Simple Smoked Ham Recipe

Sharing is caring!

Are you looking for a simple smoked ham recipe? I have the perfect one for you!

Growing up, we always had a homemade smoked ham at Christmas time. That would lead to leftover ham sandwiches for weeks on end (yum!!)

For those of you who have never cured ham before, this recipe will also serve as a guide on how to cure a ham. Let’s get started.

Already know how to brine? Then you can jump straight to my smoked ham recipe here!

12 hours of hot smoking is a long one! You need something that can stand up to the test & hold the temperature for this duration!!

Two Techniques to Smoking Ham

This guide includes two different techniques, each offering a different layer of flavor to the ham.

Technique 1 for Smoking Ham

First off curing in brine then injected with brine, cold smoking, and finished off with hot smoke. It sounds tricky, but it’s not. 

You can also try injecting your ham with bourbon. This can give the ham a deep earthy flavor

According to Steve from Barbecue Bible, the cold smoking process gives the ham a deeper, more flavorsome smoke flavor.

This is because the cold smoke drives deeper into the meat than hot smoke, its you are looking for a deep smoky flavor you can also wrap your ham in foil. The main job of the hot smoke is to finish off the cooking process.

Technique 2 for Smoking Ham

Second, you can inject the meat. Injecting doesn’t so much add flavor but helps keep the ham moist and helps speed up the curing process. I Usually follow this method when I am cooking ham for Easter.

Then I follow the same process above, of cold smoking then hot smoking.

The kids love it when I make this one, they always take leftover sandwiches to school.

I hope your family enjoys this smoked ham as much as we do!

Related Posts
Have a read of some of our articles below. They will help you become a better pitmaster!
Read: Smoked Crispy Pork Belly
Learn: What is a Pork Cushion?

What Type of Wood to Use for Smoking Ham?

I like to use a light fruitwood when smoking ham. These include applewood and cherrywood. If you prefer a stronger flavor go for oak. You can see the rest of the types of wood I recommend for ham here.

How To Serve My Smoked Ham

This ham can be served hot straight out of the smoker. 

I think it’s delicious with a side of;

Garlic Green Beans

Smoked And Mashed Sweet Potato.

Smoked Mac and Cheese

Using a Pellet Smoker to Cook Your Ham?

If you’re using a pellet smoker to smoke your ham, follow my instructions here.

Have Some Leftovers?

Of course, you do! I think thinly sliced is perfect for sandwiches (with that leftover potato salad and some mustard!!).

My favorite way to have this ham is cold between two pieces of fresh buttery bread!

If you are storing the ham make sure to let it rest until it’s at room temperature, then cover and refrigerate. You can refrigerate it for up to 1 week.

Smoked Ham Recipe

Smoked ham waiting to be eaten

The Smokehouse Shoulder Ham Recipe

This recipe makes 1 large ham shoulder. This is enough to serve 6 to 8 hungry humans for a main course or a family of 4 with plenty of leftovers! This recipe does take time, planning and a little bit of self-control. I normally get this started on a Saturday and eat the following Sunday.
Resting Time 10 minutes
Total Time 9 days
Course Main Course
Cuisine Barbecue
Servings 8
Calories 70 kcal


  • 1 tablespoon pink curing salt
  • 1 8-10 pound (4-5 kg) bone-in fully cooked ham

  • 1 pound of coarse salt kosher or sea
  • 2 tablespoons pickling spice
  • 2 quarts ice water
  • 3 quarts hot water
  • 8 ounces packed dark brown sugar


  • 1 Meat injector
  • 1 Jumbo heavy-duty resalable plastic bag
  • 1 Wire rack
  • 1 Large stockpot or plastic bucket
  • 1 Instant-read or remote digital thermometer
  • Hickory or apple wood, Ideally you want a mix of both (enough for 24 hours of smoking)
  • 1 Roll If hanging a roll of sturdy butcher’s string Optional


