Brown Sugar Glazed Baked Ham Recipe

maple brown sugar glazed ham

The Spruce/Abbey Littlejohn

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 2 hrs
Total: 2 hrs 15 mins
Servings: 12 servings
Yield: 1 6-pound ham
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
178 Calories
4g Fat
19g Carbs
17g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12
Amount per serving
Calories 178
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 4g 5%
Saturated Fat 1g 4%
Cholesterol 49mg 16%
Sodium 787mg 34%
Total Carbohydrate 19g 7%
Dietary Fiber 0g 2%
Total Sugars 17g
Protein 17g
Vitamin C 4mg 20%
Calcium 32mg 2%
Iron 1mg 5%
Potassium 320mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Fully cooked hams are an excellent choice for the holidays, as they're easy to prepare, feed many without effort, and make wonderful leftovers.

Also great for busy families, hams can be the base for many other recipes during the week. Cook the ham on Sunday and enjoy it all week long in many dishes, from casseroles and sandwiches to soups and pasta. Our take on a maple glazed ham is simply delicious and excellent for Thanksgiving, Christmas, or Easter as a wonderful centerpiece dish. Besides, the magic happens without much intervention from you, so if you're short on time and need to do many things at once, this is the recipe you want.

The brown sugar glaze imparts extra flavor and helps create a delicious outer crust. In a little over two hours, you can serve the ham and efficiently use your oven to make other dishes at the same time, such as roasted veggies or baked potatoes.

As the ham is already fully cooked—check that the label says so—you are just heating it up and not actually cooking the meat. It can be eaten as is, but by warming ensures the best flavor and texture. An instant-read thermometer is a great tool to have when making ham, but if you don't have one, simply follow the 18- to 20-minute rule per pound of weight in a 325 F oven.


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“Even if you haven’t cooked a whole ham before, this recipe is nearly fail-proof, especially for holiday meals. The prep was quick and easy, the kitchen smelled great, and the glaze’s flavor was perfectly sweet and spiced without overpowering the meat. Six pounds is a lot of meat, so invite guests or try the leftover suggestions.” —Colleen Graham

Brown Sugar Glazed Baked Ham/Tester Image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


For the Ham:

  • 1 (6-pound) fully cooked ham

  • Whole cloves, for studding the ham

For the Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup maple syrup

  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar

  • 1/2 cup apple juice

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

Steps to Make It

Bake the Ham

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    ingredients to make maple brown sugar glazed ham

    The Spruce/Abbey Littlejohn

  2. Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 325 F. Line a roasting pan with foil. Place the ham, fat-side up, on a rack in the prepared roasting pan. Score the fat all over in a diamond pattern, cutting to a depth of about 3/4 of an inch. Stud with whole cloves, inserting 1 clove into each intersection of the diamond pattern.

    ham with whole cloves on a baking sheet

    The Spruce/Abbey Littlejohn

  3. Bake for about 18 to 20 minutes per pound. For a 6-pound ham, the cooking time is around 1 hour and 40 minutes and up to 2 hours. About 20 minutes before the ham is done, carefully spoon about half of the glaze over the ham and return it to the oven.

    applying glaze on baked ham

    The Spruce/Abbey Littlejohn

  4. Remove the ham from the oven when an instant-read thermometer registers at least 140 F in the thickest part of the meat, away from fat or bone (140 F is the optimal temperature for a fully cooked ham). Cover the ham loosely with foil and let it stand for 10 to 15 minutes. If you don't have a thermometer and the cooking time has passed, just check that the grain of the meat separates when tearing a piece apart with 2 forks as if you were shredding other cooked meat.

    partially covered baked ham

    The Spruce/Abbey Littlejohn

Make the Glaze

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    ingredients to make maple brown sugar glaze

    The Spruce/Abbey Littlejohn

  2. In a medium saucepan, combine the maple syrup, brown sugar, apple juice, mustard, and cinnamon. Place the saucepan over medium-high heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Boil for 2 minutes while constantly stirring to prevent it from boiling over. Set aside.

    cooking maple brown sugar glaze in pot

    The Spruce/Abbey Littlejohn

Recipe Variation

Replace the maple syrup with honey or agave nectar if you prefer.


  • A fully cooked ham that has not been USDA inspected (most are but check the label) must be cooked to a safe minimum temperature of 165 F. If the ham is labeled "cook-before-eating," cook it to a minimum temperature of 145 F.
  • A half ham weighs approximately 5 to 7 pounds. For a whole ham that ranges between 10 to 15 pounds, allow the same 18 to 20 minutes per pound but double the amounts on the glaze ingredients. You'll need around 1/2 pound of ham per person.
  • Lining the pan is very important because the baked glaze makes a sticky mess, and the foil makes cleanup much easier.

How to Store

Place leftover ham in the fridge and keep tightly covered for three to four days. The ham can be frozen for up to two months. To make it easier to use when needed, slice it into serving-size pieces beforehand. Wrap the ham in plastic wrap or freezer paper, then foil and place into a freezer-safe bag or container.