Honey Baked Ham


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Who knew that a homemade honey baked ham was this easy? As long as you’ve got the temperature, time, and this insanely good spiced, honey glaze down – it’s a foolproof holiday centerpiece!

Honey baked ham on a plate next to a knife

The Best Copycat Honey Baked Ham For The Holidays

I’ll admit, I’ve bought my fair share of The Honey Baked Ham when I needed a guaranteed stunning main for the holidays. But looking back on my Thanksgiving turkey, beef tenderloin, pork tenderloin, or prime rib recipes, I was long overdue for a homemade ham recipe. And to my surprise (as always), the process was much easier than I thought.

This copycat honey baked ham is cooked just right, perfectly sliced, and that sticky sweet glaze tastes like a “chef’s kiss” moment. So if you need to make a good impression during Easter, Thanksgiving, or Christmas – I’ll show you everything you need to know about how to cook a ham.

Ingredients for honey baked ham on a table

It’s All About The Honey Glaze!

Before we dive into the ham itself, let’s first talk about this honey glaze. Because let’s be honest, this is what’s really going to make or break your ham. But don’t worry – this concoction has just the right amount of sticky sweet, a beautiful blend of spices, and even a hint of citrus. Here’s what you’ll need.

  • Honey: You’ll need a good amount of honey to evenly coat the ham. And if you’re thinking about swapping it for maple syrup, sure, you can do that. But then it wouldn’t be a honey baked ham now would it?
  • Sugar: You can use coconut sugar or another granulated sugar here. I love coconut sugar as it’s unprocessed and imparts a slight caramel flavor (aka. it’s extra delicious).
  • Orange Juice: The key here is to use freshly squeezed orange juice instead of the bottled version. This will help give the glaze a fresh citrus note!
  • Dijon Mustard: A punch of Dijon mustard adds subtle spice (though it won’t taste mustardy) and complements the rest of the ingredients extremely well.
  • Spices: I’ve got 4 here – cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves, and ground ginger. Spices that will make your kitchen smell amazing and holiday-esque!

Find the printable recipe with measurements below.

A cooked, honey baked ham on a plate

Things To Look Out For When Buying Ham

Typically, you’ll buy your ham ready-to-go instead of frozen. But if you happened to buy it ahead of time – store it in the freezer! Then let it thaw overnight in the fridge for 1 to 2 days before you plan to cook it.

Here’s a few other phrases to look out for on the packaging labels (or to ask your butcher) when shopping for a ham.

  • Fully Cooked (Ready-To-Eat) Cured Ham: When it comes to cooking, especially for the holidays, I’m all about efficiency. That’s why I’m using a pre-cooked ham. Plus, this is the kind you’ll most likely find in the grocery store anyways!
  • Spiral Cut Ham: Piggy backing off of my previous note on efficiency, picking out a spiral cut ham is key. The fact that it’s pre-sliced makes it so much easier to pull away perfectly even slices when serving. And you can fan out the slices and brush the glaze in between to let the meat soak up all that sticky sweet goodness.
  • Bone-In Ham: Similar to many other types of meats, bone-in hams tend to have a better overall texture and flavor. This is due to the collagen surrounding the bone that slowly seeps into the meat as it cooks in the oven. Plus – you can also save the bone to make stock!

Glazing a ham with a silicone brush.

So, How Much Ham Do I Need?

As you’re planning out your holiday menu – this is the first question that always comes to mind. And as I always say, it’s better to have too much than too little! But to give you a general idea, you’ll need about ½ pound of ham per person.

For this recipe, I’m using a bone-in ham that’s about 8 to 10 pounds. So this will comfortably make 12 servings, with a good amount of leftovers. And you know I love leftovers!

Equipment You’ll Need

To make a honey baked ham, you’ll need three things – a roasting tray, basting brush, and a thermometer.

Brushing honey glaze on a honey baked ham

Let’s Make The Best Honey Baked Ham

Good news – the ham is already cooked, so all you really need to do is warm it through with the honey glaze brushed on top. But in order for the ham to soak in the flavor of the glaze while caramelizing on the edges, there’s just a few extra steps added to the process.

