How to Cook a Precooked Honey Glazed Ham to Perfection

Cooking a precooked honey glazed ham may seem intimidating, but it’s actually quite easy with just a few simple steps A beautifully glazed ham makes a stunning centerpiece for any special occasion meal. Learn how to prepare and bake a store-bought spiral cut ham topped with a sweet honey glaze


A precooked honey glazed ham is a classic main dish that is perfect for holidays like Easter, Christmas and Thanksgiving. Here’s a quick overview of the process

  • Choose a spiral sliced, bone-in precooked ham approximately 5 pounds. Make sure it does not already have a glaze or seasoning on it.

  • Prepare a glaze by simmering butter, brown sugar, honey, spices, and pineapple juice.

  • Place the ham cut side down in a baking dish. Score the ham by making shallow diagonal cuts across the top.

  • Brush one-third of the glaze over the ham.

  • Bake at 350°F for 90 minutes. Turn oven up to 425°F, brush with more glaze and bake 15 more minutes.

  • Broil for 3-5 minutes to caramelize the glaze.

  • Let ham rest 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Ingredients Needed

A precooked honey baked ham starts with just a few simple ingredients:

  • Ham: Get a 5 pound spiral sliced, bone-in precooked ham. Make sure it has no seasoning or glaze.

  • Butter: Adds richness to the glaze. Use unsalted butter.

  • Brown sugar: Creates a sweet, sticky caramel-like glaze.

  • Honey: Provides floral sweetness and texture.

  • Spices: Such as cinnamon and cloves enhance flavor.

  • Pineapple juice: Provides tartness to balance sweetness.

  • Dijon mustard: Adds tangy flavor.

Prepare the Brown Sugar Honey Glaze

The secret to incredible flavor is in the homemade glaze. Simmer the glaze ingredients together on the stovetop before brushing onto the baked ham.

  • In a saucepan, melt 1/4 cup butter over medium heat.

  • Whisk in 1 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup honey, 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard, 1/4 cup pineapple juice, 1/2 tsp each cinnamon and cloves.

  • Allow glaze to bubble and thicken for 5-7 minutes.

  • Remove pan from heat and let glaze cool and thicken further.

Prep and Score the Ham

Get the ham ready for the oven by placing it in a foil-lined baking dish and scoring the top.

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a large baking dish with foil and spray with nonstick spray.

  • Place ham cut side down in the prepared baking dish.

  • With a sharp knife, make diagonal cuts across top of ham about 1/4 inch deep. This is called scoring.

  • Scoring allows the glaze to seep into the meat and prevents curling while cooking.

Brush with Glaze and Bake

It’s time to let the oven work its magic. Bake the ham low and slow to warm it through.

  • Brush 1/3 of the glaze all over top and sides of ham.

  • Cover pan tightly with foil. Bake for 90 minutes until ham is heated through.

  • Remove foil. Turn oven to 425°F. Brush ham with half the remaining glaze.

  • Bake 15 minutes more. Brush with remaining glaze.

  • If glaze isn’t browned enough, broil 3-5 minutes watching closely.

Let Ham Rest Before Carving

An important final step is letting the ham rest before slicing into it.

  • When ham isfinished baking, remove from oven.

  • Tent loosely with foil and let rest 15-20 minutes.

  • This allows juices to redistribute through meat for juicy slices.

  • Transfer ham to a cutting board. Slice with an electric knife and serve.

Serving Suggestions

A honey glazed ham pairs well with various side dishes. Consider making:

  • Mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes

  • Roasted asparagus or Brussels sprouts

  • Dinner rolls or biscuits

  • A green salad

  • Cornbread dressing or stuffing

  • Cranberry sauce

  • For dessert, serve with pecan pie or pumpkin pie

Ham Glaze Variations

There are many possibilities when it comes to glazing a ham. Change up the flavors with these ideas:

  • Substitute maple syrup for the honey.

  • Use orange juice or apple cider instead of pineapple juice.

  • Add crushed pineapple, chopped apple or cherry pie filling into the glaze.

  • Infuse flavors with rum, bourbon, coconut or citrus.

  • Play with different spices like ginger, nutmeg or mustard powder.

Freezing and Storing Leftovers

Honey glazed ham stays fresh in the fridge for up to 5 days. Here are tips for storing leftovers.

  • Allow ham to cool completely before refrigerating.

  • Transfer leftover ham and glaze into an airtight container.

  • Refrigerate for up to 5 days.

  • Reheat slices in the microwave until warmed through.

  • To freeze, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and foil. Freeze up to 2 months.


Get answers to some common questions about cooking a honey glazed ham:

How long does it take to bake a precooked ham?

Bake a 5 pound precooked ham at 350°F for about 1 1/2 hours total.

Should you bake the ham fat side up or down?

Place spiral cut hams cut side down to prevent drying out.

What is the best kind of ham to use?

Look for a spiral sliced, bone-in fully cooked ham preferably without added flavoring.

Can I use an instant read thermometer to check doneness?

Yes, check the thickest part of ham. It should reach 140°F.

Is it necessary to rest the baked ham before slicing?

Letting it rest about 10-15 minutes allows juices to absorb for a moister ham.

How do I get the best glaze?

Make sure to brush on glaze several times during baking for an evenly coated glistening ham.


With this easy method, you can make a gorgeous honey glazed ham worthy of any special meal or holiday table. The combination of salty ham with a sweet, sticky glaze is sure satisfy a crowd. Brush on the brown sugar and honey glaze as you bake for maximum flavor. Let the baked ham rest before slicing into juicy, tender pieces. Pair it with favorite side dishes and get ready for rave reviews!

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