By using canned ham you're saving a lot of cooking time and can serve a delicious sweet-and-savory meal in under 2 hours. Pineapple slices and a tangy sauce provide incredible flavor, and the recipe is so festive and fun it'd be enjoyed by adults and kids alike.
Although canned ham is clearly not as good in flavor or texture as a fresh or fully cooked ham, it offers a major advantage in its shelf stability. So having canned ham in your pantry is not a bad idea because you can put it to good use in an emergency last-minute meal. In general, a large canned ham, in the familiar pear-shape, can be stored in the pantry for up to two years. Read the label carefully, however, as some brands must be stored in the refrigerator.
Note that this is a recipe for canned ham, not Spam.
Gather the ingredients.
Preheat the oven to 325 F (160 C).
Cut the ham into 1/2-inch-thick slices, cutting almost to the bottom, but not all the way through.
Tie the ham around the outside perimeter with a piece of kitchen twine to keep the slices in place.
Drain the pineapple slices, reserving 1/4 cup of the syrup.
In a bowl, combine the pineapple syrup with the chili sauce, brown sugar, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, and chili powder.
Place the ham on a rack in a roasting or baking pan. Arrange the pineapple slices around the ham, securing them with toothpicks if needed.
Pour the sweet-savory sauce over all the ham.
Bake in the preheated oven for 1 1/2 hours, frequently basting with the sauce.
Once the cooking time has ended, place the ham on a serving platter, arranging the pineapple slices around it. Remove the twine. Cover loosely with foil to keep warm.
Pour the pan juices into a 2-cup measuring cup and add enough hot water, if necessary, to make 1 1/4 cups total of liquid. Transfer to a small saucepan.
In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch and cold water, blending it until smooth. Add cornstarch mixture to the saucepan with the pan juices and cook over medium heat, stirring, until thickened and bubbly.
Drizzle the sauce over the ham and pineapple and serve the remaining sauce on the side.
Not Much Time to Cook?
If you're pressed for time, follow one of our suggestions to serve a tasty ham in less than 45 minutes:
- The canned ham may also be cut into individual slices for baking, arranged in a single layer in a baking dish. Spray the pan with olive oil, arrange ham, top with pineapples and sauce, and bake in a 375 F oven until hot and glazed, approximately 45 minutes.
- Grill or pan-fry the ham slices, make the sauce in a pan, and once the slices are hot and crispy outside, drizzle with sauce and top with pineapples.
Store leftover ham covered in the refrigerator and enjoy it over the next three to five days. If you don't have the opportunity to consume right away, freeze it for up to two months. Use one of our meal suggestions to enjoy your leftover ham:
- Fry slices of leftover ham and serve with beans and rice.
- Cube leftover ham. Make a potato hash to accompany the ham. Layer hash, ham, and 2 sunny-side-up eggs per person.
- Mix leftover ham in scalloped potatoes, or make a fun mash with cubed ham, bacon bits, shredded mozzarella, and heavy cream. Bake until crispy on top.
- Make your favorite pasta casserole and add cubed ham to the sauce.
- Thinly slice leftover ham and make Gouda and ham sandwiches or quesadillas.
- Chop leftover cooked ham, add some sweet pickle relish, chopped celery, and salt and pepper to taste. Add enough mayonnaise to moisten the mixture and use it to fill sandwich buns or rolls. Or pile it onto lettuce leaves for a tasty luncheon salad.
- Finely chop the ham and mix it with scrambled eggs and shredded cheese. Serve with tortilla chips, salsa, and guacamole.
- Make Chinese-inspired rice by sauteeing onions, carrots, celery and bean sprouts. Add some cooked rice, soy sauce to taste, and cubed ham. Once the rice is very hot, add 1 egg per person and mix well until eggs are cooked.