Ree's Dr Pepper-Glazed Ham Is the Only Recipe You'll Need This Easter (2024)

Table of Contents
Ingredients Directions FAQs

Easter is coming—the goose is getting fat!

Wait. That's Christmas.

And Christmas isn't coming. At least not for another 200+days.

Okay, now that I've both confused and depressed everyone: Here's the recipe for my yummy sweet-glazed ham—the same ham recipe I'll be making for Easter brunch with all the best ham side dishes. It's totally easy, exceedingly delicious, and results in a purty and glossy Easter ham that'll make your guests say "Oooooooh!" with wide, expectant eyes and, hopefully, hearty appetites because this ham could feed an army. If you're not feeding an army, you'll likely have some leftover ham. To me, that's one of the best parts of cooking a ham—just imagine all the possibilities!

What's the secret to the best holiday ham?

Let's get something straight: Is glazing a ham necessary? No. Is it worth it? Yes! Ham is just regular 'ol ham until you top it with a tangy, sweet, sticky, addictive glaze. For this one, all you have to do is pop open a can of Dr Pepper and mix it with mustard, brown sugar, and apple cider vinegar. Since the ham comes from the grocery store pre-cooked, this is an easy extra step that results in major flavor. Plus, it gives it that gorgeous glossy, lacquered look that just screams holiday ham!

What kind of ham is best for Easter dinner?

Look for a fully-cooked, bone-in ham that isn't spiral cut—it stays juicier in the oven! Shank-end hams are the big, beautiful ones you're used to seeing for the holidays and those work great here. Just remember to do the math on how much ham per person is needed before you put in your order with the butcher!

When should I put my glaze on my ham?

The idea is to wait until the ham is almost fully heated, then add the glaze as one of the last steps. You don't want to add it too early or the sugars in the glaze could cause it to burn, and you don't want to add it too late or you won't get that caramelized coating. I usually bake the ham for about 2 hours before adding some of the glaze. Then I'll pop it back in the oven for 20 minutes, add more glaze, and repeat. The goal is to repeat this process until the ham is nice and glossy. The magic happens when you glaze it 2 or 3 or 4 times.

Do you cook a ham covered or uncovered?

Cover the ham to keep it moist! I've found that just tenting the ham with foil does the job. Keep it tented until you brush on the glaze. Once glaze in on the ham, remove the foil so the glaze has a chance to get all caramelized and yummy.

What can you do with leftover ham?

What can't you do is the real question. Since this is a bone-in ham, save the bone and make ham stock for future soups and stews! With leftover ham, make something breakfast-y like quiche, toss it into your favorite pasta dish or on top of a pizza, or just make a really good ham sandwich.

whole fully cooked bone-in ham (15 to 18 pounds)

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Yields:
18 serving(s)
Prep Time:
20 mins
Cook Time:
3 hrs
Total Time:
3 hrs 20 mins

Ingredients

Directions

    1. Step1Preheat the oven to 325°F.
    2. Step2Score the surface of the ham in a diamond pattern about 1/8-inch deep. Place cloves in the middle of each diamond. Place the ham in a large roasting pan with a rack, tent it with foil, and bake for 2 to 2 1/2 hours—or longer, depending on the package directions. (Some hams may require 3 to 3 1/2 hours at a lower temperature; just check the package.)
    3. Step3In a small saucepan, heat the brown sugar, mustard, vinegar, and sodauntil bubbly. Cook until reduced and a bit thicker, about 15 minutes.
    4. Step4After about 2 hours of baking time, remove the foil and brush the glaze on the ham in 20 minutes intervals (put the ham back in the oven, uncovered, in between) until it's nice and glossy. Remove from the oven and allow to rest 15 to20 minutes before carving.

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Get a big honkin’ bone-in ham. Fully cooked.

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Use a really sharp knife to score a diamond pattern all over the surface of the ham: First cut lines in one direction…

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Then cut in the other direction.

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Grab a handful of cloves and poke them into the center of each diamond…

And keep going until the whole surface is dotted. I do this for looks more than flavor: I just think it looks lovely and traditional when it’s all done baking.

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Cover the ham with foil, then put it into the oven to warm it up. I do 325 for at least 2 to 2 1/2 hours, but I’d say just look at the instructions on the package and follow those. Some hams say to go 3 to 4 hours, some at a lower temperature. The whole goal here is just to heat the ham slowly…and it takes awhile to do that.

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While the ham is in the oven, you can make the glaze: Throw 3 cups of brown sugar into a saucepan…

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Along with 1/2 cup of grainy, spicy mustard for a nice tang…

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3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar for a little bite…

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And the star of the show!

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A whole can of Dr Pepper.

You can use co*ke. Heck, you could probably even use root beer. But please, for the love of all things good and caramelized, do not use diet pop.

(It’s the sugar we’re after here.)

Amen.

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Bring this mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat…

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And simmer it for a good 15-20 minutes until it’s gotten darker and thicker.

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After the ham has cooked for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, brush the surface with some of the glaze. Then pop it back into the oven, uncovered, for another 20 minutes or so.

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Pull it out and brush on more glaze, then pop it back in the oven.

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Then pull it out and brush on more glaze! Keep doing this until the ham is fully heated and the glaze is really gorgeous and glossy.

