What Fruit Goes With Ham? Sweet Pairings That Elevate Your Ham Dishes

Ham is a beloved staple that shows up everywhere from holiday feasts to cozy sandwiches. But while ham is tasty on its own the right fruit pairing can take it to a whole new level of flavor. Sweet, tart fruits complement ham’s salty savoriness perfectly.

If you’re looking to liven up your ham with fruit but aren’t sure where to start, this guide has you covered. Below I’ll share my favorite fruit and ham combinations, from classic pairings to unexpected delights. Read on to discover amazing new meal ideas!

Why Pair Fruit with Ham?

Before jumping into the pairings let’s look at why fruit works so well with ham

  • Balances flavors – The sweetness of fruit offsets ham’s saltiness for a balanced taste.

  • Adds texture – Fruit’s juicy crunch contrasts nicely with ham’s tenderness.

  • Provides color – Vibrant fruit hues brighten up a ham platter.

  • Enhances presentation – Fruit garnishes dress up a ham visually.

  • Allows versatility – Fruit can be baked, grilled, pureed, or fresh.

With so many benefits, fruit is a slam dunk pairing for ham. Now let’s explore some winning combinations.

Classic Fruit and Ham Pairings

Some fruit and ham mixes are tried and true. These classic combos never go out of style:

  • Pineapple – The sweet tropical flavor complements ham’s saltiness perfectly. Goes great baked or grilled with ham.

  • Apples – Tart apples cut through ham’s rich fattiness. Bake ham with apple wedges or serve with apple sauce.

  • Cranberries – Brilliant tartness offsets ham’s savory flavor. Make a chutney or sauce, or add dried cranberries.

  • Peaches – Sweet summery flavor is a crowd pleaser with ham. Grill peaches with ham or make a peach salsa.

  • Figs – Subtle sweetness pairs wonderfully with cured hams like prosciutto. Wrap in prosciutto and bake, or make a fig jam glaze.

These pairings have stood the test of time. Rely on them for foolproof ham flavor.

Unexpected Fruit and Ham Combos

Looking to live on the edge? Try these surprising fruit and ham pairings:

  • Mango – Exotic sweetness complements ham’s saltiness for a unique combo. Dice mango into a ham salad.

  • Blueberries – Bursts of tartness cut through ham’s richness. Toss blueberries in a ham salad.

  • Pears – Subtle sweetness matches nicely with ham, especially in fall/winter. Bake ham with pear wedges.

  • Grapes – Juicy grapes pair surprisingly well with sliced ham. Add to ham sandwiches or salads.

  • Melon – Refreshing melon is delicious with prosciutto. Make melon wrapped in prosciutto skewers.

Feeling adventurous? Give these unorthodox pairings a shot for exciting new ham flavors.

Tips for Selecting Fruit for Ham

When shopping for fruit to pair with ham, keep these tips in mind:

  • Pick ripe fruit – Fruit should be sweet and juicy, not underripe.

  • Complement ham type – Milder fruits pair well with assertive cured ham. Sweeter fruits match nicely with baked ham.

  • Consider texture – Firm fruits hold up to roasting better. Berries work for garnishes or sauces.

  • Account for season – Use what’s fresh and in season for the best flavor.

  • Watch acidity – Very acidic fruits can overwhelm milder ham flavors. Go easy with citrus.

  • Mind the sweetness – Very sugary fruits may overpower ham’s saltiness – balance is key.

With the right fruit selections, you’re guaranteed ham success!

Delicious Recipes with Fruit and Ham

Ready to put fruit and ham pairings into action? Here are some tasty recipes to try:

Baked Ham with Pineapple Salsa

  • Ingredients: Diced pineapple, red onion, cilantro, lime juice, cooked ham
  • Instructions: Combine salsa ingredients. Bake ham and serve salsa on top or alongside.

Prosciutto Wrapped Cantaloupe

  • Ingredients: Cantaloupe wedges, prosciutto slices
  • Instructions: Wrap cantaloupe wedges with prosciutto and secure with toothpicks.

Cranberry Glazed Ham

  • Ingredients: Whole berry cranberry sauce, brown sugar, mustard, orange juice, baked ham
  • Instructions: Simmer glaze ingredients together. Brush over cooked ham and bake to caramelize.

Grilled Peaches and Ham Salad

  • Ingredients: Ham, peaches, mixed greens, blue cheese crumbles, balsamic vinaigrette
  • Instructions: Grill peach halves. Toss salad ingredients together and top with peaches and ham.

Apple Ham Sandwiches

  • Ingredients: Ham, apple slices, whole grain bread, lettuce, mustard
  • Instructions: Construct sandwiches layered with ham, apple slices, lettuce and mustard.

The possibilities are endless! Use these recipes as inspiration to create your own tasty fruit and ham dishes.

Key Takeaways for Pairing Fruit with Ham

Ham and fruit simply belong together – the combinations are endless. Here are the key tips to remember:

  • Classic pairings like pineapple and cranberries are safe bets for balanced flavor.

  • Get creative with unexpected fruits like mango and grapes for unique taste experiences.

  • Let what’s fresh and in season guide your fruit selections.

  • Bake, grill, puree or serve fruit raw – versatility is key.

  • Sweet fruits complement cured hams nicely while tart fruits pair better with baked ham.

  • Mind fruit texture and acidity levels to avoid overpowering the ham.

Now that you’re armed with expert fruit and ham knowledge, it’s time to get cooking! Surprise your family with delicious new pairings.

Baked Ham Dinner Menu with Fruit Cocktail Gravy


What flavors compliment ham?

Maple syrup and bourbon combine for a sweet, crunchy, and sticky crust, ideal for delicious spiral-cut ham. Ginger and cinnamon perfectly season this glaze, covering the salty, juicy ham.

What fruit pairs well with pork?

Pork: From chops to prosciutto to baked ham there is something for everyone when it comes to adding fruit to your pork dishes. Try adding apple, pomegranate or oranges with pork loins or chops; Peaches, apricots, dried figs and mango pair well with ham (baked or served cold) and work wonderfully in pork burgers.

What can I add to ham for flavor?

Peach preserves, hot pepper jelly, and maple syrup work as sweet bases for glazes that add sheen as well as distinct flavor. Tasty additions such as aromatics, herbs, and spices switch up a traditional ham and make it truly memorable.

What fruit goes well with ham?

Pineapple and ham are a classic combination that always complements each other. Whether you just put canned pineapple rings on top of the ham as it bakes or makes a pineapple puree to serve on top, it’s sure to be a hit. Cranberry is another fruit that goes well with ham. You might be surprised by this since it isn’t the most common combination.

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.

How do you eat a ham with fruit?

Fruit is well known for being an excellent accompaniment to pork. The flavors complement each other so well, you’ll wonder why you ever made ham any other way. Place ham in a shallow roasting pan. (If desired, score ham by making diagonal cuts 1-inch apart in fat in a diamond pattern).

What dessert goes well with ham?

But one of the best parts about ham is that it goes well with so many different flavors. From sweet to savory, there’s a dessert out there that will complement your meal perfectly. So if you’re looking for the perfect way to finish off your next ham dinner, look no further! 1. Carrot Cake Carrot cake reminds me of Easter dinner with my family.

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