Honey Bourbon Glazed Ham

If there ever was a show-stopper of a roast, this is it.

Absolutely perfect for Easter, or any other special dinner you want to share with loved ones. It’s so easy to prepare and the results are truly memorable. Serve with French Gratin Potatoes, Maple Glazed Carrots, and Homemade Dinner Rolls. Incredible!

An overview shot of a honey bourbon glazed ham next to a bowl of mashed potatoes, glazed carrots, and a glass of white wine.

HOW TO MAKE HONEY BOURBON GLAZED HAM

The beauty of this roast, besides its incredible taste, is how simple is to prepare.

If your ham is frozen, be sure to allow it to thaw for several days, or even better, 1 week in the refrigerator.

The glaze can be made up to 2 days in advance.

WHAT IS BERKSHIRE HAM?

A Berkshire ham comes from a breed of pigs that originated in England. They are known for their marbling, which delivers deeply flavorful ham, and is extremely tender and juicy.

A Berkshire ham is not cheap, we’re not going to mislead you on that. But it is superior in taste and is ideal for special meals such as Easter.

You can order them for expedited delivery from D’Artagnan or Gourmet Food Store.

A cutting board with a large Berkshire ham in the background and a sniffer of bourbon, and small bowls of apple cider vinegar, mustard, and brown sugar next to it.

Scoring the ham is essential for allowing the glaze to melt down into the meat.

Simply take a large, sharp knife, and cut slits across the ham. Then turn the ham 45 degrees, and cut another set of slits, forming diamond shapes in a cross-hatch formation.

EXPERT TIP: You’ll want to score the side of the ham that has the layer of fat. This is called the fat cap and is loaded with flavor. As the ham roasts, the slits will begin to spread open, allowing you to baste the meat with more of the glaze.  Don’t cut the slits more than ½-inch deep, otherwise, the slits will spread too much during the roasting process.

Two hands using a large knife to score the fat cap of a smoked ham.

THE PERFECT GLAZE

Since this ham is bone-in and smoked, it arrives loaded with incredible flavor.

But you’re going to want to elevate the taste even more with a wonderful glaze.  Trust us on this.

We find the combination of a good-quality bourbon mixed with molasses, spicy brown mustard, apple cider vinegar, and honey put this ham over-the-top.

A glass bowl of honey bourbon glaze with a whisk in it.

After preheating your oven to 350 F, it’s time to add the first round of glaze.

This glaze is not real thick, which is great. The honey in the glaze will create an incredible crust as it cooks into the top of the ham.

EXPERT TIP: We recommend adding another layer of the glaze to the roast every 20 minutes. You’ll want the internal temperature to reach 135 F. This usually takes a couple hours for a 18 lb, bone-in ham.

A hand using a large brush to apply glaze to an uncooked Berkshire ham.

The smell in your house, while the ham is baking, is nothing short of incredible.

Once cooked, allow the ham to sit for at least 10 minutes to allow the juices to settle.

This is ham perfection.

A cooked honey bourbon-roasted ham in a roasting pan on a roasting rack.

HONEY BOURBON GLAZED HAM SERVES A CROWD

As mentioned, this ham is a bit pricey.

But when you consider how many meals you can make out it, it’s really a good deal after all!

And it’s so easy to prepare, it allows you to focus on those wonderful side dishes!

A white dinner plate with sliced ham, glazed carrots and mashed potatoes on it, next to a glass of white wine.

This honey bourbon-glazed ham is the perfect centerpiece for that special occasion meal.

As you slice into the roast, you’ll immediately see how juicy and tender the meat is.

Just look at that ham! This is a wonderful ham for an Easter feast. Check out other recipes on our Perfect Easter Table!

Two hands using a large fork and knife to carve a honey bourbon glazed ham on a platter.

Ready to make the most amazing baked ham in the entire world? Go for it!

And when you do, be sure to take a picture of it, post it on Instagram, and tag @howtofeedaloon and hashtag #howtofeedaloon!

 

An overview shot of a honey bourbon glazed ham next to a bowl of mashed potatoes, glazed carrots, and a glass of white wine.

