Easiest Meal Ever | How to Cook Ham in an Electric Roaster Oven

Something that you can cook so easy yet tastes excellent does not happen every day in the kitchen. You might already think that ham is from heaven. But what if I tell you that there is even an easier way to cook it? Well friends, proceed and learn how to cook a ham in an electric roaster oven and prepare yourself a delectable meal tonight almost without any effort.

Ham is pretty much the official food for Easter just as turkey has been identified with Thanksgiving. Many people enjoy the tender and juicy taste of baked ham over the holidays. Who would not? It is practical and tasty. Even better, it cooks much faster in a roaster than your big old chunky oven! Join me on this quick and straightforward guide for baking ham in an electric roaster oven the most practical and delicious way.

How to Cook Ham in an Electric Roaster Oven?

The good news is that you do not have to be an expert. If you can cut a tomato in half then you are probably a good fit. All it takes is some aluminum foil, a decent size ham, and an electric roaster oven. Oh, and we will also make some glaze, so you would need some honey and spices too.

Step 1 | Buy a ham

To get things started, you need to buy some ham either from the store or the butcher. You cannot jump on to the other steps before completing this one. Usually, there are basically three kinds of ham available. First one is the raw ham, which takes the longest amount of time to prepare. Benefits include being able to develop a unique flavor. Creative home cooks might opt for this choice. The downside is the long cooking time.

The second option is the precooked ham. I suggest you go with this one for the best results and the quickest way. It is cured. And if you like your meat cured the right way-salted, and smoked that is- then this is it for you. I also have to mention that this is by far the most popular option in the world of ham baking.

OK, there is another one, but it is not for everyone. It is called country ham! If you like the spicy taste of the South, then there is a good chance you are going to fall in love with the first bite. It takes many months to achieve a distinctive taste. Notice, country ham is very salty, and it must be soaked in water before cooking in the roaster oven.

Tip Alert

Precooked ham gives the best results. There are three types of hams that you can purchase. Fresh ham is basically raw pork, ready-to-eat ham is cured, and the country ham is heavily-salted and dried for long periods of time ranging from 5 months up to a year.

Step 2 | Read the label

Inspect the ham. You probably did this at the store or the butcher shop. But it is always wiser to be on the safe side.  Check the label on the ham to see if it is fully processed or not. On some products, you will notice that it states ready-to-eat or fully cooked on the labelling. This phrase means that reheating the ham would be sufficient. Moreover, it also means that it is the one described above as the second option. Note that you can either cook fresh ham or reheat and flavor a precooked version in the roaster oven.

Step 3 | Wrap it up

After you got yourself a decent ham of your choice, it is time to start cooking. Keep in mind that retaining the moisture on the meat is crucial during ham baking. For this reason, we wrap the ham in aluminum foil. Start by placing 2-3 sheets of foil large enough to cover the whole meat. Next, place the ham in the center of the layered sheets fat side down (cut side should be facing you), and add seasoning. This part is totally up to your taste buds, and the sky is the limit. There is a delicious recipe if you scroll down a bit. You can try that one or make up your own. Whichever one you prefer; you should not skip on salt and ground pepper unless you have some sort of medical situation prohibiting. That is ham seasoning 101.

Cover the ham with the aluminum foil once you are done seasoning. Make sure you leave the top part open since we need that opening to apply the glaze. Do not forget to score the ham. Just apply any pattern you like with a meat knife.

Ham Seasoning Recipe for Electric Roaster Oven

You can use the following seasoning recipe for a 12 to 16 pounds ham (precooked). Bone-in or boneless ham are both fine.


  • 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoons of honey
  • 2 teaspoons of dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon of dried garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • Salt to taste


  • Melt the butter on a medium size deep pan.
  • Once the butter is melted, add the olive oil.
  • Add the honey and stir for a few minutes (1-2).
  • Take the mixture out and let it cool down a bit.
  • Pour the mixture into a small bowl.
  • Add all the other ingredients and make sure they blend well.
  • Brush the mixture over ham.

Tip Alert

You can use a food processor to incorporate the ingredients better. Use a pastry brush to apply flawlessly.

Step 4 | Preheat the roaster oven

Unplug the roaster oven. Take out the cooking rack. Add some water (4-5 cups) at the bottom of the pan. Put back the rack inside. Plug in the roaster oven, and then turn it on. You need to preheat for about 8 to 10 minutes at 325°F. Doing so will make the roaster ready for the ham; it should start heating right away, and the low temperatures won’t help. Amount of time needed may vary depending on the model.

Step 5 | Start cooking

Place the aluminum foil wrapped ham on the rack carefully. Check on the water; it should be lower than halfway thru the ham. Hook up the meat thermometer if you have one. Do not forget to close the lid! Have some coffee, and come back later to check on the temperature.

Tip Alert

You can add 1/2 cup of red wine to the glaze in order to deepen the flavor of the ham. Also, you can add 3 tablespoons of maple syrup to increase the browning.

Step 6 | Apply glaze (optional)

If you bought a precooked ham, then there is a good chance that it came with a glaze packet. Most hams at the groceries are sold this way. If not, you can prepare glaze from scratch. You should not apply the glaze until the meat thermometer shows 100°F. And before I forget; some hams do come glazed. I suggest you check the label. You do not want to double glaze.

Step 7 | Check the temperature

Your ham is ready when the meat thermometer reads 140°F. This is true for precooked hams. If you are cooking a raw ham in the electric roaster oven, then you should look for 160°F. Carefully take out the ham from the roaster oven when the meat reaches the necessary temperature.

