Wondering how to cook ham?  This Crock Pot Brown Sugar Holiday Ham recipe is one of our very favorite ways to make a fail-proof holiday ham that will knock their socks off. Both spiral and regular cooked hams come out super flavorful, tender and juicy with this crockpot-baked ham recipe.

One of our very favorite Crock Pot Ham Recipes. Great for spiral or regular cooked ham. Foolproof  way of cooking ham in crockpot.

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How to Cook Ham

Slow cookers are just perfect for those who find themselves wondering how to bake a ham. Crock pots tend to keep moisture in a lot better than ovens, so cooking ham in a crockpot has a lot of advantages, especially for first time ham-bakers or those who are just simply looking for an easy way to bake ham.

Note: We recommend that you use bone-in spiral or traditional hams or whole muscle boneless hams in the slow cooker. Reconstituted hams do not typically do well in the slow cooker for long periods of time.

Crock Pot Ham Recipes

I found this recipe in Gooseberry Patch’s new Hometown Christmas. This recipe is by far the easiest most flavorful ham I have ever personally made. It was incredibly tender and juicy and it literally took 5 minutes to throw in the crock pot! (Note: If you don’t have these ingredients on hand, you can also try our Easy Crock Pot Ham.

Now most of the time I prefer a basic bone-in cooked ham versus a spiral ham. I think it is nostalgia more than anything. However, I have used this recipe multiple times for both types and I have to say this last spiral ham we made in the crock pot was so incredible it might just begin to change my mind on the whole matter! Regardless of what type of ham you choose, there isn’t an easier way out there to cook it than in your slow cooker!

Cooking Ham in a Crock Pot


Prep time: 

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Serves: 10-12

Fail proof crockpot ham recipe. Perfectly tender, flavorful and juicy every time!
  • 7 lb Cooked Bone-In Cooked Ham or Spiral Cooked Ham
  • 1 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 Cups Pineapple Juice
  • ½ Cup Maple Syrup
  1. Place ham in a large slow cooker flat side down.
  2. Rub brown sugar over all sides of the ham.
  3. Drizzle with juice and syrup.
  4. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.


Slow Cooker Recommendations

When purchasing your ham, keep your crock size in mind. It is important to consider both ham shape and size. Picking a ham based purely on weight can lead you to an odd shaped cut that won’t fit your crock pot. You will want to make sure your ham can fit entirely inside of your slow cooker with the lid completely closed. Many models of slow cookers these days come in 6-7 qts offering ample room for a nice-sized ham. This 7 lb ham fit nicely in my 6 qt slow cooker.

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  • rebeca

    that’s how I cooked my ham this year. It was super easy and tasted wonderful. It fell apart and was so tender. In fact, I think I’ll go get some leftovers right now :)

    • Cris Goode (@crisgoode)

      I just love making it this way! Glad you enjoyed it(and those leftovers!)

  • Cris

    We just love this method!

  • ronda collins

    This was so delicious, I will do my ham this way from now on!! Thanks for the wonderful recipe!!

    • Cris

      So glad you enjoyed it!!

  • Angie | Big Bear's Wife

    This just looks amazing, I know we’re going to have to make this for Christmas this year!

    • Cris

      Aw thanks Angie! Enjoy!!

  • Edie Sherwood

    I have a question: What brand/type of ham do you prefer? I tried cooking a ham in my crock pot once an it was a disaster, but my ham didn’t have a bone and, I realized later, was probably pre-cooked. I cooked it for 8 hours on low with brown sugar and pineapple juice and it was bone dry and crumbling apart even with all the liquid. How can I avoid this in the future (company coming next week! Eeek!)

    • Cris

      Hi Edie-
      It sounds like you may have started out with a ham that was processed quite a bit. Those may be okay to slice up for lunch meat and such, but I would steer clear for your feast next week. Did it happen to have a cut side to it where you could see the ham or was it all encased? My guess is it was likely encased. For that traditional ham you are going to want to go with a bone-in variety to be sure you are getting what you want or, if you go the boneless route, look for “whole muscle” on the label. Spirals turn out great in the slow cooker, just turn them cut side down so the juices can keep them from drying out.

      Don’t be afraid of a “cooked” label. I believe all”smoked” hams (what we think of when we say ham) are technically cooked. Some require more cooking while others you are simply reheating. Fresh ham (uncooked) will cook up more like a roast and turn white.

      Good luck and let us know how it goes!

  • Judy

    Hi do you cook it on Hi or Low” Sounds so good. We will make it for Christmas

    • Cris

      Hi Judy! Cook on low :) Merry Christmas!!

  • Lorraine

    Hi, I saw this on pinterest and just had to check it out. I plan to try baking my ham this way asap. I am *known* for my whiskey – pineapple ham at christmas, so I may try adding a half cup of Jack Daniels- my go-to brand for my christmas ham- plus some ground cloves. :)

    • Cris

      Sounds good Lorraine! You may want to substitute your whiskey for half a cup of the pineapple juice instead of just adding it in addition to. Those cloves sound so good! I love the flavor of cloves with ham! Merry Christmas!

  • susan

    Any suggestions if I forgot pineapple.?
    Besides that it looks very good

    • Cris

      Hi Susan! We haven’t tried it, but I have heard some folks use apple juice. I would imagine that would make it a bit sweeter though.

  • kellie

    My family is not big fans of pineapple. Does it keep much of that flavor? Or can I use something else like apple juice? Suggestions appreciated :)

    • Cris

      Hi Kellie- After it cooks down it doesn’t maintain a distinct pineapple taste. The juices are very savory. You can try apple juice as I know others use it. I have heard it will be a bit sweeter though. Enjoy!

  • Katherine

    Hello, I’m in Aus & don’t know wat a spiral ham is! Can I please use a shoulder or leg ham thats already cooked from the supermarket? Do I take the rind off and then cook the ham with ham ‘fat’ side lying on the botton of the crock pot or at the top under the lid? Sorry to sound silly, but I’d love to make it but never done it b4.

    • Cris

      Hi Catherine-
      I would cook it with the fat side up. Enjoy!

  • Anita

    I use the powdered packets of apple cider with the brown sugar – if you like the spices similar to the ones that come with the spiral ham

    • Cris

      Great idea Anita! Merry Christmas!

  • Trackbacks

  • Trackback from How Long to Cook Ham - Recipes That Crock!
    Thursday, 18 December, 2014

    […] Special care should be taken while reheating spiraled cooked hams in the oven so that they don’t dry out. One way to avoid this is to cook spiral hams in a crock pot. […]

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