Slow-Cooker Spiral Ham

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We love a good ham for our Easter Sunday feast.  But, what’s the best (and easiest way to prepare it)?

Once you get your hands on a nice fully-cooked (preferably smoked) ham, you are already almost to the finish line for making an amazing holiday centerpiece roast.  But, folks, let’s take it a step further and amp up the flavors even more, make a great sauce, and do it effortlessly.  Sound good? Let’s do it!

A spiral baked ham sitting on a large oval white platter with cooked carrots surrounding the roast.

How To Make Slow-Cooker Spiral Ham

The slow-cooker makes preparing your favorite meals so fast and easy.

This is truly a “set it and forget it” meal. Perfect for a busy holiday meal preparation.


Choosing the Right Spiral Ham

There are lots of good hams on the market nowadays. If you can’t find one at your local supermarket, check with your butcher. We also love to order from D’Artagnan. But, search around, you’ll find a good ham that is perfect for your special feast.

EXPERT TIP: We recommend going with a 6 to 7-pound bone-in, smoked, uncured, fully cooked ham. We love a spiral sliced ham, but that’s up to you. We find that as the ham is slow-cooking, the juices seep in between the slices and make them even more flavorful.

A pair of hands gently spreading apart a few of the slices of an spiral ham that is fully cooked.

The Simple Ingredients You Will Need

Brown sugar is a classic ingredient to amp up your smoked ham.

We sprinkle a good 1½ cups all over the top.

EXPERT TIP: If you go with a 5, 6, or 7 lb ham, you should have no problem fitting into a 6, 7, 8, or 10-quart slow-cooker. It’s okay if you have to stuff the ham in a bit. Be sure to place the ham in the slow-cooker flat-side down.

A person using their fingers to sprinkle dark brown sugar all over the top of a spiral ham that has been placed inside a slow-cooker.

Next, we add even more flavor: 1 cup of pure maple syrup and 1 cup of apple cider.

NOTE: If you can’t find apple cider, then you can just go with regular apple juice, just make sure it’s 100% juice.

Other great substitutes for apple juice include orange juice or pineapple juice.

A person pouring maple syrup from a measuring cup as well as a cup of apple cider into a slow-cooker filled with a spiral smoked ham.

When to Serve Slow-Cooker Spiral Ham

Well, that’s a bit of a no-brainer. Easter Sunday certainly comes to mind.

However, this ham is so easy to prepare, you can throw this in the slow-cooker right after work and be ready to eat within a couple of hours.

Baked ham leftovers are legendary for making incredible sandwiches, especially our Monte Cristo!

Just take a look at this ham!

A fully cooked spiral ham that is on serving platter next to braised carrots.

What To Serve with Baked Ham

Folks, if you’re going to have a fabulous baked ham for your holiday feast, you’ve got to have some stellar sides.

Here are our favorites:

Who’s hungry?

A white dinner plate filled with several slices of baked ham next to au gratin potatoes and braised carrots.

To make a wonderful sauce to accompany the Slow-Cooker Ham, simply scoop a couple of cups of the cooking liquid after you’ve removed the hame and set is aside.

In a small bowl, mix together 1/4 cup of stone ground mustard with 1/4 cup of Dijon mustard and then 1 tablespoon of apple cider mixture.

Mix in the reserved cooking liquid. Add to a gravy bowl and pass at the table. Amazing!

A mustard-maple sauce being poured from a small ladle onto a plate filled with several slices of baked ham.

Ready to make the best (and easiest) baked ham this holiday season? Go for it!

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

Slow-Cooker Spiral Ham

This Slow-Cooker Spiral Ham is exploding with flavor and could not be easier to prepare. The mustard-maple sauce puts it over the top. Perfect for holiday entertaining or a special Sunday meal!
5 from 7 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Entree
Cuisine: American
Keyword: baked ham recipe, easy baked ham recipe, how to cook a ham in a slow-cooker
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 45 minutes
Servings: 15
Calories: 448kcal


  • 6, 7, or 8 QT Slow-Cooker


  • 7 lb ham bone-in (or boneless), smoked, uncured, fully cooked, spiral-cut
  • cups brown sugar preferably dark
  • 1 cup maple syrup pure
  • 1 cup apple cider or 100% apple juice


  • ¼ cup Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup stone-ground mustard aka: Old Style
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • Salt to taste


  • Place the ham in your slow-cooker, flat-side down.
  • Sprinkle the brown sugar all over the ham and use your clean hands to work the sugar into the ham. Pour the maple syrup and apple cider over the top of the ham.
  • Place the lid on the slow-cooker and turn on LOW and cook for 2 to 3 hours. (no less than 2, no more than 3).
  • Take the lid off and use a large spoon to pour the cooking liquid all over the top of the ham. Put the lid back on and slow-cook for another 30 minutes.
  • Use a couple of large spoons or spatulas to carefully remove the ham from the slow cooker and place it on a cutting board or serving platter. Cover with foil if not serving within 15 minutes.
  • To make the sauce, use a measuring cup to remove 2 cups of the cooking liquid from the slow-cooker. In another medium-sized bowl, mix together the two mustards and the apple cider vinegar. Stir in the reserved liquid. Whisk until fully combined. Taste, it may need a little more salt, if so, sprinkle some in. Transfer to a gravy boat and serve with sliced ham.



Go with boneless or bone-in, but we prefer bone-in.  
Be sure to not let the ham cook for too long.  3 hours is about the max you want to go.  To keep the ham warm, turn the setting to WARM after the braising period is done. 
We like to pull the slices aways from the bone and arrange them on a platter to make it easy for guests to serve themselves.  We also pour a little of the sauce over the ham.
You can also cook cut carrots and/or parsnips in with the ham, but you'll need to increase the time to about 3 to 3 1/2 hours.  Be careful not to overcook!