Honey Bourbon Glazed Ham

This Honey Bourbon Glazed Ham is just amazing and the perfect dish for Easter Sunday, or any other special occasion. So simple, yet so incredible in flavor. And you'll love the leftovers! Yum!
Print Pin Rate
Course: Entree
Cuisine: Entree
Keyword: Glazed ham recipe, holiday entree, Honey glazed ham
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Resting time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 25 minutes
Servings: 15 people
Calories: 398kcal

Equipment

  • Large roasting pan with rack

Ingredients

  • 1 cup bourbon
  • ¼ cup apple cider
  • ¾ cup honey
  • ¼ cup molasses or maple syrup
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup spicy brown mustard
  • 1 15 lb ham smoked, bone-in, preferably Berkshire or Heritage

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Whisk bourbon, cider, honey, molasses, brown sugar and mustard in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  • Score fat in a crosshatch pattern, not cutting more than approx. ½-inch deep.
  • Set the ham on a rack in a large roasting pan and add enough water to fill to 1/4" inch, about 2 cups.
  • Brush ham with glaze and roast, basting every 20 minutes with extra glaze. (Tent with foil if browning too quickly, until insta-read thermometer registers 135 F, about 2 hours).
  • Transfer ham to cutting board and let rest 10 minutes before slicing. Serve with additional brown mustard, if desire.

Video

Notes

If your ham if frozen, let it thaw in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days before cooking.  
A bone-in, smoked Heritage ham is another great option for ham.  Look in body of the post for links to distributors of excellent Berkshire or Heritage hams.  
If you don't want alcohol in the glaze, then substitute the bourbon with chicken or beef broth, however, the taste will be different.  It will be delicious, but a different profile than with the bourbon.  99% of the alcohol cooks out during the roasting process.  
Though the smoked ham is already cooked, we recommend roasting the ham until an internal temperature of 135°F is reached.  An instant-read thermometer helps with this. 
Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for up to 1 week and freezes beautifully for up to 2 months. 

Nutrition

Calories: 398kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 52mg | Potassium: 106mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 18mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe? Take a Picture!Mention @HowToFeedALoon or tag #HowToFeedALoon!

POST UPDATE: This recipe was originally published in March 2016, but was updated with improved tweaks to the recipe, new tips, photography, and a fabulous new video in April, 2020!

8 Comments

  • Chris, This looks like another winner, will definitely try. You were right in the pronunciation of shire in Berkshire but wrong with the pronunciation of Berk. In England we pronounce it BARKSHEER.

  • Hi Kris & Wesley!

    I came across your website while looking for a recipe for chicken salad. I know the basic ingredients in it, but growing up my family basically only used salt & pepper to dishes, and I was looking for additional herbs & spices that would enhance and add more flavor. Was I ever excited when I read your recipe – it is AhhMazIng! It really is The Best, especially with your homemade mayo!

    While here, I looked to see if you had a baked ham recipe. After reading it, I have two questions:
    1) I have a spiral ham on hand from sales after the Easter holiday. Can I use it in place of the ham you suggest?
    2) I don’t drink alcohol. I know alcohol cooks out, but since I don’t drink, I don’t have any bourbon. What can I use as a substitute?

    I am so happy I found your website. I love your recipes. I love your quirkiness and charm. You’re both adorable! This will be my go-to for ideas for meals. From one Loon to another, thank you for all you do. Much love to you both.

    Tammy 😉
    XOXOXOX

  • Made this ham today for my guests. By far it was the best I’d ever done and I made many. The glaze was perfect inspite oh the fact that I was missing apple cider. Thank you this was a real winner. It’ll be gracing my table for many years to come.

    • That is just so wonderful to hear, Diana! We know the challenge of preparing a special occasion meal for guests…everything needs to be just right! So, we’re thrilled that this ham recipe worked well for you and your guests enjoyed it. We love it, too. And talk about delicious leftovers!! Thanks so much for letting us know and please stay in touch. Very best, Kris & Wesley.

    • Hi! Yes! The ham is already fully cooked, so all you need to do is completely heat it through and let the honey bourbon glaze caramelize and cook perfectly. This usually takes 1 to 2 hours, depending on the size of the ham. So good! Let us know if you have any other questions, or if you decided to go with a baked ham this year. You’ll love it if you do!! Best, Kris & Wesley

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