First – let’s get your ham thawed if it’s frozen. You’ll want to thaw it in the fridge overnight for 1 to 2 days. Then let it come to room temperature on the counter 2 hours before cooking.

  • Prep the roasting pan. Preheat your oven to 300°F (150°C) and adjust the oven rack to lowest position. Then pour 2 cups of water into the roasting pan for added moisture as it cooks.
  • Mix the honey glaze. Stir together the sugar, honey, orange juice, mustard, and spices.
  • Brush on the glaze and bake the ham. Place the ham on the baking tray, brush ¼ of the honey glaze on top, then cover the ham with aluminum foil and bake for 10 to 12 minutes per pound. During this 1 ½ hours you’ll re-glaze every 30 minutes.
  • Caramelize the glaze. After that time is done, increase the oven temperature to 425°F (220°C), remove the aluminum foil, and brush the remaining glaze all over the ham. Then let it bake uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes, until slightly caramelized.
  • Slice the ham. Let the ham rest for a few minutes, then carefully pull away the slices with a knife to serve. The beauty of a spiral ham!

Pro tip: make sure your ham is fully warmed through by using your thermometer to see if the internal temperature reads 130°F (50°C).

A roasting tray with honey baked ham in it

Ways To Store and Use Leftover Ham

Leftover turkey is great, but leftover ham is even better. You can store the slices in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Otherwise, you can freeze it in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. Once you’re ready to eat, here’s a few delicious ways to re-imagine ham in these meals!

  • Make a meaty breakfast. Dice it up into small bits and toss them into a Western omelette, egg scramble, or even a breakfast hash!
  • Toss into a salad. Instead of shredded chicken, add in dice ham chunks into your next salad. This works great with salads like a cobb salad or make this ultimate ham salad!
  • Make a simple stir fry. Never forget to use leftover meat for stir fries! A combination of diced, ham, kale, onions, and peas makes for an easy yet surprisingly flavorful dinner. But you can swap in any kinds of veggies.
  • Add into a soup. Save the bone to make this delicious split pea soup! But you could also add diced ham into cabbage soup or lentil soup.
Sliced honey baked ham on a plate with a fork

Honey Baked Ham Recipe Video

Let me show you just how easy this holiday ham comes together! Watch the video below.

Savory Sides To Serve With Ham

Now that you’ve got the main centerpiece down – lets think about all the sides you’re going to serve with it.

See how easy this honey baked ham was to make? Give it a try for your next holiday dinner and let me know how it turned out in a comment below!

Honey baked ham on a plate next to a knife

Honey Baked Ham

5 from 18 votes
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 12 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan


A homemade honey baked ham (with the best honey glaze) that's an easy, foolproof holiday main? We're all for that here!




  • Thaw the ham. If the ham is frozen, allow it to thaw in the fridge for 1 to 2 days. Then, remove the ham from the fridge and let it rest on the counter for 2 hours before cooking, to come to room temperature.
  • Prep the roasting pan. Preheat oven to 300°F (150°C). Adjust oven rack to lowest position. Pour 2 cups of water into bottom of roasting pan.
    A roasting tray for honey baked ham
  • Mix the honey glaze. In a medium bowl, stir together the sugar, honey, orange juice, mustard, and spices.
    Mixing honey glaze in a bowl for honey baked ham
  • Brush on the glaze and bake the ham. Place the ham on the baking tray, brush ¼ of the honey glaze on top, then cover the ham with aluminum foil and bake for 10 to 12 minutes per pound (for a 9 pound ham, that's about 1 ½ hours). During this 1 ½ hours you'll re-glaze every 30 minutes.
    Brushing glaze on a honey baked ham
  • Caramelize the glaze. After 1 ½ hours, increase the oven temperature to 425°F (220°C), discard the aluminum foil, and brush the remaining ¼ of the glaze all over the ham. Return the ham to the oven and bake uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes, until shiny, glazed, and slightly caramelized.
    Brushing honey glaze on a honey baked ham
  • Slice the ham. Let the ham rest for a few minutes before serving, then slice it up by removing the spiral slices from the flat, wider end first.
    A large honey baked ham on a plate


Calories: 557kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 57g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 221mg | Sodium: 3549mg | Potassium: 879mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 25g | Vitamin A: 16IU | Vitamin C: 74mg | Calcium: 24mg | Iron: 3mg
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Honey Baked Ham, Honey Glazed Ham
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

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About the author

Lisa Bryan

Lisa is a bestselling cookbook author, recipe developer, and YouTuber (with over 2.5 million subscribers) living in sunny Southern California. She started Downshiftology in 2014, and is passionate about making healthy food with fresh, simple and seasonal ingredients.