  • In your large stockpot or plastic bucket mix together the coarse salt, curing salt, pickling spice, sugar and 3 quarts of hot water. At this point stir in any additional flavouring. Over a high heat bring to a boil and continue to boil until the sugar and salts have dissolved. Stirring several times. This should take around 3 minutes. Once dissolved remove from the heat and add in the ice water. Let cool then place in refrigerator until cold.
  • Once the brine has cooled strain two cups into a measuring cup. Inject the full 2 cups of brine deep into the ham using a meat injector. You want to inject a 1 – 1 ½ inch intervals along the bone. Inject all 2 cups of the brine.
  • Place the ham in a large resealable heavy-duty bag, and then place safely inside a large stockpot or large food-safe bucket. Once the ham is resting safely in the bag and bucket, add the brine to the bag. You are looking to submerge the whole ham. Once submerged, squeeze out any excess air and seal tightly. Place in the refrigerator for 7 days. Once a day turn the ham over to ensure an even cure. Midway through the 7-day process, repeat the injecting process with another 2 cups of brine.
  • Once the 7 days is up (finally) drain the ham and give it a very thorough rinse with cold water. Once thoroughly rinsed pat dry with paper towel. At this stage, if you plan to hang your ham during the process, securely tie your butcher’s string around the narrow end of the ham. To be safe give it a test hang to make sure the string is going to hold. If you plan to use your smoking rack there is no need to tie.
  • Prepare your smoker for cold smoking by following your specific brands instructions. You should set your temperature no higher than 100°F. Add your preferred woods. I like a mix of hickory & apple for this recipe. Hang or place your ham in the smoker and cold smoke at 100°F for no longer than 12 hours.
  • After 12 hours, set up your smoker for hot smoking. Preheat your smoker to between 225 & 250°F and add your preferred woods. I like a mix of hickory & apple for this recipe.
  • Once your smoker is up to temperature, place or hang your meat and let cook for 10 – 12 hours or until cooked. You are looking for an internal meat temperature of 160°F. When checking the internal temperature you want to get the probe in the middle of the meat, but not touching the bone.
  • Eating time! I like to serve the heat hot out of the smoker with some fresh green beans and a big helping of creamy mash sweet potato! Delicious!


Want to know when your smoked ham will be ready? See my smoked ham temperature chart 
Thinking of using a rub? Here are seven of my favorite rubs to use on smoked ham. 
Keyword Ham, Smoked Ham

Wrapping It Up

Making smoked ham takes a little bit of prep time and planning. But I guarantee you that the end result is totally worth it.

I like to get the ham brining on a Saturday and eat the following Sunday. It’s a great Sunday evening meal in summer. Not to mention the leftover sandwiches at work and for the kids at school on Monday and Tuesday!

If you have your own smoked ham, cured ham or double smoked ham recipes I would love to hear about it!


Author: Charlie Reeves
Hi, I’m Charlie, I am head taste tester at Simply Meat Smoking! I love it grilling, smoking, and getting out in the yard with the kids! The family also love to test all my recipes (especially my EXTRA CRISPY pulled pork, smoky pork loin, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill)

You will usually find me playing with the kids, perfecting my brisket bark, or sipping beers with boys around the fire. Can’t wait to share all my delicious smoking and grilling adventures with you!

You can read more on our About Us page.

Still Hungry for More?

8 thoughts on “Simple Smoked Ham Recipe”

  1. Thank you for the awesome tips on smoking a ham Charlie!! I had found it hard in the past but using your ideas of curing it via injection then cold smoking it with a finish in the hot smoker was brilliant!

    1. Thanks Hugo!! I agree the curing via injection was a game changer for me as well when it came to smoking ham last Christmas I knew I had to share it!! Have you tried it with brisket yet?

    1. Hiya Glen,

      Mate I usually go something that is 8-10 pound (4-5 kg) good for the extended fam and loooots of smoked ham sandwiches! Are you cooking it up this weekend?


    2. I am excited to try your cold smoked ham, but my smokers minimum temperature is only 200 deg. Is there an alternative to cold smoke with a higher temperature?

  2. Hey there! I have a 12-15 lb half ham leg with shank and I’d like to use this method to cook it for Thanksgiving (the goal is to replicate my own honey baked ham), but I’m short on time…What happens if I decrease the brine time from 7 to 5 or 6 days? What will happen if I opt for no curing salt? Can I finish it off in the oven (the day I serve it) after cold smoking it rather than hot smoking as the last step? Oh my gosh, so many questions! Thanks for any recommendations you can give :).

    1. Hiya Jess!! Sorry for the delay, I haven’t cold smoked ham before, how did you go with it? No stress about only curing for 6 days, I gone down to 4 before, but I definitely wouldn’t skip that step. Let me know how you go!! ohh and send some pics of your thanksgiving ham if you can 🙂

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating