Hams are an affordable, yet special centerpiece for any holiday meal. This Ham with Pineapple Glaze features salty umami from soy and sweetness from a combination of pineapple and brown sugar. Whether you’re using this easy recipe to celebrate Easter, Christmas or any time in between, this Pineapple Glazed Ham is an excellent main dish for any occasion.
Why I love this recipe:
I love this Ham with Pineapple Glaze recipe because it has two sweet sauces! One glaze that is brushed on the ham and the other, is a very delicious spicy pineapple serving sauce.
And because of that, it may seem like this recipe has a lot of steps, but they’re all easy to follow, just dump-into-pot-style steps. They require very little of you—I promise. (And isn’t that what we all want for holiday dishes?)
Another bonus is, baked ham is a pretty forgiving dish.
The only thing you could do wrong is accidentally dry it by overcooking it, but even if you do, who doesn’t like a crispy piece of ham, especially smothered in sweet sticky sauce?
That said, if you follow these tips, I’m sure your ham will be cooked perfectly and will impress whoever you’re feeding.
Whether you serve this ham for Easter, Christmas or any other celebration, it’s a stunning centerpiece that pairs with so many classic holiday side dishes. Be sure check out my many recommendations below.
I hope you love it as much as I do!
Ingredients and Tools
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- 5-8 lb. bone-in ham—while it doesn’t have to be spiral, they sure are convenient.
- Fresh thyme
- Unsalted butter
- Brown sugar—you can use dark or light brown sugar in this pineapple glaze recipe.
- White wine—I like a dry, unoaked white wine, like a sauvignon blanc or a pinot grigio. You don’t need to use a really expensive wine.
- Whole cloves
- Pineapple juice
- Soy sauce—this ingredient gives our recipe lovely umami and saltiness.
- Bay leaf
- All-purpose flour—also known as AP flour, this is going to serve as a thickener for our serving sauce.
- Crushed pineapple in juice—please make sure that the pineapple is in juice, not in syrup!
- Red pepper flakes—this is the best ingredient because gives this salty sweet dish a secret spicy zing.
In addition to these ingredients, you’re going to need the following tools:
How to make this Pineapple Glazed Ham
We start by baking the ham and warming it up. To do that, cover the ham with foil to keep moisture in, and bake it in a preheated oven.
Ham will take about 10-14 minutes per pound to heat through, so it’ll take around 50 minutes to an hour and 20 minutes for an average 5-8 pounds ham. It is good when it reaches an internal temperature of 110F/43C, which you can check with a meat thermometer.
About 3/4 of the way in, when the ham is almost heated all the way through, splash some of the wine and herbs into the roasting pan to give aroma and flavor. This will also help keep moisture in while the ham finishes its initial bake.
At that point, I like to also flip the ham to face downwards, as you can see in the photos. I do this so when I start to glaze, the glaze can coat all parts of the ham and can get equally sticky and delicious all around. If the ham is laying horizontally, the bottom part of the ham doesn’t get as much glaze, and won’t get that sticky sweetness we love.
But flipping the ham like this is a minor detail, to be honest, and it is not required if you don’t want to do it.
Make the ham glaze with pineapple juice
While the ham warms up, we make our pineapple brown sugar glaze for ham by literally dumping all glaze ingredients into the pot, bringing them to a boil, then reducing to syrup consistency.
This is quick and easy, and it should take no more than 15 minutes to come together.
We know the pineapple ham glaze is done when it’s thicker and coats the back of a spoon.
Glaze the ham
Also at the 3/4 of the way stage, we want to crank up the temperature in the oven to help all those sugars in our glaze caramelize and turn sticky delicious.
Then, brush the glaze over the ham and put it back in the oven. The secret is to repeat brushing, every 10 or so minutes for the final duration of the cook, so that the glaze builds up and caramelizes nicely.
Remove the glazed ham from the oven to let it rest, and while it rests, make the serving sauce, which is to die for!
Throw them into the saucepan together and bring that to a boil, then let it reduce ’til syrupy.
Then we’re all done and ready to plate and serve.
Decorate and Garnish
Hams make a beautiful edible centerpiece for holidays! Garnish it with additional pineapple slices for a beautiful look.
I love serving the pineapple ham slices with sauteed veggies like collards or kale.
You can also sprinkle some fruit around. Depending on the season, you can use fresh cranberries, pineapples, apples or whatever you’d like!
What to serve with Pineapple Glazed Ham
- Instant Pot Brown Rice Recipe
- Sautéed Veggies
- Instant Pot Garlic Mashed Potatoes
- Air Fryer Butternut Squash
- Baked Asparagus with Parmesan
- Spinach Madeline
Other Holiday Recipes to Try:
- Ham With Pineapple Sauce
- How to Spatchcock a Turkey
- Dry Brine Spatchcock Turkey
- Compound Butter for Turkey
- How to Carve a Spatchcock Turkey
- Grilled Turkey Breast
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Ham with Pineapple Glaze
- 5-8 pounds bone-in spiral ham
- 6 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 3/4 cup white wine divided
- 10 whole cloves or more to taste
- 6 ounces of pineapple juice
- 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
- 1 bay leaf
Pineapple Serving Sauce
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons of all purpose flour
- 1 20oz can of crushed pineapple in juice
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup of pan drippings*
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Preheat the oven to 325F/165C.
- Place the ham in a roasting pan and cover with foil. Bake until 100-110F/37-43C in the center (approximately 10-14 minutes per pound). This should take about 1 hour and 20 minutes for an 8 pound ham.
- Meanwhile, make the pineapple glaze.
- In a small sauce pan add 1/2 cup of the wine, and the herbs and bring to a boil. Then, remove the herbs (but reserve them) and add the soy, pineapple juice, cloves sugar and butter. Boil until syrupy.
- After about an hour, or 3/4 of the way, remove the foil and increase the oven temperature to 350F/176C and pour the remaining 1/3 cup of wine and the herbs to the roasting pan. Let it cook the rest of the way through until it gets to 110F/43C internal temp.
- Then, flip the ham up and brush 1/3 of the glaze over the ham and increase the temperature again to 400F/205C. Cook another 30 minutes, brushing the remaining glaze every 10 minutes (until you get to 140F/60C internal temperature).
- Remove the ham from the oven and brush again with glaze. Transfer to a serving platter and let it rest 15 minutes before serving.
- In the meantime make the serving sauce by combining all the ingredients into a sauce pan and cooking until syrupy.