love, Dedra ❤
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