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How to Prepare a Precooked Smoked Ham

by Zora Hughes, studioD

One of the best things about picking up a precooked and smoked ham is the time and energy you save not cooking it yourself. You don't even have to reheat it if you don't want to. Once it's fully thawed, you can simply slice and serve it cold. Otherwise, it only needs a short while in the oven to fully reheat. While some pre-cooked hams come already glazed, you can opt to add your own glaze if the ham is bare, giving it a crunchy, flavorful crust.

Cold or Room Temperature Ham

Thaw your ham if it is frozen by placing it in the refrigerator. Depending on the size, it could take anywhere from 12 hours to more than a full day to thaw.

Slice and serve the ham on a platter once the ham has fully thawed if you want to serve it cold. If your ham is spiral-cut, as many pre-cooked hams are, you only need to cut through the thin connections visible on the ham's surface -- and around the bone if it's bone-in -- to loosen the even slices.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit if you wish to serve the ham warm. Place the ham on a roasting rack set inside a shallow roasting pan. Add an inch or so of water to the pan, which helps infuse moisture into the ham.

Brush the skin of the ham with a glaze, using a basting brush. Your ham may come with a glaze already on it or with a glaze mix. You can also make your own simple glaze by combining equal parts of brown sugar and honey.

Cover the ham loosely with aluminum foil. Place the roasting pan in the oven to reheat for 12 to15 minutes per pound. Remove the ham when it is done and let it rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Items you will need
  •  Chef's knife
  •  Roast rack
  •  Roasting pan
  •  Aluminum foil


  • Experiment with a variety of creative glazes for your ham, such as pureed fruit blended with honey or pineapple juice and brown sugar mixed together.
  • Store leftover slices of ham in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days, covered in plastic wrap. For longer storage, place ham slices in a freezer-safe resealable bag and store in a freezer-safe container. The ham can keep in the freezer for 1 to 2 months.

About the Author

Based in Los Angeles, Zora Hughes has been writing travel, parenting, cooking and relationship articles since 2010. Her work includes writing city profiles for Groupon. She also writes screenplays and won the S. Randolph Playwriting Award in 2004. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in television writing/producing and a Master of Arts Management in entertainment media management, both from Columbia College.

Photo Credits

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