Slow Cooker Ham – From the crockpot to the table in less than 20 minutes.

I always get the same question when I call home while I’m on my way home from work, “What’s for dinner?” If I haven’t planned my menu for the week, I really hate this question. I am generally not creative enough to come up with a dinner plan that quickly. The hubby always suggests spaghetti or grilled chicken. The kids always suggest tacos or pizza. If I left it up to them, this would be the menu for the week…Taco Monday, Grilled Chicken Tuesday, Hamburger Wednesday, Hotdog Thursday and Pizza Friday. I do like all of these meals, but NOT every week.

This week I put a new recipe on the menu, slow cooker ham. This recipe calls for a whole, bone-in ham placed in the crockpot with some brown sugar. Really, that’s it. It was one of the easiest recipes, besides the one that I have in the crockpot for tonight (more on that tomorrow).

I put the ham in the crockpot before I left for work. But I hit an immediate snag…the ham was too big for the crockpot. I decided to cover the top in tinfoil, lay the lid over the top of it, and leave for work. A few hours later I get a call from the hubby about how the ham didn’t look right. All of the steam was escaping and the bottom of the crockpot was dry. I guess I hadn’t thought through this issue very well. Thank goodness my husband was home or this whole thing would have been a disaster. He cut off a portion of the bottom of the ham and then it fit perfectly.

A few things to keep in mind before you make this recipe:

1. Do not buy a smoked ham. Apparently this recipe is not good with a smoked ham. Make sure it is a bone-in ham.

2. Make sure you have a crockpot that is big enough to fit your ham, or trim the ham so it fits.

3. I highly recommend getting a crockpot like this one. This isn’t exactly the one that I have, but they have the same features….the best of which is the fact that it switches to “warm” once the meal has cooked for the time you set. For example, I set my ham to cook on “low” for 8 hours. Once the 8 hours passed, the crockpot switched to “warm” to keep the dish from drying out. If you use your crockpot a lot, get a programmable one.

4. Be prepared. If you buy a big ham, you will have a lot leftover. Keep the bone and some meat to make Ham & Bean soup, and keep the rest of the ham to make sandwiches…you know…the kind of ham sandwiches that remind you of Easter.

5. This recipe is gluten-free, and the ham even had a big, gluten-free sticker on it. I’m not sure why ham would ever have gluten in it, but you would be shocked at all of the pointless ways they use it. Someday try the Gluten-free Rice Krispies. They are Grrrrreat (yes I said it) without gluten. Oh, and don’t even get me started on Chex. Almost all of their cereals are gluten free and they taste amazing. I’m not certain if they have always been GF, but they don’t taste any different today then they did when I was little. Now, if they would only make CAP’N Crunch gluten-free, the hubby could die a happy man!

Sorry everyone, I don’t have any pictures of this one. I’m getting better about taking pictures of everything, but we were in a hurry last night and I couldn’t get a snapshot. The ham looked and smelled amazing. You may have to pay $15 for your ham, but if you can get several meals for your $15, then it’s worth it…right?

Slow Cooker Ham
Adapted from:

1-1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 (8 pound) cured, bone-in picnic ham
1/2 cup pineapple chunks (optional)


Sprinkle 1 cup of brown sugar in the bottom of the crockpot. Place ham flat side down on top of the brown sugar. If necessary, trim the ham to allow for it to fully fit in the crockpot. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup of brown sugar over the ham and place the pineapple chunks around the perimeter of the ham. Place lid on crockpot and cook on low for 8 hours. Remove from crockpot and slice.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Thanksgiving Menu – Simple recipes for those that don’t want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen « The Accidental Cook

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