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Best Crock Pot Ham Recipe, 3-Ingredient Simple

My Best Crock Pot Ham recipe is deliciously tender, smoky, savory and just the slightest touch of sweet from that dark brown sugar and mustard glaze. Perfect, really. lol

Crock Pot Ham (slow cooker ham) served on a white plate with broccoli and potatoes
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Serving crock pot ham always makes the meal feel a little bit celebratory and yet, cooking a ham is very simple. Why on earth don’t we do it more often!!??!.

No, seriously, you guys. My [affiliate link] Slow Cooker Ham recipe is so good! This could be your Easter ham, Thanksgiving Ham, Christmas Ham or just Sunday Dinner ham.

Ham that is slow roasted in a slow cooker is tender, juicy and full of flavor. No matter when you serve it, this Crock Pot Ham recipe will make you the dinner hero!

boneless ham in the package

The Ingredients

  • Whole Boneless Ham
  • Dark Brown Sugar (Light brown sugar works, too. I just prefer the deep, rich caramely flavor dark brown sugar brings to the brown sugar glaze.)
  • Stone Ground Mustard

Buying Ham

The Cost of Ham

As proteins go, I would say ham is mid-range on price.

It’s not quite as affordable as chicken, however, it is much cheaper than ground beef, per pound.

back of a boneless ham in the package

I purchased a whole boneless ham, this week, and it was only $3.48 per lb.

It was almost 9 pounds, so of course the initial cost was more at once, than a pound of hamburger, but I will get 5 or 6 different meals from it.

That’s extremely economical to my way of thinking!

Of course the more that is done for you, prior to purchase, the higher the cost per pound. For example, boneless is more expensive than bone-in. But, about half the weight in a bone-in ham is waste and thrown away, so in real dollars for what you get, they’re about equal.

Spiral sliced ham will cost more than an unsliced one. Half hams and smaller are usually slightly more per pound than if you buy a whole ham. Decide what conveniences you want to pay for and which ones you can manage on your own.

removing netting from ham for Best Slow Cooker Ham

a netted, boneless whole ham

How Much Ham To Buy for Crock Pot Ham

An eight-pound boneless ham will serve around 30 people. Especially if you are having a wide array of side dish options, too.

A bone-in ham must weigh at least 14.25 pounds to feed the same number of people.

Think about the appetites you’ll be feeding. Are there a large number of big eaters, who might need more than the average size portions or who will enjoy going back for seconds? Are there a large number of young children with small appetites? Those can both affect how much ham you will need to buy.

In general, you will need just over a quarter pound of ham per person when serving boneless ham. And, just under half a pound of ham per person should suffice when making a bone-in ham.

Raw bone-in ham on a wooden cutting board surrounded by fresh vegetables
Whole Bone-In Ham. Photo credit: ©istetiana / Adobe Stock

Boneless or Bone-In?

There is really no significant difference between bone-in and boneless hams other than the bone itself. Choose what you like best and what most easily fits your slow cooker for my Best Crock Pot Ham.

I always choose boneless ham when I’m making this Crock Pot Ham recipe. My preference is not to have to deal with all the waste from the bone and excess fat that are part of working with a whole bone-in ham.

For me, the texture and flavor are not significantly different, as long as the boneless ham is slow-cooked.

The only benefit I can see to a bone-in ham is that you would have the leftover bone at the end for making beans or soup.

To understand my preferences and why I choose boneless ham, read that section, below.

Front view  of whole boneless ham unwrapped

Whole Boneless Ham sliced in half.

Cooked or Uncooked Ham?

Both bone-in and boneless hams that have been cured and/or smoked can be purchased uncooked or fully cooked, already. In most cases, you will find that hams labeled “cured”, “smoked” or “baked” are already fully cooked.

The law requires uncooked ham to be plainly marked and include instructions for safe handling and proper cooking. Read your package to be sure.

Fully cooked ham can be immediately sliced thin for sandwiches (like my Ham and Cheese Sliders) or other recipes (like my Chicken Cordon Bleu). It is safe to eat with no need for further cooking.

For glazing and maximum tenderness, however, you will still want to roast or slow-cook most hams that are being served as the centerpiece of a special meal, even if they have been pre-cooked.

closeup of sliced chicken cordon bleu on a plate with salad

Any type of ham can be cooked in the oven, crock pot, or countertop roaster. Small ones can be cooked in the Instant Pot or even an air fryer.

I love the flavor of smoked ham, so that is always my first choice. But, you can definitely buy hams that aren’t smoked. Sometimes ham is labeled just country ham or cured ham.

Again, reading the packaging is critical in selecting ham and knowing how best to handle it.

Cured ham can be either cooked or uncooked. It is required by law to state whether it is fully cooked or must be cooked before serving, on the packaging.

crock pot ham on a white platter sliced for serving

Why I Choose Boneless Hams

My personal preference is boneless. It slices easier, cooks faster and I don’t have the fat, gristle, and bone waste of a bone-in-ham.

My guess is you could use this Crock Pot Ham recipe on a bone-in ham, but would probably need to roast it in the oven. My crock pot sure wouldn’t accommodate a whole one, anyway. Perhaps a half.

The bone-in ham will require extra work after cooking, too. You’ll want to remove the excess fat and bone before slicing it for the table. You will most likely have more drippings at the bottom of the roaster, too. Which can be great for gravy (or soup at another time).

There is no right or wrong in which ham to choose for my easy crock pot ham recipe. It is 100% a personal preference. Since mealtime is usually hectic for me, I will always choose what’s easiest for serving and cleanup. For me, that’s a boneless ham.