How to serve ham?

You must pay attention on the moisture. It is crucial not to dry out the ham. It is a fatty meat, and can get burned easily. Thus, adding water at the bottom of the roaster pan is almost mandatory. Some people like to serve ham warm, while others prefer consume cold. This also depends on the type of ham you are serving. Spiral-cut hams are usually served cold. Potatoes, pecans, spinach sand green beans go great with ham. However, you can be as creative you want to be!

Serving slices of roasted ham that is cooked in an electric roaster oven. Great for sandwiches and snacks.

Can a ham be cooked in a roaster?

You can cook a ham in a roaster oven just like any other meat. In fact, ham is the easiest to manage. Place the ham in the electric roaster oven and cook for about 1 to 2 hours depending on the size of the meat. Note that it takes a little longer to cook a bone-in ham.

Do you put water in the bottom of roasting pan for ham?

It is practical to add some water at the bottom of the pan while cooking ham in the electric roaster oven. You can also add other liquids like wine or root beer. This helps to enrich the flavor and also retain the moisture during cooking.

Do you cover a ham while baking?

Cover the ham with aluminum foil while baking to prevent any excessive drying. You need to maintain the moisture until you apply the glaze. Otherwise, the meat would lose its moist texture and the flavor would diminish.

Is bone in ham better than boneless?

It is easier to slice and eat boneless ham. However, most people would agree that bone-in ham has a deeper flavor compared to the boneless version. This is same with almost any other meat. The parts that are close to or around the bones always tend to taste richer. Bones definitely add to the flavor of the meat.

How much ham do I need for 10 people?

You can prepare half a pound of boneless ham per person. It is a moderate estimate that works well for calculating the amount of ham you would need for your guests. If you are cooking a bone-in ham, then prepare about 3/4 pound per each person. The following chart can help you plan wisely for your dinner serving. You would need approximately 5 pounds of boneless ham for 10 people.

Ham Serving Estimation Chart*

Number of People
Boneless Ham
(by pound)
Bone-in Ham
(by pound)
211 1/2
1057 1/2
14710 1/2
18913 1/2
*Above numbers are approximate estimates only. Each person’s appetite can differ significantly.

How is ham made?

Ham is produced either by salting, and then drying or smoking raw pork. In general, ham is considered precooked because the process of curing merely prepares the meat for consumption. However, you can also purchase a raw ham and cook it with a roaster oven. Note that some outdoor electric roaster ovens such as the Oster Smoker 16-Quart enable you to burn wood chips and smoke ham, turkey, or any other meat efficiently with ease. You can buy flavored chips and smoke your food professionally at home.

How long does a ham need to cook in the roaster oven?

As a practical guide, calculate around 15 minutes of cooking time per pound of boneless ham in the roaster oven. You would need about 2 hours for a raw 8 pounds ham to cook in the roaster oven. On the other hand, you need to give about an hour of cooking for a 12 to 14 pounds of precooked ham. Finally, estimate about 18 to 20 minutes of baking per pound of raw bone-in ham.

Your goal is to bring the ham’s inner temperature to 140°F when reheating a precooked one. Shoot for 160°F if you are baking a raw ham. It is always wise to check with a meat thermometer. In order to achieve that perfect ham cooking level, you need to bring the electric roaster oven to 325°F.  A pre-heating time of 8-10 minutes is suggested for best results.

What about baked ham leftovers?

Baked ham is simply a great resource for a variety of leftover recipes that are all yummy. It is a fabulous way to extend the holidays for a few more days. Once you bake a tender and juicy ham, you might want to hang on to the leftovers since they can turn into a goldmine easily.

Popular ham leftover recipes:

  • Split pea soup with ham
  • Ham pie with watercress
  • Ham cobbler
  • Creamy ham salad
  • Ham omelet with mushrooms
  • Classic cold subs with ham
  • Cheese & ham casserole
  • Ham, leek, broccoli and potato pie


  • Cooked ham can be stored in the freezer for about one month. Wrap the unused portion of the ham in aluminum foil. You can do this within 2-3 days after you cooked the ham. Just take it out of the freezer at least 24 hours prior and thaw it in the fridge prior to consuming. However, the frozen ham will not taste as yummy as a freshly cooked or reheated one. Freezing cooked meat has a tendency to reduce the flavors.
  • Make sure you soak the country ham in water for 15 to 20 minutes before consumption. You can use tap water. Soaking is necessary since the country ham is a specialty. It is cured over a long period of time and is heavily salted to give that southern twist.
  • Ask your butcher or the staff at the grocery store for guidance on how to reheat or cook the ham. They have in depth information about their products, and can provide additional tips for achieving even more delicious meals with their expertise.


  • Always cook your ham thoroughly. Eating undercooked ham can cause trichinella spiralis parasite (trichinosis). It is advised to cook raw ham at 325°F until the meat thermometer shows 145°F.
  • Never glaze the ham with the drippings at the bottom. Use fresh glaze instead, otherwise you might burn the outer parts of your food.

In Conclusion

You can prepare ham effortlessly with an electric roaster oven. It is a widely popular meal, especially during Easter. The main reason for this popularity comes from such features as having an irresistible taste, being reasonably inexpensive, and easy to prepare. Also, you can use the leftovers in other recipes like soups, sandwiches, and more resourcefully. This adaptability and usefulness surely add to its reputation. Electric roaster ovens are exceptionally advantageous appliances when it comes to preparing a variety of holiday meals like the Thanksgiving turkey, and Easter ham.

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