Note: On my Food Network episode last weekend, I only glazed it once because I had been at church and didn’t want to add too much more time before we ate. It was still totally delicious, but glazing the ham 2 or 3 (or 4) times really results in more of a masterpiece in terms of gorgeous surface.

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Mmmm. Easter feast!

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Enjoy, guys. This ham’ll take you far in life.

Ree's Dr Pepper-Glazed Ham Is the Only Recipe You'll Need This Easter (2024)

FAQs

What is the most popular ham for Easter? ›

What most American cooks procure for Easter dinner is a wet-cured, lightly smoked, prebaked ham, what neighborhood butchers called a city ham, when there were still neighborhood butchers. There is nothing particularly urban about city ham, the meat expert Bruce Aidells said, but the name took hold as shorthand.

What is the secret to good ham? ›

Cook it low and slow.

This ensures that the meat doesn't dry out as your ham spends at least a couple hours in the oven. The ideal temperature to cook at is 325°, and for a bone-in half ham it will take 20 to 25 minutes per pound to cook at that low of a temperature.

Do you cook the ham before you glaze it? ›

The idea is to wait until the ham is almost fully heated, then add the glaze as one of the last steps. You don't want to add it too early or the sugars in the glaze could cause it to burn, and you don't want to add it too late or you won't get that caramelized coating.

Should Easter ham be served warm or cold? ›

Pre-cooked ham can be served directly from the refrigerator. If you'd like to serve it hot, heat in a 350° oven to an internal temperature of 140°. At 140°, the ham will be thoroughly warmed and moist.

What is the tastiest ham in the world? ›

Joselito | Declared the best ham in the world | Iberian acorn-fed ham. SINCE 1868 With more than 150 years of experience, Joselito holds the secrets of an ancestral tradition.

Which is better shank or butt ham? ›

Butt portion vs. shank, which do you need? The butt portion will cost more per pound and will yield the largest amount of attractive slices. The shank bone is preferred by many for cooking with beans or in making soups, and others prefer the “fully cooked” varieties for ease of preparation and cooking time.

Why do people put soda on ham? ›

Cola adds caramel sweetness to a ham glaze and can stand up to other strong ingredients like bourbon and cloves. If you'd rather not cook with alcohol, use apple juice instead. Start with our Classic Cola-Glazed Ham recipe and give it your own spin, depending on the soda you're using.

What keeps ham moist? ›

Put Liquid in Your Pan

The best way to keep your ham from drying out is to utilize the drippings that come in the package. Pour the juice from the package onto the ham. If there isn't a lot of juice in your package, you may want to add your own liquid.

How does Gordon Ramsay cook ham? ›

Method. Put the gammon into a large saucepan and pour on enough cold water to cover. Add the carrots, leek, onion, peppercorns, coriander seeds, cinnamon stick and bay leaves. Bring to the boil, turn down to a simmer and cook for 3 hours, topping up with more boiling water if necessary.

Should a glazed ham be covered when baking? ›

If you don't cover your ham while cooking it will quickly dry out. Instead: Put some aluminum foil over your ham while it's cooking. It is recommended that the ham is covered for at least half of the cooking process and only removed during the last half when you glaze it.

Do you cook a ham at 325 or 350? ›

Heat oven to 325°F. Remove all packaging materials. Place ham, cut/flat side down, on rack in shallow roasting pan; cover tightly with aluminum foil. Heat approximately 18 to 23 minutes per pound until heated through.

When should I put my glaze on my ham? ›

The glaze should not be applied until the final hour to 30 minutes, in order to avoid burning the sugars. What you're going to do with the glaze ingredients is just combine most of them into a paste, and then apply it to the ham. After that, the heat in your oven will take care of everything.

What happens if you don't cover ham with foil? ›

The Kitchn explains that the best way to keep ham from drying out in the oven is to simply cover it with some aluminum foil or place it in a baking bag. This will trap any moisture as it evaporates and prevent the ham from drying out.

Are you not supposed to eat ham on Easter? ›

Ham is often served at the Easter table, which may seem odd since Jesus was Jewish and wouldn't have eaten pork. It seems that this holiday food comes more from the timing of Easter rather than a religious meaning.

How many pounds of ham do I need for 10 people? ›

That means for a 10-person Easter dinner, you'll need a bone-in ham that weighs between 7.5-10 pounds or a 5-pound boneless ham. If you're serving country ham, though, you'll need way less of it. Although it is delicious, the saltiness will prevent people from heaping it on their plates.

What is the most popular meat for Easter? ›

What is the traditional Easter meat? Ham is the most traditional Easter meat.

What is the most eaten meat on Easter? ›

There's no question lamb is front and centre at the Easter table - and for good reason - but there are plenty of alternatives to choose from. This is our list of some of the best meats to have for your Easter dinner: Easter Lamb.

Which is better spiral ham or whole ham? ›

Whole hams have the advantage of being less prone to drying out when cooking, but to be honest, if you're careful about the way you cook it, a spiral-sliced ham will be just fine. I usually opt for spiral-cut hams.

What cut of meat is an Easter ham? ›

Ham comes from the back legs and rump of a pig. A whole ham is a large piece of meat weighing about 18 to 20 pounds, so most grocery stores sell them in sections. Ham sells both boneless and bone-in. (Remember to keep the hambone to flavor soups, stews, and greens.)

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