Calories: 448kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 46g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 131mg | Sodium: 875mg | Potassium: 711mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 6IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 63mg | Iron: 2mg
Tried this recipe? Take a Picture!Mention @HowToFeedALoon or tag #HowToFeedALoon!


  • 5 stars
    This received so many compliments at my Easter brunch for this ham. 2nd time I served it to the same group. A bit upset because there were no leftovers. Rave reviews for the sauce. Gave out your recipe and website before the end if the night. THANK YOU.

    • Hi Barbara! That is music to our ears! We are THRILLED you had such great success with the slow-cooker ham and sauce! That’s too bad there were no leftovers…but that’s a good thing, too! It was a hit!! Thank you so so much for sharing. We hope you had a wonderful Easter! xoxo Kris & Wesley

  • Although unlikely, I wanted to pass this on in the event anyone has leftovers: Jewish rye, buttered on the outsides, layer of ham, thinly sliced Gruyere cheese, and a little ham sauce spread on the inside of the bread. Grill in skillet until cheese is melty. Soooo good!

    • 5 stars
      You just posted about exactly what we ate for lunch an hour and a half ago. We added sourkraut and horseradish ….. leftover garnishes from St. Patrick’s Day era Ruben sannies from all last month which we also adore.

      • Oh my gosh that sounds amazing. Takes it to another level of flavors with the kraut and horseradish.

  • 5 stars
    Another hit! The ham had a tiny hint of sweet throughout the entire piece without that sappy glazing many hams have. The sauce added a punch that paired perfectly. I tried the carrots but they did not get done enough but I have them saved in the juice and will cook over the stove this week. Potatoes Dauphinoise and Roasted Asparagus with Chopped Egg completed our Easter meal. It was a Loon Easter!! Thanks guys.

    • Hi Mark!! Woo hoo!! So glad everything turned out great and hope you still can enjoy those carrots!! Thanks as always for letting us know and for the great review! We always appreciate that so very, very much!!! All the best, Kris & Wesley

    • Hi Stacy! That is so great to hear! Glad you were able to make the modifications and have such great success!! And thanks for the 5-star review!! We appreciate that so so much!! Best, Kris & Wesley

  • 5 stars
    This recipe is going to save my ASS!
    How is it I am 50 years old and never did this before?

    You guys are Seriously INCREDIBLE and I was stressed because a heat wave is coming and I was like … F..K I am not lighting the oven in this big house with vaulted ceilings that TRAP THE HEAT ( YES, menopause makes life in anything above 65 degrees a serious BITCH!)

    So you saved the DAY for me!

    I seriously NEVER thought to do this and I COOK for other people! I owned a catering business and now I cook for a family of 4 for the last 3 years!

    It was always… the OVEN.
    God Love you both… you are so much fun to watch and enjoy

    The Food Network or the Cooking Channel will be hearing from me … I am tired of the same old shit … Jesus retire Giada DeLaurentis and Bobby Flay already… Gag me with a big damn spoon!

    Bring you on and some new fun blood!
    Keep rocking you two!

    • Leslie!!! We can’t even begin to express in words how happy you have made us!! You are nothing short of fabulous and we LOVE YOU!!! We are over-the-moon happy that we helped you out with the ham in the slow cooker technique!!! Happy Easter!!!! xoxoxoxoforever Kris & Wesley

  • Oh my goodness gracious. Now you are speaking my language. Spiral sliced ham is another one of my favorite things. This looks awesome! Thanks for another great recipe, and also for including ideas and recipes for sides.

  • This looks so good. And I just checked out the potato recipe too. Just what I needed for Easter dinner. Love your recipes and love your videos even more.

  • 5 stars
    OMG guys, this is exactly what I wanted to do with my fully cooked Sprouts (Colorado) spiral ham for Easter! But … I didn’t know exactly what to do. I give you 5 stars for the entertainment and great advice. I might come back later after I actually prepare our ham; and screw it up somehow; and need to blame somebody for my defiencies.
    Nope … I promise …. I won’t do that. I really wanted to see something like this .. along with all the entertainment you guys gave me watching it.
    Thanks! Nobody else has posted how to deal with a spiral sliced fully cooked ham with steroid flavors after the fact. I only wish I had access to wonderful maple syrup like you guys have.
    I’ll make do with some Stonewall Kitchen maple syrup I got when we were in York, Maine back in 2018 … which has turned to sugar. Little butter, and heat …. it will be good as gold.
    Love you guys.

    • 5 stars
      So… I bought a ham for Easter Sunday, but saw this recipe and couldn’t wait! I had little time to cook today and this was just perfect. My kids thought it was the best ham ever! When I do these in the oven, they get dry on the outer pieces, and the middle doesn’t get warm. The crockpot solved that, plus the brown sugar, maple syrup, and fruit juice (I used orange, because that’s all I had) added great flavor and kept it so tender and moist. It was in the slow cooker all day, started on low, switched to high to speed things up for lunch, then on warm so we could have more for supper. It was great!!! Thank you, you handsome y and talented young men. You even had a sauce recipe and side dish recipes! Wow! I think I’m in love

      • Hi Lisa!!! Woo hoo!!! That is fantastic!!! Couldn’t be more thrilled to hear that you and the kids loved the ham!! Thank you SO MUCH for letting us know and for the fabulous review!! That means the world to us!! xoxo Kris & Wesley

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