The holiday ham is a staple around the United States. Most people serve an oven-baked ham, and this traditional method is fine for some people. However, nothing quite compares to a holiday smoked ham. If you have the right tools, it only takes a little longer to slow-smoke a holiday ham than to bake it – and it’s worth it for that authentic smoked flavor.
In our smoked holiday ham recipe, we go over the basic instructions for smoking this popular meat while also adding a special ”Holiday Glaze”. The result is a combination of smoky summer flavor and holiday sweetness. Once you’ve served smoked ham once, your family and friends will go crazy for it every Christmas, New Year’s, and Easter. In fact, we wager that it will be the best holiday ham you’ve ever had.
Note that, for this recipe, we recommend starting with a pre-cooked, sugar-cured ham. These are available at pretty much every grocery store. Using a ”green” uncured ham will result in a meal that more resembles barbecue pork. The pre-cooked ham has already been partially smoked or smoke-flavored, effectively giving you a double-smoked holiday ham that will delight anyone who sinks their teeth into it.
Holiday Smoked Ham Recipe
Time to Prepare
Estimated Cook Time
- One sugar-cured and spiral-sliced ham, 8-12 pounds
- 1 cup of dry spice rub (we recommend Gentry’s BBQ Ham Bone – but if you have a favorite rub or seasoning, you can use that instead)
- Pineapple juice
- 2 sticks of butter
- ½-cup brown sugar
- ½-cup real maple syrup (can replace with additional brown sugar)
- 1 tbsp. honey Dijon mustard
- ¼-cup apple cider or pineapple juice
Tools & Supplies You’ll Need
- Smoker or covered grill set up for indirect cooking
- Flame Boss WiFi Thermometer or Flame Boss 500-WiFi Smoker Controller
- Aluminum foil
- Paper towels
- Aluminum roasting pan and/or serving tray
- Your favorite fruit hardwood (cherry, pecan, etc.)
- Spray bottle (for pineapple juice)
- Saucepan and stirring spoon for glaze
- If ham is frozen, place it in the refrigerator to thaw. This takes 4 to 6 hours per pound, so plan accordingly.
- Set up your smoker/grill and Flame Boss 500 temperature controller for indirect cooking. Preheat to 225 degrees Fahrenheit.
- While the smoker is preheating, unwrap your thawed ham and pat it down with paper towels to remove excessive moisture.
- Coat the outside of your ham with the dry spice rub. (Note: for best results, do steps 3 and 4 the night before and let the coated ham sit in the refrigerator overnight covered with plastic wrap. This will best allow the spices to work their way into the meat.)
- Add a few chunks of fruit hardwood in the smoker’s coals. Place your ham on the smoker, either directly on the grate or on an aluminum roasting pan.
- After two hours, remove the ham from the smoker. Use your spray bottle to baste the ham with pineapple juice. (A few squirts should be enough.)
- Wrap the ham fully in aluminum foil and return it to the smoker. Cook until the ham reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees. How long does it take to smoke ham? In total, it should take about 20 minutes per pound.
- Remove your ham from the smoker and let it rest for 20-30 minutes.
- While the ham is resting, place the Holiday Glaze ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat. Let simmer and stir occasionally for 10-15 minutes or until the glaze is syrupy.
- Unwrap the ham and place it on a serving tray. Pour the warm glaze over the ham and serve.
Holiday Smoked Meats Made Easy
For many years, the biggest downside to holiday smoked meats has been the time commitment. Holidays are when you want to be spending time with family and catching up – and it’s hard to do that when you have constantly monitor and adjust the smoker or grill. In cold regions, that also means having to take your winter clothing off over and over to head outside where the smoker is located.
That’s where the Flame Boss WiFi smoker controller comes in. By attaching the controller, you can set the temperature you want and then relax. This tool does the monitoring and adjusting for you to maintain the desired temperature. By adding meat probes, you can also keep an eye on the smoked holiday ham internal temperature without needing to manually check it. These wireless smoker controllers send the information directly to your smartphone using the Flame Boss mobile app. You don’t even need to get off the warm couch until your meat is ready!
Order a Flame Boss 500, Flame Boss 400, or Flame Boss WiFi Thermometer to simplify your holiday cooking. All your guests will get to experience the unbeatable flavor of a smoked and glazed holiday ham while you get to enjoy their company. It also leaves more time and oven space available for preparing some delicious side dishes to go with the main course. Our innovative products make smoking meats easier so you can be a boss of holiday meals.