How to Cook a Frozen Ham

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Score the fat on the side of the ham in a diamond pattern to add visual appeal.
Score the fat on the side of the ham in a diamond pattern to add visual appeal. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

If a sudden power outage has rendered your freezer useless, there's no need to despair if you find yourself with a frozen ham that needs to be cooked on the fly. Perhaps a large ham is taking up too much room in your freezer, and you want to free up the space. Or, you're living a hostess's nightmare -- you forgot to thaw the main course. Regardless of the reason, cooking a frozen ham is a relatively simple task. Before you know it, you will be sinking your teeth into a juicy, glazed slice of cooked ham.

Things You'll Need

  • Aluminum foil
  • Roasting pan
  • Glaze

Thawing Ham

Fill sink with cold tap water so that the water completely submerses the ham.

Put ham in the cold water to defrost, keeping the wrapping on the ham so it does not contaminate the water. A small ham requires two to three hours to thaw, and a larger ham requires 30 minutes per pound.

Remove ham from water bath when it is completely thawed and remove packaging.

Baking the Ham

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and line roasting pan with aluminum foil.

Place ham in pan, with the fat side up. Leave the ham uncovered.

Cook ham in oven for 20 minutes to 30 minutes per pound of meat.

Apply glaze during the last 30 minutes of baking.

Remove the cooked ham from oven, allowing it to rest for 15 minutes before slicing.

Tips & Warnings

  • Unlike turkey or chicken, hams should not be basted with their own fluid. This fluid is often too salty and will wash away any glaze on the ham.
  • Sanitize all of the surfaces and utensils used in the thawing process.
  • Never thaw ham or other meat using hot water because it facilitates the growth of bacteria.

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