Mastering the Art of Cooking a Fully Cooked Bone-In Ham

Cooking a fully cooked bone-in ham may seem intimidating, but it’s actually quite straightforward once you know the basics As a beloved centerpiece for holidays and special gatherings, bone-in ham deserves an artful preparation to draw out its very best flavors In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk through choosing, prepping, cooking, glazing, carving, and serving fully cooked bone-in ham. After reading, you’ll feel ready to prepare this impressive roast like a pro!

Selecting the Best Quality Ham

The first step is choosing a fresh, high-quality fully cooked ham that your guests will rave about. Here are some tips for picking the perfect one

  • Weight – Estimate how many servings you need and buy accordingly. Plan for around 1/2 pound of bone-in ham per person. An 8 to 10 pound ham feeds 16 to 20.

  • Bone-In vs Boneless – Bone-in ham tends to have more flavor and moisture The bone conducts heat evenly and infuses juices into the meat

  • Quality Signs – Look for a ham that is pink, fragrant and nicely marbled with fat. Check for a trusted brand, and don’t forget to check the expiration date.

  • Shank End vs Butt End – The tapered shank end is a little tougher but best for carving slices. The rounded butt end has a higher concentration of fat, but is tricky to slice.

Proper Thawing and Prepping

Once you get your ham home, take a moment to prepare it before cooking:

  • Thaw thoroughly – Give a frozen ham about 24 hours to thaw per 5 pounds of weight. Keep it wrapped and thaw slowly in the fridge.

  • Remove packaging – Discard any plastic, netting or paper. Leave any skin intact for protection.

  • Score the fat – Use a sharp knife to cut slashes across the top layer of fat. This helps fat render and allows glazes or juices to soak in.

  • Place in pan – Put the ham in a roasting pan, cut side down. Add 1 cup of water or fruit juice to prevent it from drying out.

Oven Roasting and Baking Times

Slow-roasting is hands down the easiest way to cook bone-in ham. Follow these straightforward steps:

  • Preheat oven – Heat oven to 325°F. Lower temps ensure the ham cooks evenly throughout.

  • Prep pan – Place ham cut side down on a roasting rack in a pan. Add 1 cup of liquid to the bottom to prevent drying out.

  • Cover and roast – Cover the ham loosely with foil and bake for approx. 15-20 minutes per pound.

  • Uncover to brown – Remove foil last 30 minutes so the outside gets nice and browned.

  • Check temperature – Roast until it reaches an internal temp of 140°F. Use a meat thermometer to test.

  • Rest before slicing – Let the ham rest 15 minutes before carving so juices redistribute.

Glazing Your Ham

Adding a sweet, sticky glaze takes bone-in ham to new heights. Try this easy glazing technique:

  • Prep glaze – Whisk together ingredients like brown sugar, honey, maple syrup, mustard, etc.

  • Apply glaze – Brush glaze over ham about 30 minutes before done cooking.

  • Broil to set – Broil 2-3 minutes to caramelize glaze. Watch closely to avoid burning.

  • Bake uncovered – Return to oven and bake uncovered for 15-20 minutes for glaze to set.

  • Thicken drippings – Simmer pan drippings to make a glaze sauce if desired.

Carving Cooked Ham for Serving

Follow these steps for neatly slicing your spectacular bone-in ham:

  • Let rest – Allow ham to rest 15-20 minutes before carving so juices redistribute.

  • Carve against the grain – Carefully make thin slices by cutting against the grain of the meat.

  • Start in center – Begin carving at the thickest part, usually the middle.

  • Work outward – Progress to tapered ends, trimming off outer pieces if dried out.

  • Make transition cuts – As you carve, adjust blade angle to follow the curves of the ham for pretty slices.

  • Cut vertically – Hold knife vertically for straight slices. Angle knife slightly for thinner cuts if desired.

  • Collect drippings – Have a platter or plates ready to catch the carved slices along with any juices.

Creative Serving Ideas

A beautifully roasted bone-in ham makes a spectacular centerpiece. Dress it up with these serving suggestions:

  • Garnishes – Arrange fresh herb sprigs, pineapple rings, maraschino cherries, or citrus slices around the platter for decoration.

  • Sauces – Offer mustard, cranberry sauce, apple chutney, or a glaze reduction in small bowls for drizzling over slices.

  • Sides – Pair the ham with classic dishes like scalloped potatoes, roasted vegetables, biscuits, corn pudding, or a fresh salad.

  • Leftovers – Bone-in ham leftovers make amazing sandwiches, omelets, pizza, salad topping, or soup base. Store properly refrigerated.

With the right techniques, tools, and recipes, cooking an impressive fully cooked bone-in ham is much simpler than it looks. Approach your holiday ham with confidence by following this comprehensive roasting, glazing and carving guide. Let your beautifully browned, juicy and full-flavored ham be the crowning jewel of your next celebration!

Easy Ham Recipe – How to Bake a Ham


How long to cook a fully cooked bone-in ham?

Plan on baking your pre-cooked ham at an oven temperature of 325 degrees Fahrenheit, covered with foil, until it reaches a safe internal temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit, as recommended by the USDA. A pre-cooked 10-pound ham, bone-in will need about 2 1/2 hours.

What is the best way to cook a precooked ham?

Place the ham, cut-side-down, on heavy-duty aluminum foil and wrap the ham thoroughly. Or use an oven roasting bag; follow instructions on the bag for preparation. Bake in a preheated 325F oven for 10-14 minutes per pound, or until a meat thermometer registers 135F.

How do you heat up a precooked ham without drying it out?

Reheating ham via skillet is an easy way to get a few slices nice and hot in a flash. To reheat ham slices on the stove, add a few slices at a time to a skillet over medium-high heat. Add up to ½ cup of chicken broth to keep the meat moist or opt for a couple of tablespoons of butter or oil to give the ham a nice sear.

How long to cook precooked ham at 400 degrees?


How do you cook a bone-in Ham?

1. Oven-Baking: Oven-baking is a classic and foolproof way to cook a bone-in ham. Follow these steps: Preheat the oven to 325°F (163°C). Place your ham, cut side down, in a roasting pan. Cover the ham with aluminum foil and bake for approximately 15-18 minutes per pound.

Is honey baked ham as good as regular ham?

The addition of honey will affect the calorie content of the food. One tablespoon of honey contributes to approximately 64 calories. In addition, the use of heat when making baked ham will reduce the quality of the honey.

What temperature should a bone in Ham be cooked at?

The recommended temperature for cooking a fully cooked bone-in ham is 325°F (165°C). This moderate temperature will allow the ham to warm evenly without drying it out. How long do I need to cook a fully cooked bone-in ham? As a general guideline, allow about 10-12 minutes per pound of fully cooked bone-in ham when baking at 325°F (165°C).

What is a bone in Ham?

Bone-in hams are also more decorative, and make for a more ceremonious presentation on special occasions. Also, you get the ham hock for soups and stews! Many bone-in hams are spiral-cut, which means they’ve been sliced in a continuous spiral all the way around the bone, producing thin slices that easily pull away.

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