If you are looking to make a fancy holiday dinner for a crowd, nothing is as easy as a cooking spiral ham in a slow cooker. Glazed Spiral Ham is super simple to serve, too! Just plop it on a fancy tray with some gorgeous serving pieces and a little carafe of extra glaze on the side, and your guests will serve themselves without you having to carve some monster bird.
This Easter, I decided to spice things up ( literally ) and make a ham glaze with leftover pepper jelly, plus my favorite bourbon and some brown sugar. It makes the ham just a tiny bit spicy, but only on the edges where the glaze really soaks in towards the bottom of the slow cooker.
Bonus: once you learn how to cook a spiral ham in a slow cooker, you will have a ton of space freed up in your oven to make all kinds of delicious side dishes, like my classic Baked Southern Macaroni and Cheese or delicious, souffle-like Corn Casserole.
Of course spiral ham isn't just for Easter ( and neither are macaroni and cheese nor corn casserole! ). I love making a spiral ham in the slow cooker for a Thanksgiving dinner without a turkey, or a classic Southern Christmas dinner. It's such an easy dinner for a crowd, and I love that the slow cooker doesn't heat up the whole house like the oven does, which is an issue when you live in a sub-tropical climate like Charleston! If you can convince your family members to bring the sides, you can go an entire holiday without turning on the oven.
Are you tired of seeing photos this delicious spiral ham cooked in the slow cooker yet? I love how the bourbon brown sugar pepper jelly glaze seeps into the ham, but doesn't leave it super sticky. Just a nice, light covering for a little bit of extra flavor.
How to Cook a Ham in the Slow Cooker FAQ:
Can I cook a precooked ham in the CrockPot?
YES! In fact, that's exactly what this recipe calls for. The hams we are used to getting in stores are precooked, and we are really just reheating them to a safe temperature and seasoning them when we "cook" them in the slow cooker or oven.
What if my ham won't fit in the slow cooker or is too tall?
Place the lid on top anyway, and crimp foil TIGHTLY around the insert for the slow cooker and the lid to connect them. Does this look super classy? No. Does it work? YES!
What are good side dishes for ham?
Spiral Ham is surprisingly versatile. Some of my favorite side dishes for ham are:
Slow Cooker Southern Ham
- 1 spiral sliced ham 5 - 7 lbs
- ½ cup bourbon
- ¾ cup packed brown sugar I used light but dark is just as good
- ½ cup pepper jelly
- ¼ cup dijon mustard
- Spread ¼ cup brown sugar on the bottom of the slow cooker.
- Lay the spiral ham in slow cooker.
- Mix the remaining ingredients and pour them over the ham.
- Place the lid on slow cooker. If it doesn't quite close, cover it with aluminum foil and crimp to seal.
- Cook for 6 hours on low or 4 hours on high.
Kelly Edwards says
Pepper Jelly Never used it can you recommend a name brand or did you make it from scratch ..
I buy my pepper jelly - if you are in the South, Kroger and Publix store brands both are wonderful! Stonewall Kitchen also makes a great version - you can find them in most grocery stores in the jam/jelly aisle or with the specialty foods in the deli, as well as online.
How do you lay the ham in the crock pot? Flat face down? Or on its side? However it fits? Do you have any more photos of this recipe, by chance? Thank you!
I put it flat side / cut side down, and the tapered side sticks out of the top. If your slow cooker is too shallow for the lid to fit properly, place the lid on top of the ham and then seal it to the cooker's pot with foil to keep the heat in while it cooks. I do this every year!