Just 5 minutes of prep for tender, juicy crockpot spiral ham every time! You will never fix ham any other way again. This is the perfect recipe for holiday meals!
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The Easiest Holiday Ham
We love to serve this slow cooker spiral ham for our Christmas dinner. It’s so simple, and delicious and is always a favorite. Sometimes I’ll make this honey baked ham recipe or this oven-baked ham, but this slow cooker version is definitely easier and requires less work!
Today I am sharing the easiest and tastiest ham recipe ever. Seriously, after cooking this slow cooker ham, I will never mess with cooking one in the oven ever again. It’s made with just 5 ingredients and you just set it and forget it. Let your crock pot do the cooking for you!
We always have ham during the holidays, especially Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Easter. It’s been a tradition ever since I can remember. This recipe is so simple and it turns out amazing every time. You literally can not mess it up, I promise! Plus, cooking the meat in a slow cooker frees up oven space for side dishes.
Other than the ham itself, this crockpot ham recipe only calls for 5 ingredients, which you probably already have at home in your pantry. It’s made with brown sugar, pure maple syrup, pineapple juice, spicy brown mustard, and balsamic vinegar.
You get sweetness from the brown sugar, maple syrup, and pineapple juice and a tangy kick from the mustard and balsamic vinegar. These flavors are so incredible together!
Find the full printable recipe with specific measurements below.
- Brown sugar: This adds a rich, caramelized taste. Make sure you pack it tightly when measuring it out.
- Maple syrup: Pure, maple flavor that contributes to the sweetness.
- Pineapple juice: A sweet, tropical flavor that blends so nicely with the other ingredients.
- Spicy brown mustard: Adds a tangy kick that helps balance out the sweetness.
- Balsamic vinegar: A tart and sweet boost of flavor.
TIP: There is no need to make the glaze ahead of time for this recipe. I just rub all of the ingredients into the meat and then let the slow cooker do all the work.
How to Cook a Spiral Ham in a Crockpot
If you’re wondering how to cook a spiral ham, it’s super easy using this crockpot method! Follow the steps below to get started.
- Add meat to crockpot. Place ham inside the slow cooker (make sure to spray the slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray).
- Coat with glaze. Rub glaze ingredients (except pineapple juice) over the meat using your hands. Then pour pineapple juice into the bottom of the crockpot.
- Cover with a lid or foil. Cover with lid (or aluminum foil if lid won’t fit).
- Cook in the crockpot. Cook on low for 4 to 5 hours, basting twice during the last hour.
TIP: If the ham you buy is too large for your slow cooker, don’t worry. I used a 10-pound ham and it was too big for the lid of my slow cooker to fit. Just place 3 pieces of heavy-duty aluminum foil over the top of the ham, covering tightly. You basically are steaming it with a tight seal.
Favorite Sides for Serving
There are so many delicious side dishes to serve with this recipe. Below are some of our favorites!
- Potatoes: Scalloped potatoes, mashed potatoes, cheesy potatoes, and twice-baked potatoes.
- Veggies: All types of roasted vegetables, like mixed veggies, carrots, broccoli, and brussels sprouts.
- Classic holiday sides: Cranberry sauce, corn casserole, and mac and cheese.
- Rolls or bread: Homemade recipes like lion house rolls, potato rolls, french bread, and sweet cornbread.
- Salads: My favorite winter salad is apple cranberry spinach salad.
Because we’re using an already cooked ham, the purpose of this recipe is to warm it up while adding delicious flavor with the glaze and tenderizing it with pineapple juice. I typically cook mine in the crockpot on low for 4 to 5 hours, until it’s warm, tender, and juicy. Make sure to baste twice during the last hour of cooking. I recommend using a bone-in spiral-cut ham that’s about 7-10 pounds.
Most fully-cooked ham will come with this packet of spices that you can add water to, but I prefer to toss it and use this glaze recipe instead. I find it adds such a better flavor than the packet.
It is best to warm your ham in a crockpot low and slow. You are essentially warming up your ham not cooking it. If you choose to slow cook your ham on high heat, there is a risk that you may dry out your ham and make the outside very tough and rubbery. For a tender and juicy ham, slow cook on the low setting.
How to Store Crockpot Ham
Once the ham is cooled and ready to be put away, simply slice the ham and place it in an airtight container or ziplock bag. Store in the refrigerator for 4 to 5 days or freeze for up to 6 months.
Are you looking for more holiday dinner ideas?! Try this easy turkey recipe or baked ham for your next family get-together.
5 star review
“I’ve made this multiple times, it’s my family’s favorite ham, they actually thought I bought it from the Honey Baked store which was their previous favorite. Thank you so much!!“– Bobbi
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Slow Cooker Spiral Ham
- 7-10 pound bone-in spiral ham
- 1 cup light brown sugar , packed
- ½ cup pure maple syrup
- 2 Tablespoons spicy brown mustard
- 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 cups pineapple juice
- Spray slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. Remove the ham from the wrapper and discard glaze packet, if there is one. Place inside prepared slow cooker.
- Rub brown sugar, maple syrup, mustard, and balsamic vinegar all over the meat using your hands. Pour pineapple juice into the bottom of the slow cooker.
- Cover tightly, either with the lid or aluminum foil, and cook on low 4 to 5 hours, basting twice during the last hour. You can also flip the ham during the last hour, if desired.
- Remove from slow cooker and let rest 10 minutes. Slice the meat off the bone and serve warm.
Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.
Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!
this is the best ham recipe and it is my go to everytime! thank you for sharing!
I have always been so intimidated by ham, but this recipe was so simple and the Ham turned out delicious! I will be using this recipe from now on. Thank you so much for getting me out of my comfort zone!
So glad you enjoyed the ham recipe :)
Thank you so much, we made this for Christmas Eve and it came out perfect. We barely had any leftovers so my kids want me to make it again for New Years Day.
Will a hickory smoked spiral ham work with this recipe?
Yes that should work well :)
Everyone loves it. It’s requested at all holiday feasts.
I’m so glad to hear your family loves it! Thanks for your review Holly :)
Very yummy! Have always baked my ham. So glad I found this idea today as it’s 98 degrees and too hot to turn on the oven. Thank you for posting.
Hope you enjoyed the recipe :)
This recipe was delicious.
So happy to hear you enjoyed it, Judy!