There is nothing quite as delicious as a homemade honey baked ham! This honey baked ham recipe is perfectly sweet, irresistibly salty, and surprisingly easy to make.
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Ham is a holiday staple, from my crock pot ham to my family’s favorite baked ham with maple dijon glaze. And a big, golden brown honey baked ham is always a show stopper on the dinner table!
Honey baked ham is one of those foods that is impressive looking but secretly simple to put together. Our recipe only takes about 10 minutes to prep and then all you need to do is wait for the ham to bake.
Your guests will think you spent hours and hours in the kitchen cooking this honey baked ham when you actually made it in minutes! The little secret is that the ham cooks in the slow cooker, making it juicy, flavorful and oh-so-easy. But go ahead and let everyone think it was a culinary challenge—we’ll keep your secret!
In addition to looking amazing, my copycat honey has the perfect balance of flavors. I use a blend of seven different spices that makes the ham have a complex, crave-worthy flavor. You can also taste the real honey in every single bite. This really is the best honey baked ham you will ever try.
(Learn more about how to cook spiral ham.)
Copycat Honey Baked Ham Recipe
Honey baked ham is one of those recipes that many people save for the holidays. I always make a big ham at Christmas and Easter, but I’m not sure why I only limit it to those special dinners. I could eat this ham all the time! And because it’s so easy, I really should be making it more often. And honey ham leftovers are, of course, to die for. Juicy slices of ham with that crispy, sweet edge is amazing inside a sandwich.
Other honey baked ham recipes I have tried in the past were always a little too sweet. Sure, I love the sweet taste of honey mixed with the saltiness of the ham, but there needs to be something more to it. That is where my blend of spices comes in.
All of the spices I use are common, everyday spice-cabinet staples that you probably have. Mix them together and you get the most amazing mix of warm, spicy, sweet flavors. This is what really sets my honey baked ham recipe apart from all the others. It is just, well, better!
See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.
- Bone-in spiral ham – Having a bone inside the ham is very important when it comes to keeping the ham juicy as it cooks. Spiral cut ham is also essential as the thin, even slices allow all the seasonings to really get inside the ham as it cooks.
- Butter – I like to use unsalted butter in this recipe as the ham is already salty enough.
- Brown sugar – Light or dark brown sugar will work well.
- Onion powder – Check the date on your onion powder and make sure it is fresh. Expired onion powder has barely any taste, while the fresh stuff is quite powerful!
- Garlic powder
- Nutmeg – Grab a whole nutmeg clove and grate it yourself for the best possible flavor.
- Ground ginger
- Ground cloves
Honey glazed ham is definitely my favorite, but if you want to try maple glazed ham, you definitely can! Simply swap out the honey for the same quantity of maple syrup, then continue on with the recipe. Maple syrup has a rich, almost vanilla flavor that also is delicious with ham. The taste of maple goes very well with the spices in this recipe, too.
How to Make Honey Baked Ham:
- Set up the ham: Get the ham situated in the bowl of your slow cooker. Make sure the slow cooker is plugged in and you have the lid ready to go.
- Make the honey butter: Whisk the melted butter and honey together. Pour the mix over the ham in the slow cooker, getting it in between the slices.
- Slow cook: Place the lid on the slow cooker and set the temperature to low. Slow cook the ham for 4 hours.
- Mix the spices: While the ham is cooking, whisk together all the remaining spices and the brown sugar.
- Season the ham: Place the cooked ham on a foil-lined tray and sprinkle the entire ham with the spice mix. Only use half of the spice mix, as you will use the other half to make a glaze.
- Broil: Broil the ham for 5 minutes. The sugar will caramelize on the ham and turn the outside of the ham golden brown.
- Make the glaze: While the ham is broiling, mix the remaining spice mixture with three tablespoons of water, then microwave for one minute. This will make a thick, syrupy glaze that you can pour over the broiled ham.
- Slice and enjoy!
You can cook honey baked ham in the oven rather than the slow cooker. Place the ham in a large roasting pan and bake at 275ºF for 13 minutes per pound of ham (an 8 pound ham would cook for 1 hour and 45 minutes). Once baked, continue with the recipe, blending the spices and sugar and broiling the ham as directed.
How to Store Leftover Honey Baked Ham
Once the ham is cooked and cooled, you can store any leftovers in the fridge. Wrap the ham in plastic wrap or slice it off of the bone and store it in airtight containers. Ham will keep in the fridge for up to one week. Leftover ham can be used in:
You can choose to freeze the ham as well. Ham will keep in the freezer for three months when tightly wrapped. I find that frozen ham tends to get a little dry when you reheat it; make some extra glaze to pour over the ham once it is reheated to moisten it up again.
I mentioned before that I like to serve honey baked ham on big occasions like Christmas and Thanksgiving. I typically pick “holiday” foods to serve with the ham to go along with the theme.
Classic mashed potatoes or some homemade cornbread are a must. Some corn pudding or cranberry sauce would also be great with honey baked ham.
My honey baked ham glaze is made with brown sugar and lots of spices. Cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, garlic powder, and onion powder all go into the glaze. The ham is also baked with a honey butter sauce that makes it extra juicy.
I like to cook a precooked ham in the slow cooker. This makes the ham juicy and evenly heated all the way through. You can also cook the ham in the oven, baking it at 275ºF for 13 minutes per pound of ham. Both cooking methods work well! The low temperature is key to cooking the ham perfectly without drying it out.
I put the spice glaze on my ham after it cooks. Then I broil the ham for just a few minutes to melt the glaze evenly over the entire ham.
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Copycat Honey Baked Ham
- 8 pound bone-in spiral ham
- 3 tablespoon melted butter
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- Place the spiral ham in the bowl of your slow cooker.
- In a small bowl, whisk the butter and honey together then pour the mix over the ham. Try to get the honey butter in between the ham slices as much as possible.
- Cover the slow cooker and cook the ham over low heat for 4 hours.
- In the last 30 minutes of cooking time, turn on the broiler in your oven to preheat.
- Line a roasting pan with foil.
- In a small bowl, mix the brown sugar, salt, onion powder, garlic powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves together.
- Place the ham in the roasting pan and sprinkle half of the spiced sugar mix over the top of the ham. Pat the spices gently so they stick to the ham well.
- Broil the ham for about 5 minutes. The sugar on the ham should be golden and bubbling.
- Add three tablespoons of water to the bowl with the remaining sugar spice mix and stir. Microwave the mix for one minute to help melt the sugar and make a nice glaze.
- Pour the glaze over the honey baked ham then slice and enjo.
- Honey baked ham is fantastic when warm or served cold on a sandwich.
- If you’d like to cook the ham in an oven rather than a slow cooker, bake it in a roasting pan at 275ºF for 1 hour and 45 minutes. We like to use the slow cooker because it makes a juicier more tender ham but the oven will still work great!
- Replace the honey with the same quantity of maple syrup to make a maple baked ham.