This delicious crock pot ham recipe will make a fabulous dinner for your family whether it’s an Easter ham or an everyday easy dinner ham. And you won’t believe the flavors from just 3 easy ingredients! Enjoy!

best slow cooker ham

What Other Recipes Can I Make with Leftovers from Crock Pot Ham?

There are so many ideas for using leftover crockpot ham, that it won’t seem like leftovers at all when you’re enjoying the meals. Remember, adding meat to any side dish instantly transforms it into a meal/casserole! Think mac and cheese and stir in chopped ham and frozen peas. Instant meal!

  • Crazy Good Grilled Ham and Cheese Sandwiches
  • Ham Sandwiches
  • Ham and Potato Soup
  • Pasta Salad with Ham
  • Cheesy Ham Chowder
  • Sweet Potato Hash with Ham
  • Denver Omelet
  • Chef Salad
  • Ham and Cheese Scones
  • Ham and Beans Soup
  • Hawaiian Fried Rice
  • Crescent Dough Ham and Cheese Pinwheels
  • Cheesy Pull-Apart French Bread with Ham
  • Baked Beans with Ham
  • Eggs Benedict Casserole
  • Cheesy Potatoes with Ham
  • Wild Rice and Ham Soup
  • Hawaiian Pizza
  • Chicken Cordon Bleu – essentially a chicken breast stuffed with ham and cheese. Delish!

And, that’s a small list. There are so many more. An investment in a whole boneless ham nets tons of money-saving meals for the rest of the week, for lunches or for the freezer!

whole boneless smoked ham for Best Slow Cooker Ham

How to Make My Best Crock Pot Ham

Don’t blink. These instructions are short.

  1. Remove the netting from the outside of the ham.
  2. Place the ham into your crock pot / slow cooker.
  3. Mix the brown sugar and mustard paste and spread the brown sugar glaze over the top of the ham.
  4. Put the lid on your crock pot / slow cooker.
  5. Cook the ham on low for 6-8 hours.

Ta Da! Best Crock Pot Ham deliciousness! See this doesn’t just have to be Easter ham. This scrumptious, savory and simple ham recipe is for any time of year.

Whole boneless hams are usually “netted”. Holding everything together, after the bone has been removed, is made easier with the netting, so the ham can be smoked. You will want to take that off before you cook the ham.

removing netting from ham for Best Slow Cooker Ham

Mix together the stone ground mustard and brown sugar to make a paste. Yellow mustard or even Dijon would work, too. I always have dark brown sugar in my pantry, but if yours is light that’s perfectly fine. Go for it.

stone ground mustard and brwon sugar in a measuring cup

Smear the mustard/brown sugar paste over the top of the ham.

As the Crock Pot Ham is cooking, the brown sugar glaze will melt and drip down the ham.

Their won’t be a massive amount of other drippings in the bottom of the slow cooker when the Crock Pot Ham is done.

It will be just enough for drizzling the delicious slices and adding a perfectly balanced sweet acidic zing to the meat’s flavor.

mustard and brown sugar paste over ham

Three simple ingredients to Crock Pot Ham recipe perfection! I hope you get a chance to make this delicious ham. You and your family are going to love it!

And, if you do make this Crock Pot Ham recipe, I hope you’ll consider stopping back to leave me a comment and a 5 star rating. 5 star ratings help others find our recipe when they search on Google.

Plus, your comments on my best crock pot ham post makes it easier for other readers to get ideas for variations and how the recipe worked when you made it. Or even what’s great to serve it with. Thanks so much for your help!

Crock Pot Ham (slow cooker ham) served on a white plate with broccoli and potatoes

The Recipe

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best slow cooker ham

Best Crock Pot Ham: 3-Ingredient Simple


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5 from 14 reviews

  • Author: Glenda Embree
  • Total Time: 6 hours 5 minutes
  • Yield: 2535 servings 1x

Description

This ham tastes too good to be such a simple recipe.  But the reality is dinner couldn’t be more special, or easy, with this dish.  The easy crock pot recipe makes leftovers for many, many more dishes throughout the week.  The number of servings will honestly depend on all the different ways you use it.  Enjoy!


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 89 lb whole boneless ham
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar (Light brown sugar works, too. I just prefer the deep, rich caramely flavor dark brown sugar brings to the recipe.)
  • 1/2 cup stone ground mustard

Instructions

  1. Remove the netting from the ham and place the ham into an 8 qt crock pot.
  2. Mix the brown sugar and mustard to form a thick brown sugar glaze.
  3. Spread the brown sugar glaze over the top of the ham.
  4. Cover the crock pot and cook the ham on low for 6 to 8 hours.

Notes

You can sub yellow mustard or Dijon for the stone ground.

Light brown sugar can be substituted for the dark.

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 6 hours
  • Category: Main Dish, Meat
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: American

What to Serve with Crock Pot Ham

Easy Green Beans and Potatoes
Green Beans and Potaotes in a white serving bowl on table with stack of plates and a blue print cloth napkin

Perfect Potato Salad
perfect potato salad

Easy Bean Salad

Sweet Potato Casserole
sweet potato casserole
glenda embree

About Glenda

I believe cooking from scratch doesn’t have to be complicated and that YOU can do it. My simple recipes, tutorials, and cooking tips will help you get weeknight dinners on the table with less stress. Forget takeout or the drive-thru. Let me show you how to make homemade easy. Read more...

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