That image of pulling your golden-brown ham from the oven out of your mind is undoubtedly satisfying, but it's not the only way to cook a ham. Grilling instead of baking or roasting ham lets you save oven space while giving the ham a deeper, smokier flavor. If you want to make things even easier, start out with a spiral ham, which is simply a pre-sliced, precooked ham; you end up with a beautifully grilled ham that's a cinch to serve. Just avoid already glazed hams -- commercially glazed hams typically lack the fresh, deep flavors that you can achieve with your own simple, homemade concoction.
Place a pan on the unheated part of the grill to prevent the juices and ham drippings from making the fire too hot. After you place the pan, preheat your grill to low. If your grill has two heating elements, only turn one on to low heat, leaving the other one off to cook the ham over indirect heat.
Put your basting liquid into a bowl. You can use a variety of liquids for basting, including broth, apple juice or pineapple juice. Use the liquid alone or mix it with flavorful additions such as butter, mustard or whiskey.
Spray the grill with cooking spray or oil, then place the ham on the grates, preferably in an area with indirect heat.
Let the ham cook for about 10 minutes, then turn it and baste or brush it with your basting liquid. Continue to baste and turn the ham every 20 to 30 minutes to add extra flavor while keeping the ham moist. Cook the ham for roughly three hours, or until a meat thermometer reads 120 to 150 degrees Fahrenheit. Since your ham is already cooked, you're primarily heating it up while adding some new flavors on the outside.
Brush glaze on the spiral ham during the last 20 minutes of cooking. You can use any glaze that you like; one easy option is a mixture of 2 parts honey to 1 part orange juice. Or sprinkle brown sugar over the ham and let it cook for five to 10 minutes before turning it and sprinkling it with sugar again, letting it cook until the entire ham is glazed.
Remove the ham from the grill and let it rest for five to 15 minutes before serving it.
- Tent or loosely cover the spiral ham with aluminum foil if you're concerned about the meat drying out. The foil helps keep moisture in while you're heating the ham and should be removed before you glaze it.
Caryn Anderson combines extensive behind-the-scenes writing experience with her passion for all things food, fashion, garden and travel. Bitten by the travel bug at the age of 15 after a trip to Europe, Anderson fostered her love of style and fashion while living in New York City and earning her degree at New York University.