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Recipe Rating


  1. Wonderful recipe. Even my picky eaters came back for seconds. I was a bit worried about drying it out because the foil needs to be removed to baste it. But with a bone-in ham, that’s not going to happen. The caramelizing at the end made it look so good too. My guests were impressed. Thank you!!5 stars

  2. It was so good! The ham became so tender! My whole family loved it! I forgot the sugar by mistake, so the sauce was more on the liquid side but the sweetness level was perfect. So when I make it again, I would put less sugar than the recipe ask for.5 stars

  3. Lisa, I can always count on your recipes to turn out perfect! We made this with boneless spiral sliced ham for our family of 27 for Christmas and everyone loved it, plus it was easy, with it being spiral sliced. The 1/2 lb. per person was spot on. Thank you Lisa!!!5 stars

    1. Wonderful! So happy you loved this recipe on Christmas. And wow, that’s a large gathering, haha! Happy New Year!

  4. This Holiday Season I used quite a few of Lisa’s recipes. The Honey baked ham glaze, the creamed corn casserole, split pea soup, and pot roast. All were excellent.5 stars

  5. We just had this ham today. My family has always been pretty set on “coke ham” (Coca-Cola and brown sugar). This year I made this honey baked ham and we all loved it!! This will be now be my new go-to – it’s wonderful! Thank you, Lisa!!5 stars

  6. I made this ham for Thanksgiving and it was a HUGE HIT. My mom even asked for the recipe after. It was so easy to make the sauce and brush it on the ham. We are currently making our way through the leftovers and it’s delicious. I will absolutely make this again!5 stars

  7. I’ll start by saying that I don’t eat ham … but my family does and they all said this was the best ham that I’ve ever made. I never really MADE my own glaze, just bought Honey Baked Hams. They said this far surpassed the honey baked store bought! 5 stars

  8. This recipe is a winner!!! I made for my our family Easter gathering and everyone loved it! It’s not very sweet and spices are very well balanced! I used only 1 cup of water because I wanted a thicker sauce. I used 1/2 of the cup of drippings plus 3 cups of homemade chicken broth to make a gravy. And it was delicious 😋!5 stars

  9. I made this for Easter; it was fantastic! And so easy. We have plenty of leftovers so I’ll be making you egg and ham casserole. 5 stars

  10. I can’t wait to try this for my first ham ever made!
    I am cooking two hams in the same oven, both are 9 pounds each. Can I cook them at the same time? I have the disposable pan, it is large enough for both hams and I will prop them on some halved onions. Thanks!

    1. Yes, you can cook them at the same time. Just be aware that multiple items in the oven at the same time will usually necessitate an increase in cook time.

  11. very good, I did use brown sugar and heated it until it melted before marinating, liked the video, and how the ham was placed in the roaster on the rack with water in the pan.5 stars

  12. If I cooked the ham the night before Thanksgiving could I do the last part of the process (the browning) before serving bringing the ham to room temperature before the last step?

  13. Huge hit on Easter! We froze the leftovers and it defrosts without issue! Definitely going to make this again!5 stars

  14. Wonderful ham, yummy glaze! Plus, our dessert was your lemon bar filling and it is a winner, definitely two keepers.  5 stars

  15. Thank you so much for this wonderful recipe!! We will definitely not be going to the Honey Baked Ham company anymore. It was so easy and is super flavorful!! Loved the combination of spices. honey and mustard!! My family and guests LOVED it for our Easter dinner!!5 stars

    1. It’s honestly so easy to make right at home! Keep this bookmarked for the upcoming holiday season :)

    1. I’m sure you can, but you’ll eventually need to add it back to the oven to get that outer layer crisp.

  16. Definitely trying your method today. I always throw the packet away as I do not like all the unnecessary ingredients. Thank you. Happy Easter!!5 stars