How Long to Cook Ham Loaf in a Crockpot for Maximum Flavor?

Hey folks! I wanted to talk to y’all today about how to make a delicious ham loaf in the crockpot Now I love me a good ham loaf, but getting the cook time just right can be tricky, especially in a slow cooker Through trial and error (and eating a whole lotta ham!), I’ve figured out exactly how long you need to cook a ham loaf in the crockpot to get it perfectly moist and full of flavor.

Choosing the Right Ham

First things first – not all ham is created equal when it comes to ham loaf! For the best texture and taste, you’ll want to use an uncured, unsmoked ham. Smoked ham has that delicious smoky flavor, but it can make your ham loaf dry and crumbly. Uncured ham has a nice mild pork flavor that pairs great with spices and glazes. Ground ham works perfectly, or you can grind your own using a food processor.

I like to use a combo of ground ham and ground pork for the best balance of moisture and fat Aim for a 1 1 ratio of ham to pork and you can’t go wrong, The pork adds juiciness!

Mixing Up The Best Ham Loaf

A basic ham loaf has ground meat, eggs, breadcrumbs, and seasoning. But you can jazz it up with all sorts of mix-ins! Some of my favorites:

  • Diced onions – brings out the meaty flavor
  • Minced garlic – for a little zing
  • Shredded cheese – melty cheesy bits throughout!
  • Diced bell peppers – for sweetness and color
  • Fresh herbs – parsley, thyme, rosemary all work well

When forming your ham loaf, pack it firmly into a loaf shape but don’t overwork it. You want it to hold together but not be dense and rubbery.

Crockpot Cook Time

Now for the important part – how long to actually cook that bad boy! Here’s a timeline for ham loaf cook times in a crockpot:

  • 1-2 pounds of meat – Low 6-7 hours, High 3-4 hours
  • 3-4 pounds of meat – Low 7-9 hours, High 4-5 hours

The most important thing is to use a meat thermometer and cook to an internal temp of 160°F. That guarantees it will be cooked through and safe to eat.

For a 1-2 pound ham loaf, expect it to take roughly 6 hours on Low to reach 160°F in the center.

Adding a Sweet Glaze

A sticky-sweet glaze takes ham loaf to a whole new level. I like to make a quick glaze while the ham loaf cooks and brush it on during the last 30-60 minutes.

An easy brown sugar glaze is equal parts:

  • Brown sugar
  • Water
  • Apple cider vinegar

Simmer that together for 5-10 minutes until thickened. You can also add spices like dry mustard, cloves, ginger or red pepper flakes. Brush the glaze all over the cooked ham loaf and let it caramelize into a sticky, candied exterior. Yum!!

More Tips for Crockpot Ham Loaf Success

Here are a few more tips for ham loaf bliss:

  • Grease your crockpot well so it doesn’t stick
  • Use a loaf pan or foil sling for easy removal
  • Finish under the broiler for crispy edges
  • Let it rest 10 minutes before slicing
  • Leftovers make killer sandwiches!

So there you have it folks – now you know exactly how long to cook ham loaf in the crockpot to get tender, juicy results. For a 1-2 pound loaf, plan on Low for about 6 hours, plus another 30-60 minutes to glaze. Pull it at 160°F for perfectly safe results.

Mic’s Kitchen – Old Fashioned Ham Loaf


How long does it take to heat up a cooked ham in a slow cooker?

Set the slow cooker to its low setting, and cover the pot. Most hams will reheat in between three and six hours, depending on their size. A three pound ham may take two and a half to three hours whereas a six or seven pound ham may take up to six.

How do you cook Gahr’s ham loaf?

At our home we prefer to shape Gahr’s Loaf Mix into ping pong size meat balls. We then cook it in a crock pot on high for two hours, we do not add any other ingredients or water. We then serve it with cheese flavored mashed potatoes or macaroni and cheese.

What do I do if my ham is too big for a slow cooker?

If the ham is too tall to fit completely inside, make a tinfoil hat for it by layering a couple of pieces of tinfoil across the top of your slow cooker and crimping around the edges to completely cover. Lay a dish towel on top of the foil to help keep it weighed down and prevent heat from escaping.

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